My children attend our neighborhood public school. Our district offers residents the option of choosing to attend another school which many of our neighbors have done. Some selected other schools for dual-language programs and some have gone with magnet programs in the arts or STEM.
Maybe I’m biased from my own experiences and connections, but I LOVE public schools. I attended private school through 6thgrade and then transferred to public school and it was such a wonderful experience. I loved public school. There were more extracurricular opportunities, greater diversity and fewer cliques. My family members all work in education. Most are teachers. My husband teaches public school.
For those who may feel hesitant to attend their neighborhood school or squeamish about not keeping up with the Joneses, I would encourage you to call and ask whether you can schedule a visit to your neighborhood public school. Ask parents who send their kids to area public schools why they stay at that campus or chose that school, if your district allows households to choose schools.
Why we chose public school for our kids
Odds are your local public school is doing all sorts of amazing things in the community you aren’t even aware of. I can assure you the teachers, coaches, counselors, support staff and administrators are passionate about serving their students and watching them succeed. There are amazing things happening at public schools, y’all. Don’t discount them just because they don’t cost thousands of dollars a year.
I’ve got nothing but great things to say about our public school and our district. I know quality of education, school culture, and class size are big factors for parents. Teachers at our school average more than 10 years of experience and class sizes are about 15 students per teacher. Students at our school perform above average on state tests. And our campus has been recognized as a Children at Risk Gold Ribbon School which recognizes and “celebrates schools that rise beyond expectations and excel academically.”
We went with our neighborhood school out of a sense of community. It certainly doesn’t hurt that our neighborhood public school also happens to be one of the top performing schools in our district. Our neighborhood public school and our school district were big factors for us buying a home in our neighborhood. Oh, and we couldn’t possibly afford private school in the Dallas area. My son loves school and is excited to see his teachers, specials teachers, PE coach, and his friends. My daughter is attending PreK and absolutely adores her teacher, the school library and, of course, recess.
Students are referred to as “friends” which is a small, simple shift with beautiful results.
Our public school has a uniform policy although not every school in our district requires them. I have no doubt our mornings are much easier because I’m not having to debate the kids about what they will wear for the day. It also makes their regular clothes more exciting for them on weekends.
We have amazing teachers and support staff at our school. They love their students and it shows! Students are referred to as “friends” which is a small, simple shift with beautiful results. When the teachers address the students, for example, they might say, “Ok, friends, it’s almost time to put away our things.” And the students refer to each other this way as well. Everyone is “My friend, so-and-so.” I can’t tell you how happy it makes my mama heart to hear my kids refer to the students at their school as friends, even when it is a new student or someone from another grade.
This creates a culture of belonging which I have seen extend beyond the students into their family members and loved ones as we attend PTA meetings, school performances, campus events, and more. I have always felt welcomed. And I am confident that my children are getting a quality education and are surrounded by caring school employees which puts my mama heart at ease every morning as I watch them walk through those doors.
Our contributors are sharing why they chose their school, or approach to education, to help you find the best school for your family! Make sure to check out our Guide to Childcare & Schools in and around Dallas!