Choosing Houston Schools- What’s Best For Your Child?

Everyone wants to build the best life possible for their child. You want them to have the best influences, the best options, and the best environment for becoming the person you know they can be. As a parent, one of the most important choices you will have to make affecting this endeavour is where to send your child to school. Quality of education varies widely from school to school, as does safety, encouragement, and opportunities for growth. As much as we want to protect and nurture our children, the fact of the matter is that we can’t constantly be by their side. Choosing the right school is important because it is where your child will be spending a large chunk of their time. Their teachers, classmates, and lessons will be heavy influences in their life, helping to shape their future.

Living in a metropolitan area means that you have more choices. This can be both a blessing and a curse. Just within Houston city limits, there are 19 school districts to choose from, with many more in the surrounding areas. Some of these districts are comprised of stellar institutions of learning. They are wonderful environments to help your child learn, grow, and develop social skills and a strong sense of civic responsibility. However, there are also some less-desirable school districts that you may want to avoid. Here, we’ve outlined what to look for in a school district and named some of the most well-respected districts in the Houston area.

Many people assume that the more money a school district has, the better the school district. Well, that’s not necessarily true. Yes, wealthy schools can afford better extracurricular activities, smaller classrooms, and better learning materials. However, many public schools are providing opportunities that rival those of private schools. You’re not necessarily dooming your child to mediocrity when selecting a less well-endowed school. When looking at statistics, don’t just look at the school district’s pocket book. There are many other factors to consider. The first thing many parents look for is a school district’s academic ratings.

Academic statistics come in a variety of forms. The easiest one to find is usually the graduation rate. A higher graduation rate implies greater investment in students. Some districts, such as Clear Creek Independent School District in League City, boasts a 95% graduation rate. Another excellent test of academic quality is the school district’s average proficiency ratings. Katy Independent School District, about 30 miles west of Houston, has an impressive 88% average proficiency rating in both reading and math. That is far above the 65% average proficiency in reading and 67% average proficiency in math found in the Houston Independent School District.

In addition to academics, look for low student-teacher ratios. Some school districts, like Cyprus-Fairbanks Independent School District in northwest Houston, offers a 17:1 student-teacher ratio. With fewer students for a teacher to focus on, each child feels more engaged and encouraged. A few other things to look at are clubs and activities offered, diversity of students, experience of teachers, and the school’s meal program. After all, do you really want to send your child to a school that counts ketchup as a vegetable?

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If you need help finding a great school district, contact our Houston-based professionals.