A More Individualized Learning Environment
It comes as no surprise that private school class sizes are smaller than their public school counterpart. The benefits that stem from this smaller learning environment includes more accommodations, a focused curriculum, and much more. Many parents begin looking at private schooling due to class sizes being too large in public school. Students that fall outside of the class mean are either left behind or not pushed enough. This is why private schools consider themselves so much more rigorous. Gifted and talented students are one of the archetypes that benefit the most from a more individualized environment.
Another type of student that benefits greatly from this smaller environment are those that have learning differences. I mentioned previously that private schools are great when it comes to accommodations. Because the class sizes are so big, public schools are unable to accommodate students that have learning differences in the general classroom. This can leave the students feeling ostracized from their peers and can cause feelings of anxiety, depression, and even open the student up to getting bullied. Private schools utilize their more personalized setting, by allowing students to feel more comfortable. This is done by giving them more ample accommodations through things like: more time on tests or homework, orally taken exams, priority seating in class, etc.
Continuing our discussion on benefits of private school, I want to discuss the prospect of focused schooling. Private schools are afforded the luxury of specializing their school and curriculum on whatever they like. Because private schools are not mandated by the state curriculum, they can choose what content to teach. This means schools can specialize in a variety of different specialties:
- Boarding Schools
- Religious-Based Schools
- College Preparatory Schools
- Special Education Schools
- Montessori Schools
- One-To-One Schools
These are the main types you’ll see of the “specialized private schools” Each one has a deeply-rooted focus that’s worth looking into if you’re considering a more specialized or catered education. We’d also recommend you research each school independently as each one is going to be different.
We stated earlier that private schools are not required to be state certified, so what are the certifications for teachers then? While it’s true that private school teachers are not required to be state certified, that doesn’t mean they aren’t qualified. Each private school is allowed to set their own requirements and qualifications for who they hire as a teacher. This means that in some private schools, they may require the teacher to have a doctorate while others may hire teachers with only an associates. usnews.com had this to say:
Regardless of class size, parents may want to look at the certification, training and professional development obligations of teachers in both public and private schools.
McGovern says that while many private school teachers are not certified as public school teachers are required to be, private schools often hire subject matter experts with advanced degrees who can give students more authoritative instruction than a teacher with a background in just education.
“Independent schools generally have extensive professional development for individual teachers and groups of teachers to make sure their skills in the classroom are really top-notch,” she says.
So while they are not state-certified, private schools generally attract more highly-qualified teachers with degrees outside of strictly education. We recommend doing the research for the private school you’re currently interested in, to see what kind of qualifications their teachers have. This means the quality of education is generally going to be higher in a private school setting.
Is It For You?
Ultimately it comes down to what you’re looking for and what your budget is. While the benefits of private school are great, it does come with a heavy price tag. We’d recommend first looking at the tuition page of a private school you’re interested in before scheduling a tour or student interview. The admissions process takes time for private schools and you want to make sure that the school fits into your budget before investing your time. If private schooling is too expensive, we’d recommend checking out our tutoring services HERE. All of our tutors are teachers at our one-to-one private school: The Tenney School. Our teachers specializes in one-on-one instruction for a variety of subjects. This means you can dip your toes and see what learning from a private school teacher is like without breaking the bank.