One common consideration in this decision is the between public vs. private schools. Both types of schools have major benefits and some drawbacks, too. Thankfully, we’re here to help you make your decision!
Read on to learn how to choose the best school for your child.
For many people, the cost is the biggest consideration when it comes to choosing between a public or private school. Private schools can cost anywhere from a few grand per year to well over $50,000 per year if you choose a prestigious boarding school. Thankfully, many private schools offer scholarships to help children from lower-income families attend, and some state and local governments offer vouchers.
On the other hand, public schools do not charge tuition and rely on taxes, bonds, and fundraising to generate operating costs. This won’t cost you money upfront, but you may end up paying more in property taxes if your home is located in an area with a high-quality school district.
2. School Districts
Speaking of school districts, a good school district is another major factor when choosing a school for your child. If you live in an area with less than desirable public schools, you might find yourself leaning toward a private school to ensure a quality education for your child.
On the other hand, some cities have public school districts so stellar that people move to the city just to go there. A great education with zero tuition is hard to pass up!
If you’re searching for a good school abroad, then navigating things like school districts can be more difficult. Thankfully, you can learn more here about finding schools in places like Perth, Australia!
3. Zoning for Individual Schools
Moving into a good school district is often not enough when it comes to public school districts. In fact, school rankings can vary wildly within a single school district.
For example, University High School in Irvine, CA is ranked 451 nationally, while Irvine High School is ranked at 1,723 nationally. Both are great schools in a great school district, but it can mean moving to a different part of town in order to get your child into a particular public school.
Private schools, on the other hand, generally do not have geographic restrictions. This makes enrolling your child much easier.
4. Faith-Based Schools
There are many things your child will learn when they are in school, but if your child attends a public school, they are likely not going to receive a religious education. If you want your child to grow in their faith as well as their education, then a faith-based private school may be a great place to send your child.
This doesn’t mean that your child cannot express their faith in a public school. Public schools have plenty of religious student organizations. It just means that your child will be taught in a secular manner.
5. Class Sizes
It’s no secret that smaller class sizes mean greater learning opportunities for children. Teachers with fewer students have more time to focus on each child and enrich their learning. Teachers with larger classes have less opportunity to focus on individual students.
Class sizes are a big part of a school’s ranking, so it’s no surprise that highly ranked schools have smaller class sizes.
It should also not come as a surprise that private schools tend to have much smaller class sizes in general. Private schools, unlike public schools, are not under any obligation to accept every applicant to their program. This means they have a greater ability to keep their class sizes small.
6. International Baccalaureate Programs
Many people consider Advanced Placement (APs) exams to be the gold standard in high school education. They help students prep for college, and they can even help them obtain college credit long before they’ve even submitted their applications.
International Baccalaureate programs, on the other hand, focus on helping your child succeed in a global world. Earning an IB certificate can open doors for your child all around the world because it is recognized worldwide. IB programs are offered in both public and private schools but finding a school that offers one might tip the scales.
7. Consider a Charter School
Want your child to attend an academically rigorous school that won’t cost you a dime? Consider checking out charter schools in your area.
Charter schools are public schools that are open to children in certain geographic areas. They are publicly funded and do not charge tuition, but they are run by private entities. Most are non-profit, but some are for-profit schools.
Charter schools are not regulated by the state, but they have specific goals and standards laid out in their charter that they must adhere to. This gives educators at charter schools more flexibility in the way they educate their students.
8. What About Athletics?
For many students, school is about more than just academics. It’s about the chance to skill athletically, too!
Participating in high school athletics is more than just fun and a chance to stay fit, though. Many students hope that their athletic performance in high school will open the door to a college athletic scholarship.
Some schools are much more advantageous for students who wish to participate in college sports because coaches have a relationship with college recruiters. If your child is interested in college athletics, consider checking out how potential schools rank in terms of your child’s chosen sport.
Trying to Decide on Public vs. Private Schools?
The debate on public vs. private schools will rage on for years to come. Both options have their own major benefits and drawbacks. Ultimately, you need to assess your current situation and what the schools nearby can offer your child in order to make the most informed decision about their education.
Are you looking for more great resources to help you guide your child through their education? Look no further! Check out the rest of our blog for everything you need to help them succeed!