Tag Archives: private schools

College Prep Schools

College Prep Schools

Another name for College prep schools is just prep school. Many of the prep schools are private, and independent of the national education association. There are typically fees and tuition associated with these types of schools. They can be a little pricey and some of these institutions also receive donations from outside sources that allow them to offer a very quality education for their students. Some college prep schools are single sex meaning that they only accept boys or girls. Some people believe that students do better academically if they are not distracted by the opposite sex. The other side of the argument leans more toward the thought that students will not learn proper social skills if they are not exposed to the opposite sex. Parents and students should decide which option will best meet their needs. There are prep schools that are only for students to attend during the day known as day schools, and some that offer living arrangements known as boarding schools

Select Carefully

Some prep schools are very competitive and difficult to gain admission into. This makes preparation for these types of school an important factor. Students should work to get the best GPA possible so they will not be denied admittance because of low grades. If the selection process comes down to two students with everything else being equal, the student with the highest GPA may win the spot. Entrance into a higher level or more prestigious prep school may also assist the teen when seeking admittance into the University of their choice. It is important to note that the more prestigious universities will usually have a more prestigious or (expensive) tuition rate. There may some limited scholarship funds available. It is important that a teen not be put into an institution of higher learning they are not qualified to enter. This situation will only create feelings of inadequacy and an overwhelmed unhappy student. If the student gets poor grades in the university they are not prepared to attend, it may create more problems than benefits for them in their academic future.

Benefits of a Prep School

One large benefit of the prep school may be the low student to teacher ratio. This may be due to the ability of the children to grasp things academically. It is also helpful if a teen has a question and needs some additional help. Many prep schools offer an more extensive list of AP or advanced placement courses. A lot of the top prep schools have strong athletic programs also. In addition they typically offer courses in the arts in the way of musicals and plays. It is not unusual for the prep schools to offer other social opportunities with clubs and other social organizations. These will assist the student as they prepare to transition into their college or university life. With the prep school being privately funded they have the ability to hire the brightest and best teachers. This benefit alone could make enrollment in a prep school a great value. When coupled with all of the other benefits we have discussed a prep school is definitely the way to go for someone interested in a top quality education.

Private Vs Public Schools

Advantages of Private Boarding Schools

Those involved in Private Boarding schools are convinced that the education offered is much better than that in a Public School. This may be due to the fact that the public schools are required to deal with everyone. The private schools are able to hand pick their students, refusing students that are borderline, or that do not really want to learn. The application process for the private school is very extensive and completion does not guarantee admission. Imagine the difference in a typical public classroom where a student is only there because he or she has to be there. The opposite side of the coin is the private school where all of the students are happy to be there and eager to learn. The private school can also hand pick the teachers and administrative staff. If a teacher does not perform well they will be asked to leave. If a school is not running well an administrator will be fired. In the public school system teachers that are vested obtain a sort of untouchable status. In some places they will really have to do something bad to be fired. Once vested some teachers relax and do a mediocre job until retirement. There are those teachers that take pride in their work and will always do a good job in a private or public setting. Teachers in a private school may not have the comfort of being vested.

Ideal Students

As mentioned previously students in a private school are there because they really want to learn. Teachers are there because they really want to teach. This creates a very positive learning environment. The success of the school is based on the success of the students. This gives everyone the desire to make things work. Since the private school has hand selected the students enrolled the success of the school depends in part to the students selected. This may seem unfair to those working in the public sector. In one sense it does have a tendency to tilt the scales in favor of the private school. How can they fail with hand picked students, teachers, and administrators. This allows the private school to charge more because of their success. An ideal situation would be created if the private sector could replicate what happens in the private school. The truth is not every young person wants to go to school. Not every teacher wants to go to work, and not every administrator is excited to make a success of the public school they work in. As in everything the opposite is also true.  There are talented teachers and administrators in every school just like there are gifted students in public schools. The biggest difference is the number and ratio of talented people and students involved in a private setting compared to that of a public setting. The challenge for the public schools is to capitalize on the gifted students that are unable to attend a private school. The public school can also be careful to hire teachers and administrators that are excited and capable of doing the jobs their are hired for. It would also be a good idea to do review the policies that protect teachers and administrators that are not performing well from being fired.



Private Teen Schools – Teen Specialty Schools

Private Teen Schools

Parents select private schools for a variety of reasons. Sometimes a child has special needs. Other times, the child is gifted and the parents seek an accelerated academic environment. In many cases, the parents are simply looking for a more structured learning atmosphere with smaller classes and more careful supervision.

If you are new to an area, check the phone book. Make sure the school is accredited before going any further with your search. Ask your Realtor, and even your children’s pediatrician.

• What should I look for in a private school?

That answer depends on what you are looking for for your child’s education. Maybe you want a rigorous academic program, like a preparatory school. Or perhaps you would like a certain emphasis, like in the arts or music. Look at class size and compare with the public schools in your area. Maybe you want a nurturing, warm environment. Decide what you want and then seek it out.

• What should I expect from private school teachers?

Check out the credentials of the teachers. Do they have specialized degrees in their areas, such as math or chemistry? Or did they graduate with general degrees? How long have the teachers been on staff? Is turnover a problem? Are the teachers well paid?

If the teachers are experienced, and have a long-term history with the school, that will tell you that most likely they are happy there.

• How can I find out about the academic program?

When you visit the school, ask specific questions about the curriculum. What math book do they use? Ask to see it and page through it. What is their language arts curriculum? What books do they read, and what writing assignments do they have?

What is the school’s philosophy on homework? Is it given daily? During weekends? How many hours should it take, and what is the punishment if it is not turned in on time?

Do the children go on field trips? How do they travel, by bus, car, train or plane? Who supervises them on these trips?

Ask about grades. Is there grade inflation where everyone makes an “A.” Or are the grades distributed fairly. How many tests are there per week on the average? What is the test taking policy (in other words, can they make-up a test if their score is low?).

• How do I ask about discipline?

Be very direct, and ask how discipline is handled. Is it time out, visits to the Principal, or extra assignments? As you tour the school, look at the behavior in the classroom. Is it under control or out of hand? Do the students appear interested or bored? Be sure and ask to enter classrooms during your tour. Visualize your child in the room and ask yourself if that feels “right.”

Ask direct questions like, “What action has been taken in the past to handle those who cheat on tests?” “How are drug problems handled?” “Have you ever expelled a child, and for what reason?”

• What about extracurricular activities?

Ask if there are clubs to join, sports teams and enrichment classes. Request a list of opportunities for the child.

• Can parents be involved in the school?

Again, be sure to ask for the level of parental involvement. Is it hands-on in the classroom? Will you feel welcome at the school? Is there a parent-teacher organization, and what activities does the group perform?

• Who should I ask for references on a particular school?

It is advised to talk to parents of current students or recent graduates. Ask what the positives and negatives are. Remember that no school is perfect. It is your job as a parent to locate the school that comes closest to meeting your child’s educational needs.