Why Private School

A comprehensive look at private schools and why they might be right for your child. Explore the history of private school education, weigh the pros and cons of public vs. private school, and get valuable advice on making the best choice for your child. Learn more about the various types of private schools from military to progressive and review directories from a variety of resources including private school associations and offline publications.
View the most popular articles in Why Private School:
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Educating Your Gifted Child
Educating a gifted child can be daunting as there is no clear roadmap for your child's education. Some thoughts and suggestions here.

We parents worry a lot, don't we? From the time of your baby's first kick in the womb to her graduation from college, her marriage, and the birth of her own children, we just never stop worrying, do we? Now, of course, I don't mean worrying in a negative sense. I use worry to express that parental awareness or sixth sense which we parents remarkably seem to develop from the time we first hold our child in our arms. Worrying goes with parenting. But let's make it informed worrying. That's why organizations such as The National Association For Gifted Children are so important.  This video discusses the parenting of gifted children.

As you begin to suspect that your child might be gifted, take time to review the information contained on an authoritative website such as the NAGC's. Ruthlessly filter information which you see on television,  hear on talk shows or read in social media.

So what makes a child gifted?  The NAGC lists the following common characteristics of gifted children:

  • Unusual alertness, even in infancy
  • Rapid learner; puts thoughts together quickly
  • Excellent memory
  • Unusually large vocabulary and complex sentence structure for age
  • Advanced comprehension of word nuances, metaphors and abstract ideas
  • Enjoys solving problems, especially with numbers and puzzles
  • Often self-taught reading and writing skills as preschooler
  • Deep, intense feelings and reactions
  • Highly sensitive
  • Thinking is abstract, complex, logical, and insightful
  • Idealism and sense of justice at early age
  • Concern with social and political issues and injustices
  • Longer attention span and intense concentration
  • Preoccupied with own
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Schools For Children Who Sing
If you have a child who sings, you might want to consider a choir school. In the United States, most of these schools are day schools.

What is a choir school? It is a private school serving the choristers of a cathedral, college or large parish church. The choristers can be boys or girls or boys and girls depending on the institution with which the school is affiliated. The United Kingdom enjoys a long history of this genre of private school.  As the Choir Schools Association notes: 

"Choir Schools are amazing places where young choristers enjoy learning and playing. Their work takes them into stunningly beautiful buildings on a daily basis. There is no better educational and musical training start for boys and girls aged seven years and up who love to sing."

Residential and day choir schools have seen a steady decline in their numbers since the 1950s for three reasons. Two devastating world wars in Britain drastically altered the social and economic landscape in that country. Changing values in modern society throughout the world have seen parents choose alternative forms of education for their children. Finally, the tremendous cost of educating children in a choir school has forced many sponsoring institutions to close their schools.

Why send your child to a choir school?

I remember a parishioner years ago asking me to support her son's application to Saint Thomas' Choir School. He was an only child and, frankly, she was the quintessential velcro mother. I was pleasantly surprised that they were keen on the residential choir school at Saint Thomas Church in New York City. It was a good solution to her circumstance of being

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Single-Sex Education: An Overview
Sending your child to a single-sex school is one of several options you have when it comes to private schools.
When you think of single-sex education as a choice or an option when you are thinking about sending your child to private school, the subject becomes a little easier to understand in the 21st century. Historically private schools have offered single-sex education for decades. Indeed many of our older K-12 schools were founded with the purpose of educating boys or girls separately. That's the way things were done back in the 18th and 19th centuries. Colleges and universities were also set up as single-sex institutions. For example, Harvard University was an all-male university until 1977 when its sister college, Radcliffe, merged with it.
 
Characteristics of single-sex schools
 
How do we define a single-sex school? By definition, a single-sex school is a school which educates boys or girls exclusively. As a general rule classes will not be co-educational. On occasion, neighboring boys and girls schools which have an established relationship will host co-educational classes. 
 
What grades do single-sex schools offer? Typically single-sex schools are high schools offering grades 9 through 12 and a Post Graduate year where available. A handful of single-sex schools offer the middle school grades 6 through 9. Even fewer schools offer PK-12. You will also notice that middle school grades go up to grade 9 and high school begins with grade 9 as well. Actually, grade 10 is probably the most common entry point for private high schools. That’s one reason for the overlap of the grades. 

In the following video the students of Marlborough School, Los Angeles, describe why they like their school so much and show us some of the activities.

There are several
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Which Schools Did Our Presidents Attend? Part 2 - Johnson to Taft
Depending on their family circumstances, our Presidents received a wide range of primary and secondary schooling.

In the nineteenth-century education for several of our presidents was strictly hit or miss for a variety of reasons. On the other hand, a couple of presidents enjoyed what you and I know in the 21st century as Ivy League educations. Fortunately for our young nation, most of these men were leaders who were able to guide our country through so uncharted waters and perilous times.

17 - Andrew Johnson

President from April 15,  1865 to March 4, 1869
Born: December 29, 1808, Raleigh, North Carolina
Died: July 31, 1875, Carter County, Tennessee, Tennessee
Political party: Democratic Party

North Carolina native Andrew Johnson succeeded Abraham Lincoln. He had no formal schooling as his family was very poor. His meager educational background notwithstanding, Johnson apparently was a skilled public speaker.

Book Scrolling has a list of books about our 17th president.

18 - Ulysses S. Grant

President from March 4, 1869 to March 4, 1877

Born: April 27, 1822, Point Pleasant, Ohio
Died: July 23, 1885, Wilton, New York
Political party: Republican Party

Ohio native Hiram Ulysses Grant appears to have had formal schooling from the age of five. He attended a subscription school, i.e., a school which his parents paid for him to attend, as well as two private schools, the Maysville Seminary, and John Rankin's Academy. He matriculated to West Point. Ron Chernow's book

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What If...Answers To Your Questions About Private School
From time to time we all wonder how things might have turned out if circumstances and situations had been different. We apply that questioning to private schools.

I was musing the other day about how things might have turned out differently if this or that had happened in my life. The same exercise applies to just about any subject. So let's do it with private schools.

What if you can't make up your mind about whether to send your daughter to grade school or to high school?

You won't be alone if you are in a quandary about sending your child to primary grades or to high school. I wrote about this at length in Should You Send Your Child to Private Primary or High School? It is a catch 22 situation. Primary school lays the foundation for solid achievement in high school, while high school lays the foundation for solid achievement in college. If either academic foundation is constructed with less than the best materials, the educational structure built on that foundation will have deficiencies. 

The solution is to find the private school which meets as many of your requirements as possible. I explain how to do this in The Search Process: A 5 Point Checklist 

What if you think you cannot afford to send your child to a private school?

It is discouraging when you discover that a day school can cost $35,000 or more. And that's just for tuition. Add in fees and sundries such as music lessons, and you are probably looking at more than $40,000. Luckily, you have several options available to you. The first and most obvious one is that there

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Recent Articles
The Department of Homeland Security recently announced that it would enforce a 2017 policy of requiring visa applicants to list their social media handles. More about this and how it impacts international students wishing to attend American K-12 private schools.
We parents are responsible for expanding our children's horizons. We are responsible for showing and explaining things, concepts, and places they have never thought of. This article contains my roadmap for enriching your child's education.
This hub page lists over three dozen articles dealing with issues in high school such as academics and discipline.
Why Private School

About Private Schools

An in depth look at private schools, including history, a comparison to public education, and a glimpse of what's being taught. Learn about the benefits of attending private school, to both students and parents. Explore private schools options when living abroad, and debunk many of the myths regarding private school education.

Kinds of Schools

Private schools are just as varied as public schools. From Catholic to progressive, military to special needs, private schools offer a lot of options. Take a comprehensive look into the many types of private schools, weigh the pros and cons of each, and get helpful tips on choosing one that works best for your child.

School Life

Get a glimpse of private school life. Here you'll find a survival guide for parents, brush up on terms and jargon, and learn why extracurricular activities are so important.

Directories

We offer several directories to aid in your choice of a private school. Included are quick links to national, regional and state associations, a list of offline resources to aid in our decision, and local school directories for several metropolitan areas.