5 Tips to Help You Choose the Right School in South Florida
With many different school options available, narrowing down the right fit for your child takes planning, asking questions, and knowing your child’s needs.
1. Know what your child needs to learn
2. Know the type of environment in which your child will learn best
3. Find out the school’s approach to learning
4. Know the extracurricular options the school offers
5. Visit the school
If you’re moving to South Florida and need to find a good school for your child’s academic growth, you may be considering whether to send your child to a public school or a private school. A private school’s low teacher to student ratio is appealing because it allows for a closer relationship between students and teachers. As a parent, it’s also good to have a relationship with your child’s teachers, as well. Private schools offer that because most of their programs run from Pre-K to 12th grade all located on one campus.
Choosing the right school takes time and consideration to determine whether it is a fit for your child. You have to consider your child’s overall well-being, personality, strengths, and weaknesses when thinking about his or her education.
Think about what is most important as you begin your search. Understanding your child’s academic and social needs will help narrow down schools where he or she can thrive. When you find a school that shares the beliefs and values you want to instill in your child, it’s reassuring to know that your child will be prepared for the future.
1. Know your child’s academic needs
One of the top priorities of choosing the right school should be meeting academic expectations. What are your child’s academic strengths? What are his or her academic weaknesses?
Knowing how your child performs in school will help you identify where he or she needs extra help or a program that offers coursework that challenges. Identifying whether your child needs a rigorous academic curriculum or one with a more specialized program is an excellent first step.
American Heritage Schools offers several specialized programs, including a college preparatory program, pre-professional programs, technology, and fine arts.
2. Understand the learning environment
The learning environment is an important factor to consider because many variables go into student success. The learning environment ranges from the number of students in a classroom, helpful resources, and clear expectations. Knowing the student and the learning environment he or she needs will help learning and growth in the long run.
Exploring the school’s available resources, such as tutoring services, a library, and computer labs, can help you determine if your child will be set up for success.
Part of a good learning experience means that there is open communication between parents and teachers. Does the school foster this kind of relationship?
Figuring out the relationship between parents and teachers should be something to look for when considering a school. When teachers and parents have open communication:
- teachers can adjust to teaching them
- parents can support their child at home
There’s also less room for misunderstandings and miscommunication because the student’s family and the teachers already have established a relationship.
Another part of finding a conducive learning environment is knowing the school’s and teachers’ expectations up front. This sets up your student for success.
American Heritage Schools offers a low student to teacher ratio. This allows teachers to foster relationships with their students, so they feel comfortable reaching out for help. American Heritage Schools also has an “open door” communication policy that allows communication between teachers, students, and parents. This method builds the community and sense of family between the faculty and the families they work with.
3. Find out the school’s approach to learning
Part of a successful learning experience is finding the right approach to learning for your child’s needs. Knowing how your child’s learning style and how the school integrates students into the curriculum will help you understand if your child will be successful.
Find out if your child learns better by doing hands-on activities or through discussions with other students. Each child has a unique learning style that helps the child process and retain information. No one knows your child better than you do. Be clear when communicating your child’s needs to understand the school’s approach to how children learn.
At American Heritage Schools, students have the opportunity to learn through hands-on learning at the science lab at a young age. The curriculum instills different learning styles through assignments requiring oral and written reports that exercise different methods of communicating information.
4. Find out what extracurriculars the school offers
Whether your child is interested in athletic activities or the fine arts, involvement in extracurricular activities helps him or her explore their interests and offers balance in the student’s life. It is important to foster your child’s interests and passions. Not only does it build character, but it also helps your child meet other students who also enjoy the same activities.
Extracurricular activities benefit students by building their teamwork abilities, increasing self-confidence, and encouraging time management skills to balance classwork and activities.
At American Heritage Schools, students have several extracurricular options available to them, from the athletics program to the fine arts program. You can find a list of different fine arts course offerings on our website.
5. Visit the school
Visiting the school is the best way to envision what it would be like if your child were attending it. Prepare a list of questions to ask the principal or teachers when you visit. Some questions can include:
- How heavy is the course load?
- How much communication is there between the teacher and parent about the student’s performance?
- What are the teacher’s expectations?
- Is there outside help such as tutoring offered at the school?
- Is the academic curriculum challenging for gifted students?
Asking the right questions can make all the difference in preparing your child to succeed in a new school.
American Heritage Schools offers in-person and virtual tours. Visit us online today to speak with an admissions director.