View Poll Results: Which school should we pick?
Catholic school 12 13.33%
Public School 54 60.00%
Public School for Kindergarten Catholic School After 4 4.44%
Other Because there is always an other. 20 22.22%
Voters: 90. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 07-10-2012, 04:44 PM   #21
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Re: Public or Private School.

I would go tour the public schools and ask lots of questions and decide if you think it is a good fit. We are doing a public charter school that is lottery based. We are less than a mile from our school.

The one thing I like about a local school is that your kids will go to school with the kids in the neighborhood. Even though we are almost as close to the charter as the local school most kids will be going to the local school. I would look up tests scores but they often don't tell the complete picture. One school I almost wrote off because of scores but it turns out that the scores were lower because there was a school with in the school that was for special needs kids. Before we moved my local school did not get good scores but this was not because of ESL or because of special needs students there just wasn't a lot of parental involvement and I was not comfortable with that. If for some reason the charter did not work out I am not sure if I would use the local school but I would tour it and ask a lot of questions and decide from there. The local school for our new house gets an ok score. It isn't a high score but not a low score either.

Since you have 3 kids and you are trying for at least one more you won't be able to afford tuition for all the kids on a low income. We can't afford private school. You can always supplement the education they are getting at a public school if it isn't adequate. I went to a private Catholic school in elementary school for one year and hated it so not all privates schools are better. You have to ask lots of questions and decide what you like about each school and if you can't afford the private school but like aspects of the curriculum maybe teach her those aspects yourself.

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Old 07-10-2012, 04:50 PM   #22
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Re: Public or Private School.

Another thought: keep in mind that if you are stretched to pay tuition in the first place, you may be stressed out by all the fundraisers and requests for donation. Yes, you can opt not to donate to those (or buy the products being sold), but you may also feel bad about always saying 'no'.
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Old 07-10-2012, 05:02 PM   #23
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Re: Public or Private School.

Compare the actual schools. Go tour them. Ask questions. You can't make an educated decision without any real information.
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Old 07-10-2012, 05:14 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by BSWmama
Unless the public school is bad -and as others have said you'll have to research, see the facilities, meet with the teacher, etc - I would do that.

We plan to send ours to public school for various reasons a) don't want to/can't spend the money on private, b) believe highly in the value of a public education to expose our child to diversity, various learning styles, etc, and c) I simply believe that as a parent and citizen of my community I want to support our school system - if every parent with the means/education/opportunity sent their children to private school, I think that would really devastate the public school system which relies heavily on parent involvement for accountability, support, and change. My husband and I went to public schools and had no issues getting good colleges - I didn't feel that I had gotten a worse education, at least as far as the basics, than those who had gone to private schools.
I agree with this. Our choices of good public schools is slim, but dd1 got accepted to the academic magnet school, so I'm counting my blessings! But I would choose quality of education over diversity. I would choose private (and find a way to pay for it w/o incurring debt) if it was the best educational fit.
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Old 07-10-2012, 06:12 PM   #25
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Re: Public or Private School.

Quote:
Originally Posted by burnsis View Post
I do not support private schools. I don't believe education and business should mix. I have worked at a private school and did not like that they were financially driven. Students were not top priority, parents were lied to, and on and on. Parents think they are getting a better education for their children by forking out all of that cash, but ultimately, most could do better teaching them on their own through homeschooling.
I work in a charter school so not quite the same as a private school but similar in many aspects and I could tell you the same exact thing.

Be leary of getting stat's from school officials. They can be manipulated way too easy to their own benefit. Also remember that these officials know all the questions you are going to ask and they know how to answer them. Really word of mouth is your best bet. Find out the names of the teachers and how they are from other parents. That is really your best bet IMHO.

I also think that deciding on a school based on their lunch program is a bad idea. And speaking from personal experience....the school I work for uses their "great" lunch program as a selling point and it does sound good on paper but the food is really bad. Mystery meat, preservatives, tons of salt, corn syrup in needless places etc etc etc.... I can eat lunch free as an employee but always go to the trouble to pack a lunch anyway for how gross their food is.
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Old 07-10-2012, 06:20 PM   #26
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Re: Public or Private School.

You need to look into both schools (teachers, parent feedback, curriculum, education philosophy, costs) and pick the school that is the best fit for your child and family. I went to private schools and was opposed to sending DS to a public school. The local public school isconsidered "top notch" because of their high test scores, but was just not the right fit. We heard about a local charter school that was very much aligned with the teaching philosophy of the local preschool we sent DS to. So we looked into it and went with the local charter school. It is absolutely the right fit for our child. Not the most academically rigorous, not the highest test scores, but just right for him. It is also a public charter, so fits our budget quite nicely .
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Old 07-10-2012, 06:23 PM   #27
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Re: Public or Private School.

Does every state do the school "Report Cards". I was very impressed when I was looking my the schools in my small town. 60ish percent of the teachers have a masters degree and the school received an A or A+ in all areas. However something like 80% of the kids received free or reduced lunch (which I see as a negative since my family would not be in that situation).

Definitely do some research on your public school. If your state does the school report cards like mine they are very informative.
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Old 07-10-2012, 06:42 PM   #28
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Re: Public or Private School.

homeschooling? it can be whatever you need it to be in terms of affordability. your commitment is what makes a good education.

IMO public, private, religious, etc make little difference cause it's still school. But to each his own.
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Old 07-10-2012, 06:43 PM   #29
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Re: Public or Private School.

Public vs. Private means absolutely nothing. It all has to be decided on a case by case basis. First I would decide what is most important to you as far as the educational environment goes. We value a whole child learning environment with lots of individuation and specials. If the school didn't offer that then I don't care what their test scores are or highly ranked they are. We just went through Kindergarten last year and my son had a blast. Exactly what K should be but is not everywhere anymore. They also have high academic standards but not at the expense of the kids being relaxed and enjoying school.

Contrast that to a friend that just finished K as well at one of the top 5 schools in the city and it was very rigorous and WAY to much pressure for little kids. So I say look them up on Great Schools, get feedback from local parents, talk to some teachers etc. before making a decision. Most of all really think about what kind of teaching style your DD would do better with. Does she thrive on structure or need some independence etc?
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Old 07-10-2012, 07:59 PM   #30
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Re: Public or Private School.

I picked other. We're homeschoolers. Have you considered that? But really it matters what you want for your child. Is a religous education important to you? What is it that is appealing about the Catholic school? What's appealing about the public school besides that it is close and free lunches? Have you looked into the long term cost of the Catholic school? Here for our local Christain school, you pay full price for the 1st kid, 10% off for the second kid, and any other kids are free! Even if you have 10! It's an awesome deal, really. For us, if we weren't homeschooling, I would choose a Christian school if we could in any way afford it. But only you can decide what's right for your family.
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