Every year, many students enter college feeling woefully under-prepared. They may struggle to keep up with some of their classes, or they may have trouble balancing their schoolwork and social obligations. The better prepared a student is for college, the easier this transition will be. One way to help ensure your child is well-prepared for college is to send them to a private high school. Here are some of the ways in which private schools do a better job of preparing students for what comes next.
More independent studying.
In the average high school, students get a lot of guidance from their teachers. The teachers tell them exactly what to study for the tests, and a lot of that studying takes place in class in the forms of assignments and quizzes. Teachers may have students copy notes off the board, or they may even give students pre-printed notes. This can make it tough to adapt to the college setting where students are fully responsible for taking their own notes and doing their own studying. In private schools, students are often required to learn more independently. For the first year or two, teachers may give more notes and guidance, but by the time students are seniors, they'll be taking their own notes and preparing for exams on their own, just like they will in college.
More college-level courses.
If students are given the opportunity to take two or three college-level classes before college, then when they become full-time college students, they won't be as shocked by the increased rigor of the academics. Most private schools offer more Advanced Placement or college-level courses than public schools. Your child can take one or two classes in the topics they excel in or plan on majoring in, which will not only help them adapt to the rigors of college coursework but also help them confirm whether they really want to study these topics in college.
Some students struggle in college because they were not well-advised when it came to picking their major or choosing a school. Private schools — especially those that market themselves as "college prep schools" employ guidance counselors who increasingly focus on guiding students into college. They'll help your child choose a major they not only enjoy but can excel in. This will help keep them from having to change majors or drop classes, which can be big stressors as they enter college.
Private, college-prep schools are often the better choice for kids who plan on going on to college, especially in more challenging programs. To learn more, talk with an administrator at a private school near you.