January 15, 2013
Have you ever wondered...
Why a private school doesn't have to tell you why it refused your child admission?
Private schools do not have to accept applicants who do not meet their specific admissions criteria. Each private school has its own unique admissions criteria. Each school reviews its own applicant pool. Each school makes its own decisions completely independent of what any other school may decide. There is no appeal process once that decision is made. Neither does the school have to tell you why it made the decision it did. One way of 'reading the tea leaves' as it were is to hire an educational consultant. Her long experience with and knowledge of schools and their admissions process will generally be most helpful.
What happens if your kid gets caught breaking the rules?
This question is important. Unlike public schools where there is due process and something called student rights, private schools are governed by contract law. You and the school signed a contract covering the various terms and conditions of your child's stay at the school. While it may seem like a lot of fine print and legal language, it is there for a purpose: to protect the school. Read your contract carefully and understand that the school may discipline your child for breaking school rules. Depending on how serious the infraction is, the punishment could include expulsion.
Most private schools have a student handbook which explains all the rules and their infractions in great detail. The handbook is covered and explained...read more
June 12, 2011
Certain questions always seem to present themselves unexpectedly at the worst possible time. But life is like that, isn't it? The old, comfortable, predictiable play book we used to follow thirty or forty years ago has gone by the boards. Here then are some answers and some resources to help you deal with these tough questions.read more
My kid has been expelled?
Being notified that your child has been expelled is serious. The timing will inevitably be very awkward. You literally will have to stop whatever you are doing and deal with this crisis. For a crisis it most assuredly is. The mere fact that your child broke the kind of rules and did something which warranted his expulsion means that you need to get to the bottom of the situation. Why did he do this? Counselling will probably be required. Both for him and for you. What recourse do you have? Probably not much. The contract which you and the school signed spells out the consequences for infractions of the code of conduct which guides students' lives at school.
Finding a new school won't be easy but is doable if you hire an educational consultant to make it happen. If you do it on your own, you will spend countless hours calling and explaining your situation. It makes more sense to have a detached and professional consultant do all that for you. Efficiently and cost-effectively.
I want to find a teaching job?
If you want to teach in a private school, you need to...
February 10, 2011
I can just hear you saying "He's got to be kidding. After spending inordinate amounts of my valuable time and resources getting my child into private school, the school can decide it doesn't want her back next year?"read more
Yes, the school can do that. Sad. But true. Read the contract which you signed with the school when your daughter was first accepted. It very clearly spells out the rights each party to the contract has. And one of those is that the school does not have to automatically renew its contract with you. The contract has a finite term. Usually for one academic year.
How do you avoid the school sending a non-renewal notice? You make sure that the following are in order:
1. Acceptable academic progress
While it would be nice if your child could be first in every subject she takes, that is asking a bit too much. But you definitely want to keep her in the top third. If the school recommends extra help or even tutoring, don't fight that recommendation. Calculus may have been a breeze for you. But if she is struggling with it, be ahead of the curve. Accept the help offered.
All they really want is to see are her best efforts and maximum cooperation in achieving good results. There's a larger lesson that the school is trying to teach here as well. And that is to not flinch at life's challenges. Life is full of seemingly impossible challenges and situations. Learning how to cope with these...
December 12, 2010
Cindy Springsteen writes about teens for the Long Island Examiner. I asked her about the challenges facing teens and their parents in the 21st century within the context of sending them off to private school. Here are her answers. ~ Robert Kennedyread more
RK. Does sending your teens off to private school help protect them from drinking and other forms of substance abuse? Your reasons?
CS. No, I do not think sending your teens to a private school is going to protect them from the dangers of drinking and other forms of abuse. Teens are teens and just because they are in a private school, they will still be exposed to everything that is available to them in the public schools. In some cases it is said that private school teens come from families with money and could more easily purchase bad things. This is a personal opinion.
RK. Cindy, I agree that teens are teens. Whether they go to private or public school, they will be exposed to all sorts of opportunities to drink. The difference, however, with private school is that if they are caught, the consequences will be serious and swift. I know of an instance at one of my daughters' schools where a couple of seniors decided to sneak a drink on campus a few days before graduation. They were caught and were not permitted to attend graduation.
RK. Let's look at another serious issue. Suicide is one of the leading causes of death in teens. How do we keep...
December 11, 2008
Students in private schools must follow their school's guidelines and directives when it comes to using personal technology. Personal technology includes devices such as laptops, desktops, cell phones, Blackberries, PDAs, language translators, video players, and MP3 players.What is somewhat perplexing to many mature teachers is that none of these devices were in common use ten years ago. The reality is that young people have all some or all of these devices and use them naturally, freely and without much thought.
As a rule there are limits on these devices and their use in private schools. Let's look at five things you are not supposed to do with personal technology. Breaking the rules in your school could land you in a heap of trouble, including expulsion. If you are a parent, have a discussion with your child. Review her school's personal technology use policy. Help her understand the limits and the reasons why. Remind her further that she has no rights in a private school. So if the school disciplines her for an infraction, there is no recourse.read more
Private school students are covered by contract law, not constitutional rights. Her rights and privileges are clearly detailed in the contract you, her parent, signed with the school. This is a legal and binding document.
Here then are five things you must not do with personal technology while under school jurisdiction.
Harrassing is broadly defined as bothering somebody. It takes many forms and runs the gamut from racial to sexual harrassment. Most schools strictly prohibit...
May 15, 2013
Here are a dozen or so boys' schools' public thoughts about themselves and their missions.
Why Private School,
Paying For It,
High School Issues,
Jobs in Private Schools
What If They Won't Have Your Child Back?
It's spring. You receive a letter from the school advising you that it will not be renewing its contract with you for next year. How can this happen? We offer some answers.
Cindy Springsteen and Robert Kennedy on Teen Issues
Cindy Springsteen writes for the Long Island Examiner. She and I had a go at a couple of the major issues confronting parents of teens.
What Do I Do When....
Here are some answers and some resources to help you deal with those tough questions such as "What I do when my child has been expelled?"
Have you ever wondered why some private schools are so competitive? Some answers to that and other questions.
Graduation is always a warm, happy occasion. Mark this important milestone with a memorable gift. Here are some suggestions.
Preventing Teen Suicide
Teen suicide is the 3rd largest killer of young adults between the ages of 15-24. It can be prevented.
5 Things You Must Not Do With Personal Technology
Young people take personal technology devices for granted. We parents and teachers must make them aware of how such devices are used in the real world.
Ask Mr. Chips
You have questions about private schools. We have answers.
Education news from around the country.
Note: Data has been gathered from the Dept. of Education, schools, and commercial data sources.