How to Choose the Right School

One of the most important decisions that every parent makes is choosing the best school for their children. This can be a very complicated decision. Here are some ideas to help you evaluate schools and make an informed choice.

Do Your Research: Scholastic Considerations

  • What is the curriculum?
  • What are the SAT scores?
  • What grade does computer education start at?
  • What is the total student population?
  • What is the average class size?
  • What is the student-teacher ration for your child’s grade level?

Make Contact: Connect with Key People and Organizations

  • If the district has a magnet program that you are interested in, ask the Magnet Director how long the waiting list is and whether your child will get in.
  • Contact the Director of Computer Education to find out the student-computer ratio and if the district's teachers have participated in a computer training program.
  • Contact the Parent Teacher Organization and find out how active it is. Studies have shown that children's academic success increases when parents are actively involved in their education.

At the School: Will Your Child be Happy There?

Make an appointment with the Principal for you and your children to visit the school when school is in session so you can observe a normal school day. This is your chance to learn the personality of the school.

  • Check classrooms for interested and smiling faces.
  • Look at the projects and student artwork on the walls.
  • Do the students dress like your kids and do they look friendly?
  • Find out the style of dress for the first day of school so you can help your kids fit in.
  • Most importantly, be sure to talk to your kids during and after the tour. They will probably have noticed things that you didn't.

There are many concrete factors that indicator how good a school is. But after you’ve done your research, visited the school and conferred with your kids, the best indicator you have is your intuition and good common sense.