Choosing a school for your child is a big milestone for parents and can be quite an overwhelming experience. There’s so much to think about, from inspection reports to league tables, and you might not fully understand everything you’re reading about online when doing your research. I have teamed up with a private college in London to share some advice when it comes to choosing a school for your child.
Spend some time as a family talking about your priorities. Do you need the school to be within walking distance of your home or on a suitable bus route? Does your child have any learning difficulties that need to be catered to? Does there need to be exemplary sporting or music facilities to accommodate your child’s hobbies? Would you like them to attend a school that some of their friends are also going to be attending? If your child is old enough to get involved in this conversation, don’t be afraid to ask them for their opinions. It’s important for them to feel involved in such a huge decision about their life.
Weigh Up Your Options
Once you know what your priorities are, you can start to rule out some of your options. Most schools have reasonable websites that will allow you to read about their aims and ethos, the curriculum, and the pastoral care provisions, meals and so on. You will probably also be able to find out more about previous inspection reports and exam results. If you have any friends or relatives with children in local schools, don’t hesitate to ask them for their thoughts as this might help sway your decision.
After doing your research you will be able to come up with a shortlist of schools you’d like to visit. Visiting is the best way to get a real feel for the school and come up with a conclusion as to whether or not your child will fit in. You’ll be able to look around the facilities and chat to the staff and current students. Ask plenty of questions to make the most of your experience. You should also pay attention to the general cleanliness and safety of the school.
Try not to let the experience of choosing a school for your child stress you out too much. With plenty of preparation, you should be able to make a decision that you are happy with for years to come.
*This is a collaborative post. For further information please refer to my disclosure page.
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