My son is in Year 6 and would be going to secondary school next year. With entrance exams between Nov and March, this is the time to start shortlisting secondary schools. The success of a student’s high school experience has become essential to university admissions. So, it’s an important decision. I have a long list of what I’m looking for which can be summed up as a school with high academic achievement, strong level of discipline, a good balance of extracurricular activities and MUST be boarding. All my son wants is a school that has a football team. In the end, I am looking for the best environment where my son will blossom to be the best he can be.
I know that children learn in various ways and there are several factors that promote learning which might be different for each child. As parents, we need to be able to identify and select the “best fit” to enable our children experience happiness, thrive, and achieve their educational dreams.
So how do you select the best school for your child? Even if you have your heart set on one school, try to visit at least three to compare and contrast. So here are my eight (9) things to consider when selecting a school
- What are the school’s strengths and how will the environment motivate my child’s learning?
- What are their exams results like? ‘Does the school get a good percentage of higher grades?
- Does the extracurricular offered by the school match my child’s interest?
- Do they have enough out-of-school activities as these are a good indicator of the breadth of experiences available to students
- Does the school’s policy on homework and discipline reflect your own values and expectations?
- What is the size of the school? Big or small? Boarding vs Day and Coed?
- Are the facilities well maintained?the children well-presented and polite?
- What does your child want and think of the school?
- Affordability: One important information you want to know is the school fees . You need to know if it falls within your budget and even if it falls within your budget , you also need to confirm how often the schools increase their fees , the percentage per term and other sub sub fees.
Lastly talk to parents who have their kids in your shortlisted schools to get as many information as possible and ensure you visit the school. It’s good to visit with your child during the normal school day. Speak to the students and teachers (If the school doesn’t let you near its students, that’s not a good sign.)