How a Private Elementary School Builds the Foundation for Success
One of the biggest debates when considering public or private school is whether a private education will build a foundation for success in the same way that people view the success of public school students. Certainly cost is a factor for many choosing private vs. public, but in most cases the question ultimately boils down to whether your elementary school child will become more prepared for middle and high school, and later, college.
To help you understand a few ways that private elementary schools can build a foundation for success, Lakeside Christian School, the best private school in Clearwater, FL, shares a few basics.
Starting with the Basics
Before we can talk about the fundamentals for success and how private schools excel at giving children these tools, it’s first important to understand a few of the studies that support these elements.
- A recent study found that graduates of private high schools scored 4 points higher on the ACT test. What does that have to do with elementary school, you ask? The foundation to learn all of the higher skills needed for the ACT test are built early.
- The same study found a similar difference between elementary and middle schools. For example, a comparison of mathematics tests showed private schools scored 18 points higher for eighth-graders and 8 points higher for fourth graders.
- Math was not the only area where private school students excelled. Private school students also outscored their public counterparts in reading tests by 18 points in eighth grade and 15 points in fourth grade.
- In the UK, children educated in a private school setting can score up to two grades higher than children in a public education setting. Although this is taking into account a different school system, many of the UK’s private schools follow the same teaching and curriculum style as those in North America, including Montessori learning techniques and faith-based learning.
- Another study found that compared to public schools, private schools have a smaller average class size of 18.8 students. Additionally, the same study noted that private schools have a lower student-to-teacher ratio of 12 students to one teacher.
Another study found that compared to public schools, private schools have a smaller average class size of 18.8 students. Additionally, the same study noted that private schools have a lower student-to-teacher ratio of 12 students to one teacher.
These numbers put a few important things into perspective. First, it proves that building the foundation for success in high school and college starts in elementary school. Second, it demonstrates that seemingly minor details, like a smaller class size, can translate into big results later on.
Building on the Fundamentals for Success
Now that we have discussed the studied results of a private elementary school education, let’s dive into the how. Understanding how private elementary schools in Clearwater, FL, create the foundation for success is just as important as understanding the “why”.
- To start, private education focuses on a few key factors:
- Each individual child’s learning style and needs;
- Data-driven instruction;
- and an expanded curriculum
These key factors are all intertwined, with one giving way to the next. Let’s break this down further. In a private school setting, class sizes are smaller which means that teachers have the opportunity to understand the way that each child thinks and learns best, and can modify their approach. Additionally, because instructors are not “teaching to test” — in other words, teaching and testing in an endless loop — teachers are given more freedom to modify lesson plans and give each child more individualized attention.
Teachers are also able to focus on data-driven instruction and methods, and because they are privately funded they are able to expand the curriculum beyond what publicly funded schools are able to do. When building the foundation for elementary school students, teachers are not tied to just covering the minimums mandated by the state, they are able to incorporate intellectual, philosophical and religious aspects that will instill more confidence in young learners and equip them with everything they need to build a strong education.
Increasing the Focus on Areas Where Kids Need the Most Help
Previously, we touched on the key factor of individualizing curriculums to meet the needs of each individual child. But, this goes beyond just paying special attention to children with different learning abilities or needs. This means increasing areas of focus for the whole class where kids need the most help — which is a luxury that private school education is able to utilize.
In a public school setting, when the majority of the class fails to understand a specific subject or topic, the students are penalized. This might mean they are penalized with lower test scores, or even being held back a grade, because the curriculum must march on. But in elementary school especially, this can mean you are “building your house upon the sand” so to speak. As the saying says, a wise man builds his house upon the rock, and the goal of private school is to build your child’s educational house upon a rock. So when the entire class struggles to grasp a specific subject, more time is taken to help everyone as a whole understand. And if the class still struggles, there is a closer look taken at the approach and a more collaborative method of teaching for instructors that allows them to strike a solid balance with their class. Christian elementary schools in Clearwater can offer this while public schools simply do not have the time to consistently pivot when the older methods of learning are no longer working.
If you are hoping to build your child’s elementary education for a foundation of success, Lakeside Christian School should be at the top of your list. Lakeside Christian School is an affordable private elementary school in Clearwater, FL, which gives students all of the tools they need to succeed. If you’re interested in learning more about how we challenge all of our students to achieve their academic and personal goals, give us a call.
If you would like to learn more about Lakeside Christian School, a Christian elementary school in Clearwater, FL, please give us a call at (727) 239-7808 or schedule a tour of our campus.