One of the best things I did when we was applying for kindergarten was to tour 10 schools. That may seem like a lot of schools, but I started two years before my daughter entered kindergarten (families apply one year before the child will enter school).
Here are 5 really good reasons to tour as many schools as possible:
- Cast a wide net! If you don’t see the school, you’ll never know if it’s a place you might like.
- You’d be surprised at how wrong your pre-conceived notions about a school can be, good or bad.
- Anything can happen on a tour. At one school, a kid leading the tour told us that half the 5th grade class had flunked math and the teacher had been fired. OMG!
- There’s lots of comic relief. My co-author, Porcha Dodson, was leading a tour where a dad went rifling through the teacher’s drawers in the classroom, to the horror of everyone else. He called the next day to say he hadn’t seen enough of the school.
- While you ask questions that are polite and relevant, you can let other parents ask the questions you may want to ask, but you know aren’t appropriate. Trust me, they will!