Parents have a three-week window to complete testing once they submit an application. We encourage families to complete and submit applications early in the season. Testers' schedules get especially busy in the middle and end of the season, and it is much harder to secure an appointment that works with your schedule.

Once you have submitted and paid for your application, you will receive two confirmation emails, one with instructions for the next steps and one acknowledging the receipt of your payment. The first of these emails will also appear on the screen at submission. All the information you need for scheduling an appointment for Round 1 testing with one of the HCES approved testers will be provided in the email, including your child’s ID number and the deadline for testing. You must adhere to the deadline date for Round 1 testing to avoid disqualification.

List of 2 items.

  • ROUND 1

    There are two rounds of assessment within the HCES admissions process. In the first round, a parent/guardian accompanies his/her child to the office of an HCES-approved tester, trained to administer a portion of the Stanford Binet V (SB V), an assessment of intellectual reasoning. The fee for this test is $350.00. (Financial assistance for Round 1 testing is available to those who qualify. Please visit the "Reduced Fee" section of this website for detailed information.)

    Round 1 begins with the submission of the child’s application.

    An email is sent to the family once the application is submitted with a list of approved R1 testers. Parents must make contact with ONLY ONE tester to schedule an appointment by the deadline indicated in the email. Unless given permission to do so, contacting more than one tester WILL jeopardize a family’s chance to continue with Round 1. When the appointment is scheduled, the parent submits the following to the tester prior to arrival:

    1) A signed Confidentiality Consent form, provided via email after submission of the application. The Confidentiality Consent form allows parents to affirm that their child has neither been tested with, nor been exposed to, any test-related materials from the SBV in the last year. Children who have had exposure to the SBV within 12 months of application submission may not be able to apply to HCES. In these cases, the parents should contact the Director of Admissions directly to inquire.

    2) The fee of $350.00 (check or money order) made payable to the tester. (Financial assistance is available to those who qualify.)

    These items shall be sent from the family to the tester via REGULAR mail; certified mail or any other forms of delivery that require signature for receipt are not acceptable. Items must be received prior to the appointment.

    Parents are not permitted in the room with their child during the test administration. Though testing time varies, the session generally lasts 30-60 minutes. 

    The modified SBV is available only in English. Children must have adequate, fundamental skills in English to progress through the test, and, ultimately, to benefit from the HCES program.

    *Non-native English speakers may contact the Admissions Office for assistance with completing the application.*


    Contact the Admissions Office to inquire about testing accommodations for children with physical difficulties, or documented disabilities, such as color blindness or hearing impairment.
    Testers will send a report of each child’s performance to the HCES Admissions Office - parents will NOT receive scores or a report of their child's performance.

    In early December, the Director of Admissions will determine advancement to Round 2 based on a review of R1 results. Typically, 250-300 spaces are available for the Round 2 assessment. All families are notified in December via email of the Round 1 decision.

    HCES strongly discourages exposing children to the Stanford Binet V prior to the formal administration of the test for the purpose of admission to HCES. Testers will inform the Director of Admissions if they believe a child has had experience with or exposure to any test items or activities. HCES reserves the right to disqualify any child from the admissions process if there is evidence that Round 1 is not the child’s first experience with the SB V test. In the case of disqualification for prior exposure, the testing fee is not refunded.
  • ROUND 2

    There are two rounds of assessment within the HCES admissions process. The applicants who advance to the second round will undergo an assessment in January 2020. The Round 2 assessment will take place over TWO weekends only: January 11th and 12th AND January 18th and 19th, 2020. A parent or guardian accompanies the child to the HCES site on one of the assessment dates listed above. There is no fee for the Round 2 assessment.
    Families who are applying to HCES should not make travel arrangements or schedule NYC Department of Education Gifted and Talented testing during these weekends. Round 2 candidates are assigned an appointment only within this four-day period.
    (NOTE: January 18-19 is the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday weekend.)

    Any child advancing to Round 2 has two additional forms that need completing. The Parents’ Observation Form and the Preschool Teacher Observation Form request specific information about the child’s observed behaviors in short, written responses. There is no essay or recommendation letter requirement. Birth certificates or adoption records are required of all applicants in the Round 2 process. Proof of Manhattan residency will be demonstrated ONLY with a 2018 NY State tax return.

    At Round 2, children meet in groups of nine (approximately), where trained consultants observe the behaviors of each child during individual and group tasks, and during their interaction with peers and a teacher. The assessment room simulates a preschool classroom and every effort is made to create a relaxing, fun, and stimulating environment.

    Following Round 2, the HCES Admissions Selection Committee submits its recommendations to the Director of Admissions. Based on that feedback, admission offers are made to 50 children. NOTE: The Selection Committee makes decisions without knowledge of the child’s name, address, family information, or other identifying factors. No preference is given to “legacies,” siblings of alumni, or siblings of current HCES students. Final selection is based on the feedback and observations collected during Round 2.  

    All families are notified of decisions via email on Friday, February 7th, 2020. Any offer of admission, or offer for a place on the wait list, must be accepted or declined by Friday, February 14th.

    NOTE: The HCES wait list comprises 24 children from the Round 2 finalist pool. The HCES wait list is NOT ranked.