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Private, public or arranged, bilingual or not, secular or religious, near or far from home. These are some of the doubts that assail parents when we consider which school to enroll our children in.
The keys to choosing the children's schoolFrom their own experience, they lie not in looking for the best school, because there are many good schools, but in choosing a better school for our children, which is adapted to the needs of the child first and the family later.
Taking into account that children will spend about 14 years in the educational center that we choose for them, from 3 to 17 years old, it is important to refine criteria and establish a regime of priorities to find the most appropriate choice.
1- Academic level of the center. It is important to know if the center has a quality certificate. In addition, the school must make available to parents the results of the students in the Selectivity tests or in the knowledge tests carried out by each Community in 6th grade of Primary.
2- Ideology of the center. Religious or secular? The ideological, moral and religious variables of the school must be taken into account
3- Educational project. Study the learning model used by the school, if they have psycho-pedagogical guidance (through this department, guidance is offered to the child, and learning or behavior problems are detected), reinforcement classes ... and if they have other strengths such as musical training, new technologies, sports, public speaking ... are aspects that parents must also value. At this point, two aspects must be distinguished:
- If the school has an alternative pedagogical methodIt is essential to verify that it is certified by the Ministry of Education or the relevant institution in the child's country, and that the objectives set by the ministry at each stage are met.
- If the school is foreign(French Lyceum, German School or British Institute) parents must be aware that in addition to language, we are linking children with a different culture and educational system, something difficult to follow at home if we do not have links with that country.
4- Languages. Before, only exclusive schools enjoyed a bilingual education. Now, many public and subsidized centers offer this advantage for children, since it is proven that the sooner children begin to learn a second language, the easier it will be for them to be bilingual.
5- Children per class. The number of children per class is now beginning to increase again as a result of the economic crisis to lower costs. Parents are aware that the greater the number of students, the teachers can pay less attention to each one. Personalized attention improves the quality of teaching.
6- Distance. Being close to home from school is a positive factor, but not a determining factor in choosing a school. The proximity makes it easier for the children to move and makes it easier for someone else to pick them up, and the remoteness implies checking the school route service and the dining room service. Parents should consider whether they can reconcile that distance with their work schedule or pace of life without causing family problems. However, the freedom to choose a school for children without being conditioned by the neighborhood where we live or the municipality opens up a wide range of possibilities for parents to choose an educational center.
7- Extracurricular activities. They allow the child to develop other skills and abilities and set their tastes in the leisure and sports section. We must use extracurricular activities in favor of the child and not to extend the school hours.
8- Visit to the educational center. An interview with the director of the school and a visit to the facilities to see what they offer on the spot is the last step in completing our choice.
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