If you live in the United States, it’s likely that your children will be assigned a school district by zip code. School district by zip code is the way that public schools have known what students are attending them for quite some time. School district by zip code helps to keep many public schools from becoming overcrowded, but this system of determining school district by zip code is certainly far from a perfect one.
For one thing, determining school district by zip code leaves little choice in the education that a child receives. When determining school district by zip code, the quality of the school itself doesn’t matter. If a child lives in a school district where there is a public school and that child will attend the public school, school district by zip code is how things will be decided. This system of deciding school district by zip code is likely one of the reasons that so many parents are choosing to send their children to private schools. After all, having a say in the education and the quality of the education that your child receives is something that is important to many – and rightfully so.
Aside from the process of determining school district by zip code, there are many other reasons for parents to stray away from public schools. For one thing, student engagement and parent engagement alike tend to be much higher in the typical private school setting. In fact, less than 5% of all private school teachers working in the United States cite either of the above as any issue faced by their school. On the other hand, more than one fifth (more than 20%, to put things in other terms) of all public school teachers cite both levels of student engagement and parent involvement as being quite a problem.
Unfortunately, this is likely due to a number of factors. For one thing, private schools tend to be much smaller than public ones. After all, more than 85% of all private schools have no more than 300 total students. In fact, the average number of students in any given private school is only just 146. This means that a private school can form much more of a community than a public school. Public schools are often much larger and some of them, like public high schools, have far more than even 1,000 students.
Resources also tend to be better at the best private schools around, especially in comparison to the public schools in the same area. From the best middle schools to high schools, the student to teacher ratio is typically much lower at private schools. This allows children who are struggling to get the help that they need, something that is truly not always possible in the public school environment. In fact, public school children fall through the cracks all too easily, something that certainly contributes quite greatly to the overall apathy that many a public school student feels about their education.
College preparedness programs are often much more in depth at private high schools than at public ones as well, better preparing the students for life after high school and even after college as well. There is simply more time that is able to be devoted to getting ready for college. After all, the data that has been gathered on the subject clearly shows that guidance counselors in private schools are typically able to donate up to 55% of their time to just college preparedness. However, only just over 20% of the time of a typical public school guidance counselor can go towards getting kids ready for the college application process as well as college itself.
Fortunately, private schools are becoming more and more common – as well as more and more accessible – than ever before. As a matter of fact, one school out of every four in the United States is now a private school. This means that there are now considerably more than 33,000 private schools found throughout the country, schools that serve very nearly five and a half million students in total. And in the years ahead, these numbers are only anticipated to climb.