We all want our children to get the best head start in life as possible. Now more than ever, education is competitive, leading up to the eventual American path towards getting into a good college. Finding a good preschool, as unbelievable as might sound, is an important first step that could determine your child’s eventual academic career. There are plenty of studies that show children who are exposed to preschool do better in core school subjects like math and reading. Finding a good preschool could put them ahead of the curve, expose them to other kids their age earlier, and foster an early love of learning. What’s not to like about that? Enrolling children in private schools is also an ever-popular choice among competitive parents. More specifically tailored and rigorous curriculums, a closed social society of sorts, and a focus on academics, networking (important alumni are key), and high-achieving students draws in many parents.
How Do Private Schools Really Look on Paper? One appeal to many parents is the smaller size of private schools, with 85% of private schools having fewer than 300 pupils at a time. There almost 31,000 private schools that exist in the United States and they educate over five million schools as early as Pre-K all the way to 12th grade. If you’re into finding a good preschool, you may want to see what private schools are in your area and explore their programs. Private schools enroll about 10% of all of American students. Statistics from the 2011-2012 school year showed that 96% of private schools were co-ed, 2% were girls’ only and 2% were boys’ only.
Private schools have excellent graduation and college attendee rates as well. Almost 100% of seniors who attended private school in the fall of 2010 went on to graduate that following year and around 65% of them were at four-year colleges by the fall of 2011. NCES data shows that almost 90% of high school students who go to a private high school apply for college; under 60% of public high school students do so.
Why Do Parents Like Private Schools So Much? Finding a good preschool can often set parents down the private school track — many private preschool programs are run by religiously affiliated institutions and are private versus public. Children who go to preschool have been shown to have better scores by 20% on math and reading tests in kindergarten.
Private schools also tout their high academic standards. This may be possible in part because of the smaller number of pupils in their classrooms. A teacher will be in charge of 12.5 students on average in a private school setting versus 15.4 students in a public school. More one-on-one time with the teacher can help improve a child’s education and passion for learning significantly and that can be hard to come by in a larger classroom setting.
Because of the admissions process, private school students are also more on the same learning wavelength, so teachers can push a more advanced curriculum, without worrying about students whose education may be lagging behind their peers. Indeed, in 2007, the Fraser Institute reported that over 90% of parents who had sent their children to private schools did so because they felt teacher dedication was higher in private schools. And 80% were happy with the academic standards present in private schools.
What Else Should I Know About Private Schools? Research the admissions process for various private schools and be sure that it’s a good fit for your child, especially if you’re thinking about a specifically religious private school. Though your child’s education is important, it’s also important that their social experience be a pleasant one as well. Social skills and networking will also be a crucial part of their education and you want to make sure they feel comfortable.
Consider both public and private schools in your educational hunt to give your child the best experience possible. Ideally, they should gain both an education and an appreciation for learning, important social and networking skills, and lifelong friends. Do your research and give them the best start possible!
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