Evaluating Schools

Here you will find resources and tools to aid in your search and evaluation of private schools. Explore the ranking system and read what schools have to say about it. Learn more about the most important questions to ask and how an education consultant can get answers. Use our checklists to help compare school administration, curriculum and more.

View the most popular articles in Evaluating Schools:

Leadership, Legacy, and Learning: Pillars of Top Schools

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Leadership, Legacy, and Learning: Pillars of Top Schools
We explore the key elements contributing to the success of leading private schools, highlighting the importance of strong leadership, a rich legacy, and a focus on comprehensive learning experiences.
Olivier Le Moal/iStock Photos

Now and then, the question that occurs to me, as it should to you, is precisely why I think a particular school is one of the best. I have to conclude that the best schools have all of the following characteristics. What's more, they have them in abundance. Now, before you start thinking that I am only talking about older established schools, that ain't necessarily so. I am aware of a couple of newer schools that fit neatly into the category of best schools simply because they have all of the characteristics explained below. So let's look at what I think are the traits of the best schools.

Great leadership

The best schools have strong, dynamic, dedicated leaders. They are led by women and men who envision their goals and have the experience to execute their plans to achieve that vision. The head of the best school is a superb fundraiser, capable administrator, leader by example, and expects the best from everybody in her school community.

This video from Cristo Rey of Hope illustrates the clear vision of Cristo Rey schools.

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I know of several schools which could have been great. But they never made it because their fractious board of trustees kept getting in the way of progress. Change is never easy. But it seems that boards often have a rather difficult time with change. That always surprises me because most

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Demystifying College Admissions Tests

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Demystifying College Admissions Tests
This in-depth article explores the key differences and common features among the three prominent college admissions tests: SAT, ACT, and CLT. As an expert analysis, it provides a comprehensive comparison of the test structure, content coverage, scoring mechanisms, and interpretation. The article also examines why college admissions staff use these tests as part of the admissions process and discusses the role of standardized testing in college admissions. By understanding the nuances of each test, students can navigate the testing landscape more effectively and make informed decisions.

As you evaluate private high schools, review the kind of standardized college admissions tests on which they base their curricula and teaching. College admissions tests play a significant role in the admissions process, providing colleges and universities with standardized measures of academic preparedness. This article aims to delve into the similarities and differences between the three prominent college admissions tests: SAT (Scholastic Assessment Test), ACT (American College Testing), and CLT (Classic Learning Test).

Test Structure and Format

The SAT is a widely recognized college admissions test the College Board administers. It consists of sections in Reading, Writing and Language, Math, and an optional Essay. The SAT is scored on a scale of 400-1600, with an additional essay score (if taken). The test allows approximately 3 hours without the Essay and 3 hours and 50 minutes with the Essay.

The ACT, developed by ACT, Inc., consists of sections in English, Math, Reading, Science, and an optional Essay. The ACT is scored on a scale of 1-36, with an additional essay score (if taken). The test allows approximately 2 hours and 55 minutes without the Essay and 3 hours and 35 minutes with the Essay.

The CLT, offered by the Classic Learning Test organization, features sections in Verbal Reasoning, Grammar/Writing, Quantitative Reasoning, and an optional Essay. The CLT is scored on a scale of 0-120, with an additional essay score (if taken). The test allows approximately 2 hours and

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Is The IB Program Right For Your Child?

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Is The IB Program Right For Your Child?
The International Baccalaureate programmes cover the entire K-12 spectrum with three distinct educational curricula. Is the IB programme right for your child? Some answers to your questions here.

Will your child be going to high school in a few years? Are you looking at the academic options available in your local public and private schools? If so, then I recommend that you take this IB quiz. It will help you decide the best college prep approach for your child.

In education, one size does not fit all because children learn differently. Some children do well in a school offering a curriculum centered around Advanced Placement courses and Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) preparation. Others thrive in the non-traditional educational experience that progressive schools provide. Finally, some children find that the substantial academic experience that the International Baccalaureate program offers is the right option for them. Your answers to the following questions will help you make the right decisions about your child's academic future and preparation for college.

Why should I consider a school that offers the International Baccalaureate® Diploma Programme?

For several reasons, you should consider sending your child to a school that offers the International Baccalaureate® Programme, or IB as it is affectionately called. First of all, you have decided that you want your child to learn how to do serious academic work in high school so that she is well-prepared for the rigors of tertiary-level academic work. Secondly, you are uncomfortable with her only learning how to do well on tests. Thirdly, you want her to develop superior writing and research skills.

Where is the IB Diploma Programme offered?

Most American public and private

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Evaluating Schools: Check All The Boxes

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Evaluating Schools: Check All The Boxes
We help you keep the focus and stay organized as you evaluate schools on your shortlist.

It's very easy to get side-tracked as you work your way through the process of choosing the right private school for your child. That's because there are so many considerations for you to ponder. Consequently, you can detour into many sidebars as you explore schools online. Now, there's nothing inherently wrong with getting side-tracked. Indeed, you may find answers several levels down from the top page. Just make sure that you get yourself back on track after scanning that granular information. So, I will show you how to stay focused and organized while you look at schools.

First, develop a shortlist of three to five schools for you to explore in-depth and visit to confirm your findings. This shortlist will generate lots of observations, evaluations, assessments, and questions. So, make sure that you have checked all the boxes listed below.

1. Location

The location of the schools on your list is essential simply because travel these days is never easy. For example, getting your child to school can involve driving her to school and picking her up at the end of the school day. Or you may be able to contract with a transportation service to handle that. Or you might want to carpool with another family.

Review the logistics involved carefully. Ideally, you don't want to be more than a 20-30 minute drive from the school. So draw a circle 3-5 miles out from your residence. Use the search engine on this website to find

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How To Identify Schools

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How To Identify Schools
Identifying or evaluating private schools is the second part of the private school search process. This hub aggregates more than twenty-five articles that deal with this topic with the hope that they will help you search for the right private school for your child.

I know what you're thinking. "I have already chosen a couple of private schools to look at. So, why do I need to identify schools? What's that all about?" Identifying or evaluating schools is the next step in your school search process. In the first step, you surfed the Web looking at alOur website listsl kinds of schools. Depending on where you live, you had a handful of schools to possibly a hundred or more schools available. The first step involved your scanning school. The second step involves a detailed examination of three to five schools to determine which might best meet your needs and requirements.

A Guide To Schools Within 10 Miles Of Philadelphia

Philadelphia is home to some of the oldest K-12 schools in the nation. Our website lists eighty-four K-12 private schools within twenty-five miles from the Center City. You literally can find just about any kind of school you are looking for. Read more...

This video offers us a look at Cristo Rey High School.

A Guide to the Cleveland Council of Independent Schools

The Cleveland Council of Independent Schools is an organization that currently has thirteen member schools in the greater Cleveland area. Use Private School Review to find schools that do not belong to the CCIS. Read more...

Boarding or Day School?

Many parents agonize over sending their child to boarding school or keeping them at

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Recent Articles

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6 Schools and Their Beginnings
6 Schools and Their Beginnings
This article explores the rich histories of several prestigious schools in the United States, including the Allen-Stevenson School, Lycée Français de New York, Catherine Cook School, Shattuck-St. Mary's School, and The Spence School. It explores their origins, founders, growth, philosophies, and enduring legacies, highlighting their commitment to academic excellence and progressive education principles.
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Technology is transforming K-12 education, enabling personalized learning, immersive experiences, and new teaching methods. This article explores the latest classroom technologies like interactive whiteboards, tablets, virtual reality, online learning platforms, and educational software. It examines how these tools enhance engagement, provide real-time data, and facilitate hybrid learning models.

Choosing a Private School