High School Admissions2022-05-31T16:39:41+00:00

One-on-One Tutoring

High School Admissions


What’s the deal?

Admission to private, independent, parochial, or selective enrollment high schools is dependent, in part, on High School Entrance Exam (HSEE) scores, and navigating these exams is even more complex than it is for college admissions. From ISEE to SSAT to HSPT to SHSAT, test acronyms—and parental & student confusion—abound.

The journey certainly presents challenges for our seventh and eighth-graders, who must navigate new obstacles. For most, this is their first high-stakes test. What’s more, the preparation process often reveals gaps in skills that students were not previously aware of, and these gaps vary depending upon the depth and rigor of teaching students have received across a range of grade schools they attend.

Our Approach

At Academic Approach, we use our SuperTest to assess your students’ skills efficiently across multiple topic areas and question types at once. Our expert directors use this SuperTest data to customize high-impact tutoring programs for students thelp them raise their scores on the HSEEs and develop academic skills vital for success in high school. 

About Our Curriculum


Despite the diverse formats of the HSEEs, all tests cover similar foundational aspects of high school academia. Students will be tested on the general topics of Math, Language, Reading, and Writing. We’ve broken those down into 64 discrete lesson subjects, each with their own key skill assessments and practice sections.


We carefully build our programs to create structure for our students that connects prior knowledge to higher levels of academic rigor. Our students leave their lessons having added more proverbial bricks to their towers, building upon an ever-growing base of knowledge.


Roughly 83% of the material on HSEEs will be encountered again on the ACT and SAT, and 100% of it will be encountered during high school. We sculpt our programs to support your student with the future in mind, teaching essential material they’ll draw on throughout the coming years. We hope to provide them such a complete extracurricular education that they’ll consider returning to us when it’s time to think about college admissions exams.


The material covered by each HSEE overlaps significantly—we take advantage of this. We synthesize subject matter and question types from across the spectrum of HSEEs to ensure that our students gain exactly the proficiencies they desire, whether that’s specific to one exam or broadened to allow the student the option of taking other types of exams.


Our inventory of targeted homework and assessment materials is composed of no fewer than three full-length practice tests for each HSEE category, as well as hundreds of practice problems in formats varying from short quizzes to timed practice sections.

An Overview of the Exams

ISEE (Independent Schools Entrance Exam)

Required by Independent Schools (Dalton, Fieldston, Francis W.Parker, University of Chicago Laboratory School, The Latin School of Chicago, etc.)

SSAT (Secondary School Admission Test)

Required by Boarding Schools (St. Pauls, Phillips Exeter, Lake Forest Academy, etc.)

HSPT (High School Placement Test)

Required by Parochial Schools (Loyola Academy, St. Ignatius College Prep, etc.)

CPS HS Admissions Test

Required by Chicago Public Schools’ Selective Enrollment Schools (Walter Payton, Northside Prep, Lane Tech, Whitney Young, Jones, Brooks, King, Lindblom, Westinghouse, and South Shore)

SHSAT (NYC Specialized High School Admissions Test)

Required by NYC Specialized High School Schools (Brooklyn Tech, Bronx Science, Stuyvesant, High School of American Studies, etc.)

Ready to get started?


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