Before child opens his eyes into her mother’s lap, future planning of his career makes his parents worry. It is very truly said that home is the first learning institute of a child and his family members are teachers of that institute. Lifelong parents desire to provide best education for their child in any circumstance and dream for their successful career. School follows home in building child’s psychology from bricks of knowledge, manners, education etc to give him beautiful life that he deserves. School choice gives parents more opportunities to achieve their expectations for their child. Parents want their child's school to meet the same goals of high academic achievement they have set. They may want their child's school to reflect the values of their family and community. In other words, they want to choose a school that is a good fit for their child. Therefore, parents must start early to search for a school so that they have enough time to put an eye on all hook and crook for their child and they must keep on discussing and reading about varied schools available for their child to outline steps that one can follow to help them make a thoughtful choice.
Challenges faced by parents in choosing school
Life of the parents becomes a roller coaster once the responsibilities of their child come on their head and joyfully they try their best to fulfill them. The most arduous job for them is to lay seeds of education that grow into that plant which always bears sweet fruits in their child’s life forever. Prior to school selection many challenges fall in their path that they have to climb without any confusion in their mind. Some of the challenges that are often faced are
Fees of the school
Financial status of a family determines the amount that parents are able to pay for a school. For parents who are financially sound do not get into such problem but this is not true with everyone. It is not necessary that school quality improves with increment in fees. Student in a lower fees school than a student in high fees school can perform better academically from his hardwork and can obtain better in his life. By the way government schools do have less fees than public schools and yet they give excellent education. There are schools which give scholarships for brilliant as well as economically backward students. Therefore, parents must decide about fees by first consulting their pocket.
Location of the school
Are there good schools in our locality? Should we send our child in schools that are at long distance? Is completing education far from home a good option for a child? Such questions always hassle in parents mind and answers are also hidden with parents only. Parents should analyze what is more beneficial for their child. Parents must ask from their heart whether their child is willing to take admission with his friends, whether their child talent can be nurtured outside neighborhood better or whether they are willing to pay for school transport. Parents must consider their as well as their child comfort ability and then take a decision about location.
Coeducational versus single sex
Generally, whether a school is co-ed or single sex isn’t as important as the school’s quality of leadership, teachers and approach to teaching. Most families will have a personal view about the issue, which is linked to the personality of their child and their family values, and will choose what’s best for their own situation.
Schools have individual and distinct cultures and learning and teaching philosophies. For example, some will have a strong sports ethic, some will follow a religious affiliation, and others promote individuality and artistic pursuits. It all depends on what’s important to parents and their child. Are they looking for a curriculum with a balanced sporting and academic approach, or one with strengths in artistic and musical areas, or in science and maths? An environment with a strong academic focus might be important to them, or perhaps one that teaches their child more about your religious views. Such things are either decided out of family tradition or their child interest.
Another factor on which parents cogitates many times before trying to make perfect choice of school for their child. What are the maximum class sizes? Does this vary with the subject? On what basis are the students grouped within classes? Parents keep on fussing on such questions. Some feel that their children will be much more comfortable in a small school in a small district, while others feel their children will thrive in large schools and large districts. This is one of the factor but not that important to be given first choice.
Academics of a school is really important challenge that parents have to look after as this probably gives idea about school curriculum, activities, schools’ efforts in shaping child education and knowledge etc. How do the students score on standardized tests? What kinds of programs do they offer for children with specific needs (either remedial or advanced)? Are academics important at the school or do they focus more on the emotional and interpersonal aspects of education? These questions give them key to their selection.
How does the school handle discipline? Do they have a school-wide discipline policy or does each teacher have his/her own way of doing things? What system do they use for keeping parents informed of disciplinary issues? How do they deal with bullying? What kind of discipline is used on the playground? Issues related to discipline parents are very careful and therefore, they should ask for a copy of the school’s discipline policy.
Are the teachers the kind of role models you want for your child? In general, do teacher-student relationships seem comfortable and relaxed? What is the staff turnover rate? Do the teachers spend extra time with students in such activities as sports coaching? Do they seem to have high expectations of themselves and their students? What are the specialties or strengths of the staff? Are there any resource people available at the school -- a librarian, counselor, speech therapist, or nurse? How were the choices for these resources made, and how are needs that are not covered handled? If the class sizes are large, does the school have any help such as teacher aides, parent volunteers, college student assistants, or cross-age tutors? Also, parents may want to see what teachers and school leaders have been doing to keep their skills up-to-date and to broaden their teaching knowledge base.
This is an important item on many parents' agendas. This has rarely been an issue in the past. But as school shootings have become more common, it is a question that parents must consider. How does the school deal with security-related issues? How important is security? Is a school more secure because it has security officers or is a school more secure when this is not a factor? The student population will also impact the level of security. Are there a lot of bullies? Gangs? Social pressures? How much should a student have to deal with when going to school? The answer will vary from parent to parent, but the degree of security is something to take into account.
Successful schools will tend to have active participation of the entire school community in all aspects of school life. Are there parents or other community members serving as volunteers in classrooms, labs or for special events? See if there is an active school site council. What is the main business of the council? Are there active subcommittees? How regularly does the council meet and how well attended are the meetings? Look, as well, for evidence of community partnerships and other cooperative arrangements with community agencies, service clubs and business groups.
These make up the community your child will become part of. Do they come from a narrow or broad range of cultural and socio-economic backgrounds? This segment should be taken care of seriously.
Above given challenges are the needs of the time that parents have to fight back for choosing best school for their child. Time will swap but not tension that parents have for their child bright career. Challenges teach you to always learn and make best decision of your life.