ADVERTISEMENT

Choosing a school: red flags

Expert advice and insights on private school red flags

Find a list of schools

We provide all the information you need on choosing a school on OurKids.net. Here we focus on red flags about schools. We asked education experts to weigh in on this question. What follows are numerous valuable insights.


For expert advice on a wide range of questions related to choosing a school, read our comprehensive choosing guide. You can also read our parent interviews on choosing a school, as well as our in-depth advice guide on getting into a private school.

On school red flags

“High staff turnover is a bad sign. You want strong leadership too, so if the principal, headmaster, or board of directors is changing every couple of years, this points to a lack of stability. If my child is in grade 2, I’d like to know there’s continuity from grade 2 to 3.

What are the goals of the school? What are their priorities? How do they approach the curriculum? If a school can’t answer those questions, this is not a good sign.”
Ann and Karen Wolff, Education Consultant, Wolff Educational Services


“Bad schools aren’t transparent: they don’t communicate clearly or they do so with a spin. You should also avoid schools that give you a high-pressure sales pitch: schools that accept your child and try to get you to sign on the dotted line right away, and that want all the money up front. Of course, this is different than a school that sends out a letter that says ‘We need to know in 10 days, because we have a waiting list.’”
Janyce Lastman, Education Consultant, The Tutor Group


“The biggest red flag is a lack of commitment to understanding your child. And that might mean not doing initial testing, not looking at a child’s assessment, or not meeting for an in-person interview. And you want to make sure that communication goes both ways. It’s almost like a dating service: you need to vet the school out, and decide if it’s the right fit for your child.”
Una Malcolm, Director, Bright Light Learners


“I wouldn’t recommend a school that didn’t have good practices. Practice, leadership, education philosophy, execution, teachers, parent community, a joyful learning environment, parent participation, a solid admission process… It’s all about good practice, and if it’s not all there, to me it can’t be a good fit.”
Elaine Danson, Education Consultant, Danson and Associates

Advertisement
Find Private Schools:

In the spotlight:

Latest Articles


January 14, 2020
What does 'more' mean to you?
Students need more from their schools, but what? We asked some of the best.

December 19, 2019
Building a better school
Elie Newman's Transformation Project at The Bishop Strachan School

December 16, 2019
A Quaker institution for the modern world
Pickering College defines itself through its values and the tradition that informs them.


October 18, 2019
Private school developmental priorities
The different kinds of developmental aims of private schools


Our Kids The Trusted Source
Our Kids The Trusted Source

Disclaimer: Information presented on this page may be paid advertising provided by the advertisers [schools/camps/programs] and is not warranted or guaranteed by OurKids.net or its associated websites. See Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy. Our Kids ™ © 2020 All right reserved.

Sign up to receive our exclusive eNews twice a month.
You can withdraw consent by unsubscribing anytime.
Name
Email
verification image, type it in the box
Our Kids From Our Kids, Canada’s trusted source for private schools, camps, and extracurriculars.