Your child's education is critically important. It sets them off on the road to success and will, in one way or the other, directly affect how they grow and prosper. No pressure, right? If you're looking for the right school for your daughter, you need to follow a specific process with multiple steps to make sure that you do the job properly. What do you need to remember as you make these crucial decisions?
You can break this process down into 3 steps. Your first activity will be online, reviewing prospective schools by visiting their websites. At this point in the equation, there can be a lot of choices, and it's easy to become overwhelmed. In order to narrow this down somewhat, look for testimonials first. If you know other parents who have sent their children to one or of these schools, seek their opinions. The objective is to come up with a shortlist.
Once you have this list, contact the registrar at the school to see what places are available. When you talk to them, remember your first impressions, as your gut reaction will often be correct. In particular, do you feel as if the school is welcoming, appreciates your enquiry and is very forthcoming with information? Make sure you ask them about the particulars of the curriculum, the typical class size, the facilities available and the student/parent relationship. You are looking to see what makes this school stand out against the others.
An all-girls school might be a better environment for your child, as such facilities typically create better opportunities and a more conducive environment for girls to succeed and develop in all ways. Many studies in the past have shown how girls that attend single-sex schools achieve far greater confidence and are more likely to move on to subsequent study opportunities, as compared to those who simply attended a coeducational school.
Once you are happy with your phone interview, schedule a visit to the school campus itself. This can be privately or during an open morning. Once again, take note of your first impressions. You'll be able to see how students interact with the teachers and get a feel for the overall culture of the school. In particular, look at the students themselves and see if they are naturally engaged and cheerful.
Putting the Ball in Motion
You should now be in a position to make a final decision. So, in order to put this process in motion, begin your research as soon as possible.