When new leadership takes office, one thing that they look to change is the education system in our country. Many who champion this want to improve the performance of the under performing ones. Knowing which ones are bad can be difficult and truly evaluating them can take time. There are five things to look for that should set off red flags that a high school should be avoided if possible. |
The first thing that should turn you away is that it is not a safe environment. It could be the neighborhood around the school, an upswing in crime in the area, bullying from other kids, and fights breaking out on school property. It is also possible that the principal and teachers have no control over classes, meaning that safety is not a major priority and there may be underlying issues that are also not being met.
Another thing that you should look for when you are weeding out a bad high school is bad teaching. That is not the goal of each teacher that sets out into the field, but unfortunately, it can happen over time. This includes a lack of subject knowledge, inability to control a classroom, unprofessionalism, and an inability to diagnose learning problems. They are also extremely worried about specific methods and the wrong goals.
Next thing to look for is a low graduation rate. If you learn that the dropout rate is high, research into why that may be the case. Find out how well the students do in math and reading overall and learn where the underachievement is. If it is below normal, they you may want to avoid that high school. It is hard for even the good students to go against the grain forever.
Too many students per teacher is another indicator of a bad high school. Class size can make a big difference in how students learn. Recent years have shown that there are more students than teachers in schools now due to budget cuts, low funding, and government debt in many states. Individual districts and schools handle this differently. Before you enroll your child, make sure that there is plenty of room for him or her.
It is not hard to know how bad a school is as long as you know how to spot a good one. Each student should be given the attention he needs and his teachers should know him individually. You should also know about the development of teenagers so that you can help them deal with them.
Any time that you are moving to a new district take a tour of the various high schools so that you can choose your home wisely. Your child deserves the best chance at a future that you can give him. If you notice any of the things mentioned, you should look at other school options.
Rutgers Preparatory School is a high school Somerset, NJ parents can be proud to send their children to. Learn more about their curriculum by visiting http://www.rutgersprep.org.
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