Too late to apply to LAUSD magnet schools? Try this instead
LA School Report | April 15, 2014
Now’s a chance for LAUSD parents to act: the SAS program, which stands for “Schools for Advanced Studies,” is accepting applications until April 30.
SAS programs are, in essence, gifted programs that reside within a traditional school. Offered at dozens of schools district-wide (see list here), they are considered a well-kept secret, perhaps because performance numbers are not broken out from the host school so their track records are hard publicize.
“What some parents don’t know is that kids don’t have to test to get into these programs,” says Angel Zobel-Rodriguez, a mother of two, who started a website called, Magnet Angel (and runs another called Ask a Yenta) to help parents navigate the complicated gifted-magnet application process.
Instead, students can be referred by schools if they meet the academic criterion (see description here). And unlike with the magnet process, students can apply to as many SAS schools as they want and don’t need “points” — an accrual system that is used for the gifted magnets.
According to the new LAUSD Gifted/Talented website, the programs are “an intensive academic articulated program in which both innovative and traditional courses are taught.” The SAS programs are open to students from neighboring areas (pending available space) who have been identified as high performers, and the SAS teachers are required to go through extra professional development training.
In general, you can expect “classes will be taught at a higher level,” says Zobel-Rodriguez. “Think of them as gifted magnets but without a bus.”