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Those who send (or sent) their kids to private school, would you do it again?

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  • #16
    Originally posted by F0017S0 View Post
    Not a parent, but I attended private school from nursery school through my PhD; as I try and envision a future as a physician, I enrolled in the local community college to complete some GPA repair classes (and some nursing prerequisites as an alternate path). In my opinion, the experience is night and day favoring private education. If I have a problem, there is someone I can talk to (relatively quickly) at a private school whose job it is to address the issue. Conversely, at the community college, good luck getting an appointment with a counselor due to student volume. In discussions with friends and acquaintances who went the public route for university, they reported difficulties enrolling in required courses, possibly delaying their graduation or requiring "super terms" loaded with four major-required courses, impacting their academic performance.

    I realize that my post is specific to college, but it wouldn't surprise me if some of the same issues are true for high school and elementary education as well. Even if you live in a well-off area where the public school "approximates" the private school, you might be at the mercy of teacher's/administrator's/para-professional/service unions, school board politics, et cetera.

    Given all of that, if I had kids, and the financial wherewithal to elect private education, I would go that route.
    Equating the experiences of community college versus private university to the decision between private versus public for elementary school is ridiculous. Not at all comparable situations.

    And the issue regarding advisory services access and course enrollment difficulty is primarily a function of school size, not public versus private.

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    • #17
      “Anyways, im pro public school. Plenty of kids went to IVY league. Just make sure it is a "good public school"”

      The schools your children attend is more important than the school district.

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      • #18
        As a fellow parent contemplating the same, what issues did your older kid have if you don't mind me asking? If you feel like there's truly an issue, I'd make a change without a doubt. How much is your private schools?

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        • #19
          If you're going to a college prep private school, the general benefits are: 12:1 classrooms, excited dedicated teachers with extended hours of access well beyond the classroom.

          Admin support still will clash with teachers and students and parents. The real power is the board that drives the decisions since they directly hold the budget purse strings. The larger the endowment, the better situated to allow for achieving the purpose of the board.

          Every prep school has their own flavor of this.

          So mind that while choosing private vs public. Like saying General Internal medicine - training private vs public - resident vs fellow dominant. academic vs nonacad training.

          That said -- we sent one to private; one to public - each fit best and supported for their own situations. Yes, we'd do it again too. We pulled one from private to public since didn't see the benefits and fit for him.

          Being academic internal medicine in HCOL - still able to finance the cost without compromising retire fully at 60 goal on 200k annual.

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          • #20
            Depends on location, as Tangler said. My wife's public school in a wealthy zipcode was likely better funded than my private school. We've started the 8 year old with public school. We've since toured the secular private school in town since the COVID learning experience has been lackluster (COVID denying county, some level of in person school much earlier than most places).

            If your kid has any learning disabilities, a public school probably has better resources than the private school. There are no perfect answers.

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            • #21
              Sibling's kids switched from private to public and did better, but honestly that was probably partially due to reduced commuting time. A friend who is vice principal at a K-12 private IB school sends his kids to public school. Some of each type are great and some suck. I wouldn't send kids to the private school my friend started his teaching career at but I would send them to his current school.

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              • #22
                My oldest child went to public schools in Lakeland, Florida ( not the best rated) throughout. Now 29. Almost perfect SATs. Played second position on tennis team three years. Cello at All State. Graduated Stanford 2015.
                My youngest went to private schools throughout. Finished one year of college. Lives in the basement .
                If they aren’t re-enacting West Side Story in the playgrounds, I would stay with public

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                • #23
                  Why would you send the second child to private after the first thrived at public?

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by Bdoc View Post
                    She was surrounded only by very wealthy individuals and it definitely plays a role in how she views the world(few 9 and 10 figure net-worths there.
                    Does she ever mention that she wishes she would have married for money?

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                    • #25
                      We sent our children (now adults) to private school for three reasons. 1. Language immersion. We're both from immigrant families and grew up learning/speaking multiple languages at home. We wanted all the children to speak at least a second language fluently. Yes, there are public immersion programs nowadays, but they were non-existent 20 years ago. 2. A better educational experience. As was stated earlier, a class size of 40 just cannot compare to a class size of 15-20. I have found that public school funding is chronically in jeopardy, at least in our state. We did send our oldest to public elementary (30-40/class), and one year, the funding was so short that they were planning to end the academic year in April! Only after the passage of a special bond did the school district extend the curriculum until June. And this was supposedly a school of excellence in a high performance district. 3. Potential for a better outcome for struggling students. A couple of our kids struggled in middle school and high school (slower maturation, ADHD, etc). These private schools recognized learning issues quickly, kept on top of them, and dragged the kids to graduation kicking and screaming. There would have been a high chance that these kids could have gotten lost in the crowd without the added attention. Fortunately, they're all thriving, kind, contributing members of their communities.

                      Yes, there will be the inevitable responses from many doctors who went to public school, saying that they went to the same med school or residency as their Ivy-League and private school colleagues. However, I feel like that is a selective sample of the success stories, and does not account for those students who didn't quite make it to the top.

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                      • #26
                        Top 10% kids will succeed in almost any environment. Top 1% even moreso. The rest of the student body very much so depends on school environments.

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by Rotish View Post
                          Why would you send the second child to private after the first thrived at public?
                          We were convinced that he was the next Andy Roddick, and needed “special “ nurturing for his tennis skills.

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by Auric goldfinger View Post
                            We were convinced that he was the next Andy Roddick, and needed “special “ nurturing for his tennis skills.
                            How did that go?

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                            • #29
                              Originally posted by Tim View Post

                              How did that go?
                              Not well. He’s still in the basement

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by Rotish View Post
                                Feel like public vs private is always an impossible topic to read about as it devolves into a pissing match before the thread gets locked.

                                yet here I am, asking a variant of the same topic. We are considering sending our two kids to an elite private school. They’re currently in elementary school one of the best public school districts in the state, but have been very disappointed with the experience thus far. Some zoning laws have led to class overcrowding problems, and the Covid handling really shed the light on the difference between public and private schools (one was virtual for a week, the other was virtual for almost 2 years).

                                Yes, I know it’s a major financial weight, but we will be able to meet our financial goals either way. That said, this is going to be a tough decision to reverse once we make the leap. So I was hoping to get input from those on here who decided to send their kids to private school—was it worth it?

                                My experience with a combination of private and public school with our daughter

                                1. Private from almost 3 years ( those pre-k, pre,preK and prepper etc on to K and through 5th grade). Did not have a choice as initially had some issues with learning that this school could accommodate and later had to stay because switching to public school meant repeating a year due to birthdate cut off and getting bored. Very small class sizes and she thrived.

                                2. Towards the end of elementary school we looked at 2 private schools. One required she attend a religious class at least once a week ( we are against forced religion) and the other parochial school was more lenient but had overcrowding ( imagine that in a private school) and wanted to cater more to the Germans posted in USA for 3-4 years than the local population. Also drug use was rampant in their high school and snobbery was the norm. We were about to enroll her in a public STEM or charter school but she got in a gifted middle school. That was the best school she attended.

                                3. High school. She refused to go to the parochial high school even if we wished and could afford. She chose a IB program in a dump of a public school and loved it. She has thrived well so far and people similar to her who went to private schools did not do any better. In fact, no one from the gifted middle school went to a private school even though 1/3 of them ( including us) would easily have afforded it.

                                In the end we would have done the same thing over again. If she did not have the early learning issue I would have her in public schools all the way. If a child can get in, a gifted or magnet public school is the ideal, combining the best of both worlds - learning challenging subjects and being exposed to diversity..



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