This was a bit of a surprise, via the NYPost:
"Look out for big mother on campus.
"Manhattan’s elite private schools have enlisted the parents of their students to spy on prospective families during school tours to get the skinny on how the kids and their parents act when they’re not under the glaring eye of the admissions director, insiders told The Post.
"The tour guide or a wandering assistant teacher traditionally reported back to administrators at schools like Columbia Grammar, Mandell, Collegiate and Episcopal on their behavior, but after parents learned whom to act their best in front of, the schools have upped their vetting process and are now planting parents in the tours to observe perspective parents and then hand in notes.
“'At a certain point a mom spilled that she had been asked to go on the tours and watch how the prospective parents behaved, and then it got out that it was a common thing,' private-school mom and social researcher Wednesday Martin said.
“'If you see a school parent on a school tour but she’s not conducting the tour, just ‘coming along,’ shut up and don’t check your cell!'
"And parents are eager to be 'admission volunteers' because of the power it gives them in the admissions process."The comedy that is the elementary school admissions process is oncreasingly playing itself out as farce.