Your Complete Guide to Finding the Best San Diego Catholic School
Over 5.7 million K-12th students in the United States attend a private or Catholic school.
In fact, when compared to all of the nation’s schools, private schools make up more than a quarter, which shows that there’s a growing appreciation for the structure and experiences they provide.
But why do families advocate for, and choose private over public?
For many, the answer is an immersive education, opportunities for community service and outreach, and the whole-person approach to learning which often includes religious instruction, especially for Catholic schools.
But how do you know if a Catholic school is right for you?
And how can you find the best San Diego Catholic school for your child and family?
Finding the best school is about finding a school that supports advanced and life-long learning, one that has an immersive Catholic community, and focuses on rich, Christian-based experiences that will fulfill your child not only academically, but socially and emotionally, too.
Whether you’re thinking about enrolling your child in a Catholic school, are debating a switch from public to private, or are simply exploring your local options, here are your steps for finding the best San Diego Catholic schools.
1. Research All the Local San Diego Catholic Schools and Make a List
Choosing schools in San Diego may seem daunting at first, but the process is relatively simple.
Start by making a list of all the potential options, then weed out any that might be too far away, out of your price range, or not aligned with your personal beliefs or educational ideals.
When you have a shortened list, you can start to narrow down what schools you want to pursue and start reaching out.
2. Focus On Schools with Strong Instruction
You can expect qualified instructors at all of the best private schools in San Diego. However, depending on your child’s needs or areas of weakness/strength, you might prefer some type of specialized instruction.
If, for example, your child has a learning disability or IEP, you might want to look at private schools in San Diego that offer Special Education services. If you’re looking for your child to have more autonomy in his or her learning, it’s best to search each school’s academic philosophies and beliefs.
The instruction is the most fundamental component in finding the right fit so be sure to only pursue options that have the strong, qualified instruction.
3. Don’t Be Shy About Asking Questions
As you narrow down your search, don’t be shy about asking questions! Creating a running list of basic questions for each school, and specific questions to ask teachers, administrators, or other parents when you’re visiting each campus.
4. Take a Campus Tour (With and Without Your Child)
The best way to see and feel the environment of a school is to be there in person and possibly even see some of the classes in action.
Although you will want your child involved in the process because he or she will ultimately be the one attending, it may be helpful to also tour the school alone (just parents) first to get a feel if it’s a good fit before introducing your child.
5. Meet With the Principal and Potential Teacher(s) If Possible
When you go to a campus, be sure to set up any necessary appointments.
Meeting with a principal or director can ensure you’re getting a feel for the school from the top-down. You’ll also want to meet with any administrators to learn the application process, and, if possible, potential teacher(s) to preview the classroom experience.
6. Connect With Other Parents
If you can, connect with current parents to get a more behind-the-scenes feel of your child’s potential school.
Ask the principal/director to put you in touch with a family who would be willing to talk to you, or use social media to connect (for example, in a Facebook page or group).
7. Use Social Media as a Tool
Beyond connecting with current parents, you can use social media to stay connected with a school’s happenings. The best private schools in San Diego use social networking to update both students and parents with events and activities.
Even if you’re not a current student or family member, you can attend events to see whether or not the school will be a good fit.
8. Apply and Stay Up-to-Date on Application Deadlines
When you’ve found a few schools that seem to fit your child and family, don’t hesitate to apply.
In San Diego, there are application windows and deadlines you must take note of. It’s important to stay up-to-date on those deadlines to ensure you aren’t missing any opportunities to enroll your child in the following school year.
9. Listen to Your Child’s Ideas and Concerns
Your child won’t be an expert on picking a school—that’s your role! However, they will be able to provide valuable opinions that are worth listening to.
While you don’t want to base your school choice solely on your child, you do want to validate and listen to their concerns, questions, and ideas, to select a school that will be the right fit for everyone involved.
Be Selective When Picking Your School
Your child’s school will become a big part of his or her life—you want to choose wisely!
The best San Diego Catholic school is one that combines strong learning with immersive religious education in ways that will encourage and inspire your child academically, socially, and emotionally.
To learn more about Notre Dame Academy and to see if we are a good fit for your child/children, head to the enrollment page and schedule a tour.This post was written by a guest blogger.