List of 20 frequently asked questions.

  • Why does AOS start Middle School in 5th grade? Should I be considering 5th instead of 6th?

    AOS has a great 5th grade program and many openings.  Students learn many valuable life skills in 5th grade that they use through middle and upper school.  They are taken care of by the 5th grade team and Middle School Division Head as they transition from 4th grade or their previous school.  5th grade is a good entry point for any families considering AOS for Middle School by allowing students to develop relationships over four years instead of two or three, gives them the skills they need to be successful students, and provides many unique opportunities in academics, the fine arts, physical education, and the spiritual life of the school.
  • What are the best entry points for AOS?

    AOS has many openings in the PK-3, PK-4, and Kindergarten in the Early Childhood program and Lower School.  5th and 6th grades are great entry points for Middle School with many openings available each year.  In each of these grades we add openings to each section up to 32 for Early Childhood.
  • Is there any priority status given in the admissions process?

    Yes.  If there is space and if the applicant is qualified, priority is given to members of Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral, other Orthodox families, siblings, alumni, legacies, and children of faculty members.  
  • Do you offer extended care?

    Yes.  AOS’ Extended Day Center provides care for students before and after school.  EDC opens at 7:00 A.M. and closes at 6:00 P.M. and is open on some holidays.  Additionally, summer day camp is offered.
    After-school extracurricular clubs and activities are also available.
  • Should I apply to more than one school?

    Yes.  It is imperative that each family finds the right match or “fit” for their children.  Visiting other independent schools’ campuses and websites will assist parents in their search.  The Houston Area Independent Schools website is a great place to begin.

    Additionally, the demand for independent school placement is great, but the spaces are limited. Parents should apply to at least three schools. AOS does not guarantee openings or admission, so applying to more than one school provides more opportunities for placement. 
  • Are letters of recommendation beneficial?

    Only to a small degree.  AOS strives to assist parents in determining the “fit” for their child.  One or two letters of recommendation for the child, not for the parents, is acceptable.  The person who is giving the recommendation should have firsthand knowledge of the child.
  • What if my family is not Orthodox Christian?

    AOS accepts children of all faiths.  The Orthodox faith is the very heart of AOS.  AOS students will learn about the faith, its beliefs and traditions. All children will attend Chapel, religion classes, and wear the school’s emblem on uniforms.  All Christian holidays are celebrated.  To find out more about the faith, parents are encouraged to visit the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America website
  • What is AOS' commitment to diversity?

    AOS strives to maintain a diverse community both in the student body and in the faculty and staff.  The Board of Trustees formed a Diversity Committee to ensure that the School stays true to its mission of inclusivity for the good of the entire community.  Diversity includes, but is not limited to ethnic, cultural, religious, national, and experiential differences.  AOS is proud to report that 35% of the student body is from diverse backgrounds, which is above the norm for private schools in Houston. AOS holds diversity events throughout the year to educate our community and support our commitment.  Themes relating to diversity and inclusivity are embedded within the AOS curriculum.  
  • If my child is not accepted and we reapply, will my child have to retest?

    Each admission year stands alone.  Applicants will be evaluated for the grade to which they are applying.  
  • Can Teacher Recommendations be given to my child's teacher from last year?

    Teacher Recommendation forms are required from your child's current teacher.  In addition to current teacher recommendations, a letter of recommendation from a former teacher may be included.
  • What other faiths are represented at AOS?

    Our community self-identifies as:  Baha’i – 1%, Baptist – 4%, Catholic – 27%, Christian – 10%, Episcopalian – 10%, Greek Orthodox – 12%, Orthodox – 4%, Jewish – 1%, Methodist – 15%, Presbyterian – 7%, Protestant – 1%, not reported – 8%
  • What if I decline AOS' offer of placement for my child and decide to reapply?

    If a place is offered to an applicant and that place is declined, a new application will be required.
  • What is the wait pool?

    The wait pool is a group of applicants who have completed the admissions process, qualified, but for whom there is no space.  The wait pool is kept until the start of the school year.  If space becomes available for a particular gender, all files of applicants in the wait pool of that gender are revisited by the Admissions Committee and a selection is made.  New information such as the dynamics of the formed class and the “fit” of the applicant for that class is added to the process.  The wait pool is not ranked.
  • How can I prepare my child for evaluation?

    The purpose of an evaluation is not to obtain the highest score.  The purpose of the evaluation is to determine, as much as possible, whether the child will be successful with a particular school’s philosophy, rigor, and expectations.  Evaluations are instruments that assist with placement. They also provide an opportunity to see the child’s personality, behavior, maturity, strengths, and challenges to determine whether the school is a good “fit” for the child.  

    AOS considers the AABL scores, WPPSI, WISC-IV, ISEE, and group visit as part of the overall process.  Each grade level has specific developmental considerations.  Information and tutorials for the AABL and ISEE can be found on the ERB website
     
    Tutoring for the WPPSI or WISC-IV is not appropriate. Tutoring can be counterproductive by placing undue stress on the child and can create test anxiety. If the child is taught the answers, then there is the danger of placing him or her in a situation where expectations are higher than what the child can achieve.  We strongly discourage parents from trying to prepare children for testing. If “teaching the test” is suspected, it will invalidate the file. A good night’s sleep, a nutritious breakfast, staying calm, and the anticipation of a pleasant experience is the best preparation for testing.

    Prior to the group evaluation in the lower levels, parents may explain to their children that they have been invited to do some activities at Annunciation Orthodox School. It is a great opportunity for children to “show what they know” and to use their very best manners.
  • When will applications for admission become available?

    Applications will be available from August 30th each year until December 15th.  Click on the "Apply now" link to create a login and begin the application.
  • Are there any exceptions to the Early Childhood, Kindergarten, and First Grade age requirement?

    There are no exceptions to this requirement.  The AOS program is designed for the age they are to enter AOS.
  • What is the call list?

    If parents missed the deadline for application but would like the opportunity for their child to be considered, they may contact the Admissions Office and ask that their child be placed on the call list.  There is no application, evaluation, or fee and the likelihood that the family may be called off of the call list is limited, Should space become available and the wait pool has been exhausted, then the admissions director may contact the parents of applicants on the call list to determine their interest.  If the parents are interested, then the parents may begin the admissions process.
  • What is the earliest date I can apply for my child?

    Applications go online after Labor Day.  You may only apply the year before the child is to attend.
  • Why is there so much testing for private schools?

    The admissions process in Houston is competitive, and each school strives to obtain the best picture of each child. Therefore, each school utilizes different tests to assess different aspects of the child.  For example, the WPPSI and WISC-IV tell the school about the way a child thinks about things, while the AABL and ISEE give a picture of school readiness.  While a child may be intelligent, they may not be ready for a particular school.

Annunciation Orthodox School

3600 Yoakum Boulevard | Houston, TX 77006
Phone - (713) 470-5600 | Fax - (713) 470-5605