Every parent wants what's best for their children. When it comes to education, there is a lot of debate about the merits of private schools. Undeniably, private schools offer many benefits over public schools, such as more attention from the teachers due to smaller class sizes and the availability of more extracurricular activities and after-school support. However, with the average price of private elementary schools reaching $7,770 a year and the average price of private high schools being $13,030 a year, you should really get to know the teachers at each school when deciding which school is best-suited for your children. Don't hesitate to talk to the teachers to get to know them. Here are three discussion topics that will allow you to get to know the teachers better.
How the Common Core State Standard Guides the Class Itinerary
To ensure that all students are ready for life after high school, teachers are required to teach specific concepts and theories. The Common Core State Standard is a set of guidelines that basically establishes what needs to be taught in the class curriculum. One of the main benefits of enrolling your children in private schools is knowing that the teachers will go above and beyond this guideline.
Before enrolling your children, print out the Common Core State Standard for each course that your children will be taking. Talk to the teachers to determine what their class itinerary looks like. Determine whether all of the required concepts will be taught. Next, you'll want to have a frank discussion with each teacher regarding how the Common Core State Standard guided their decisions when preparing the class itinerary and curriculum. Make sure that the standards are merely a starting point for a conversation and that the teachers plan on elaborating on various concepts so that your children will be able to fully master these concepts.
What Their Approach to Long-Term Course Planning Is
When interviewing teachers, you shouldn't focus on just talking to teachers that are teaching the grade that your children will be in. You should also talk to teachers that are teaching higher grades. When talking to all of the teachers, you'll want to inquire about their thoughts on how to master long-term course planning. In particular, you'll want to know whether the teachers have put any thought into how the different concepts and theories taught in each course will lead into the upcoming grade.
Teachers that spend a significant amount of time on curriculum mapping will generally be the most prepared. This is because these teachers will know what concepts overlap in each grade and will know whether they need to teach anything to shorten the knowledge gap between the different grades. Determine whether the teachers consistently attend meetings to make sure that they cover the learning gap between each grade.
What Their Hobbies and Passions Are
The interview doesn't have to be all talk and no fun. On top of asking the teachers about their teaching experience and their plans for the upcoming school year, it's also important for you to get to know the teachers on a personal level, as many teachers will bring their passions and hobbies into the classroom. For example, you might want to know whether some teachers are particularly passionate about certain topics. These passions and hobbies may rub off on your children.
Some parents may want to request that their children take courses with specific teachers based on their passions as well. For example, if reducing your household's carbon footprint is very important to you, you might want to find teachers that share similar passions. Teachers that spend a significant amount of time volunteering may also encourage your children to do the same. These teachers may know about various volunteer groups that your children can join.
When deciding which private school is best for your children, speak to the teachers because they are the ones responsible for filling your children's minds. The teachers will also have a strong influence on your children as they grow up.