When my oldest son was three, I became overwhelmed with finding “the right” preschool for him. When I say “the right” school, I mean the best fit for him and one that my husband and I were comfortable with. It was, after all, the first time that he would be away from us.
I researched through on-line websites like www.greatschools.net. I talked to other parents and spoke to the schools in which I had interest. I spent much time preparing an excel document to list schools, tuition, and other important information. When I finally narrowed my choices to three schools that I liked, I found that I wasn’t the only one who liked them. All three had waiting lists.
Waiting lists for schools? How did I not know about this? This was just one more thing about parenting that was very new to me. I would soon find out that picking a school for your child becomes a very big deal to many parents. I had a lot of friends that expressed the same fears as me. Would I make the right choice? Would my child be happy? Would he excel?
We were lucky and finally got into the preschool of our choice. But before I knew it, it was time to do the whole process again. Only this time, it was for kindergarten. I found myself, for the second time, searching and agonizing over the best choice for my son to begin his education.
I learned about public schools, private schools and charter schools (public schools that are privately owned and operated but publicly funded) and found that attending orientations was very helpful in getting a feel for the school. But with two young boys, I didn’t have the time to visit a large number of schools. So I relied on other parents, considered their recommendations and read about their experiences, negative and positive.
Every parent wants the best start for their child. Children have years to be in school and as a parent, you want to find the appropriate foundation to begin that journey. Again, we found ourselves on a waiting list for the school that I decided was the best fit for our son. Luckily, I started kindergarten research early and put my son on the waiting list when he began his second year of preschool.