As a parent, selecting a school that offers top education and a conducive learning environment for your child is of utmost importance. Good schools near you can provide meaningful learning experiences and a nurturing atmosphere that can have a lasting impact on your child’s academic and personal life. From the importance of preschool education to the role of parents in education, there are various factors to consider when choosing the right school for your child’s primary schooling as well as secondary schooling. The teaching system, education management system, and teaching methodology are all crucial elements that contribute to a school’s success. Teachers and staff who employ different teaching styles, such as communicative language teaching, direct instruction, task based learning, and the lecture method, can help students learn and grow. A good school will have a classroom environment that encourages interactive classroom activities and supports different teaching techniques and strategies. In this blog post, we will provide you with seven tips that can help you assess and choose the best school for your child. We believe that these tips will help you make a more informed decision and give your child the correct education for their academic journey. So, whether you’re a first-time parent or have been through this process before, read on to learn more about how to choose the best school for your child.

1. Do a complete research on various schools

Conducting thorough research on different schools can help you make an informed decision on selecting a good school for your child that provides the correct education and a conducive learning environment.

  • Start by looking at their education board (CBSE vs ICSE vs IGCSE vs IB vs SSC – we’ll be writing an article on this soon) and consider the pros and cons of each.
    • CBSE: The golden choice, it is the most popular board, and is the baseline for higher education entrance exams. Quite scoring, and offers some choices of subjects.
    • ICSE: Once a popular board, it was meant for the elite. But now it is accessible, and offers a lot of choices of subjects.
    • IGCSE / IB: Tuned for students who would be studying abroad after their 12th grade.
    • SSC: Run by the state. Not a great choice anymore.
  • Evaluate the teaching system and methodology to see if it is system driven, planned, or teacher-led. Find out how the school handles teacher changes and what the training program is like. Check the teaching methodology to see if the content is vetted by an educational authority, what subjects are taught, how frequently the content is upgraded and the pedagogy followed.
  • Location is also a crucial factor as it affects your child’s daily routine, commute time, and extracurricular activities. It is recommended not to choose a school that requires more than 40 minutes of travel one way – unless of course, you find a perfect match for a school!
  • Safety is another key aspect to look into, with parents needing to know that their child is in a secure environment. This includes examining the security measures in place, the behaviour policy for students and staff, and the overall safety record of the school. It is important to ensure that the school provides a safe and secure environment for its students to learn and grow.

2. Explore the culture of the school

For those looking for good CBSE schools or good schools nearby, it’s crucial to conduct a thorough investigation of the school’s culture to ensure that it aligns with your own values and beliefs. This includes the values and beliefs that are instilled in students from the management down to the staff. This can be determined by reviewing the school’s mission and vision statements. Look for evidence that the school is actually following its stated mission and vision, such as through classroom activities, teaching styles, and meaningful learning experiences.

3. Check out the infrastructure and other facilities available 

When searching for a school, it is important to consider the infrastructure and facilities that the institution provides. 

  • Is it comfortable?
  • Is it safe and secure?
  • Is it hygienic? (can you smell your way to the bathroom? ;-))
  • Is it well lit?
  • Does it have play areas?
  • How often do the kids get to play per week?
  • Is it well-maintained?
  • Does it have separate eating areas? If not, where do the children eat?
  • Does it have a designated area for sick children? What are the protocols when children get sick in school?
  • Is the water potable?
  • Is there a counsellor in the school for behavioural issues? How do students get access to the counsellor? How are parents alerted if there are issues?

However, you as parents must also look beyond the infrastructure to ensure that the school offers high-quality programs and unique classroom activities that will give your child an edge over others. Teachers and a well-designed learning system play a vital role in the education of a child. It is not enough for a school to simply display flashy and large infrastructure to impress parents.  Planning and executing good quality programs is hard. For example : a school can display 40 synthesisers in the music room – but actually, what is the use? How often are they used? Can they be taught as a group activity? 

Remember, infrastructure is not going to educate your child, it is the teachers and system driven learning that play a very important factor.

4. Schools’ Learning Approach

Next would be looking into the school’s approach to learning. This involves examining how the school handles various aspects of education such as homework, classwork, examinations, and activities. Additionally, look into  how the school prepares students for higher classes and board exams.

Another thing to consider is the school’s expectations of the role of the parents in their child’s education. How much are the parents expected to do? Are they expected to complete projects given to the students? Do they need to invest in additional subject tuition for the students as well?

To start your research, visit the school’s website and see if they offer details about their teaching system and teaching methods. Look for a school that offers a balanced approach to homework and classwork, and provides a stress-free environment for students to learn. A good schooling environment is one that provides a variety of  learning experiences, such as hands-on learning, group projects, and interactive classroom activities.

Contact the school and ask for an appointment to visit the campus. See the time for response. It should be quick. When you visit the school, observe if the teachers and staff are approachable and if the school offers a conducive learning environment. Check if the school provides different teaching styles, and classroom activities for students. Ask the school counsellors about the teaching pedagogies and strategies they use to enhance student learning, and their role in helping students with their queries.

To gain further insights, talk to other parents and students who have enrolled or graduated from the school. This will help you understand the quality of education management system, the teaching methodology, and the quality of education provided. You can also read testimonials from parents and students on the school’s Facebook page or website, and check Google reviews of the school.

It is essential to select good schools that offer meaningful learning experiences and prepare students for the future. So, conduct a complete research on the school’s learning approach and select the best school that provides a holistic education experience that nurtures your child’s academic, social, and emotional growth. If you are looking for good CBSE schools or good schools near you, this research will help you make an informed decision.

5. Look at the affordability

When selecting a good school for your child, the cost of tuition is a vital factor to consider. However, it’s not the only factor to consider. It’s also important to look for schools that provide a superior education to the one you’re evaluating

Many schools may charge exorbitant fees but fail to deliver quality education and meaningful learning experiences that will benefit your child. It’s important to note that a school’s infrastructure isn’t the only indicator of top education. Therefore, it’s imperative to compare the features of various schools against the fees charged, to ensure that you’re getting the best value for your money. 

Additionally, it’s important to research and check for any hidden costs such as transport, uniforms, and extracurricular activities. Does the school provide transparent information about its fee structure? Does it offer you a clear projection of fees for the duration of your child’s enrollment in the school? It’s important to consider these factors while selecting schools to ensure that your child received the best education without breaking the bank.

6. Does the school have Sports and Extracurricular Activities

It is important to consider not only your child’s academic growth but also their physical and emotional development. Regular sports and extracurricular activities play an important role in shaping a child’s personality and promoting their overall wellbeing. While checking out a school, it’s essential to ensure that they offer ample opportunities for sports and other activities like dance, music, etc.

It’s not just about the availability of sports and activities infrastructure at the school, but also about the school’s attitude towards such activities

Having a large playground is not enough if the school doesn’t schedule regular sports periods! Is a sports period once a week okay? Or would you prefer a daily sports period? Is there a planned system around sports activities too? Is it really implemented, or a “marketing pitch”?

Furthermore, the timing of these periods is also important, as conducting sports activities during peak afternoon hours when the sun is overhead may not be the most suitable option. Additionally, in some schools, such periods are hijacked for other subjects, which can hinder a child’s physical development. Is there a promise that it won’t ever happen?

7. Teachers and the staff

When selecting a school for your child, it is important to pay attention to the quality of the teachers and staff. They are the ones who will be responsible for your child’s education and development.

As a parent, it is essential to visit the school and observe the teachers and staff, their behaviour and interactions with the students. Look for a school that has a supportive and caring attitude towards their students. 

Teachers should be skilled, knowledgeable, patient, and able to provide students with the necessary guidance and assistance. You can also inquire about the teachers’ qualifications, experience, and teaching methodology.

 It is essential to ensure that the school has a low student-teacher ratio to provide individual attention to each student. A good school also emphasises the importance of training and well-being for their staff, which inturn creates a conducive learning environment for the children. 

It is also important to consider the teaching methods and strategies used by the school, including the classroom environment, different teaching styles, and classroom activities for students. By assessing these factors, you can gain insight into the quality of teaching and the overall atmosphere of the school.

At Walnut School, we believe in the importance of providing children with a good education and a conducive learning environment, while also incorporating unique classroom activities for their academic and personal growth. Our institution places a strong emphasis on research, which is why we have created seven tips for you, the parents, to choose the right school for your child. These tips reflect our dedication to providing quality education to our students. As parents, it’s important to conduct thorough research on schools, explore their culture, check their infrastructure and facilities, understand their learning approach, and recognize the role of parents in education. We believe that by following these tips, parents can make an informed decision about choosing the best school for their child’s future academic and personal growth.

To further help you in your endeavour to find the best school for your child, here is a checklist of questions that you can download and use making the process smoother. Happy hunting! 🙂

You can also access the list of questions here.

What to look for when searching for a school for your child.
  1. What is the school’s education board? (CBSE, ICSE, IGCSE/IB, SSC). Based on its reach, which board is best suited for my child’s aspirations?
  2. What kind of teaching system does the school have in place? (Is it system driven? Planned?)
  3. What is the teaching methodology used? Is the content vetted by an educational authority? What pedagogy is followed?
  4. Which are the subjects taught? How frequently is the content updated? Do they teach any additional subjects?
  5. What is the curriculum of the school? Is it comprehensive and updated regularly?
  6. How does the school ensure personalised learning for each student?
  7. How does the school support students with different learning styles and needs?
  8. How does the school encourage critical thinking and problem-solving skills among students?
  9. What kind of assessments and evaluations are conducted to measure students’ progress?
  10. What is the homework policy of the school? How much homework does the school give the students?
  11. What is the school’s approach to technology integration in teaching and learning?
  12. What is the role of extracurricular activities in the school’s learning approach?
  13. How often are these extracurricular activities held?
  14. Is there an additional cost for participating in extracurricular activities?
  15. Do all students get to participate in extracurricular activities?
  16. What is the communication process between parents and teachers? Is there a parent-teacher meeting system in place?
  17. Does the school offer transportation services to and from the school?
  18. What is the distance and the time required to travel to school from my residence?
  19. Are there any additional costs, such as textbooks or technology fees?
  20. Has the school shared its fee structure along with the projected fees with the parents?
  21. Are there any hidden costs that parents should be aware of, such as mandatory fundraising or volunteering requirements?
  22. Are there any payment plans available to help make tuition more manageable?
  23. How do the school’s fees as well as features compare to other schools in the area?
  24. Are there any discounts available for families with multiple children attending the school?
  25. What is the refund policy if a child is withdrawn from the school?
  26. What is the process for selecting teachers? Are they selected based on merit and experience?
  27. Are the teachers well-trained and experienced in their subject areas?
  28. What kind of training and professional development opportunities do the teachers receive?
  29. Are the amenities and facilities provided by the school comfortable?
  30. Is the school campus safe? Do they have security cameras and trained security personnel in place?
  31. Are all areas of the school campus well lit?
  32. Are all the school facilities, including classrooms, restrooms, and common areas regularly cleaned and properly maintained?
  33. What are the sports facilities available? (well maintained playgrounds, basketball courts, etc)
  34. Do students have separate eating areas? If not, where do they eat?
  35. Does it have a designated area for sick children? What are the protocols when children get sick in school?
  36. Is the water potable? Is it readily available to the students?
  37. Is there a counsellor in the school for behavioural issues? How do students get access to the counsellor? How are parents alerted if there are issues?

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