Independent Education, the next best thing to Education at Home
There are times in our lives when life gets in the way, when homeschooling is simply not practical or potential homeschoolers need time to make adjustments, its during these times that parents concerned about their children’s education seek out independent education as the next best,a viable alternative to homeschooling.
Celina Jones has prepared an article outlining the costs and advantages of Independent Education, this information is accurate as of July 2013
What the Extra Money Pays for in Independent Schooling
While some parents may balk at the fees for independent schools, it is worth considering what they actually for; at present, fees for independent and private schools start from about £3,400 per term, and can rise to £7,800 and higher per term, depending on whether or not boarding is included. Moreover, independent school fees tend to rise above the rate of inflation, and average out at about a 6 per cent rise per year; the South of England is also generally more expensive than the North. Taking this into consideration, what does paying high fees for independent schooling for your child get you?
Notably, independent schools that receive private funding are able to devoete far more time and space to classes – rather than crowding a lot of students into a small room, independent schools are able to create smaller classes with more personalised lessons. Independent schools can also be more selective in terms of the teachers and assistants that they hire, and can offer higher wages as incentives for staff with consistent records of excellence.
Independent schools also tend to have a much greater degree of flexibility when it comes to curricula and school philosophy compared to state schools, which have to rely on Local Education Authority funding; independence makes a big difference, in this context, to schools being able to structure their own curriculum, and to seek out more cutting edge academic ideas and international teachers, resulting in a more specialist environment for students.
At the same time, independent schools can spend more time working on extra curricular activities, which state schools often cannot afford to put on at the same scale. Sports clubs, after school clubs, and field trips are just some of the areas in which independent schools tend to excel, while boarding schools can provide students with a comprehensive level of care and support from a very young age.
It’s also possible for independent schools to use their funding advantages to offer extra academic support and one to one tuition for students that either require help or a focused scheme of education if they fall into bright or gifted categories; expert tuition can be provided, while independent schools can also set up fast tracking programmes for preparing students for exams and entry to university.
In this context, the money that goes towards independent schooling is primarily able to create a more specialised education experience for your children, with more investment possible in facilities, teaching, and the selection of small class sizes that can enable a much more tailored set of lessons and extra curricular activities. Independent colleges are also able to point to consistently strong records of academic achievement across the board, and can be viewed as one of the surest ways in which you can give your children every chance to make the most of their potential.
Celina Jones is an education blogger and a strong believer in the role of independent and private schooling within the UK; having attending an independent college in London like Lansdowne College, she is of the opinion that you can get a lot out of a private education.