When you move to a new neighborhood, the first thing on your family’s priority list is usually choosing and enrolling your child in school as soon as possible. How do you know which one to choose if there are multiple options to consider within your local community? Here are four factors to consider when choosing the “best fit” school for your child.
1. What your child will learn
Many schools offer different curriculum and extracurricular activities. Ask your child which subjects and after-school activities she would like and would suit her talents/abilities best and take this into consideration when selecting a new school for her.
2. How your child will learn
Your child’s learning style, academic motivation, physical and/or mental health challenges, conduct, learning disorders, individual strengths and depth of self-understanding will all affect how much he/she can absorb in a new environment.
These aspects will also affect how teachers and peers will interact and influence your child. Gather information about how that particular school will teach and interact with your child, both in and outside of the classroom. Ask the school directly, and inquire with neighbours and ask other parents you meet as you get groceries and run errands.
3. Social interaction for your child
What kind of culture exists within the new school? Is there a sense of community? Are there clubs that mirror your child’s interests? Does the school have any problems with bullying, drugs, or anything else you need to be aware of?
Peers hold considerable influence over your kids, so it’s important to carefully consider what kind of population you will be placing your child in to avoid potential problems.
4. Your child’s unique qualities and needs
Your child is like no other and possesses unique characteristics, yet also shares many qualities in common with other children. Consider your child’s capabilities, personality, talents, wants and needs.
Reflect back to how he/she performed in the last school and evaluate whether or not the environment at each school will meet your child’s needs. As a parent, you know your kids better than anyone and the type of environment in which they will thrive.
We’re happy to be able to fill you in on the schools in the area. If you are considering purchasing a home in Red Deer, here is a little bit about us and how we can help you and your family find your “best fit” home.