Most children spend at least 13 years in the school system. If you have the option to pick your children’s school, you want to make sure that it’s a great fit for the student.
During your tour of the school, make sure that you ask some important questions that voice your concerns as a parent and what’s in the best interest of your child.
Here are 10 questions you must ask before enrolling your child in school.
1. What’s the School’s Educational Philosophy?
Every student has a different learning type and specific personality. It’s best to match those things up with a school whose educational philosophy lines up with your children’s needs.
However, not all schools have an educational philosophy. When you go to tour the school, ask if they have one to make sure that your child will fit well in their environment.
2. How Does the School Handle Different Learning Speeds?
Children with all different learning speeds who enroll in school.
It’s important to meet up with the school’s counselor to see how that school works with children with different learning speeds. If your child takes longer to understand the material, will the teachers cater to them in everyday school situations (i.e., extra time on tests)?
Ask if the school has a gifted program. If so, how do they identify the children who are eligible? Also, ask how the assessment process works to get into the gifted program.
Students who have different learning speeds need teachers to cater to, or else they will have behavior problems like boredom and acting out.
3. Can You Meet the Teachers?
When you go tour the school, ask to have a chance to speak with some of your children’s potential teachers. They will be able to come from a different perspective than the counselor or whoever is giving the tour.
See if the teachers go through any sort of refresher training on a yearly basis. Some schools require their teachers to undergo some professional development occasionally. These courses help them stay on top of the latest trends in teaching and learning which benefits the students.
4. Is there College and Career Readiness?
If your child is entering the high school years, you might want to focus on college readiness, career readiness, and professionalism for future careers.
See if the school has any magnet programs or academies that help the students grow an understanding and interest in a particular career path.
IB (International Baccalaureate) programs encourage their students to think independently and give them a higher standard of education that focuses on getting the students into college.
Another good thing to ask is if the school facilitates any SAT or ACT preparation courses and test exams.
Some charter school options are highly focused on college and career preparation.
A school that incorporates some of these aspects can help guide your children onto their right path for after high school.
5. Is the School Ready for the Future?
Today’s children need to be ready to thrive in the digital world. Schools should be focusing some time on things like digital education, coding, STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics), and IT.
It’s important to see if the school is ready to prepare your children for the possibility of the changing work environment of the future.
6. Are Enrolling Students Encouraged to Participate in Outside Involvements?
If your child has any involvement in sports, or other outside involvements like the performing arts, might occasionally miss school to attend games or performances.
Ask the school if they have a way to handle this situation. Can the students achieve attendance credit? Can the students have an individualized class schedule to work with their calendar?
Many schools are able to work with the students to make sure they catch up to the rest of the class and have their homework done when their extracurricular engagements take place.
7. How Does the School Handle Discipline?
Unfortunately, your child might break the rules during some point in their time at school. On the flip side, another child might break the rules and do something to harm your child. Because of this, it’s a good idea to ask what the school’s discipline policy is.
Also, see what the school’s steps are to try and prevent any misbehavior in the first place. This includes talking about suspension and what happens when your child exhibits bad behavior.
8. Is There Learning Outside of the Classroom?
It can be important to take the children out of the classroom in order to stimulate and encourage different types of learning.
Ask if there are opportunities for the classes to take field trips to museums, local learning spots, and to learn from professionals in your area.
This will help expose your children to real-world scenarios and get them out from behind their desks during the day. Breaking up the consistency of their learning environment will keep the children more engaged and interested in learning.
Studies also show that these types of learning activities can help decrease the stress levels of the students.
9. How Many Students are in Each Class?
In order to make sure that your child has the attention he or she needs to learn effectively, it’s important to ask about the student to teacher ratio.
Many educational professionals believe that the fewer students that are in a class, the more attention each student receives which is beneficial to their learning experience.
10. Are there Emergency Drills?
In today’s society, it’s important to ask what kind of emergency drills the school prepares the children for. Ask if they regularly hold active shooter drills, fire drills, bomb drills, and tornado drills.
Another good question to ask is what exactly the parent’s roles and responsibilities are in each of these scenarios are. This way both you and your child know what to do in case of any of these emergencies.
What’s Important to You?
These questions will help you when deciding what school you should consider enrolling your children in. Make sure to focus on the aspects that are most important to you and your child.
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