Choosing a high school may be the death of me....

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Choosing a high school may be the death of me....
12
Sat, 03-03-2012 - 6:53am

HI,

 

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Community Leader
Registered: 07-26-1999
Welcome to the board Janice! I am in a bit of a hurry this morning, so I will come back and give a more thoughtful answer late, but I think a social life and school activities, both the ease of transportation and time getting to and from them should be a consideration. I would start by putting a pros and cons list together for each school, both you and him, and any other decisions makers or anyone involved in transportation, etc. and then take a good hard look at them. If he doesn't seem to care just as long as he goes to one of them, then it seems as though your voice should be the deciding factor, and if one is most inconvenient, you should rule that one out.
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iVillage Member
Registered: 01-06-2006
Sat, 03-03-2012 - 12:46pm
What about teams, clubs, social life? If he's got an interest in a sport or activity, which school gives him the best chance to participate and do his best? Is he a social kid? Maybe closer is better in that case because he'll be able to get together more often outside of school. How does he handle competition? Being a school administrator I'm sure you've thought about all of this but I just thought I'd throw it out there.

I agree with Tracy, sit down together and do the pro/con thing. Quantifying things always helps. I always include a gut feeling category when I do this just to make sure my instinct is included in the decision.

Good luck with the decision. Oh, one more thing... Has he had a chance to visit the schools and shadow a student? Maybe that would help...
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003

Hi Ladies,

 

Avatar for turtletime
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-13-1998

We went through this a couple years ago and are now going through it again. Our local high school wasn't an option and so we went through the ringer digging up as many other options as we could find. We landed at a performing arts magnet after an intense audition process that my DD really wanted to attend and we drive her 20 miles away to go there freshman and now sophomore years. However, while it's not a "bad" situation, DD has really grown and matured and honestly, ready for much more. So, we are at it again. At least this time, the ideal situation is clear and closer to home (and only available to juniors and seniors so something we couldn't have considered a couple years ago.) However, it is a dual high school/college program and takes references, essays, interviews, testing. We're also still hunting for a "back-up" and so all sorts of different paperwork to be done.

Don't discount convenience. Quality of life is something really important to consider. DH and my DD have to be up at 5:30am to get to school and it's tough... really tough... especially for a theatre girl who spends hours a day in rehearsals and often late nights. Teens need sleep and if they have to be up at 5:30, I guaruntee they aren't getting enough. Plus, if your child is not passionate to go where they are waking up early to get too, well, it's that much harder. I gave up my part-time job in order to be able to get her afterschool and to her activities (and we have a middle schooler in the mix too.) It's a sacrifice we can afford to make but still, when you are making a sacrifice to get your child to a special school, your expectations are much higher because you are all working that much harder to make it work.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-06-2006
Sun, 03-04-2012 - 11:25am
I think our sons are very much alike! My ds is a swimmer too and he also loves technology. Sounds like you made some terrific progress toward a decision. Good luck without the final choice.
iVillage Member
Registered: 01-06-2006
Sun, 03-04-2012 - 11:26am
With the final choice not without-gotta love autocorrect!
Avatar for mahopac
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-24-1997

I agree that quality of life is an important factor, but more so for the kid than the parent, unfortunately. ;)

Our oldest transferred to a single-sex Catholic HS at the start of 10th grade.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-27-1998

We just went through this process last year with our son. My only suggestion is that you drive the route to his top choice schools (or your top choice schools) during rush hour a few times. My son's top pick, and the school he ended up going to, was a 45 minute commute each way on a good day. Our daughter also applied to the same school and was accepted very late in the game. When they started in Sept., I thought I would lose my mind. Sometimes it could take as long as 70 minutes for me to get home. Needless to say, we ended up moving to be closer to the school.

It's not just about the academics and the good fit; family life matters, too!

Community Leader
Registered: 12-16-2003
Mon, 03-05-2012 - 10:23am
My kids attend the local public schools, we are lucky to have phenominal schools. I am a list writer, I would just start writing out the pros and cons and have a frank discussion with your ds as you both go through them. College is way easier, as you are there to perhaps get them to interviews, open houses, etc... but it is your kid's decision and not yours!!!

Ramona  Mom to 2 great kids and wife to one wonderful hubby since 1990!

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-06-1999
Distance from home was a big factor for us when buying a home. DS goes to an all boys parochial school that is about 15 minutes away. High school is different in that sports practices, theatre practice, etc don't end exactly when the coach/teacher says they will, and often run into the evening. Between school, sports, theatre and Boy Scouts I do a lot of driving and that does not even count his younger sister's activities and school. If your son chooses to take zero period classes his school day will usually start around 7:00am. Quality of life for your family is very important. If your son is a good student he will excell academically no matter where he goes to school.

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