If you have been following me, you will know Mason our oldest boy will be turning four next year. Which means we will have to be going through the pre-primary application process for the first time as parents. He will be starting Grade 000 at a new school.
Hubby and I have been hunting schools for almost a year now. It can be a terrifying prospect as this is where our boy will be spending most of the next three years of his life before starting pre-school.
We finally found a little Afrikaans school about 3km away from our home that also relays to the pre-school we want him to attend when starting Grade 1.
Here are a few questions to consider;
Here is the very first you need to consider asking yourself before consider anything else regarding any school;
- Do you prefer a public or private school?
- Do you want your child to have a religious education?
- Do you have a specific language you prefer your child gets educated in?
- Do you prefer single-sex or co-education?
- What are the fees? Are the school fees and other costs affordable to you?
- Is the school delivering of broad and balanced curriculum which brings out the best in every child.
- What are the school’s admission procedures and entrance requirements?
- Will your child get the needed attention or are the classrooms cramped with too many students?
- Will the school be able to cater to your child’s needs and value your child’s uniqueness?
- Will your child be happy there? Will you and your child feel welcome there?
- Do the children look happy at the school?
- After your guided tour, where you happy/impressed with the atmosphere, playground, library, classrooms and teachers who will be shaping your child for the years to come?
- How does the culture of the school match your family’s values – for example, uniform policy, attendance, emphasis on academic achievement, compulsory weekend sport and so on?
- Does the school’s policy on homework and discipline meet your own needs and values?
- What is the process if your child gets unwell, upset or unsettled?
- How far are you willing to travel and is the school close enough to work/home when your child get sick or you get called to school?
- What are your options for before and after school care?
- Are the children supervised at all times?
- Are the entrance and side gates locked and secure around the school?
TRUST YOUR GUT!
As all Mommies know, we have a sixth sense. If you cannot close your eyes and imagine your little one being happy and educated at the school, it simply is not the school for your child.
At the end of the day, most primary schools are vibrant, friendly places and you may struggle to choose one. Primary schools tend to have the feeldgood factor. If you just aren’t feeling it, this one’s probably not the one.
I would love to hear about what you considered before sending your little ones to school