In the wake of social distancing solutions, there have never been more options for quality child education. Just as adults have navigated how to work from home, in the office, or through a mixture of both, children are able to learn online, in a traditional classroom, or through one of the many emerging approaches to public and private schooling. Although it may be easier than ever to find a learning style that best suits your child, it can be overwhelming to navigate all of the options that are currently available. Whether you are focused on finding the right school district, classroom style, or something else, these factors are worth considering when picking schools.
Teacher Qualifications & Satisfaction
Choosing a school with good teachers can be difficult, no matter the school format. Between low competitive wages, limited public classroom resources, and varying levels of experience, it is a good idea to take a look at not only teacher qualifications, but also how those teachers feel about their working environment. As is the case with any other job, happy teachers are more likely to do their best work.
Cultural & Economic Diversity
Socialization and community exposure are a big part of the in-person classroom experience. Children learn how to interact with each other and navigate complex emotions through play and collaboration. Learning in a diverse environment can help set kids up for greater mutual understanding and empathy, so it’s a good idea to take a look at the cultural make-up of a prospective school district.
Accessibility in the Classroom
Along with disability-friendly features such as ramps, rails, and braille signage, parents are increasingly interested in finding school programs that accommodate neurodivergent needs. Hybrid classrooms, custom lesson plans, and other interactive formats can help kids retain more class information and discover what learning styles work best for them.
STEAM & Extracurriculars
Children thrive when they are engaged in activities that challenge their skills and expose them to new concepts. Sports, hobby clubs, and STEAM activities are all great ways to help kids both in and out of the classroom. It’s a good idea to take some time to explore the different programs offered in different school districts and institutions.
Although there are many ways to explore different school options, tools such as Niche make it easier to see how some of these criteria are ranked in your area. Niche also ranks other factors such as classroom size, safety, and overall ‘best of’ districts and schools. No matter what your child’s academic trajectory may be, considering these elements is a good way to narrow down your options.