Of all the important decisions that come with raising a child, education is one that you desperately want to get right. Quality education is something that will benefit your child for the rest of their life. However, the quality of public schools across the country can vary a lot, leaving you wondering whether your child might be better off at a private high school instead. If you aren't sure if a private high school program would be a good fit for your teenager, ask yourself the following questions:
Is your child getting lost in the crowd?
Class size in schools is something getting a lot of scrutinies these days. Many parents worry that their children won't get the individual attention they need if the teacher has their hands full with too many students. If you know that your child struggles in the crowded classroom, a private high school could be the solution. Private schools generally have fewer students per class, giving your child more opportunities to participate in discussions and receive one-on-one time with the teacher, making them less likely to fall behind.
Does your child have specific interests?
If your child excels in a specific activity and already knows they want to pursue it as a career, a private school could help them achieve their dreams. Public schools are funded by the government and must use a certain curriculum and take standardized tests. This sometimes makes it so teachers only focus on a couple of core areas of study, leaving very little time (if any) to subjects such as the arts. Private schools do not have those limitations and can have a broader curriculum. So, if your child has a love of music, for example, they could find a private school that focuses on the musical arts and get a head start on their career.
Could your child handle high academic standards?
If your child is excelling in public school, easily earning good grades, they may be a good fit for private school. Private schools generally have higher academic standards, with more challenging classes and more opportunities for earning college credits before the students even graduate. At a private school, being smart will make your child respected, as opposed to being branded as a nerd and mocked. If this is the kind of environment your child would thrive in, you may want to consider private school.
Is religion important to you?
Because the Constitution mandates the separation of church and state, public schools are prohibited from teaching religion. However, if your family is devoted to your religion, you might want to consider sending your child to a private religious high school that doesn't require that separation. That way, your child will grow in their faith as well as receive their secular education.
Do you want to be more involved in your child's education?
When your child goes to public school, you may only have one or two parent-teacher conferences a year. At a private school, you will be able to be much more involved with the school. Some private schools even require some parental participation, and some put on events for the family. You are also sure to have much more communication with your child's teachers about the curriculum, your child's classroom performance, and college opportunities.
After considering these questions, if you think a private high school program would be a good fit for your child, reach out to private schools in your area for more information.