Three Tips For The Preschool-Hunting Parent

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Preschool is something that was once considered an option rather than a need by many parents. This is not simply because parents were uneducated about the benefits of preschool — and in the early days, being educated about private preschools and what they have to offer was difficult. In fact, preschools of the past are far cries from more recent preschools. Preschools have become a part of many private schools, with many children transitioning from preschool to kindergarten while staying in the same preschool. The benefits of preschool are difficult to deny, with many parents and teachers alike now considering preschool to be a stepping stone from toddlerhood to the academic lifestyle that all American children will have to grow accustomed to. Going to preschool helps a child become used to school — while at the same time growing to love learning. The sooner a child comes to love learning, the easier school will be for them. Still, choosing the best preschool for your child can be intimidating. After all, there are so many different preschools to choose from, including both private and public preschools. Let’s look into some things to consider that will help you in the process of choosing the best preschool for your child. Yes, preschool is just the beginning — but it’s an important beginning.

1. Know Whether Or Not You Want A Religious School

This may seem to some like an odd thing to consider for a young child, but religious preschools are options, and in many cases great ones. It’s estimated that 80% of private school students attend religiously-affiliated schools, and with many of the best preschools being private, it’s important that you know from the beginning whether or not you want your childhood to attend a religious school. There are religious private schools for practically every mainstream religion in America. As such, if religious qualities are important to you, there should be plenty of options available. Religious schools are known to be held to rigorous standards, and many parents appreciate the academic standards of such schools whether or not they themselves are religious. With that being said, some religious preschools use their religion as “a core principle”, rather than applying it to every aspect of lessons — and as such, many of these schools readily admit children who are not from religious families. It is really a matter of whether or not you are comfortable with your child being exposed to religion — if you are, this opens up many excellent options in private preschools.

2. Think About Student To Teacher Ratio

While private preschools tend to be smaller than public ones, some are still larger than others. As preschoolers are all in the same “age”, this means that they will usually be split up between a few different teachers. While children need to interact with each other to make friends and develop social skills, conventional wisdom teaches that the smaller the class is, the more individual attention a child will receive. This is just common sense, and it can affect your child’s academic performance and emotional health. This is why, when choosing the best preschool for your child, you should perhaps come back to private schools, religious or not. The fact is that 36% of private schools average student to teacher rations of 10:1, compared to just 10% of public schools. If you want your child to have a truly individualized experience, private preschool may be the way to go.

3. Consider The Summer

When choosing the best preschool for your child, check and see if they offer summer programs. Many preschools offer summer camps, which not only makes life easier for working parents, but enriches the lives of students. It’s estimated that each year, over 11 million children and adults go to summer camp. Summer camp gives kids outlets and care, and if it’s run by a private preschool, you know exactly how your child will be treated and by whom. It’s just another benefit of private preschools.

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