Are private schools effective

Public school vs. private school: where do children learn better?

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Financial tips for families with children

By the end of primary school at the latest, parents are faced with the question of which secondary school their children should go to. More and more children are attending private schools. Parents hope for a better education here, but also fear the expensive school fees. But are private schools really better than public schools? How do you find the best school?

Basically, the best school is one that is accessible, that the parents can afford, and that suits the child so that your child will be happy to go - that is the best guarantee for a successful school visit. In urban areas, the choice is usually greater, while in rural areas, the longer journeys to school often limit the choice of schools. But this does not necessarily have to be a disadvantage, but can also make the selection easier.

Cost factor

Public schools are also publicly funded, so school attendance is free here. What still has to be paid, of course, are expenses for teaching materials, travel expenses to school, class trips, etc.

Private schools also receive public funding. However, since these are not enough to cover the costs, parents usually have to expect school fees. How high this turns out depends on the provider of the private school. Contrary to the image, very few Priatschues charge horrific sums. Instead, the school fees are usually based on the income of the parents, so that school attendance can even be effectively free of charge if the family income is limited. This is because private schools are subject to a so-called special ban: They are not allowed to exclude students for economic reasons.

Regardless of income, it can be worthwhile to look around for private schools and to inquire about the costs. Of course, it should be remembered that school fees, even if they are not exorbitant sums, still have to be paid over a long period of time. And possibly not just for one child if siblings want to go to the same school later.

Private schools: alternative teaching concepts, different focuses

The most difficult question is surely which type of school is best for the child. Most parents know state schools from their own youth - sometimes more, sometimes less motivated teachers, solid curricula, often face-to-face teaching, regular class work, grades and certificates.

Opposite them is a steadily growing number of private schools, now several thousand in Germany. Children can obtain all recognized qualifications here, so the learning content is not inferior to that of public schools. However, private schools often offer other focal points or teaching concepts, which makes them interesting as alternatives.

Denominational schools, which make up a large part of private schools, are funded by the churches. In addition to imparting religious values, a special focus here is on social engagement and the social development of children in the community. At international schools children get to know the diversity of different cultures and have multilingual lessons, which can later facilitate an international career for the children.

Many private schools, especially the Waldorf and Montessori schools, have dedicated themselves to alternative teaching concepts. The focus here is on arousing the children's curiosity and interest in the teaching content and motivating them to explore, do and learn on their own. In this way, the children should discover and develop their individual strengths. Often grades are not given until the final year.

Who does better?

Despite alternative pedagogy, more lessons and fewer hours lost at private schools, studies have shown that the success rates of private and public schools hardly differ. The proportion of students who graduate, and even their final grades, are roughly the same in both school groups. At least on average; there can be regional differences.

Each type of school has its strengths and weaknesses. And at every school, public as well as private, there are good and committed teachers who reach and inspire their students, and teachers who fail. Whichever school your child attends: This is one of the factors that determine the extent to which a school can implement the principles that it is committed to and reach its students. Therefore, as parents, you can and should interfere here if necessary. Ultimately, every school can be the right one.

Read on: What does a degree cost?