May is the month when the parents of
school age children make their choice. 
School introduce themselves, and parents try to make a decision, bearing
in mind the place in which they wish to see their children in 20 years
time.   The moment when parents’ dreams
about the future of their children since their very conception emerge is the
moment when they decide on their schools.    
This is perhaps the most difficult choice in the world when it is
considered with such an exalted perception. 
Whereas the children’s future success depends on a combination of
various variables and their school of choice is just a little element in


Which school to choose?


Although state schools have changed a lot
over the years, changes in private schools are experienced in a faster
pace.   In addition to education, the
social aspects of schools are influential in parents’ preference.  Parents are often confused by school pupils’
overall success at exams, schools’ clubs, courses, excursions, support in
sports and many other features.   Today
the promotion packages of such schools are in competition with the social
facilities of 5 star hotels. 


There are two fundamental questions that
parents should ask themselves while making their choice in such richness.  


  • What does my child need?


It is important that parents know their
children before choosing a school for them. 
The school age children’s muscle development, mental condition and
attachment to their parents all influence their school preference.  Since development of each child will be
different than another, it is important for parents to choose a school that
will pay attention to their special needs. 
Such special needs may be a strict discipline, sleeping a little bit
more in the mornings, getting personal attention, private education support or
study facilities after school hours etc. In order to decide on such
requirements you need to know your child well. 


If the child is developing in accordance
with his/her age, then his/her first teacher will be very influential.  For children being separated from their
parents, teachers will take on the role of a second role model.  The relationship established with the teacher
and his/her approach to children’s individual characters are more important
than his/her proficiency to teach lessons. 


  • What is the budget that I can allocate for my
    child’s education?


When parents enter in the race for
choosing a school, they should pay attention to their financial capability as
much as their children’s competency.  I
often witness in our one on one sessions that parents regard schools as
trademarks and go to great lengths to get their children enrolled in such
schools and suffer serious financial troubles as a result.  


Having one’s child enrolled in a school
that he/she can not afford means that one braces himself/herself for going
through a very stressful period of time where he/she relinquishes his/her own
personal needs by calculating the years that lie ahead.    Such stress inevitably reflects on the
child as the pressure for success.  Such
pressure automatically affects negatively on the child’s success combined with
his/her concerns.  And this results in a
vicious circle where both parents and the child are worn down. 


Moreover the child sent to an expensive
school with limited financial means can not participate in the extra facilities
offered by the school other than those paid for in the tuition fee.   He/she may lag behind the school
environment.  Loneliness follows as a
natural consequence.  Whereas by having
the child sent to an affordable school parents can also ensure the child gets
outsourced complementary courses in language studies, sports and arts.   



If you are able to answer these two
questions then you are ready to choose a school for your child.  The best school is the one that is close to
your home and within the boundaries of your budget, and the one that you are
sure of its education and training discipline and its ways to deal with negative
situations and the one that has the teacher that could serve as the best role
model for your child. 


Derya Gülterler, MS

Clinic Psychologist