There is no wrong choice for a family who compares what various schools offer for their child’s education experience.
Charter, public, private, homeschool and hybrid online offerings in education have given a true meaning to the word choice. This decision is about what fits with each family’s values, education expectation and unique needs within a school community.
Grant Lichtman’s book “Thrive: How Schools Will Win The Education Revolution” is the resource for our faculty book study this semester. In the book, educators are asked to identify their school’s north star and the value proposition that makes their school unique and different from others in order to build a culture of innovation of their own. Equipped with this understanding, it is possible, according to the author, to develop a school culture that is irresistible to parents.
Lichtman tells us there is only one uber critical piece to this equation: “finding, attracting and retaining families who choose your school in an ever and rapidly diversifying landscape of consumer choice.”
He further reminds us “we have to make choices not because we value one learning outcome or one set of student interests more than another but because no school can afford to be all things to all people.”
Parents will find it helpful in this process of decision-making to visit schools and talk to the principal and staff. In the family blog post “Let Me Give You Some Advice.com,” there are some specific questions that may be helpful as you begin your search.
■ Tell me what your teachers value in the learning process. Describe the culture of your school.
■ Tell me about your school’s philosophy for learning. What is the role of the student in the learning model?
■ How is the curriculum chosen? Who has input on this decision?
■ What is the role of a parent in your school? What are the best ways for me to build a good relationship with the school?
■ What do you hope a child who attends your school leaves knowing or believing?
Answers to these questions allow you insight into the philosophy and what is valued in the learning organization. You may not find all the answers you are looking for, but answers to these questions will give you the basic understanding in making choices regarding schools.
“Finding the right answer begins with the right question,” Frank Sonnenburg, author and advocate for moral character, said.
We welcome you to contact St. Cyprian’s Episcopal School as we begin accepting enrollment for the 2022-23 school year on Feb. 1, and we look forward to answering your questions regarding what makes us a formidable choice in education.