Information about Selective Enrollment High Schools

Selective Enrollment High Schools are public high schools which admit students based on a 900 point admissions process.

The 11 Selective Enrollment High Schools are: Brooks, Hancock, Jones, King, Lane Tech, Lindblom, Northside, South Shore, Walter Payton, Westinghouse, Whitney Young.

The admissions process for Selective Enrollment High Schools consists of three 300 point parts (900 total points). The three parts are:

  • 7th grade grades in Reading, Math, Science and Social Studies 300 points

  • 7th grade spring NWEA MAP scores (For CPS Students) // 8th grade fall NWEA MAP scores (For Non-CPS Students) 300 points

  • Selective Enrollment Entrance Exam 300 points

Feel free to use the calculator below to see what point totals are required for admission to the different Selective Enrollment High Schools (based on last year’s cutoff scores).

Click HERE to register for courses. Learn more about Test Prep Chicago HS Entrance Exam prep courses below:


8th Grade HS Entrance Exam Test Prep Classes

What is this 8th grade course? Test Prep Chicago's 8th grade course prepares students to take the different exams for entrance into Selective Enrollment high schools, private schools, and parochial schools. Students will learn the math, reading comprehension, language skills, and vocabulary content universal to all three entrance exams.

Why is this course unique? Our course is the only one in Chicago that prepares students for all three entrance exams. While class content is focused on topics common to all of the exams, homework assignments are personalized to focus on only the exams relevant to each student.

Why choose Test Prep Chicago? Because our courses are structured around 3 core learning principles: Teach, Practice, Apply; Building Blocks; and Practice Makes Perfect. Learn more about our philosophy.

What are the three different entrance exams? Students applying to Chicago's Selective Enrollment (public) high schools will take the Selective Enrollment High School exam (SEHS). Students applying to private/independent schools in Chicago will take the Independent School Entrance Exam (ISEE). Students applying to Chicago's parochial schools will take the High School Placement Exam (HSPT). The ISEE and HSPT are nationally recognized entrance exams, while the SEHS is specific to Chicago's Selective Enrollment Schools.

How are these exams different? The topics covered on all three exams are nearly identical: math, reading comprehension, language skills, and vocabulary. The exams, however, have some unique features. Number and difficulty of questions vary, as well as the format with which questions are presented. Additionally, the ISEE requires an essay while the SEHS and HSPT test language skills through multiply choice questions.

Who should take this course? Any 8th grader who is interested in applying to Selective Enrollment high schools, private schools, and parochial schools. The high school admissions process in Chicago is extremely demanding, and our course will give students a competitive advantage for the entrance exams.

What if my child is only applying to one type of high school? None of your child's time will be wasted during our course! All class time will focus on material required on your child's entrance exam. The homework assigned will be tailored to his/her individual needs and the unique features of his/her exam.

What if my child is applying to all 3 types of high schools? Your child can prepare for 2 or 3 different entrance exams with our single course. Class time will focus on the material common to all 3 exams. For homework, your child will have access to the individualized assignments specific to each entrance exam. To reinforce the skills necessary on specific exams, your child will spend time completing homework tailored to each exam.

What materials will my child receive? Your child will receive weekly packets that include worksheets for use in class. These handouts include easy-to-understand teaching notes as well as practice questions. Our materials are designed to facilitate active-learning by striking the right balance between instruction and student participation. Students will also receive weekly homework assignments that will allow them to hone the skills learned in class.

How will my child's improvement be measured? Students will take a diagnostic exam (during Session 1) to measure their strengths and weaknesses. A final exam will be administered (during Session 8) to measure how students have improved during the course. Additionally, graded homework assignments and in-class quizzes will provide insight into your child's weekly comprehension and improvement.

What communication will I receive during the course? After Session 1, you will receive a comprehensive analysis of your child's diagnostic results. This will include strengths and weaknesses as well as a personalized study plan for your child. You will also receive weekly emails from your child's teacher detailing his/her homework results, quiz scores, and progress during class. After Session 8, you will receive a second comprehensive analysis of your child's final test results with details about his/her improvement compared to the diagnostic test.

Who will be teaching my child? Your child will be taught by one of Test Prep Chicago's highly skilled instructors. All Test Prep Chicago instructors have completed our intensive interview and training process.

How long is the course? Our course consists of 8 two-hour sessions offered once a week.

Where and when will classes be held? Classes will be held weekdays after school and on weekends. Classes will be taught in your child's middle school or, when necessary, at a nearby school or public classroom.

What is the course tuition? What is included in the tuition payment? The tuition for our 8th grade courses is $455 (~$28/hour for in-class instruction). This tuition covers all in-class instruction, test prep material, and student feedback.