The average cost of private school tuition is $11,012 a year. As you can clearly see, this is no small figure. So, why would parents pay such a large sum when there are perfectly good public schools to send their kids to? Is private school worth it?
The answer is yes and for a number of reasons. Curious as to what these reasons are? Here are the 7 most prominent.
Smaller Class Sizes
One of the biggest benefits of private schools is that they offer smaller class sizes. As such, each student gets more 1-on-1 time with his or her teachers. This can be vital not only to the educational development of your child but the emotional and psychological development of your child as well.
Currently, the average student-to-teacher ratio in public schools is 16.1:1. Conversely, in private schools, it’s 12.2:1. And since you get to choose the private school, you could very well find an even smaller ratio than that.
More Dedicated Teachers
Let’s get this out of the way immediately: there are plenty of top-notch teachers working in the public school system. Many of them sacrifice their own time and money to ensure that their students get the best educational experiences possible. However, for every great public school teacher, there tend to be 3 or 4 bad ones.
This isn’t typically the case in private schools. Private schools greatly scrutinize every teacher they hire. If they determine the teacher to be any less than extremely dedicated, they pass him or her by and look for a different hire.
As such, kids who go to private schools tend to end up with a whole host of highly dedicated teachers. These teachers want the best for their students and go out of their way to ensure that students are as comfortable and as educated as possible.
This obviously bodes well for test scores, not only because students learn the concepts that they need to know, but because they go into tests with full confidence in their abilities.
More Extracurricular Activities
While grades and test scores are a big part of getting accepted into universities, they’re not the end-all, be-all. Colleges aren’t just looking for intelligent students. They’re looking for well-rounded students.
For this reason, your child needs to be involved in extracurriculars. And while public schools do offer extracurricular activities, their extracurriculars pale in comparison to those offered by private schools.
Whereas a public school might only offer football, soccer, baseball, volleyball, basketball, and track, a private school will offer a bevvy of additional sports (ie. lacrosse, hockey, field hockey, swimming, etc.). And whereas a public school might only have a choir and a band, a private school will typically offer a bevvy of other art programs (ie. theater club, dance club, etc.). This gives your child a much bigger selection of extracurriculars to choose from.
These additional extracurriculars can be huge when your son or daughter is sending his or her application to a university. If an admissions advisor has to choose between a theater-participating, hockey-playing honors student with a 28 ACT score and a non-involved honors student with a 28 ACT score, the advisor will likely pick the former.
Why? Because he or she is better-rounded and will likely be seen as being a better representative of the university. Visit this website to learn more about private school extracurriculars.
Another reason to choose a private school over a public school is that private schools tend to have safer environments. There are two general reasons for this.
For one, because it costs a great deal of money to enroll a child in a private school, most of the students at private schools come from affluent backgrounds. And because affluent neighborhoods are generally safe, it can be assumed that the kids living in them are safe to be around. Ergo, a safe environment is established.
For two, private schools are allowed to screen students. As such, if they deem a student to be unsafe, they can prevent him or her from enrolling. This is not allowed at public schools, meaning that they’re often forced to accept undesirable students.
Now, this isn’t to say that there aren’t uber-safe public schools to send your kids to. It’s just that the safe-to-unsafe ratio is much lower than what it is for private schools. Plus, in order to send your child to a select public school, you have to live in the school district.
Often times, parents find that they get more peace of mind by paying the tuition and choosing the private option. Their kids get to learn in a safe and comfortable environment, allowing them to maintain their mental health and stay on the college track.
Take it however you will, but the fact of the matter is that private school students test better than public school students. In fact, statistics show that their ACT scores are a whole 3.1 points higher, on average. That 3.1 points can be the difference between college acceptance and college rejection.
Of course, there are still public school students who obtain high scores on standardized tests. However, the statistics seem to show that they do this in spite of their schools as opposed to because of their schools.
So, if you don’t want to leave it to chance, get your child enrolled in a private school. The dedicated teachers and special resources available at private schools are sure to give him or her that extra and much-needed edge.
Is Private School Worth It to You?
And there they are, the 7 biggest reasons to choose a private school over a public school for college prep. Is private school worth it to you? If so, you’re advised to start budgeting accordingly.
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