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Academic Success Gazette 
In This Issue:
Legendary Los Angeles Teacher Jaime Escalante Passes
The Coming Trend in College Applications
Study Tip -...Start Making Your Plan for Studying for Finals NOW
Monthly Coach Profile
Quick Links
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Academic Success Offers ISEE Classes this Summer


Academic Success will be offering a two-week course preparing students for the 7th/ 8th grade version of the ISEE.  The two sessions will be taught at St. Matthew's school in Pacific Palisades.

 1st session: June 28 - July 9
 2nd session: July 12 - July 23
In our innovative class you will learn and practice the strategies, tricks and techniques needed to maximize your score!

Call us at 310-823-4398 to sign up, classes are filling fast.

Academic Success Partner of the Month
Paula Barksdale 

College-bound students and their families typically feel a sense of excitement, anticipation, and worry.  Parents wonder how to help their child establish a solid foundation in high school. Students worry about finding a college where they will be happy and productive... and can get in.

One of our favorite partners, Paula Barksdale, can help.

Paula established her practice in 2001 to help high school students prepare for, select, and apply to colleges. Families hire her for a variety of reasons: to gain exposure to a wide range of schools; to have an expert on their team who can provide hands-on support and guidance, and to reduce family stress with an objective, caring third-party.

Paula works with students from across the spectrum of academic, athletic and extracurricular achievement. High powered kids, late bloomers, and plenty of good, "regular" kids benefit from working with Paula through this process. She is a naturally optimistic and energetic person - her students find that her support can greatly reduce the stress during a time of enormous change and uncertainty.

Check out Paula's website at or give her a call at 310-213-9787.
for a Student Community Service Opportunity?
Vista Del Mar logo 
Vista Del Mar is one of the most comprehensive care facilities for children experiencing mental health, behavioral, emotional, or social problems.  Located in West LA, they this non-profit organization provides a variety of services, including foster care, adoption, and the treatment of children
with developmental difficulties. They have several different kinds of volunteer programsfor teenagers from being a teacher's helper in their K-12 program to helping in their theater program. Vista is one of the jewels of our community and a great place for any student looking for an opportunity to volunteer.
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Looking for a College Counselor or Ed Therapist?
We  partner with excellent Educational Therapists and College Counselors throughout the L.A. area.  Give us a call and we can recommend the right fit for your child.
Check Out Our YouTube Video!!


Academic Succes is very proud of the two-minute video we recently produced to give you a feel for who we are, our philosophy and the way we approach our work.
 The Higher Road
 Life Coaching for Teens

friends walking

The Higher Road life coaches work with teens in the most challenging aspects of life: social skills, managing stress, motivation, organization, health and wellness, and oppositional behavior.

friends walking

Check out The Higher Road website to learn more about this dynamic program.
How Academic Success Can Support You
At Academic Success we take great pride in finding the right coach to support the unique needs of each student we help.  Please check out the areas where we work on our web site and let us know how we can support you.

Spring is upon us, and there are several important things to think about as we head into the last push of the academic year.

As always, the most important task is to be organized, and organization is especially critical to a strong preparation for finals. Take some time to spring clean your backpack, bedrooms, and sort through the stacks of paper that have been growing for months.  It will clear the space mentally and physically for a successful last effort. Second, take a moment to reflect on all the good work accomplished so far. Give yourself a pat on the back, and acknowledge your triumphs. Lastly, focus on your goals. How far are you from the grades you want? What will it take to get there? The clearer you are, the more likely you are to make the adjustments necessary to achieve the best results.


We are ready and able to assist you with this process.

Call us at (310) 823-4398



Jamie and Eric

Education News

Legendary Los Angeles Teacher Jaime Escalante Passes Away
Jamie EscalanteUnder the banner reading "Calculus Does Not Have To Be Made Easy -- It Is Easy Already," Garfield High School's Jaime Escalante became the most famous calculus teacher in America. While he taught his students calculus, he taught the rest of the education community a more important lesson - when students are inspired, motivated, and taught with passion, they can achieve results beyond what any "expert" thinks is possible.  Escalante died last month at the age of 79. 
The story of Escalante's triumph at Garfield High is a well-known tale, made famous by the film Stand and Deliver starring Edward James Olmos.  What is less well known is a mere 10 years before he began teaching at Garfield, Escalante emigrated to the US from Bolivia without the ability to speak English. He worked as a dishwasher, got a degree in Electronics at Pasadena City College and job working in electronics at the Burroughs Corporation.
Like many great teachers, education and success did not come easily to Escalante.  His belief was that desire, and not natural ability, was the key to success.  He took that message to his classroom. Despite the fact that Garfield High had almost lost its accreditation, in his first five years of teaching Escalante guided the first of many classes in taking Calculus, as well as passing the AP test.
Escalante's example is real lesson for the rest of the education community.  Based on their test scores, socio-economic background and previous grades, most of his students were not destined to succeed academically.  However, effort, more than any other quality, can make up for other deficiencies.  When teachers give their full effort and inspire their students, and those student reciprocate with commitment and desire, all the previous barriers become meaningless.
For a great summary of Escalante's life and achievements, check out his obituary in the Los Angeles Times.

The Coming Trend in College Applications - Do a YouTube Video!

bar graph danceThis year, as part of their admissions application, Tufts University allowed prospective students to create and submit a YouTube video as part of their packet. Out of 15,000 applications, about 1,000 prospective students took Tufts up on their offer and made videos.
Because they are on-line, the rest of us have a chance to look at them too.  The most popular is the video of the girl who combines dancing with various types of mathematical graphs.  Or, you may want to watch the video of the boy who believes that golf tricks and card tricks are his tickets to higher education.  One of the odder choices is the boy who thought it would be a good idea if he recorded his Tufts video wearing a Northwestern University sweatshirt.  And, of course, there are many, many, many music and rap videos of highly questionable quality.
All joking aside, Tufts represents the cutting edge of what may be a radical change in the application process in coming years.  As social media and digital technology expand and become more accessible, the standard college application will likely also change.  In the coming years, the pen-on-paper application will likely yield to a far more interactive process.

Study Tips

Study Tip -  Start Making Your Plan for Studying for Finals NOW

studying 2With spring break behind us, the big upcoming challenge is final exams. Whether it takes the form of an AP test, a SAT II test or those dreaded end-of-term tests that force you to review material you have not looked at in months, final exams are stressful trials.


The key to managing the process is to plan out your review and study strategy now.  Divide up the material that you need to review into segments and put those segments on a calendar.  By making sure that progress is made towards the final exam every night, students will feel more in control, more prepared and less overwhelmed.

Coach Profile

Meet Sara Rose 
Coach Profile of the Month

ashleyIf you are ever looking to get into an in-depth discussion about planetary and plasma physics and the origins of the planets and outer space, Sara is the right person to talk to. As a 4th year physics major at UCLA, she is about to graduate with a degree in this other-worldly field. 

However, after spending a lot of time in a laboratory doing physics research, she has realized that she is more interested in working with people on the ground rather than the phenomena in the sky. Sara will be pursuing a law degree, bringing her science background as a patent attorney, dealing with the latest technologies produced by society.

When not in school, Sara can be found at her sorority (a physics-loving sorority girl isn't the usual combination, but she likes to surprise people by breaking stereotypes), playing piano and flute, reading books (the classics, fiction, physics/math non-fiction), practicing tae-bo, yoga, and traveling.

Sara enjoys academic coaching because she loves knowing how things work. Especially with math and the sciences, the knowledge acquired at a young age is the foundation for figuring out scientific concepts that are not always accessible. She likes to help students learn and understand that the theoretical work is relevant to the real world and life.

We consider it a privilege and an honor to support students and their families throughout the Los Angeles area.  Please call us at any time; we welcome your thoughts and input.  We are available at 310-823-4398.
Jamie Altshule & Eric Altshule
Academic Success,Inc.