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.
View the most popular articles in Kinds of Schools:
Updated June 25, 2014 |
Progressive schools have been around since the early 1900's. Some educators think that progressives are rebels against traditional rote learning. The progressive educators like to think of themselves as reformers. The truth is somewhere in the middle.
Progressive schools have been around since the early 1900's. Some educators think that progressives are rebels against traditional rote learning. The progressive educators like to think of themselves as reformers. The truth is somewhere in between the two points of view.
 
The movement has an interesting history. Read about John Dewey (1859-1952), the modern founder of the movement in the U.S. You can only wonder what might have happened to public education had some of his ideas taken root. As it is, progressive educators and schools which employ their philosophies are pretty much confined to the private sector. A list of private schools which embrace the progressive ideals, teachings and curricula is given below.
Updated February 08, 2017 |
Roman Catholic Boarding Schools
These Roman Catholic boarding schools offer good value, great educations and a faith-based community experience.

Educating the young has been a mission of the Roman Catholic Church for as long as anybody can remember. While curricula and teaching methods have changed dramatically over the years, one thing is immutable: these schools do a great job educating their students as evidenced by the very high percentage of their graduates who go on to colleges and universities all over the country, indeed, around the world.  With many other boarding schools charging $55,000-65,000 for their services, these boarding schools offer good value as such things go. A couple of schools are single sex schools. The rest are co-educational institutions.
 
Roman Catholic orders such as the Jesuits or Salesians which specialize in teaching run many of these schools. The standards are high. Most schools have uniform or dress codes. Core values are also taught together with plenty of instruction in the Catholic faith. These Catholic schools produce graduates whose solid spiritual and academic foundations anchor them for advancement in later life.
 
Check out the profiles of these schools. Many of them also take day students, so if you live in the area, you can have the best of both worlds.

Canterbury School, New Milford, CT
Grades 9-12
350 students
Coed

"The Canterbury experience is a rich one for both boarding and day students, and the community is made more diverse by students from around the globe. Through an active community service program our students and faculty are constantly involved in serving others outside the Canterbury community." 

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Updated May 25, 2016 |
For Profit vs Not for Profit Schools
What are the advantages and/or disadvantages of a for profit versus a not for profit school? Is one kind of school better than the other?
Private schools are generally set up in one of two ways: as for profit entities or not for profit (nonprofit) entities. The for profit version is typically used by either a corporation or a private individual in order to make a profit but not be eligible for contributions which are tax-deductible to the extent provided for by law. Not for profit status is what most private schools chose to organize under so that they may make money but also receive contributions which are tax-deductible to the extent provided by law.  
 
What then are the advantages and/or disadvantages of a for profit versus a not for profit school? Is one kind of school better than the other?
 
For Profit Schools
 
The way in which a for profit school is set up is to allow it to be controlled by an owner. That owner could be an individual or group of individuals as is often the case with many pre-schools and some elementary schools. Another form of ownership is a corporation. This often is a corporation owned an operated by a group of local individuals. More typically, for profit private schools are owned by a corporation which has schools in several locations. For profit schools are usually in business to make money or turn a profit. They pay taxes on those profits. Parents pay for the school's services just as though they were customers. Examples of this sort of school include Le Rosey in Switzerland, Sylvan Learning Centers, the Nobel Schools, as well
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Updated June 25, 2014 |
Classical Christian schools combine strict adherence to Christian beliefs with classical principles of education.
Christian schools as a genre have been around since the 1950's. Recently a subset of Christian schools known as classical Christian schools has become popular. This seems to have come about because standards in public education have steadily fallen. Many parents simply will not tolerate shoddy disciplinary standards, sloppy dress codes, violence in our schools and underachievement and low expectations. As a result they start their own schools.

A classical Christian school proclaims Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. It also adheres to the principles of a classical education as set out by educators such Dorothy Sayers, John Milton Gregory, St. Augustine and Douglas Wilson. Parents and students enroll in a classical school because they too embrace the mission and teachings of the school. Teachers are required to sign a statement of belief as well. The result is a school community which is tightly focussed on its aims and objectives. Put another way, if you cannot subscribe to these beliefs, then you need to look elsewhere for your child's education if you are a parent.

You won't find computers and fancy technology being used in classical Christian schools. They use the trivium (grammar, rhetoric and logic). A classical Christian school seeks to produce excellent students well-schooled in their faith.
Updated June 09, 2016 |
Sometimes a regular school is not the right fit for a child. Perhaps she needs an alternative school.
What is an alternative school? For most of us the term alternative school means a school with a non-traditional program. Its students could be 'gifted' or 'troubled' or have special learning needs.
 
Schools For The Gifted
Many schools for the gifted offer enrichment in academic subjects. Others specialize in the arts. Most of the students in these schools excel at their school work and in their artistic endeavors. They thrive in a school setting where they don't have to waste time on non-essential courses. The extra time gained is spent on music lessons, rehearsals and studio time.
 
Schools for Troubled Teens
 
Schools for troubled teens are often styled 'therapeutic' schools. Their students have been unable to succeed academically in regular schools. Perhaps discipline is a problem.  Or the child has an eating disorder or is suicidal. The program at a therapeutic school tends to be highly structured so that a child learns how to cope. Some therapeutic schools deal with substance abuse issues. Children who are addicted to drugs and alcohol can find the professional help and counseling they need to change their lives.  Other schools specialize in emotional growth issues.
Admission to these schools is on an 'as needed' basis. You won't have to wait until a certain date to admit your child. Some schools have minimum stays in order to ensure the effectiveness of their programs.
 
Schools for At Risk Teens
Several cities offer 'street schools' modeled after the highly successful Denver Street School. The 
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