The most popular NPN blog posts and forum threads of 2017

Written by: Laura Baginski

Best NPN forum threads and blog posts of 2017

And you thought 2016 was tumultuous. 

The twists and turns of 2017 nearly gave us whiplash, from the impressive academic growth at CPS to its CEO's demise, to, well, nearly everything that happened in the U.S. government this year. Through it all, NPN members led lively discussions on these topics and many others, while our blog represented parent voices on perennial issues such as mind-numbing school commutes to potty-training. 

Here are the top NPN blog posts and forum threads of 2017!

Top 5 NPN blog posts of 2017

1. What it's like to have kids at 2 different schools: Sweet mercy, this CPS mom (also NPN's program coordinator!) has a school commute from hell. Read through the timeline of her day and you'll feel a lot better about your school drop-off routine.

2. How to apply to CPS preschools: "Wait, I have to apply to CPS preschools almost a year before my child is old enough to attend?" says every Chicago parent of a toddler. Yep. In this post, we break down when and how to apply, and what preschool programs are available through CPS. (Note: The deadline to apply for the 2018-19 school year was Dec. 22.)

3. When parents fight on the playground: It happens all the time: Two kids get in a tussle at the park and the children's parents react with hostility toward each other. That's what happened to NPN blog contributor Matt Beardmore this summer, and he wasn't proud of his reaction. He talked to a senior lecturer at UIC's College of Education to get some ideas on how to handle these situations better.

4. What to expect from CPS notification letters: Okay, you've applied to a bunch of CPS schools. Now what happens? This guide takes you through acceptance letters, how to accept or decline seats, and the dreaded waitlist. 

5. Best Chicago playgrounds for the potty-training toddler: Who wants to stay inside all day monitoring your kid's underwear for wetness? These playgrounds have close-by bathrooms to prevent accidents.


Top 5 NPN forum threads of 2017*

1. Gotta vent 2017: Sometimes you just have to let out your frustrations, and the NPN forum is a safe (and, if you choose, anonymous) place to do it. Just a few examples of what NPN members vented about in 2017: Husbands' loud chewing, the Chicago Post Office, group texts and a perennial favorite, in-laws.

2. Private school admissions results: Who got letters already? Who got in where? Comparing notes helps mitigate the school acceptance anxiety!

3. The high school admissions race: Once elementary school is solved, many parents about the next admissions hurdle: high school. No matter how young your kids are, it's helpful to get a glimpse of what your high school options may be—and the challenges of getting into a first-choice school.

4. My husband is cheating and I'm crushed: This thread is a heartbreak. A mom of three kids discovers her husband is cheating and unloads her disgust and disappointment on the NPN forum. But what's heartwarming is the empathy and kindness other NPN members showed her—offering her useful advice and encouragement to get through this terrible time. 

5. CPS notification letters: For years, NPN staff has been starting a thread on the forum after CPS notification letters go out asking members to post where they were accepted and/or their number on school waitlists. Not only does it help to commiserate during this nerve-wracking process, it also can give you a sense of your chances of getting into a school depending on where you are on the waitlist. Look for our forum post in April when 2018-19 school year notification letters come out!

*Only NPN members can see posts in the member discussion forum. Now's the time to join our Chicago parent community! Learn more about NPN membership.

Related articles: 

The 10 most-read forum posts of 2016

The 5 most popular NPN blog posts of 2016

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Posted on December 21, 2017 at 1:01 PM