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How Soon Should We Start Looking for a School?
My husband and I are expecting our first child at the end of August. I realize it may be considered a bit early to be looking into schools so soon but we feel that it's never too early. We're having difficulty finding some private schools. We know that we want a private setting and co-ed. We want top rated schools but I just can't seem to find a list to start looking into them.

Location doesn't really matter in terms of our search as my husband and I are planning to build our lives around our daughter's education. If you could shed any light on this I would greatly appreciate it.

Dear How Soon,

All lot depends on where you plan to live. If you are in a major city such as New York or San Francisco, places in the best preschools and primary schools vanish like water in the desert. In a nanosecond. Having said that, I admit to being old fashioned. In my opinion educating your children is a major parental obligation. You, not the school, cast the die in the early, formative years. It is a co-operative effort involving you, the school, and, of course, your child.

For more on early education options read Early Education - What Are Your Options?

In a Bind

My children have being going for 2 years to a private school. I paid full tuition for both always.
But unfortunately this year my business went down , And I'm hardly making to live. I sold all my possessions, I'm living in a small rented apt., and Almost making it to eat.

I spoke the principal about this issue, and she said she was willing to help me. How ever I made the most I could and I pay $18000 out of $22000. She even offered me assistance for next year.
However I decided to change may kids to another school, first is more convenient for my children, they offered me financial aid and it will be much cheaper for me. The Principal got really mad at me because of the change and she decide it not to forgive me those $5000, she verbally agree to it. Went I try to spoke to her she said , she was not in charge of that any more, and that I needed to talk to the accountant at the school. Of course that lady told me she has strict orders from the principal to make me pay. The whole issue now is that they don't want to release the children records for the other school, and they didn't let me see the last school report card from my children. I didn't even know if they pass the grade or not?. I spoke to the teachers and they said, exactly the same, the principal told them not to show me anything. I really feel like in leprosy, and I sue re I don't have the money...
The problem is that we are Jewish and my children can't go to a regular school, someone else is going to help me beside the low payment from the school. I can proof my income at this time...My question is, how can I get the records or the last report?

Because most private school financial agreements are covered by contract law, the only thing I can suggest is that you consult an attorney. Your area probably has low cost community legal services. It probably makes good sense to seek their professional advice.

Grades

"Why don't most independent schools either calculate their students' G.P.A.'s or assess a class rank to their students for purposes of college admissions at the very least?"

Most schools do. Read Assessment - Grading Policies for a more detailed discussion of how grading in a private school works.

Child with Cerebral Palsy

I have a daughter who is 3 years old and i want to know are there any private schools that have the any programs for cp children in the GTA.

The Greater Toronto Area has a superb selection of schools for every need. Check Toronto Schools Online for listings of schools which have their own Web site.

Child with ADHD

Hi, how are you my name is T-----. I have a 10 year old that was diagnosed with ADHD, he's currently on concerta 36 that seems to control is behavior to some extent. He was in private school where he got expelled. He's currently in public school and I think he would do better in a private school that focuses on education but is also very disciplined. I would greatly appreciate any information/guidance that you might have to share.

I suggest that you find a school which specializes in learning disorders such as ADHD. Remediating learning differences requires skilled, highly trained and certificated teachers. Lots of one on one teaching too. Here's a list of Special Needs Schools.

Rejected

I found a small all-male private school (grades 5-8) for my son. I researched it, and we applied. Although, we feel mislead. We were told to apply, and that there would be enough spaces available for our rising 5th grader, so we went ahead and “pursued” the application, interview process. The interview went well. (so we thought) We waited for the week of the acceptance letter. Well, we never got a letter, either way. So, I did call the school as we need to know. I am sure he has been put on the waiting list. But, now my phone calls are not returned from the headmaster. He was so eager to call me right away before all of this! I did not mean to pester in anyway, but…I did finally spoke with the school secretary, and she will re-mail another letter. Even if he did get in, I am not happy with the process, as we feel mislead, and jerked around, and blown off, now that our son did not get accepted.

Is this what to expect when applying to private schools, as it has left a bad taste. A courtesy call back from the headmaster is all we want, to find out reasons as to why our son wasn’t accepted, so we know, if we should go forth, with looking at other schools.

A private school can pick and choose who it accepts. That is the essence of a private school. But, I agree with you. There seems to have been a break down in the communications between you and the school. That's why is it so important to use the services of a professional educational consultant. She will show you how to avoid this kind of awkward situation.
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