By Carol Lloyd, Executive Editor
For the average parent, touring a school can feel a little like wandering through a house of mirrors. What’s distorted? What’s true to life? Where are your own personal biases or personal experiences getting in the way of knowing what’s best for your child? Unlike education experts who may get to observe classrooms or pepper the principal with questions on best practices, parents visiting a school may not get to enter a single classroom much less enjoy face time with the principal.
So when we set out to create short, engaging videos that gave parents a little insider knowledge on assessing a school, we honed our laundry lists while still including some unexpected tidbits.
In Finding the right elementary school. (Don't be a sheep!) we recommend that parents look for examples of 4th and 5th grade writing – especially nonfiction writing.
In How to find a middle school -- lessons from a neurotic mom, we encourage parents to understand how math tracking works to make sure the school puts students on the track for college-ready high school classes.
And in Finding the right high school -- even if it means taking advice from your ex, we remind parents to look for clues about student culture in the trophy case, the school newspaper and the range of student clubs.
Along with a few key ideas, we spiked all the videos with a little narrative and a dash of vertigo. We understand that a couple of school tours can leave even the most savvy parents reeling. We also understand that parents can still learn a huge amount on school tours – if they know what to look for and are not afraid to ask questions.
These videos represent a new tenor for our content and one we’re frankly excited about. We’d love you to check them out and email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to share your feedback.