Finding Schools

Learn more about how to find and evaluate private schools. Find out why price should not be your only consideration. Get valuable advice on how to save time and money when choosing a school. Learn more about ranking schools and why it may not work.

View the most popular articles in Finding Schools:

5 Distinctive Features Of A Waldorf Education

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5 Distinctive Features Of A Waldorf Education
Waldorf schools offer a distinctive approach to K-12 education. We look at some of the features of this 100 year old movement.
Rudolf Steiner c. 1905 Public Domain on Wikipedia.org

Editor's Note: I will disclaim upfront that my eldest daughter went to a Waldorf School in the primary grades. Being creative people, we were impressed with the creative side of the curriculum. Our daughter's two years at a Waldorf school were overall a good experience. ~Rob Kennedy

 

On the fringes of traditional K-12 education are movements like Montessori, Waldorf, and Reggio Emilia. They offer parents different approaches to early childhood education, and in the case of Waldorf schools, they continue on through high school. Searches on Google and YouTube will yield a lot of information to help you explore the subject of this article, a Waldorf education.

 

The founder

 

Austrian philosopher and scientist Rudolf Steiner (1861-1925) established what we now know as the Waldorf or Steiner schools. He opened his first Waldorf school in Stuttgart, Germany Emilia 1919. A hundred years later, there are over 1,200 Waldorf schools worldwide.

 

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Choosing A School: It's Not That Simple

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Choosing A School: It's Not That Simple
You cannot rank private schools. We explain why.

One of the top questions on this site goes something like this: "I'm moving to (name your city) next summer. Can you recommend the top schools in that area?" My standard reply suggests that the writer engage an educational consultant to assess the writer's specific requirements and make appropriate recommendations. I also send along a link to that state or city, as the case may be, so that the writer can get some idea of the diversity of private schools in that area.

Many people think that I am copping out by not making a recommendation or ranking private schools. My reasons are simple: I am not a professional educational consultant. I am an impartial observer of the private school scene, both at home here in the United States and abroad. I maintain a reference site so that you can find a school online and make further inquiries based on that information. I editorialize on trends and happenings in the world of private K-12 education. That's all I do.

Private Schools Cannot Be Ranked.

Why are there no rankings on this site? I maintain that it is impossible to do. I have given it much thought, but I always come back to my experience forty years ago when we were looking for schools for our two daughters. It came down to one thing: the right fit. One size does not fit all when it comes to educating your child. 

Our eldest daughter was very competitive. She was also very strong, even gifted, academically.

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Finding Schools

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Finding Schools
Just starting your search for a private school? Not sure where to look? This hub gathers together articles that will provide some answers and guidance.

Choosing a private school is a process with many parts to it. It also takes 18-24 months to complete. This collection of articles deals with the second part of the process in which you look at all kinds of private schools and see what they offer. I'll show you where to look for schools. I also introduce you to some of the things I think you should look for in a school.

What am I looking for?

If you don't know too much about private schools but are thinking that private school might be a good option for your child's education, here's how to get the search process started.

How To Search For Schools  Private School Review has a robust search engine that will make your private school search process much easier to do. Here are some tips on how to use this tool.

Private School Search Tips  We look at several ways you can use to search for private schools. Whether you are beginning the search process for a school for your child or just want to find out more about particular schools, we offer some tips and tricks to make searching more efficient.

The Search Process: A 5 Point Checklist  Use this five-point checklist to keep your search for private schools organized.

This video offers an overview of The Madeira School in McLean, Virginia.

What kind of private school will work for me?

You have your own specific needs and requirements. So,

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Private School Search Tips

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Private School Search Tips
We look at several ways you can use to search for private schools. Whether you are beginning the search process for a school for your child or just want to find out more about particular schools, we offer some tips and tricks to make searching more efficient.

Google, Bing, and Yahoo will find anything you are looking for provided that you ask them correctly. The problem with these search engines is that if you aren't careful, you will end up with far too many results. And 99% of those results will not relevant to you and your needs. For example, when I search for "private schools" on Google, I get 1.5 billion search results. Nobody has time to look through all those schools. With that in mind, here are a few search tips to help you search more efficiently.

 

Save interesting sites.

 

Before we start searching for schools, take a few minutes to set up a Google or Word doc. Save interesting school websites for easy reference tomorrow, next week, or a month for now. Doing this will save you valuable time and keep your search process organized.

 

Use quotes.

 

When you enter

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How Do I Find The Best School?

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How Do I Find The Best School?
A parent and I chat about finding the best school for her daughter. While the parent may be fictitious, her questions are quite typical of the kind of questions and concerns parents have when thinking about sending their children to private school.

Editor's note: In the following conversation, the parent is fictitious but her questions and my answers are real.

Parent: I am thinking about sending my teenage daughter to a private school for grades 9-12. How do I find the best school for her?

Rob K: Let me answer your question with another question. I know that I sound like an attorney by doing this, but I need to understand why you are thinking about sending your daughter to private school. Once you have told me your reasons, I will explain how to accomplish your goal.

Parent:  My daughter's current school is OK. It's a public school which sends a large percentage of its graduates on to further education. So, that's OK. She's been with some of her classmates since kindergarten. Now I feel that she should be with other students who really want to learn. I also want her to be in smaller classes. She's one of 25 students right now.  The other thing which concerns me is that the high school curriculum seems a bit thin, and is mostly focused on SATs and AP examination preparation.

Rob K: Now, you are giving me something to work with. Small class sizes are one of the main reasons most parents decide to send their children to private school. Most schools have 12-15 students per class. Your child will not just be a number in a small class. She will know everybody and everybody will know her. She will not be able to hide in

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