September 2013 Weddings

Private school thread revisited

I was absolutely dying over the course of the last couple of days because I could not post in that thread, in particular in response to this post:

"my children will never attend private school!

i went to a private christian school for 6 years, and those were the worst years of my life, there are next to no regulations for the teachers, they can do pretty much whatever they want, and not worry about being fired, because they know that no one wants to teach private school.

the kids are all spoiled rich kids, and are horrible to eachother."

Bchdrmr pretty much covered what I wanted to say, but apparently I still can't keep my trap shut. Tongue out I think it is ridiculous to make such broad generalizations about all private school teachers. It is one thing to share one's experiences. I am not bothered in the least by someone sharing their own personal experience. I am bothered by the generalizations made above. I have taught at both private and public schools. I taught at a fantastic private school, Round Rock Christian Academy in Round Rock, and in various public districts in Texas. If I was choosing between the particular schools I have been in, I would send my kids to RRCA, hands down. The curriculum was more advanced, the class sizes were much smaller (most of my classes had 9-15 students and 15 was really a large class). The parents were more involved. I've been in public schools where they had to cancel field trips because they couldn't get two parents to go along. I always had lots of parents willing to help out. There was a pretty even mix of kids from really rich families and kids whose families made huge, huge sacrifices to send them there. There were plently of kids on scholarships. Then there were a large number of kids whose familes fell somewhere in the middle. I went to a huge public high school in Orange County, California. The socioeconomic disparity there was so much worse than I saw at RRCA. My avocado green 1978 Cadillac would have been all sorts of embarassing to park in a lot of BMWs, Mercedes and Lexus if I hadn't been so grateful just to have a car. Wink I saw kids treat each other horribly at every school I was at and at every school I have ever attended. Unfortunately kids will do that anywhere. As far as accountabillity RRCA is accredited by ACSI (Association of Christian Schools International) and the accredidation process is very stringent. They are also a member of Region 13, which imposes other requirements on them, including having a large number of their teachers hold Texas teaching certificates. I worked with a lot of fantastic teachers there and I saw a few really awful ones come and go, usually very quickly. I also worked with some fantastic public school teachers and some really awful public school teachers. I didn't become a private school teacher because I had to take a job no one else wanted. Other people did want the job I got. I wasn't the only one who applied and interviewed. There are things that make those jobs less attractive (lower pay and crappy benefits), but there are also plenty of things that make them more attractive. For me the positives of working at the private school outweighed the negatives and also outweighed the positives of working at public school, based on my own previous experiences. And I certainly didn't get to "do pretty much whatever" I want. Administration had high expectations of me and if I didn't live up to them I would not have kept my job. Trust me, I saw it happen (not to me!). I did work in some pretty low SES school districts, some with really high turnover, really low levels of resources, etc. so I know that definitely affected my public school teaching experience.

My point is that there are great public schools and great private schools. All of the negatives that have been listed for private schools can be true of public schools and vice versa. If I lived in  a place with fantastic public schools I wouldn't feel the need to consider private school. I happen to live in a place with not so great public schools and I would love to have the option of private school. We don't have any near us and we don't have the money so it's not an option. I have education degrees, so we will send our kids to public school and I will fill in the holes at home.

Kimberly, DH Monte, Angel baby 10/06, Angel twin 7/07, Rhett Kaden, our IVF miracle, born 3/23/08, Mason Robert & Wyatt David, our FET miracles, born 8/2/09 at 36 weeks, 3 days
Our Blog


Re: Private school thread revisited

  • For the most part, I agree with Kim777. My experience at a private school wasn't so great, but that was mostly because I was yanked out of public school in October of my first grade year and put in private where I knew no one at all and everyone had already made friends and it sucked. I was back in public for 2nd grade.

    However, just because I had a bad experience doesn't color my opinion on private schools. A friend of mine teaches at the Girls School of Austin and if and when DH and I have a girl, I am seriously considering sending her there. I'm amazed at what a great curriculum the school teaches and their philosophies are in line with my own.

    There are some really excellent private schools. There are some really excellent public schools. You just gotta do what's right for your kid.
  • So much I want to say! But I'm walking out the door right now ... Ugh!

    Personally, after attending both, I will do everything I can to send my child to private schools.

  • I agree with you.  I went to a private pre-k and kindergarten and I loved it!  We had spanish class and I remember it vividly- our teacher spoke nothing but spanish and the whole class was him telling stories about "John" and all his adventures.  He would talk and draw (amazing!) pictures to go along with the story on the chalk board.  It was so fun, and we all had to ask to go to the bathroom and get water in Spanish, so we were learning.  I was also playing the violin at age 5.  
  • I don't have any against private schools except the tuition cost.  I don't understand needing to send your kids to private school because the public schools are bad.  If you can afford the tuition, then why not just move to a better school district?  I guess everybody is different, but we bought our house pretty much because of the neighborhood and the schools. 
    Warning No formatter is installed for the format bbhtml
  • JezcaMJezcaM member
    i taught at both private and public schools, and generalizations about either are going to be inaccurate. i hate it when people ask 'is ___ a good school?' because that's such a subjective question. the standards *i* use to judge the quality of a school could be totally different from yours.

    in my opinion, most private schools offer the following benefits over public schools:
    • smaller class size, which leads to more one-on-one attention from the teacher and more accountability (kids can't get away with something without EVERYONE finding out about it), more parent communication
    • curriculum tailored to your beliefs/values. if religion's important to you, it's great to have your kids' school reenforce those same beliefs/values.
    • tighter community that is more likely to lead to lifelong relationships
    • less emphasis on stupid standardized tests, less red tape

    and most public schools offer the following benefits over private schools:
    • teachers are better-paid, so public schools to attract the "more qualified" teachers
    • public schools generally have more money, providing for more current textbooks and other enhanced resources/equipment.
    • larger public schools are able to offer a more diverse course selection
    in choosing a school, i think one should first look at their public school. if there are specific attributes of that school/administration/faculty that you don't like, then start exploring private schools.
  • MrsAJLMrsAJL member
    First Comment
    In Response to <a href="">Re: Private school thread revisited</a>:
    [QUOTE]I don't have any against private schools except the tuition cost.  I don't understand needing to send your kids to private school because the public schools are bad. <strong> If you can afford the tuition, then why not just move to a better school district?</strong>  I guess everybody is different, but we bought our house pretty much because of the neighborhood and the schools. 
    Posted by ali-1411[/QUOTE]

    Lots of reasons: too far from your place of employment, family, friends, things you like or maybe you enjoy the ambience of the neighborhood. 

    There are nice and enjoyable places to live that don't have the best schools and I don't see anything wrong with parents who want to send their kids to private school is that's their choice. 

    Further more, I think there are a lot of things that need to be improved in the public school system but I don't think it should be the same 20% of parents who are working towards better schools so that the same 80% of families and students can benefit.
  • Just wanted to say that I also think it depends on the school. I went to private school my entire life (my mother teaches at my old elementary school, so we got major tuition breaks). My parents scrimped and saved to send us to an academically rigorous middle school and high school. There were definitely very privileged students at my school, but there were also more normal kids like me. I had a tight group of friends and we are still close. 

    My junior year of high school, I told my parents that I wanted to try public school. The school where I attended was considered very good, but there was no comparison to my private school. I was bored to tears and transferred back after two months. And then I had a ton of catch-up to do.

    For me, it was very worthwhile because I thrived under the pressure and the school was the right size for my shy personality - my HS graduating class had ca. 75 students. I was lost at the giant public school. Private school was more tough for my brother and sister. They were more social and not very motivated academically, so there was a lot of stress for them. They probably would have done very well at public school. 

    I am sure things have changed a lot, but that was my experience. 

    If DH and I have a child like I was, I would not hesitate to do as my parents did and sacrifice nice cars and vacations to send him or her to private school. It really opened a world of opportunity for me. I use that education every single day. Personally, I think that private school is more useful for high school if that means more opportunities for college education. I can always supplement a public school education at home when the kids are younger and more pliable, but I think that would be much more difficult for me with teenagers. And I can't hang with HS calculus anymore. :)
    Business Cat. image
This discussion has been closed.
Choose Another Board
Search Boards