All About Shadowing

A shadow, or Hornet for a Day visit, is an opportunity for your child to follow a current Tatnall student through the academic day and experience what school life is like as a part of our community. The value of a shadow visit cannot be replicated in an open house or personal tour; there is no substitute for full-day immersion and peer-to-peer experience.  I say time and again, “shadowing is the most important decision-making tool for your child” and have heard numerous times about school plans changing after spending the day with us. The notion that “Tatnall felt like home” during a shadow day was the sentiment that ultimately upended the intended plans of many families. 
A good shadow program offers students a peek into every facet of an institution: the culture of the school, the relationship between upper and lower grade students, the rapport between students and educators, the pulse of the administration and staff, the rigor of academic programming, the care in the appearance of the school, the quality and appeal of the food, the welcomeness of coaches, the extensiveness of the arts program, and so much more. Spending the day with us, meeting new friends and integrating into the Tatnall “way of life” is worth your child missing a day at their current school. No other experience will help your child find their next academic and social home more than being a Hornet for a Day. 

After booking the shadow visit, you may have a few questions. Please feel free to reach out to the enrollment team or ask when dropping off. On the day of the visit, first-time visitors (and their parents) are often the most nervous. That’s ok! It’s perfectly natural to be a little nervous when coming to a new school. We will do our best to make everyone feel comfortable and assuage any fears you may have, including having your child “shadow” one, handpicked student in their grade. They will spend the day together, attending classes, having lunch, meeting friends and learning the ropes of a typical day at Tatnall.  At the end of the day, visitors usually have a good sense of whether they want to apply. There are students who may be on the fence after the visit, or (later in the admissions process) they may be struggling to pick between two schools. In these circumstances, we are happy to have your child visit again. Sometimes during the second visit, students feel more comfortable asking specific questions or seeking out particular areas that interest them. And that’s why the option for a re-visit is there. We know that choosing the right school is an enormous task; our goal is that a student leaves knowing whether Tatnall is the right fit for them and their family. 

The Tatnall School’s shadow program begins October 1st and is offered most weeks, Tuesday - Friday. We offer shadow visits for all interested students from PK3- Grade 11. Visit our website for a list of available dates to select for your first and second choice visit date. You can register for Hornet for a Day byclicking here, or by calling The Office of Enrollment at (302) 892-4296 .