How to Choose Schools For the Kids

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Parents find it their prime duty to provide their kids with quality education.

Choosing a school which provides good quality education along with nurturing the talent and creativity of the kids is very important factor in doing so. Thus this path needs to be selected carefully and wisely. However, this is often easier said than done.

With the rapidly growing number of pre-schools, primary and secondary schools all around us, it s always a question on parents mind that how to choose the one school that best fits the specific needs of their child.

There are many important factors that should be considered before choosing a school for the kids.

Proximity

It is always advisable to first start looking at the best available schools closest to the place of residence.

This becomes necessary, both from a safety perspective and to prevent the kids from suffering the repeated discomfort of a long journey to and fro from his/her school every day.

As a responsible parent, they have to consider their child’s comfort and also ensure that the school is close enough for them to reach in the shortest possible time whenever needed or in crunch situations.

Fees

Very often parents incline towards enrolling their kids only in the most expensive private/international schools – assuming they are the best, courtesy their inflated fees and a striking array of hi-tech facilities available at the schools.

This misconception is quite popular in India and most of the times, it is not true as well. There are several reputed public schools across the country which are not only cheaper but also provide comparable/better quality of education to its students.

Moreover, providing quality education is already an expensive luxury in India and there is no need for the parents to risk towards potential bankruptcy in their haste to send their child to the – most expensive schools – possible.

Fees

Instead, parents need to focus on whether they are getting full value for the money they are paying in terms of quality, safety, facilities, extra-curricular activities and the assurance that the all-round development of their child is being taken care of in the best way possible.

Parents could also go for visits to know more specifics about the school’s facilities towards their kids. This would provide them with clearer picture of the school and take the ultimate decision.

Scholastic and non-scholastic activities

What kids learn and experience during his/her influential years stays with them for life.

When it comes to choosing a good school, parents tend to get inclined towards the schools who, although provide quality education but lack in extra-curricular activities. The right balance between academic and extra-curricular activities must be ensured by the parents.

Ensuring that the school meets the maximum standards of excellence in terms of its staff members, their teaching methodologies, academic prospectus and moral standards should be the biggest priority of the parents.

Extra-curricular activities like outdoor games, team sports, art & craft, online art competitions for students, hobby ideas, physical education, dance & drama classes also play a huge role in shaping a child’s on the whole character.

Scholastic and non-scholastic activities

These activities could possibly add an extra edge in the capacity of kids for learning and further sharpen his/her intellectual skills.

Hence the existence of the proper facilities and trained staff to facilitate this aspect of the child’s education is equally important.

All of the above could easily be verified by visiting the schools personally and talking to the principal, teachers and caregivers and taking a tour of the facilities provided.

Parents could also do a thorough background check about the schools online and could even talk to parents and existing students to see what exactly the school has on offerings for them.

Teacher to student ratio

Research has proved that students tend to learn more in smaller classes, have higher grades and also perform better in their examinations and non-academic activities.

As a rule of thumb, one teacher for every 30-35 students per class is an accepted industry norm in good primary/secondary schools.

At the Pre-K level, it should be a teacher and two assistants for a class of 10-15 preschoolers.

Hygienic Environment

When it comes to kids, a clean and hygienic school environment is a major factor. Parents need to know if this is actually the case or not.

Things like – Are the outdoor games and toys safe for use by children? Is the playground kept clean and tidy?

Hygienic Environment

Are the nannies and teachers themselves clean and hygienic? – need to be checked and confirmed personally.

Also is the school sufficiently equipped with a medical bay and staff in case of a medical emergency with a child?

Has the staff been trained in basic life-saving and CPR techniques?  These are some of the other things parents might need to look at too.

Discipline

This factor has outspokenly added significance today in light of the fact that we see so little of it among kids these days.

Choosing a school with a high level of discipline is important to make sure that the child imbibes the right values and takes responsibility for his/her actions.

However, the methods adopted by the school should be civil.

Discipline

Many studies have shown that a stressful school environment could possibly lead to a decline in the understanding and learning capabilities of children.

It is the responsibility of parents to make sure that, whatever schools they are planning to enroll their child in, follows the normative disciplinary actions.

While the quality of education remains the most important criteria, the opportunity to develop kid’s creative, physical and social skills is also a key attribute that needs to be given equal importance too.

Jyoti Dhiman
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