Parents bring their children to Village for many reasons. And no matter what the reasons are, making the decision with whom to trust the education of your child, is no simple matter.
There are many schools from which to chose, and not every school is a good fit for every child. At The Village School, our learners are more than a student ID to us. We want to make sure our school is the best fit for your child as well.
Our guidance experts have gathered some research that we hope will help you through the process of making your decision. The first step is to understand your child’s needs. With your needs in mind, you can begin exploring the private school geography in the Houston area. You’ll want to narrow your list and set up school visits. After the interviews and campus tours, you’ll want to review your school list again, prioritizing those schools that best meet your child’s particular needs.
Understanding your child’s needs
Bring the family together around the dining room table and create a list of your child’s educational needs. These can begin with practical requirements—the non-negotiables; then list your desired requirements—perhaps location, educational reputation, highest grade-level offered; and finally, list those “extras” that will make your child’s experience memorable and worthwhile.
Practical Requirements to Consider
When you begin the process of selecting a private school, you’ll encounter several practical requirements which may affect your decision. You may want to consider:
Location: How far must your child commute to and from school?
Transportation: Does the school provide transportation?
Culture: Do you want a school where boys and girls are separate? Are you looking for a college preparatory program? Do you want a religion to be a part of your child’s education?
Extended Care: Is before- or after-school care available to your child?
Boarding: Does the school provide a boarding option?
Residential Life: What activities are the boarding students typically engaged in when not in classes?
Tuition: How much does the school cost? What is your budget?
Special Needs: Does your child require support for any physical, emotional, linguistic, or learning needs?
Use this list to begin the process of identifying those non-negotiable, practical requirements. When you are making your initial list of schools, you’ll find these requirements will help you narrow your list of possible schools very quickly.
Desired Requirements to Consider
Next, consider the desired aspects of your “best-fit” private school. Use these requirements to shortlist your private school choices. Desired elements may include:
Curriculum: Some parents look for an outstanding math and science curriculum, and others may desire a top music or fine arts program.
Facilities: Are modern school facilities important to you? A contemporary chemistry lab? Classrooms with natural window light and the latest in instructional technology?
Instructional Model: Do you want a traditional, back-to-basics program or an innovative approach to learning?
Size: Does your child thrive in small classrooms sizes, or in a large school setting?
School transitions: Do you want your child at a school with multiple grade levels, such as PK-12, building relationships with faculty and students without transferring every few years?
Communications: How does the school communicate with parents regarding student progress? How often?
Parent Engagement: Is your ideal school one where parents are invited to be part of the decision-making process?
Prioritize these desired requirements. After you’ve considered what is important for your child’s school, analyze your list for which schools offer what. Weight the schools based on what is important to you in your desired requirements list.
Extracurricular Requirements of your Private School
After determining your practical requirements and considering your desired requirements, it’s time to look at your extracurricular requirements. These requirements will help you and your child choose between two outstanding programs. For extracurricular elements, consider:
Is your child interested in sports? If so, which ones would your child want to play?
Is your child interested in pursuing art or music?
What interests does your child have that could be further developed in a club at school?
Our Village faculty, staff, administrators, and students want you to take your time in making your best-fit decision for your child. We know that every school is not right for every child. Whether your child joins us at Village or not, we encourage you to do your own homework and to prioritize your child’s needs. And when you determine that a Village education represents the best-fit for your child, our admissions team will be there beside you to guide you through the process and answer every question you and your child may have.