Kenwood Academic Center in the CPS system is for students in grades 7 and 8. Admission into this program guarantees a spot in Kenwood High School.
Kenwood Academic Center | School Overview
Kenwood Academic Center for gifted students on the south side of Chicago is part of Kenwood Academy High School. It is a very well-sought after program where students take accelerated high school classes and are also able take courses at The University of Chicago. The main goals of the school is to prepare students for competitive colleges, and to make sure all students excel in academic literacy, argumentative writing & discourse, and math and science skills.
Kenwood Academic Center | Admissions
Admissions to the Kenwood Academic Center is very competitive. Approximately 7000 students take the admissions test for all seven of Chicago’s academic centers each year, but only 1000 or 10 percent are offered a spot to at least one of the centers.
The odds of admission change depending on how competitive the process is, and the chance to get a seat is either lower or higher depending on the academic center. For example, in 2015, 755 students applied to the Kenwood Academic Center, and 200 were selected for admissions. Whitney Young Academic Center had 2060 applications, but only 140 students were offered a seat.
Of the 30 percent of students who are admitted to the centers, about 30% gain admission as a result of scores alone; the rest get in as a result of assessments of a combination of scores and the socio-economic tier they reside in. In other words, kids from wealthier neighborhoods need to score higher than students from less wealthy areas.
In 2016-2017, average scores for accepted students were 743 points on the 900 point admissions scale.
Kenwood Academic Center Application
Applications are available at CPS elementary schools or can be accessed on the website of CPS’ Office of Access and Enrollment.
Each child only needs to submit one application form, no matter how many academic centers s/he is applying to. You will need to submit the application, which is available in early October, by the middle of December. Your child will need to take the admissions test before early February.
Admissions Criteria and Entrance Exam
In order to gain entry into Kenwood Academic Center, admissions considers students’ grades and test scores (NWEA MAP) in 5th grade as well on an admissions test taken during 6th grade.
The application scoring system has three main parts: Previous year’s NWEA MAP assessment (33.3% of the total), previous year’s final grades for core subjects (33.3%), and the entrance exam (33.3%). The weights for the different parts are established by using a total of 900 points, with each 33.3% element worth 300 points.
The Kenwood Academic Center entrance exam, also known as a selective enrollment test, is not a traditional test, such as the Illinois Standard Achievement Test (ISAT) or the MAP, but assesses logical thinking and problem-solving skills. For example, students will work on figural reasoning, including pattern matrix, figural series, figural classification and figural analogies questions. On the verbal side, they will be asked to arrange sentences, complete word-letter matrices, and show understanding of syllogisms and verbal classifications. Students will have to show ability in math through completing number matrixes, number inferences and arithmetic reasoning.
These are questions that students are not used to seeing and it is important to practice with materials similar to those that will be encountered on the test. You can access some free questions based on the test for 7th and 8th grade, click the button below.
How Can We Help?
At Origins Tutoring, we believe that preparation for the Kenwood Academic Center test does not have to be daunting and exasperating; instead, it can represent an important opportunity along a student’s path to learning mastery. Indeed, the perspectives and abilities acquired during preparation provide a foundation that can last throughout a student’s school career and beyond.
Our two-track approach to mastering content and improving test-taking skills means that students will not only thoroughly understand the fundamental concepts and skills tested by the Kenwood Academic Center test, but they will also excel in using essential techniques to improve attitude, endurance and focus.
Our students hone their independent thinking skills while developing a resilient mindset so they can perform on test day in a powerful, resourceful, creative and calm manner. Each student in our program receives the undivided attention and expertise of a dynamic and experienced coach who provides the framework to support each student on his unique path to becoming a master learner.
Please call 917.287.7927 now for a complimentary consultation to discuss how we can help your child achieve his or her personal best on the Kenwood Academic Center test.