Thursday, April 12, 2007

Choosing a Preschool? Is it the Most Important Decision in Your Life Right NOW?

This is a GREAT resource for all you anxious parents who are never going to have the time to read my blog :) But who am I kidding? I post these things for myself anyway While we are on the topic of early school education, I have the following bullet points for anxious parents - take them with a grain of saltine:

* If your kid likes the school, and your gut feels okay about it, then it is probably an OK school.
* If you are not a religious family and you chose a parochial school, you will either become more religious as a family or will become unhappy with the school
* The cost per child is always really 1.5 times the amount you are told you will pay, due to fund raising and volunteering obligations. Get an estimate from the school before hand.
* Check out the oldest kids' classrooms, not just the one your child will be in. See what is in store for your child. Don't think about changing schools, rather view the school as a whole.
* Talk to parents. They can give you the best information, don't be embarrassed to ask for phone numbers of the parents of kids who have GRADUATED from the school
* Post your opinions on web pages like the one that you see if you click on the title.
*If the environment of your child consists of articulate individuals then your child will do well in school, because he/she can communicate their needs easily. On the other hand, if your child has a hard time communicating their needs verbally, you might want to clue in the teacher in advance, so he/she can anticipate your child's non-verbal communications.
* If you are not welcomed in your child's classroom, find another school.
* If you don't feel good about the administration of the school, find another school.
* My ideal school would have web cams with passwords for children's significant others.
* The most vocal parents will take the school leadership, so if they bother you, find another school.
* If your kid is really unhappy about going for more than the first couple of days, do a serious assessment of the issues involved, because MOST kids really LOVE school.
* Take the time to encourage friendships between your child and other children whose parents you can tolerate. Because if you don't like the parents, the playmates grows old, fast.
* Give your child fun things to bring to class. Find out the policy regarding food, allergies, gifts, and toys. Once every couple of months, have YOUR CHILD bring a treat in for the class
* Don't just COMPLAIN to teachers and administrators, give them a THUMBS UP for good work and things you like too.
* RELAX, you don't have to spend 15K or even half that amount for your child to have a great preschool experience and learn a lot.
* RELAX, most kids are neither damaged by preschool nor even remember anything about it.

Peace and Love and the most positive of intentions,

Dr. BK


Devilbluedress said...

You must be the parent of a preschool child. You mentioned nothing about school accreditation, teacher child ratios or if the school is academic or play based...

I enjoyed reading this though.

Dr. BK said...

LOL, my son is graduating from college this June. I took those factors you mention as givens. Most of the parents of preschoolers in my life are MDs and are OVER concerned with the factors you mentioned. This post was an attempt to be practical and relate to several of my gal pals who were driving themselves nutz...

Thanks SO much for commenting..