As registration for the next school year is rapidly approaching, I have been considering the importance of school choice. Today, I met a couple of teacher friends for coffee so we could catch up on life. They were just passing through on their way home to Spokane. During our conversation, I discovered that they both were teaching at new schools. The husband had left a public magnet school to teach at a Classical Christian School, and his wife had taken an elementary teaching position at a local public school.
It struck me that the change for the husband from a magnet school to a Classical school would be a positive change for him. And sure enough, he explained that he loves his new position. For him, the Classical approach to teaching is ideal. He loves its structure, dictated curriculum, and clearly defined scope and sequence. He explained that by knowing exactly what he is supposed to teach, he is able to focus on the how of teaching and on building relationships with his students.
Yet, he reflected that while the Classical type of teaching and learning fit his personality really well, many of his colleagues are the exact opposite. He explained that many of his teacher friends love the creativity and freedom that his previous school offered.
What struck me was the fact that there are different types of teachers, just as there are different types of learners, and that one style of learning does not fit all.
Washington State continues to lag behind other states in allowing or supporting school choice through programs such as vouchers, education savings accounts, tax credit scholarships, and individual tax credit/ deduction.
The result is having your children in a private school in Washington State takes commitment and sacrifice. However, finding the right school for your child and funding it is an investment that will make the greatest impact in your child’s future success.
Hillside was developed to offer a different choice in education. The school was founded on the idea that education should not be focused on teaching to only one type of learner, but should be small enough and flexible enough to meet the needs of the individual students in each classroom. Learning should reflect the diverse skills and experiences needed in our current job marketplace, and character development and moral values should be modeled and expected in all aspects of the school community.
I believe public education funds should follow students to the schools or services that best fit their needs. If a school is able to offer a great learning environment for equal or less cost than the public school alternative, parents/ consumers should have a say in where their children go to school. Until that time, parents who choose to find the best fit for their children will have to continue to make the sacrifice and invest their own money into giving their children the best start possible.
To learn more about what Hillside has to offer for preschool, elementary, and middle school, please join us for our upcoming open house and Middle School preview, January 14th, 2016. Come see a different choice in education.
You can learn more about the issue of School Choice by reading the following links: