Should I keep my son in private school for another year or switch him to public?
I have a dilema... I'm sending my son to a private school that offers preschool, prekindergarten and kindergarten. I'm definitely doing preschool and prekindergarten there, but am undecided about kindergarten. I'm sure the cirriculum is better in the private school, but think it might be important for him to start public school with the other kids his age so he isn't the odd man out come 1st grade? Also, the private kindergarten is about $700 per month - so I'm not sure if it is worth it! How important is kindergarten from a learning standpoint? Is it worth the $700 a month to send him to private school, or would a really good public kindergarten offer him equivelant skillls? Please help! I have no other friends who send their kids to private school, so no one to help me. :) -Shawna
<p>Hi Shawna, This is such a tough one....I went through the same decision making process. My son is in kindergarten now and based on my experience this year I would say that the teacher is the single most important part of the kindergarten experience. (I'm assuming both schools you're considering are clean and safe which is obviously THE most important thing). So I would ask the principals of both schools if you could visit the kindergarten classroom(s). You'll be able to tell pretty quickly if the teacher seems like a good match for your child (and you!). If you like the teachers at the public school then I'd say you should send him there for kindergarten for a few reasons. First, if he goes to preschool and pre-K at the private school, it might be hard for him to get that he's in "big boy school" when he starts kindergarten there (which might make first grade a rough transition). Second, if you're certain you're going to send him to the public school for first grade then I definitely think it would be easier for him to have gone to kindergarten there as well (in terms of having friends, knowing his way around school, etc). Finally, the $7,000 investment really is something to consider. Imagine what that money could do for him if you sent him to the public school for kindergarten and put that money in his college fund! In terms the curriculum...obviously a lot of important learning happens in kindergarten but the most important goal for that year is learning to love school (which has more to do with how good the teacher is and how fun the playground is than how advanced the curriculum is). If you sent him to the public school and you felt he wasn't being challenged enough his teacher will probably be happy to find individualized ways to challenge him and you can always supplement the curriculum at home. Hope this helps. Let me know what you decide!</p>