5 Most Common Questions and Answers About Private School

27, Dec 2022

Deciding to put your child in a private school comes with many questions. When comparing different private schools in your area, you will notice a vast difference in areas such as their focus or emphasis, their policies, and extra programs they may offer. When searching for the best private school fit for your child, you may have a plethora of questions for each school. Common questions about private school may not all have the same answers depending on the different schools, but knowing what to expect from private schools will certainly give you direction when finding the perfect private school for your student.

Do private schools need to follow a state or national curriculum?

Though there may be some differences from state to state, in general, private schools do not need to follow the national or state curriculum. Private schools are free to have special programs, teaching methods, and academic requirements that differ from the state standard. In many cases, private schools may have a higher rigorous academic standard than public schools in the state.  

Do private school students need to take the state standardized test?

This varies widely between states. Some states, like South Dakota, require students in private schools to take the same tests as public school students. But California will not allow private schools to use the state standardized test. Other states leave the state standardized tests to be optional for private schools.

How to choose a private school that is right for my child?

The answer to how to choose the right private school actually leads to more questions. A few questions to ask yourself as you are on the hunt for the perfect school for you child are:

  • What kind of environment will my child thrive in?

  • Is there a private school in my area that emphasizes my child’s interest in sports, art, or language?

  • How far am I reasonably willing to drive for my child’s school?

  • Does the private school have before and after care to accommodate my work schedule?

  • What type of tuition costs are in my budget?

  • How many days a week do I want my child attending school?

How do I enroll my child in a private school?

If you are making a change from public school, first you need to unenroll your child from their current school. After you have located a private school that you believe is a good fit for your child, call to see when they are taking new students and if they have a place for your child. Always schedule an observational tour of the school so you can really get a feel for how the teachers interact with students and what the environment is like. When you are convinced it is the right school, fill out the application and wait for the response. Likely with a private school, there will be an interview so the school can get a feel for what kind of student your child is. Tuition is often paid in full or partial before the school year begins but there may be some payment plans in some cases.

Are all private schools accredited?

Accreditation is a process that measures the quality of the education received at a school. If a private school is accredited, you know that there have been outside eyes on the institution that have held it to a particular standard. Private schools are not required to be accredited. If the school you are interested in is not accredited, asking questions about the success rate of students or how the school measures the quality of the education can give you a better idea of what to expect.

If interested in a Montessori education in the Bay Area, give Fountainhead Montessori School a call today.

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