Every parent wants the best for their child, especially when it comes to their education. There has been a long-running debate that continues to rage today over the perks and drawbacks of either a public or private education. There are numerous arguments on both sides and which is best for you and your child will depend on a number of factors, including your individual circumstances. A private education (confusingly enough, private educations are given by public schools in the UK, whereas a public education establishment is referred to as a state school) costs money, although some establishments offer places to those who pass an entry exam or can demonstrate academic or sporting excellence.

Finding Schools

The first thing you should do is decide whether you want to find a school local to where you currently live, or if you are willing, or even looking, to relocate to a new area. If you are looking for a school local to your current residence, there are a number of reputable guides, both on and offline, that will list local schools and give you an indication of their current and past performance, as well as their position on various school rankings.

For example, Googling private schools in Hertfordshire such as Duncombe School will return a long list of relevant results. If you are considering relocating, then it will make your life easier if you have some idea of suitable areas of the UK for you and your family to live in, as this will make going through lists of schools much easier. A third possible option is securing your child a place at a boarding school. This means they will live on-site during term time and return home for the holidays. Whether this is a suitable option for you and your child will depend largely on how comfortable they would be with the arrangement.

Evaluating Schools

The next part of the process will be to visit any schools you have identified as potential candidates.  You should involve your child as much as possible in this process, whether you are looking at a public, a private, or a boarding school. After all, their happiness and well-being is the most important thing. Before visiting schools, have a look online to see how much you can learn about them beforehand.

Past exam performance is a good measure of how a school performs academically and these days it is usually quite easy to find first-hand accounts or reviews of day-to-day life at the school online. Take into account the extra-curricular activities that are offered too. Is the school known for its drama department, or is your child interested in playing boarding school sports at a higher level?

Things to Consider

As well as the academic concerns of choosing the right school, the social aspects are also important, and these will be influenced by the staff at the school as much as the pupils. Some argue that state schools provide a better social environment, and there is increasing evidence that the difference in the quality of education offered by state and private schools is rapidly shrinking, while others firmly believe that a private education is better.

Whether you opt for a state or private education, the key factor in your child’s ultimate success will be the support they receive at home as well as at school. It is important that you are willing to put your preferences to one side if they dramatically conflict with those of your child.

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