Sep 22 Preschool & Elementary School Fair - Must-Have Details

Written by: Sarah Cobb

NPN School Fairs have been going since the early 80's!  But today, Chicago families are faced with more options, information, and confusion.  School fairs give parents the chance to interact with a diverse group of school, daycare, and enrichment program options all in one place at one time.  Stop by the NPN Table for a fantastic Box Tops for Education, Mabel's Labels, and NPN raffle!

Join us for the Sep. 22nd South Side Preschool & Elementary School Fair - a FREE event where you can make connections with more than 50 public/private schools, enrichment programs, family friendly businesses, and Chicago resources.  This event is open to the public.  Please register online using the link below to receive your eTicket - this will expedite your check in process.  

WHAT: South Side Preschool & Elementary School Fair

WHO: South Side families looking to connect with repesentatives from great public and private schools, daycare providers, and enrichment program options.

WHEN: Saturday Sep. 22nd, 10am - 2pm

WHEREHyde Park Neighborhood Club - 5480 S. Kenwood Ave.
PARKING: Neighborhood parking options are available PLUS FREE Parking at St. Thomas the Apostle School next door (5467 S. Woodlawn Ave.).  The parking lot is limited - 1st come 1st serve access.  
PLEASE BRING: Used children's books for donation to Open Books
Here is a Q&A to help you prepare for Saturday's event:
Q. Do I need to register or pay for this event?
A. This fair is FREE and open to the publc.  Please tell your friends!  If possible, please register online to get your eTicket.  This will expedite your check in process.  Click on the link above and scroll down to access the RSVP form.
Q. What public and private schools are coming to the event?
A. Check the School Fair event page and scroll down for the latest list of exhibitors.
Q. How should parents prepare beforehand to make the most of their time at the event?
A. Spend some time preparing - create a “short” list of your top school options:
  • Determine the factors that are most important to your family’s school search process (e.g., starting age, location, total costs, school hours/schedule, before/after school activities/options, etc.)
  • Visit the NPN online School Directory and use the search to create a list of schools you don't want to miss at the fair.  Check the exhibitor list to see who will be there! (NPN Membership Benefit)
  • Download the eDirectory to get to know the schools you are considering. (NPN Membership Benefit)
  • Use your NPN School Fair Program (you will receive it when you check in at the fair) to keep track of your conversations, contacts, and progress.

Q. What should I ask a school when visiting their exhibitor table? 

A. Here are a few ideas beyond getting to know the basics about a school:

  • Confirm admissions deadlines/process, requirements (e.g., potty trained), financial aid options/deadlines, and open house date(s)
  • Where appropriate, ask about twin and sibling policies
  • Ask about what a classroom looks like and what a typical day includes
  • Get to know more about their teachers – teacher-student ratios and their hiring requirements
  • Get to know their before/after school activities and options
  • What are their special classes/programs?  What makes them different from other schools?

Thank you to our media sponsor Chicago Parent Magazine, and our supporting sponsors Hyde Park Parent Support Network (PSN), Mabel's Labels, Whole Foods - South Loop, Houseful of Nichols, Gourmet Gorilla, and Jaziphoto.  Thank you to our generous host, Hyde Park Neighborhood Club.  And please bring a few books to help us support our non-profit friend Open Books.


Posted on September 06, 2012 at 10:19 AM