– Kiran Meena, Co-Founder & Head of Content, SchoolMyKids.com
Every year, many parents in India start the painful exercise of finding a suitable school for their children. The year 2020 is even more challenging as the traditional parameters for deciding on the schools need a rethinking due to the emergence of new focus areas exposed during the pandemic.
Our platform has been at the forefront over the years to help parents make the best education decisions for their children. More than 3.3 million parents visited our platform to identify the best school for their kids during the last admission season. Below are the key parameters and guidelines to select the best school for your children.
The process needs to begin with assessing the learning requirements of your child. It is important that parents not get too caught up with the schools’ so-called reputation and fame. They should instead match the child’s specific learning needs with what the schools have to offer. Many new schools have been launched in the last 4 to 5years, offering superior learning experience and outcomes but are yet to generate a name for themselves.
The search for the right school starts by comparing and ranking schools with their respective ratings and reviews from a reliable website. Some of the best websites for this comparison are:
- Schoolmykids.com -provides authentic information on admission, fees, facilities, rankings of top CBSE, ICSE, Cambridge, IB and other national and international Schools along with genuine reviews from students and parents.
- EducationWorld – India’s most comprehensive education portal for the EPS (educators, parents, and students) communities. It offers one of the most credible school rankings.
- Eduvidya – Search universities and schools
- Edustoke – School search website for admission, online application form, fees, results, ranking
- Schoolkhojo – school rating site with ratings from parents and allows schools to feature their facilities.
Also read: EW India School rankings 2020-21 (Part 1)
The factors to be researched when deciding the best options for your child are:
- Fitment to the current age and future needs
This is especially relevant for children entering the formal education stream. Parents need to take a call on the need for the best school for the playschool children vs the institution fitment for education across the whole schooling years. Given the difficulty in managing the admission process again, many parents compromise on the formative school years. If high school is crucial, so is the education during the foundation years. We believe that one should provide the best for the child growth, and if it requires having a different school during the foundational years, then the parents should consider it.
- Hygiene and cleanliness protocols
School cleanliness, disinfection, and hygiene protocols should now get more attention in the selection process. One also needs to be aware of the chemicals and other products used for cleanliness purposes to ensure that they are absolutely safe for the children. Not many parents in India are informed and aware of the hazards caused by various cleaning agents.
Parents should also opt for schools that have stricter guidelines for various Infectious diseases. Alertness and prevention are going to be extremely necessary for the post lockdown era.
- Schooling cost
Pandemic has impacted many families financially. Therefore, an in-depth look at the cost of schooling is important – look at tuition fee, annual charges, uniform, and books cost. Consult parents and obtain their feedback on the real (on the ground) costs through the year. It is time that parents do not fall into the trap of considering a more costly school as a better school. What one needs to match is the fitment to the current needs of the child.
- Approach to learning
The school’s approach to learning should be suited to your child’s needs. Some schools believe in group learning and others focus on individual performance. Some schools believe in extensive homework while others look for balance and provide a light post-school schedule, allowing more free time for kids. Many schools believe in frequent assessments, this should be in line with your time availability to support your child.
- Sports facilities
Sports have become an integral part of wholesome education and healthy life. Children, irrespective of their sporting ability, need to be encouraged to participate and become better. The school infrastructure needs to be robust enough to offer options and can accommodate all students regularly. Parents need to be careful of schools claiming to offer sports without resourcing it fully for frequent participation.
- Safety and security
Parents need to ensure that the school has enough attentive guards and CCTV at every gate. Additionally, safety and security inside the school building also need to be given attention. School’s receptivity to children’s complaints should be gauged; it goes a long way in ensuring safety and reflects the school’s desirable intent.
- Teacher staff strength and quality
Well-qualified teaching staff with long tenures/experience is an indicator of the school’s academic strength. Additionally, a student-teacher ratio that ensures individual attention could be vital for some children.
Do physically visit the shortlisted schools and talk with teachers and parents before making a final decision. I look forward to receiving your direct feedback to improve the course for all parents.
The views, thoughts, and opinions expressed in the article belong solely to the author, and not necessarily reflect the views, thoughts, and opinions of EducationWorld.