Three Reasons to Shop Around for an Elementary School
Sending your child to school for the first time can be stressful. Will they make friends and do well in class? Will they become the class clown or have trouble sharing? Will they be frightened and confused without you there beside them? Elementary school is an important time for children to learn how to learn and get along with others. As such, it’s important to make sure that their experiences are positive. While private elementary schools are not inherently better than public schools, they often provide benefits that your child may need to thrive. Here are three reasons to do your homework to find the best elementary school for your child.
First through Third Grade are the Most Important
Numerous studies have shown that the most important state of development is between birth and age six, and that the most crucial time in elementary school education is from kindergarten to third grade. At this stage, children are learning how to learn, and the practices the learn by age nine will set the groundwork for their future academic and personal success. In elementary school, students start learning to read, but in the later grades, they’ll be reading to learn new material. For that reason, it’s extremely important that young students have positive early education that allows them to master the fundamentals.
Children Need Small Class Sizes to Thrive
Studies from the Center for Public Education show that small classes are linked to student achievement , particularly in kindergarten through third grade. The best schools are able to provide high quality education no matter the size of the class, but the best private schools can often guarantee that students will be in smaller classes. If your student struggles with some of the fundamentals and can use one on one help, or if your student is particularly gifted and could benefit from discussion-based curriculum, private elementary schools are worth looking into.
Parental Involvement is Key
It’s no secret that a child’s academic success is tied to the support and help that they receive from their parents. You should be involved in your child’s educational development regardless of where they attend school, but one of the benefits of private school education is that it actively encourages family involvement. Encouraging parents to participate in events during and after school allows students to socialize with multiple adults, not just their caregivers. Private elementary schools also foster community that can be good for kids who struggle to make friends or to socialize with others. Other parents can get to know your child, and you can get to know other children, reinforcing the in-school community and giving it a home-like feel.
Private elementary schools can be a great educational option for many kids, but they’re just that, an option. Your kid will only receive what they put into their education, and they will always need the guidance and support of their parents first. Making sure you take the time to instill good values and to let your child know why school matters is the most important first step to set them up for success.