What are your thoughts on Private vs. Public Schools?
There are pros and cons to public and private schools. What is your opinion on one versus the other, and where have you decided to send your kids?
hey, I am 15 and my parents have sent me to a private school. I went to a public school for years K-5 but then they moved me to a private school and I think that it is one of the best decisions they have made for me. Most of my public school friends our now getting into parties, sex and drugs in a private school that opportunity simply has not come up nor have I desired to seek such things, the morals in my school are very strict about thinks like that. The teachers are what your paying for in private schools and they are what make it worth while. The teachers particularly at my school really care about helping me reach my full potential. The thing that a private school has taught me most was to want to learn, to teach myself things and be able to work independently.The biggest pro, among many would be the life skills that I have learn and that I have been able to take on into my part time job. The only con of a private school I would say is the price that has certainly put pressure on the family but in the end I think it is money well spent. I guess I would say that I am proud to go to a private school and lucky that I get the opportunity, but it really depends on the child, my brother who is sport orientated does not go to a private school because the academics would be overwhelming for him and he loves his school just as much as I do. There is a lot to consider though.
I think that the answer is so specific to the child, and the school system. I have 2 children, both in public school. My oldest is "twice exceptional" and would so benefit from going to a private school. We found the perfect one for him, but unfortunately, financial issues have made it impossible. My second child is bright, but not off the charts. She is the "average" kid that the schools aim for and while I think she (like any kid) would benefit from the smaller classrooms and more individualized attention that private school would give her, I think that she will also do just fine in the public school. So my answer is "it depends"
If you live in a school district that has good schools, public school is sufficient and free (do some research online for ratings, test scores, parent opinions, etc). If you live in an area in which the schools have low ratings, if you have the money, private school would be best.
Why is there a thread in comments (in this discussion and others on COM) about not "sheltering" your kids? What is wrong with protecting them from bad influences, sharing your family values, and keeping them kids as long as possible?
You left out the third option- charter schools! I guess it's still a public school- just a different type. My daughter went to a regular public school until second grade, and it was unimpressive. The class sizes were big, she was shy, and we could not afford private school. There are some wonderful public schools in our district, but unfortunately we do not live near one of them. We tried the lottery for a charter school, and were number 25 on a waiting list. I was seriously considering homeschooling with my mom's help, when a spot opened up for us.
The charter school has smaller class sizes, higher test scores, parental involvement, and my daughter really likes it. She asked me the other day when will school start up again. Her teacher sent her a card this summer. They have the same teacher for two years in a row so the kids know kids in the grade up and down, and their teacher knows them really well. They go on lots of field trips because parents take them. They learn about the river, not reading it in a text book but by going to the river! I could go on and on, but to me the most important things is how much my daughter enjoys school now, and seems to be coming out of her shell. The school only goes through 8th grade, then we have to decide what to do after that. But I think with the foundation she's getting here, and confidence, that she'll be more successful in public highschool than she would have been going to the other public school.
If one can possibly afford to send their child/children to Private school then you should do it without question. The attention that a child gets from the teacher when there are only at most 15 children in the class is so important. My youngest son was really struggling at school and they wanted to put him on the special needs register. I knew as his Mother that he didn't need it, he needed better teaching. We pulled him out and sent him privately where he really flourished! He went on to go to Grammar school and passed 3 A levels. He's now a Policeman. I firmly believe that should we not have sent him privately his life would have taken a very different path.
I have 3 girls that are older now, but when they were in school we tried the public school first. My oldest was pretty smart and pretty much already knew a lot of the things they were already teaching so when I talked to the teacher about giving her something a bit more challenging , told me that the public school was aimed at the average student. So the the ones that are ahead have to wait for the others to catch up and those that are behind will stay behind. They follow the main stream kids. I put her in a private school the next year and the classes were smaller and the teacher gave her more challenging things to do. All 3 went to a private school until they were old enough to make that decision for themselves. (High school) One chose to go all 4 years in the public high school, the next chose all 4 years at the private school, and my 3rd wanted to go to the private school but after her first year, changed her mind and went to the public school the remainder. They all benefitted from the private school setting and they all were at LEAST 1 year ahead of the other kids in the private school. It was helpful also because the private school was a collage prep school so they all had no problems getting in to the collage of their choice. A lot of schools will actually help you out on the tuition if you ask and you can usually find second hand uniforms if you ask at the front desk of the school. I did and it worked out really great for my family.
Our local public schools have been cut to the bare bones. The non-english speaking students come first for any kind of help (reading, math, etc.). We did not want our children to be one of the average..so we are in private school. Our private school has a grading scale and educational requirements that exceed public school. Plus our school is small and has a great parent involvement. I went to the local public schools before they were stripped of everything. They just aren't the same as when we were kids. Private vs. Public definitely depends on the child and the area you live in. It will be private for us all the way through high school. Fortunately we can afford it, not the case for alot of families that could benefit from the private school system.
My kids go to private school, as did both my husband and I. I attended private from k thru highschool, whereas my husband attended from k thru freshman year in highschool. I appreciate the small school community, knowing all of my kids friends and their families, and knowing that there is very little tolerance for problematic kids who might otherwise disrupt my childs ability to learn. I feel like I can keep an eye on my kids pretty well and if I can't be there, I usually have friends who are. There is a certain level of respect that is expected out of all of the kids which will only help them become successful adults. When my husband left private for public his sophomore year, he experienced a completely different environment that allowed him too much freedom and ultimately affected his grades.
I have attended private school, and teach at a public school. Here are my opinions:
Private Schools- Your children will receive an EXCELLENT education at a private school for many factors- kids parents PAY for their kids to go there, and most of them have minimum "scores" you need to get for entrance... so... you have caring parents, and higher-level kids. You weed out all the rest, and along with it the behavior problems... which leads to a much better education. Teachers don't have to spend most of their day correcting bad behavior- they just teach, and for the most part, kids want to learn because most of them are college-bound.
Downsides- are cost, obviously. And, maybe a "lesser" facility in terms of extra curriculars because the schools do not receive tax dollars and cannot have swimming pools, multiple gymnasiums, fancy auditoriums, etc. My private high school didn't even have air conditioning.
Public Schools- Offer more in the way of extra curriculars, specialty courses, more diversity with students, etc. Downsides- public schools have to educate EVERYONE... the kids from gangs, the kids with sucky parents.... the kids who don't speak English... the kids who don't behave and their parents never follow through... along with the Honors students, and everyone in between. You put all these different types of students in one Algebra class and expect the teacher to do an awesome job and get every student to meet their scores? Come on! Half the time- we are working on behavior instead of academics because that's the reality of the situation. So... a lot of students with "potential" are held back because of this. So, when my kids are older... since I can't afford to send them to private school... I am going to hope and pray that they are smart enough to be in Honors classes.... because I believe that is where they will have the best chance to learn.
My son went to a private boarding school during his last three school years, that is from 16 - 19 here in Sweden. He loved it, I was fore it since there were extremely good and well educated teachers, but most of all because we needed the break from each other. Being a single strong child with a single strong mother can be too much when your are young and want to find your own path.
As for the comments about less drugs and sex ; that has not what I have heard. Kids going to pvt school tend to have more money, cars and more freedom rather it's to use drugs or have sex. I have heard this from many friends who went to pvt schools.
It was not the sanctuary their naive parents thought it was.
Personally I don't think you should send your kids to pvt school if you want to shelter them. Sheltering your child leaves him ill prepared for later hurdles. It is better to parent them and discuss with them issues that come up.
What if parents put all that pvt money into their public schools - now there's an idea.
My two oldest were bullied in pblic school. My girl by boys on the bus. Making sexual comments about her breasts. The dean of students was informed and his first reaction was to ask what she did. My son was bullied by the teacher. Came home with bruises and got called names. So we switched both to a private school. Best decision we ever made. It was a small catholic school in carthage NY. Wonderful teacher. We received a discount on our tuition. The class size was small. The kids could get away with nothing. Lol. The principal of the school is a very understanding and lovable woman.
Both of my kids learned so much in this school. To this day they are still in contact with their friends. There was never any problems on this school with sex or drugs or alcohol. It was just not tolerated!!!! Sister would never have tolerated. What a great woman she is!!!
Now the army sent us to this hell in georgia last year. They are in a public school because we can not afford private schools here. Over 1000$ a month is just outrages!!!! The public schools here are horrible. Pregnant, drugs, alcohol and racism. And that is just middle school. If I had the money I would send my kids back to a private school. Not only the quality and quantity of learning is advanced. The environment and social education is too.
Hopefully we go back upstate and my toddler can go back to this wonderful school !!!
I think private schools are way better. The whole atmosphere is better. My two boys go to private schools and they are doing exceptionally well. I love the way the teachers teach and the children are well mannered.
I have gone to both, Private first and for the longest, nursery school through 7th grade.. then 8th grade through 12th at public..
I have learned most of what school and life needed to teach me at my Private school and more. Public school was like going to school at the local park for me..huge distractions, a lot of crazy behavior was allowed, teachers were very un-involved, un-attached from the kids, felt like I could be here or not be here..
I learned nothing significant in high school, I learned everything else in college..
People say private schools are snooty but the public school system is failing miserably.. are we snooty for wanting to give our child the best education we can give them?... I dont know if all private schools are religious but i never understood why parents would spend SO much money on essentially a bible study class and a science class revolving around creationism.. isnt that the point of sunday school?
I have three girls and a boy, they all go to the same private school for girls, buying their uniforms was expensive but I managed to get a deal buying four uniforms, they all love the school and it means I can keep all my children togeather whereas in a public school danny, would have to go to a boys school. He is tought the same way as the girls but was a bit scared at first haveing to go to school in a skirt but now he is used to it and fits in nicely with all the other girls. After school at home and on weekends I keep Danny in skirts to get him used to the bennifits of wearing skirts and of coures it is cheaper if all the children wear the same clothes as boys clothes seem to be dearer as you can buy packs of four girls panties quit cheap. I reconmend private schools at all times, drugs and bullying is no issue and Danny is treated the same as the other girls.
I believe that Public Schools are "Dumbing Down" our children...this is why. P.S., may not always meet the needs of Your Child. When you H. S. you have the ability to give your children one on one when ever they need it. It is a known fact that P. S. teachers give a maximum of 3 minutes of indivdulized attention to your child each day. (not saying that it is their fault, time will not allow) Think of it as having 20+ youngsters in your home each day, aside from chores, meals and such in a 7 hour day, how much personalized attention do you feel that you could give each one? Our government mandates and regulates your childrens education in the P. S. system, how much do you really believe they care? From what I have seen hands on, not much! I opted to H. S. for several reasons...one on one attention at all times (no degree needed), learning curves...if they excell in one thing and not another, there is time to work with them. No violence, nothing to intrude on their learning, no resentments of other children who feel the need to pick on you for what ever reason, things that you do not want your children to now yet, no feling like a failure if you do not do well in a subject. I could go on forever...I was mis treated when I was young because I was very small, that sticks with you for life. My husband was picked on because his mother taught him that violence was not the answer. We were raised as teens in the 70's, the kids were mean then...since it is 40 odd years later, things have only gotten worse. The standard of learnig has gone down. In H. S. you regulate what your child needs, how they learn. My heart goes out to the teachers that really care, but are not given the chance to educate as they were taught. Do I have confidence in the P. S. System? NO!!! I was one in that system and I would not wish that on my worst enemy. Hope I did not step on toes nor offend anyone, this is simply my view.
Charter school are a great alternative. My daughter is 16 and attends a free, not for profit charter school. Class sizes are small, the teachers are top-notch. This is not a continuation school or school for special needs. It's a regular high school, just smaller and higher quality. Kids are there by choice, so it's is largely well-behaved, intelligent kids. We love it!
I agree: that question is very specific to the child AND especially to the school system! We always did private school with my daughter, from Pre-K through 2nd grade. We liked the small class sizes, so that was a plus. But it also costs a lot of money, so we moved to a good public school system in 3rd grade. I never wanted to do public school, and was dreading it, to be honest. But guess what? We like it better than private! There are cons: the school is large (900 kids); you might not get in the same class with ANYONE from the year before, and there is only like 15 minutes to eat lunch! BUT my daughter likes it because she found the private school kids to be more snooty and competitive. Plus, we have a WONDERFUL school system, where the teachers and administrators really do CARE about not only education, but also about the kids as people. I thought we would get that in private school, but found that small, private, and even "Christian" sadly didn't always = to care for my child's best interests. Now, if we lived in the next county over? NO WAY would I do public school. But OUR public school system is one of the best in the State of Florida, not to mention the whole country, so that makes a difference.
In a nutshell there is good and bad at both. I attended public schools and taught/coached at private schools. In the public schools, dress code is always an issue and large class sizes and lack of resources can make teaching and learning difficult. Depending on what school your child attends, extra curricular activities could be costly or minimal and competition could be tough or not an issue at all. In the private sector, some private school teachers have less education than in the public sector. It's the world of haves and the have nots-some kids can't afford to buy lunch and others drive mercedes and have no concept of money. There are drugs and sex in private schools so deluding yourself into thinking a private environment protects from those factors is ludicrous! The advantages of private schools is the focus on volunteerism and the one-on-one attention in class. But don't be fooled that private education makes a better student-there are bright students in public schools too and in the end private schools need tuition to make it, so they will admit students who are brainless if they can pay! The cost factor of private schools can be prohibitive and now that college costs even more regardless of state or private, your return on investment might not be beneficial. Attending a public school and hiring a tutor might be a more cost effective approach if your child needs specialized attention in one or more areas. The bottom line is that depending on my finances and my child's desires and needs, I will choose the school that is right for our family and so should every parent!
My granddaughter went to private school, K through 9th grade. By the end of her 9th year, due to the cost for the scandal in the church, the classes in private went from 40 to 55. A lot of their parochial schools were closed in order to help pay for the lawsuits. Our public high school offered more than $1M in scholarship. The private offered none. All through her school years she was a A+ student. She loved math and did exceptionally well. When she transferred to public, she was behind 1.5 to 2 years more than other students that had always received public school training. She had to repeat the ninth grade until she caught up with other tenth graders. It took her six months to do so. One of the side effects of her transfer was that she refused to attend church. She had, had enough religious training for nine years. Time that had been spent on religious teaching, would have been spent of American History and Geography in public schools. An area that really brought her test score down when she first went public.
In her twelfth year she received a full four year scholarship for a state college. And she has thrived there. She is taking science related classes and can't wait until she goes back to class in August. The private school that she had been attending has lost a large number of students for the same reason my granddaughter left. Too large classrooms, low SAT scores, no scholarships available.
One side note. The private school had two student stabbings last year. The public school had no crime at all. And the public school has more than 3000 students. It makes me proud that it was also my high school and her parents.
it depends on your schol district and your child. i'm in nyc and i put my kids in Catholic school because the middle schools in my district were scary. my older child academically did ok but socially, she had very few friends in her class. the school has disciplinary problems that i don't think were very well handled. in 4th grade she had a nightmare teacher & never did do as well as she had. my younger daughter's class received the short end of the stick with a teacher in 2nd grade, 3rd grade was a year long substitute but she was good. she just completed 5th grade & still doesn't need to study to make honors. she completes most of her homework in school. so i applied & she was accepted into the gifted & talented program in the public school. turns out this public school has improved dramatically from when my older child would have gone there. if i had put my older child in this middle school, she would have been lost. my younger child i think is going to thrive. it all just depends.
I have had my son in both private and public schools...Originally, he was in private schools for k-3rd grade. The reason for this is because of the Los Angeles School system. Schools are rated on a scale (api?) of 1-10. The school that he would have went to was rated a 2. Hardly anyone spoke English at the school and they slowed down learning to accomodate the non-English speakers. Most of the money for the school budget is for teacher salaries, retirement, healthcare, etc. There was also an issue of safety in the area. When we moved about an hour away there was no need to have him in a private school...the schools are 9's and 10's in this area and the teachers are great.
So, I think it depends on where the schools are......
I think it all depends on the child...
Obviously, parents pay for private schools and they are highly aware of that fact. I think it can cause problems when it comes to gifted kids. Not the bright average, mildly or moderately gifted kids. I'm talking about the highly, exceptionally and profoundly gifted kids.
I find that parents can have a hard time rationalizing that they are paying for their child's education, but the child is not doing the same work or getting ahead as quickly as other kids. The truth is that these very gifted kids learn a lot faster and a lot easier.
But it's a hard concept for the parents to get their head around. Why? Because their child may be learning more than s/he would have learned in the public system, there's the underlying assumption that you can pay for your child to become smart. Ergo, their child should be as smart as the other kids in their grade.
For this reason, we have opted for a public school. I should say that it is unofficially a school for gifted children, meaning that people who do not live in the catchment and yet have a gifted or highly gifted child can wait in line outside the school for days before enrollment day.
It's not full of middle class families who think their child should be as smart as any other. There is also the increased responsibility of the school to follow Government mandated regulations about gifted education in it's purest sense. I don't think the private schools do that. They are fine with moderately gifted kids of course. But when it comes to the highly gifted, it's very easy for the school to see these kids as pawns to bring the group up, by tapering these children's activities towards things which help the school's goals/help the other children achieve higher scores. As opposed to treating highly gifted kids as individuals who have the same rights to a challenging education as the other kids.
But, honestly, if my son were average to moderately gifted, it would be private school all the way for us.
Many nuances to this issue, but I can say that going to extremely competitive private schools throughout my life kept me in a bubble, unsure of where I fit really in the bigger scheme of things, only to find out 23 years later (in the press) that sexual harassment and abuse were rampant at my high school, acts that could not have continued at that level of conspiracy at a public school. But who knows? Maybe I would've been too bored and frustrated otherwise at a public school, and as I was not a victim of sexual abuse, how much did it matter to my learning that, unbeknownst to me, those around me were suffering horribly? What I have found already from our local public school, however, is that if your child has special needs, a good public school has more resources to handle and identify those needs, and your child could get a lot more one-on-one or small group attention than at a private school (ironically), where most kids are treated like little independent college students in the upper grades. Most important, however, is that parents are directly involved with the child's education, not assuming the school will take care of everything, public, private or parochial, especially when it comes to social-emotional development.
Many people have such a misconception when it comes to public vs private. Ultimately, it is what is best for your family when that time comes. I have worked at small public schools, inner city at-risk high school, and a private Christian school. There are pros and cons to both, as with any real life decision that has to be made....and it's a tough one. What bothers me, is that people are so quick to judge either. It's almost as bad as working mom vs stay at home mom.
We made the decision to send our children to private schools based on the school district we lived in, and the fact that we wanted them to be educated in mind, body, and spirit. We love the idea that they are being taught rigorous academics, as well as to live a life for Christ. I read a comment that stated, it's not the schools job to teach them morals, ethics, etc. but the sad truth is, a lot of students simply aren't getting the basics, like "the golden rule" and "respect your elders" at home. Instead, they are being taught to speak their mind, stand up for themselves, and fight back, rather than compassion, creativity and respect. I'm all for teaching our youth to stand up for their rights, but not at the expense of others' safety.
Just because someone decides to send their child to a private school, does not mean that they are rich and snooty. We struggle financially to be able to pay for private schools, are by no means rich and are the farthest thing from snooty. We felt it was the right decision for our children.
To each their own...
I went to a private christian school as a child but sent my sons to a public school and homeschooled them some too. It is a personal decision for you!
Hey, I am a teenager, I am 16 years old and I go to private school, I am not stuck-up or snobby or anything like people may think. I am just a normal teenager with more opportunities than public schools can offer. I went on an exchange to Scotland earlier this year, I have my Duke of Edinburgh Bronze award, I play a sport for an hour every day, I have smaller classes with less than 20 students and I am involved in activities like choir, cadets and writing for the school magazine. The uniforms allow us to not fuss over what to wear every day, helps us be less elf-concious, stops bullying. I must say there is almost no bullying at my school, of course there is the teasing and everything but there are no actual bullies. Private school is the way to go. No doubt.
Our children are attending a private school for two reasons, my husband works there and it's an amazing school. As for cost, it's actually a considerable savings for us coming from daycare. Most private schools offer financial aid. We actually only pay about 20% of the actual cost.
Initially my concern was that it would be a bunch of stuck up kids from rich families but interacting with them through my husband and now through my children, I was totally wrong. It's a small warm community feeling. It reminds me of a sorority in college. I have constantly been amazed at how the older high school kids interact with my little ones. They have been so kind and considerate to my children. Even though we were usually just tagging along because my husband would be chaperoning.
I love the fact that my son is in first grade and the reading and math programs are tailored so that every child is working at their own potential. The kid that needs extra help gets it, the kid that needs to be pushed is.
If you live somewhere with fabulous public schools, then by all means, take advantage. I live in an area with great schools (right outside of where I can afford to live). The school district we live in, which is not the worst in the area, I've been warned by friends that are teachers there to "get out before you get to middle school." So instead, I'm sending my kid to a place where I think they'll flourish. I admit that I'm jealous of them every time I walk onto campus.
I can only imagine what it would have been like to go somewhere like this instead of to an average public school that I hated. Where I had teachers tell me that it was okay to not be good at math "because I was a girl" or that no ever noticed or realized that I had a form of dyslexia.
I wish I could afford it.
I personally saw public school, better education, less bullying on money status, and less mean, unreasonable teachers. I have sent my daughter to private school for a school year, and those were the worst teachers I have ever seen. My daughter also got bullied for being "poor" and not wearing thongs, Yes, the girls were wearing thongs in fifth grade!
My oldest (who is now 14) started out in Catholic schools because I didn't like the district my public school was in at the time. The Diocese in our area decided to shut her school down and I began seeing a closing pattern so instead of waiting for them to close the next school I would have chosen (which did happen later) I put her in the public school I despised. Come to find out, where I thought she would be more advanced by going to a private school, she was actually behind (in some areas). Private schools (at least in my situation) do not have the resources available for students who either need help or who need more challenging environments. We have since moved to another district and both of my daughters continue to have high academic achievements, more access to sports, more access to honor courses, etc., while my Diocese continues to close schools.
I would dearly love to send both my children to private schools. Sadly, I simply can't afford the fees. My eldest son is ADHD and has Dyspraxia, affecting how he can hold pens etc. He's very clever but needs support and only gets 6 hours of inclusive support. If I were paying, I feel the school could afford to do more.
There are great teachers in non-fee paying schools, but they are swamped by the general mass of uncaring parents producing lack lustre, badly behaved children.
Even children like my own, who should be in special schools, are ruining classes for the general populous who just need to be sitting down and paying attention.
I still think it would be a lottery, even if I were paying, but there are some excellent private special schools right near me and I'd LOVE to send my eldest there.
Catholic School hands down.I went and now my kids go.I would rather live out of my car than not send them.It is the best thing we can do for them.and btw-we are middle class as are 99% of those at my school.
Tylah McConnell. You are wonderful. Thank you for your insight on this matter. I agree with you 100%. Now just to get the ex hubby to agree.
I went to private schools until fifth grade, then public for a year, then homeschool/private school.
I didn't do well with private school because I have dyslexia and a few other issues, unless that school is specifically for deaf, blind or whatever the diability is, they aren't going to have the staff or resources to teach the child to work with it.
I didn't do private school again except when we were in locations that kept girls from going to school. (missionary kid) When it became apparent that I needed something else, I home schooled. My husband taught me in Benin, my grandmother when we were in Israel, and public school in the UK
Mine goes to a public virtual school. It's home based, so you can still curve it to your child. It's a sacrifice, but, we don't regret it.
home school if u want ur child alive!!