I finally got to attend a Parents for Public Schools Presentation and it was SO helpful. The PPS website, SFUSD’s website and the SF K Files have way too much information, but the presentation focused on the necessary and important information and that was priceless! And, no offense, but the anonymous bloggers and commenters are also anonymous in their credentials for giving advice. I highly recommend all parents going through this process to attend one of the PPS workshops. You can click here to find a list of their upcoming library workshops.
Here is what I found to be the top 5 helpful things or just new things the presenter shared with us (very much useful for our own search and maybe not yours, but I thought I should share anyways):
- The secret to getting a good placement for your child is to list as many schools as you are interested in your child attending in the order of your preference! The more schools, the better. This may seem completely obvious, but after reading the SFKFiles and other online resources I’ve noticed folks trying to strategize in different ways.
- The Biliteracy Language Programs are for native speakers of the program language. The programs are to help kids be biliterate, bilingual and bicultural! A few folks told me these programs are just for English Language Learners, but from how she explained it, it sounds like it is just for NATIVE speakers. Kids could be native speakers of Spanish and English, right? I have to confirm with each school program, but I think my child qualifies for these programs too.
- Don’t forget to ask the private and parochial schools about their curriculum standards and teacher credentials!
Don't forget that these schools don’t have to have the same curriculum and credential standards as public schools.
- Just a reminder that test scores do not tell the whole story, mostly they just tell you about demographics of a school. Word.
- You should know that ALL public schools have:
· 200 minutes of PE every 2 weeks
· The same lunch menu
· Funding for a half-time librarian
· Music starting in the 4th grade
· GATE identification starting in 3rd grade
· Same math and English language arts textbooks
· Max class size of 22 students K-3, 35 for 4-5
* Inclusion programs
* Inclusion programs
I was getting excited about some of these things on tours only to now realize that every school has them.