Generally speaking, a person’s schooling life will go on for at least 13 years, starting at prep and eventually finishing in Year 12. By the time your child has graduated Year 12, they will have spent about two thirds of their life at school (not including any additional years of university – if that’s the path they decide on).

I think everyone can agree that this is quite a significant amount of time, which is why it’s imperative to find the school that fits them best.

Schools will not only educate your child, but prepare them for the “real world”. They will play an important role in cultivating your child into the young adult they will eventually become. It’s at school that your child will make friends, learn life-long skills and start developing their own attributes, beliefs, opinions and thoughts.

The school they go to and its values will have a major influence on this process. It’s important that the character of your choice of school aligns with your family ideals. It’s never going to disadvantage your child to be around like-minded individuals as it helps to nurture better, stronger and long-lasting relationships.

When making the important “which school?” decision, it is integral to keep several things in mind.

  1. What matters to one family, could be completely meaningless to another. That’s why no two schools are exactly the same. And it is important to realise that no school is perfect, you’re looking for the best and most suitable school for your child and your family.
  2. Things may go wrong. Don’t let your first instinct be pulling them out of school. It’s bad for their sense of resilience and may have a lasting effect. Their encounters with bad bosses and difficult colleagues later on in life will rely on every bit of learned resilience. Of course, you and your child are the best judge of what’s too much.
  3. The school you choose is for your child, not for you. This is a commonly made mistake by parents who want their children to have the same education they had or wish they had. Talk to your child about their needs and wants. If they differ from yours, compromise until you can come to a fair agreement.

We recommend gathering all the necessary information you’d need to choose a school and collate it. Choose your “non-negotiables” and then add your “would be nice, but not necessary” list. Your list may include factors such location, costs, learning, facilities, class sizes – any information that you feel like you need. This makes it easier to compare one another and will ultimately help you choose the right school for your child.

If you live in Far North Queensland, check out our Guide to Schools where we’ve done all the hard work for you.