Post # 1
I’m from a country where racial segregation was the rule of the day for more than 300 years and that was totally applied in schools. There were Whites only schools and Blacks only schools. The Whites only schools were provided with all the amenities you can think of by the then government and the Black schools had absolutely nothing. I mean no running water, electricity, proper toilets (we used the bucket system), sporting facilities, etc. I happen to come from the blacks only schools. A lot of this changed in 1994 when we got our freedom and Black people could now be enrolled at any shool of their choice if they can afford it of course. Yes I am South African
Now the Whites only public schools already had everything and to most blacks like myself they are way better (education and extramural activities wise) than the schools we attended. Now that we can afford a bit we are able to send our kids to this schools though they are a bit expensive but they are better (cost wise) than private shools.
My son is turning 3 next month and I have been doing a rough research on the schools regarded good. Apart from searching the websites of the schools I have been asking for view from parents who have school going kids. There is a public primary school very close to my work and that is the place we are buying a house at. There’s also a Catholic Private school not far from that and another very expensive private school closeby. Now when I asked certain colleagues who have school going kids others frown at the fact that I am considering taking my child to a public school. Not because it is bad or at a bad location because it is not but mainly because it has the word “public”.
I mean all the extramural activities offered at the private schools like, tennis, karate, cricket, Athletics, Chess etc are available at that school and because it is government subsidised it is way cheaper. We can very comfortably afford the Catholic Private School, but we don’t want to do it only for purposes of being relevant among certain groups of people.
My husband is of an opinion that we should take our son to a very good public school and invest the extramoney for his university instead of him getting almost the same aducation expensively and drowning in student loan debt like us for his tertiary education. I really think this is a very good point.
I mean my husband and I attended the blacks only schools in the Getto and we only touched a computer for the first time at tertiarry but I still completed my law degree in record time at a good University in my country and he also completed in Agricultural Scientist Qualification in Record time.
Does this happen to you as well Bees in your regions or countrys or I am just surrounded by silliness?
Post # 2
I know nothing of your situation, but what I do know is this. If you are friends with a group of people who are paying a large sum of money for something that they could be getting for free, then it is very important to that group of people that they all agree on how “good” and “important” it is to be spending that money. Everyone must buy into that delusion or else it all goes up in smoke.
Post # 3
Keke84: I want to clarify public versus private – I know in different places it means different things
Public = government funded (here free)
Private = Parents foot the bill, usually for more upper class familes (not always, but usually)
Do I have that right?
Post # 4
Keke84: I do know people who think that they have to pay for a child to get a good education. I went to Public, governement funded school, best high school in my area – highest graduation rates and highest university acceptance rates. Even better than the Private schools people paid a lot of money for.
Post # 5
Keke84: I’m in the US, so obviously, the school situation is a bit different, but I attended public school up until high school and I went to a Catholic high school. On paper, my public school had more clubs, more sports teams, more class options, etc. My private high school had very limited clubs, sports and just the bare basics for classes, we had very few electives and very few Advanced Placement class options. Hands down, I would take the private school over the public school 100 times over. It has everything to do with the atmosphere. At public school there was constant bullying, pressure to use drugs, have sex, etc. Catholic school was much more peaceful and it gave me much more of a chance to be successful. I could absolutely have been successful at public school as well, it just would have been harder and I would not have been as happy.
With that being said, there are plenty of great public schools too, mine just wasn’t one of them. I also think that in the earlier grades it may not be as important which you pick, as the difference between public and private may not show as much.
Post # 6
i was in private school for kindergarten and 1st grade. my parents bought a house and sent me to public school after that. i went to public school for the rest of my schooling and had a fine education. my supervisor sends her 2 boys to private catholic school, the amount of money she spends is more than i spent on college tuition.
for you, you really need to weigh the pros and cons of your kids attending both schools.
Post # 7
Keke84: I’m American and there is a lot of bitching about public schools here as well. Personally I think school is what you (the student) make of it. You can go to the most well-funded school in the country but if you don’t study and work hard you’ll fail. I think lack of funds that are associated with public schools are a lazy excuse thrown around by parents of kids who don’t apply themselves. Maybe I’m biased because I went to public school my whole life, graduated with honors, and was accepted into my first choice of colleges.
Don’t worry about what other people think. I agree with your husband that you should save the money for college.
Post # 8
Keke84: I think trying to compare school systems in different countries is like comparing apples and oranges.
I am totally unimpressed with public school in the U.S. after a bullying situation with my daughter. I appreciate and love that U.S. kids have access to a free education. I don’t love how underfunded public schools are here.
I think the biggest issues in the schools have to do with things that the schools themselves can’t control. Social media is causing kids to develop their social skills differently. Because so much of their interactions now take place behind a screen of some type, many kids are lacking basic empathy. The way they treat each other online is spilling over into real life interactions. Bullying has always happened, but with the younger generations, it has turned into a completely different animal than what it was before the new technology swept the nation. Pair this with the fact that most teachers are over burdened and under funded for the actual education portion of the school, and you have a system that needs some revamping.
Appreciate your public school teachers! They have one of the most important jobs in the world, educating our kids. They have to make do with what they are given, as well as tread the quagmire of a new age of bullying with in the schools.
Post # 9
I think it depends a lot on the quality of school – some public schools are great, and some are terrible. The same goes for private schools. I would never ever send a child to the public school that I went to (I graduated with more than one kid who never learned to read) but I know other people who went to public schools and got a first class education. I think as long as you research the school and are pleased with what you find you should go for it and screw what other people think. It’s way more important to have college money in the future than a private school jacket today.
Post # 10
I think as long as a school provides quality education and opportunities for your kids, it really doesn’t matter how expensive or cheap it is. I fully anticipate my ILs having a problem with us sending our kids to public schools (we’re in the US, so it sounds a bit different from your situation, but it’s similar in that there are good and bad public schools), but we’ve done our research, are planning to buy a home in a good school district, and I don’t see the point in spending tons of money on our kids’ primary and secondary education when we could be saving that for their college. Plus, my husband (and his sister) went to private schools, and thier experiences do not make me think it’s any better than my public school experience – DH’s school was laughable in terms of educational quality (he went to a Christian private school that actually had a class called “Creation Science”), and his sister went to an elite prep school where she regularly saw kids doing lines of cocaine in the bathroom. No thanks.
It doesn’t matter what others think. Other people will always have opinions about how you choose to raise your kids – for some reason, people think this is in some way their business – but you need to make the decisions that are right for your family and be at peace with it.
Post # 11
Question: how are problem students dealt with in South Africa?
I ask because here, schools are fined if they exclude or expel pupils. It is almost impossible to get rid of problem students. Also, school attendence is mandatory, so you get a lot of pupils who don’t want to be there. My experience of state school was this:
– 30 students to a class.
– 3 with serious behavioural problems (screaming, throwing chairs etc).
– 3 egging them on, and most of the rest of the class taking the opportunity to play with their mobile phones/chat etc.
We would waste the first 15 minutes of every 45 minute lesson just getting everyone to sit down and open their books. Then I went to a private school. Same quality of teaching, same facilities, same class sizes. The only differences were:
– The uniforms were a bit more expensive.
– The 3 pupils who would have disrupted the class in state school were simply expelled.
It made a huge difference; you just can’t imagine. It’s sad that you’re paying a small fortune to simply expel the most disruptive and aggressive 10% of students, but that’s what it boiled down to for me. Honestly, if my state school had been able to simply expel pupils, I wouldn’t have seen the point in going private. However, as it was then it made such a difference. I would have really struggled to complete secondary school if I hadn’t gone private.
If the discipline in both schools is 100%, and there isn’t that much of a difference in facilities and quality of teaching, I say go state and save your money.
Post # 12
In my country there isn’t a huge difference between public and private schools in terms of education. There are good and bad public and private schools. I went public.
I would however check very carefully with other parents, internet, newspapers, … and compare both schools. Check if current teachers are good, how they deal with good students, how they deal with worse students, … Extra curricular activities aren’t everything. Your son needs a solid maths/verbal/… education to prepare him for a bright future. All the best to him 😉
Post # 13
koi424: That is so truthful and I think it’s exactly what is happening here.
Post # 14
MsGinkgo: you have it very right. Though here there are 2 kinds of public schools. The totally free ones that serve the very poor communities like where I grew up and these are the ones I attended. And then there are those public ones that I think are partly funded by government. Those are usually found in middle class communities and parents have to pay a certain amount. Not expensive at all but best for the money paid and most have the same things offered by private schools. That is the kind I want to take my son to.
Post # 15
SithLady: yes I agree the public school I attended is a place I will never take my child but it was then, the best public school my single mother of 2 who was a domestic worker could afford. But now the school has changed. There’s so much violence, drugs and excessive teenage pregnancy. But the one I’m talking about is nothing like. It’s like a private school that is state funded or subsidised.