How many times can you take the ISEE when you are applying to NYC private middle and high school?

The Educational Records Bureau, taking advantage of an easy source of additional revenue, has changed their testing rules so students applying to 5th – 12th grade can take the ISEE one to three times per admissions season. From their site:

Starting in August of 2016, students may register to take the ISEE up to three times in a 12-month admissions cycle, once in any or all of three testing seasons.  The seasons are Fall (August-November), Winter (December-March), and Spring/Summer (April – July).

The ERB states that “ISEE does not encourage multiple testing, but we do offer students and families that option.” By offering this option, and splitting the seasons so that students can easily take the test in both fall and winter (November and December), the ERB in fact does encourage multiple testing.   In response to the testing rules change, many families have been anxiously contacting me, wondering if their children should sign up for multiple test dates.

The ISEE, an admissions test required for admission to most NYC private middle and high schools, competes with a rival admissions test, the SSAT, offered by another company.  Students have always been able to take the SSAT multiple times, which contributed to the SSAT’s popularity.  By changing the number of times students are allowed to take the ISEE, the ERB should gain more test-takers as well as more students taking multiple tests.

In my experience, taking the ISEE or the SSAT once is usually enough.  For more information or to sign up for my NYC private middle and high school educational consulting program, email New York’s best private school consultant.