How do you decide which private school is best for your child? The answer is that you start by looking at logistical factors such as location and tuition costs. Once you have a list of schools that are nearby and fit within your budget, the next step is to consider the educational philosophy, classroom environment, and enrichment opportunities of each program. Learning about each of these elements can help you make an informed decision about where to send your child to school.
The first piece of information you need about any private school you seriously consider is location. If you want to remain in your home/area then there are going to be some constraints on where you can send your child for school. Decide how far you are willing to travel to drop off and pick up your child and then start your search for a private school. Searching within a defined radius will help you quickly narrow down the options. You must consider drive time and convenience as you try to find a private school that is right for your child.
Tuition costs can also help you determine which private school is best for your child. Do you have a budget you are trying to stay within? If so, take a look at the tuition costs of the programs you are considering. If you find that none of the programs are within your budget, then you likely need to take a close look at what is realistic for your area. Many private schools offer a variety of payment options so you can choose the one that is most convenient for you.
The educational philosophy of a private school can impact every aspect of the program. The philosophy under which a program operates will impact factors such as the curriculum, class size, classroom design, and enrichment programs. The educational philosophy also relates to how the administration and teachers view students and what they believe about the purpose of education. These are important factors to consider! Learn as much as you can about the educational philosophy of a program before you decide if it is the right option for your child.
Learning about the classroom environment can help you determine if a particular private school is right for your child. Your child will be in the classroom day in and day out. The size of the class, layout, and instructional tools will all impact the overall environment of the classroom. Look for a private program with a classroom environment that will help your child thrive. The best way to learn about the classroom environment of a private program is to schedule a time to observe a class.
Private schools have the resources and flexibility to provide enrichment opportunities that you will not find in a traditional public classroom. For example, Fountainhead Montessori School offers Mandarin and Spanish immersion programs for elementary students. Language immersion is an example of a unique enrichment opportunity that is available in a private school setting. Consider the interests and needs of your child as you explore the enrichment opportunities at the various private programs.
There are a number of high-quality private school programs in the Bay Area. As you narrow down the options, be sure and include Fountainhead Montessori School on your list. You can find answers to all of the questions above on the FMS website to help you determine if our program is a good fit for your child.