Before my boys were born, I was a public school teacher. A big believer that the biggest difference in a child’s school experience comes from the parents: if child has an involved parent and the family values education, then you can have a positive experience at almost any school.
I still do believe that.
But, it’s not as simple as that.
My Bear will be old enough to go to kindergarten in the fall. We had gone back and forth over the decision to send him or wait a year, since he will still be a young 5.
At this point, we think we’re going to send him. His teacher always says how smart he is- it’s not a matter of academic-readiness, it’s a matter of emotional and behavioral. While some of these concerns are probably normal for any boy his age, our biggest concerns are the complications he has from lead poisoning.
Will he be okay in a public school classroom?
One that might very well be over-crowded, like my oldest’s was at the beginning of this year- he started the year with almost 30 kindergarteners in his class. That lasted about a month or so, until they added another kindergarten teacher. But, a month is a long time and the first month of school is such a crucial one for a child’s adjustment to school.
Will they be able to give him the special assistance that he needs? While there is a special education program at the school, how quickly he would be serviced and if it would be enough have me concerned.
Sometimes a mama has to go with her gut and my gut is telling me that my Bear would drown in the public kindergarten.
So, we are looking at the Christian school, where he would be in a small class. We’re also looking at the Montessori school, with its child-centered approach.
I’ve realized that just like the rest of the choices that we’ve had to make for our children, it’s not really about a generalization like “Public schools are the way to go!” but about what each individual child needs.
Do you send your children to public or private school? How did you make that choice?