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Schools


Is your child ready to go to school? Here's what to look for when considering what school to send your child to.


Location

How far is the school you have in mind, from your home? When looking at schools, try to ensure you send your child to a nearby school - at least, one which doesn't require a long commute. Children are so burdened with studies that the last thing they need is an hour's ride to school and back.

If you feel that there are no good schools around where you live, consider sending your child to a boarding school in a nearby town. This will save a lot of time and effort that your child would otherwise spend in commuting. In addition, bonds formed when your child is in a boarding are generally very strong, and the friends he makes at this time are likely to stand by his side for a lifetime. In addition, your child will grow up to be independent.

Of course, many parents don't want to send their children away to a boarding. This is a decision you and your spouse need to make.


Economic status of other children

If you are not very wealthy and send your child to a school for the wealthy children, your child's self esteem is sure to suffer. In addition, don't be surprised if your child starts making very unreasonable demands to keep up with his wealthier friends. You may not be able to fulfil these demands, and this may cause your child to start feeling insecure about his financial status. Instead, send your child to a school with students from various backgrounds. He can then aspire to do well once he sees the lifestyle of richer friends, and will not feel insecure about his background since there are many others from similar backgrounds around.


Board

A number of parents obsess about what board exam they want their child to appear for. The school is far more important than the board. So instead of sending your child to an average ICSE school, opt for a top-of-the-line school that offers a state board exam.


Medium

What language do you want your child to speak in the future? In India, there is a lot of emphasis on English medium schools. Most of the best schools teach in English. If you decide to send your child to an English medium school, make sure it is a school where the language is given strong importance. You don't want your child to speak poor English and make multiple pronunciation errors - this will defeat the purpose of sending him to an English medium school.

Whatever medium you choose to send your child to, your child should come out being very strong in the language, otherwise it reeks of poor schooling. Even children who went to bad schools can end up being fabulously successful, but poor language skills do pit the scales against them.

Parents also don't pay much attention to the marks a child secures in his language or literature papers - which is a mistake. Most entrance examinations your child may have to take in the future, like SAT, GMAT, GRE, CAT, CWT - and all other entrance exams for various MBA, Engineering, Law… colleges, require in-depth proficiency in English. Language is best taught at an early age, and if English is given strong focus when your child is young, he will grow up to be naturally proficient in it.


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