Getting Started

In this section we offer a look into some of the most important factors of choosing a private school. Investigate single-sex education and read what students have to say, learn more about what is important when choosing a private school, and get valuable advice on transitioning to a new school.
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Updated June 13, 2016 |
IDEA
Use this simple mnemonic to help you organize your search for a private school for your child.

We all have so many things on our mind and so much to do every day. So when it comes to undertaking a major project such as finding the right private school for your child, anything which will help you zero in on what needs to be done is helpful. I have always found mnemonics useful. With that in mind you can use this simple mnemonic to help you organize your search for a private school for your child. In this short clip Jennifer Schroeder shares her experiences on choosing a private school.

From start to finish you will probably invest up to 125 hours in this process if you are looking at boarding schools. About 50 hours if you are looking at day schools. Perhaps 25 hours if you are investigating primary and preschools. It's a lot of work with a lot of deadlines to fit into your busy schedule. But if you will scope out the various tasks you have to do and work through them step by step, you will get through it.

The most important caution which I or any private school consultant will give you is a very simple one: start the process as far in advance as you possibly can. At least 18 months before the fall of the year you plan your child to attend her new school. If you are forced to find a school at the last minute, it can be done. Not

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Updated November 21, 2016 |
What is Really Important in Choosing a School?
What is really important in choosing a private school? Ranks? Academics? Financial aid? Sports programs? Arts programs? One of these criteria doesn't matter. The others do.

As you begin exploring schools for your child, you begin to realize that you have dozens of options. And they are all a little different. It's rather bewildering looking at all these web sites especially if you have never visited a private school before. They are all so different. How can you ever decide which one is best for your daughter? Start with a very basic strategy, a game plan if you will. Let's look at what really matters when it comes to choosing a private school for your child.

Your requirements

Start with your requirements. Your requirements trump everything. So have a family discussion. Be relaxed and open-minded because your requirements as a parent are going to be different from your daughter's. You are thinking the best educational experience. She's thinking about her life and her friends and the reality that she will have a whole new situation to deal with. That's scary for a young person. But you can make it an adventure and get her to buy into going to private school if you are patient, informative and, above all, a listener. Dictating to your child will probably get you nowhere in a hurry. 

So, what's really important? Ponder these questions and then develop some answers after having that family discussion.

  1. Are you looking for a traditional college prep school experience or something else?
  2. Is your religion a major determining factor?
  3. What about sports? Arts programs? Extracurricular activities?

What about a school such as Midland

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Updated October 12, 2016 |
5 Factors for a Successful Private School Experience
As you consider sending your child to private school, think about these five factors which make for a successful private school experience.

So, you are considering sending your child to private school. As the idea gels and your selection process gets underway, think about these five factors which will make for a successful private school experience. After all, you want the best possible outcome for your child. You want her to benefit from the enriched academic experience which a private school can offer. But most of all, you want her to be happy in her new private school environment. You also want the peace of mind which comes from knowing that you have made all the right decisions.

The right school

So, with dozens of private schools to choose from, choosing the right one is probably the most crucial item on this list of factors for a successful private school education. Which is the right school? You'll know it when you visit it and speak with the admissions staff. It will be the school which best meets both your requirements as a parent, and the requirements of that precious cargo which you are about to entrust to the school. You can review the statistics and data about the school. You can determine that its philosophy and educational mission align with your goals and objectives. But the real question for which you need to find the answer is how will your child fit in. If you feel comfortable about your answer to that question, you are all set. You will have chosen the right school.

The right sports

As

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Updated August 23, 2016 |
Do You Know....?
If you know the answers to all these questions, you probably teach or work in a private school. Be that as it may, these questions contain links with the answers.
Do you know....? If you know the answers to all these questions, you probably teach or work in a private school. Be that as it may, these questions contain links with the answers. Test your knowledge. Dispel some urban legends about private schools. Do you know....?
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Updated February 06, 2017 |
Small Is Good
Private schools offer individualized attention to their students because their class sizes are generally small.
Private schools learned a long time ago that small is good. Most prep schools have a student population of about 300-400 students. You will find larger and smaller schools, of course. Exeter is an example of a very large prep school. With a population of 1100 students and commensurate numbers of faculty and staff, Exeter is a large institution.

By contrast South Kent School is an example of a small school with 150 students. What do Exeter and South Kent have in common? A low student to faculty ratio. Typically private schools have student-faculty ratios in a range of 10:1. This is the genius of private schools. This is what you are really paying for when you send your child to private school: the personal attention to her learning needs.

Low student to faculty ratio is another way of saying that the class sizes are small. That is a good thing. You see, in a small school your daughter cannot escape and hide from view like she can in a large public school with large class sizes. When she sits around a Harkness table with fourteen other students and the teacher in the middle, there's no hiding anything.

As a result of small classes, teachers are able to dig deeply into the material. They are able to explore the sidebars and cement the fundamentals in place. (Parenthetically, it is a very satisfying feeling to be able to truly teach as one can do
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Choosing a Private School

GETTING STARTED