Education

Characteristics of an Ideal School for a Better Future

When you first bring a child into your life, it’s a common feeling to want to give that child everything you possibly can. Their home is the place they spend the majority of the time, so you may set up a stylish nursery, acquire both everyday and special outfits, provide healthy food, and find a few unique toys at the store. You probably do whatever you can to make that space and early experience as beneficial for them as possible. What is Characteristics of an Ideal School for a Better Future

As your child grows, s/he will begin to spend time in other places, such as playgroups or a relative’s home. You likely spend some time determining whether the different environment will be beneficial for your little one, providing a safe but interesting place for them to spend time. How do the caretakers treat children in their care? Is the facility secure? What kinds of activities will your child do?

When your child arrives at school age, these considerations may seem to multiply as you investigate schooling options for your young learner. Children could end up spending almost as much time at school as at home some days! It’s essential for their well-being that you, as a caregiver, consider many factors when finalizing your choice for the ideal school for your child. All of the best schools in Dubai have different approaches to each of these elements; it’s important to review them all and determine which school is the best fit for you and your family.

First Impressions

When you visit a school for the first time, you are bound to have a first impression of the people you meet. This can start as early as the front desk staff; are they welcoming and friendly, or harsh and rude? Observe the behavior of people even if they are not actively engaged with you. If they are impolite and demeaning to others, it’s possible they would behave that way with a parent or even a student.

Quality schools also make a point to keep their physical facilities in the best shape possible. This begins with security considerations as you enter the building—does anyone ask what your business is in the building, or do they ask for identification as a visitor? Pay attention to security protocol around visitors, including areas they can access and information they could theoretically access without permission.

Educational Staffing

Perhaps the next most important consideration is the impression that the teaching staff leaves on you. When families and teachers share similar approaches to learning and interacting with children, the relationship can be smoother for everyone involved. If possible, try to meet with a few teachers privately to see if you can gain a sense of how the teachers function together. Do they feel supported and empowered to suggest changes by their administrative leaders? Is there a good mix of more experienced teachers and those new to the profession with fresh ideas? Are there ample professional development opportunities for everyone to stay aware of the latest trends and teaching approaches?

Strong teamwork skills can enhance the experience of families, teachers, and students alike. Observe what you can about how teachers interact with each other—perhaps you can ask to sit in on a teacher meeting. By watching a live class with a teacher and students, you can also get a sense of how teachers partner with students to individualize each learning experience.

Curriculum and Teaching Approach

Of course, the actual curriculum and teaching approach is a highly relevant factor to consider when deciding if a school is a good match for your child. All quality schools will continually reiterate that their focus is on their students, though the specifics of how they make this happen can vary.

What kind of materials are used to teach the children? You may ask to see current teaching materials and see if they allow for the use of current technologies in the field, such as tablets or unique apps.

Quality institutions consider ongoing evaluation an essential part of their work. This includes both assessment of teachers as well as the evaluation of students. The approach should not be punitive but rather with the goal of ongoing improvement through regular review and feedback (including implementing feedback received from parents as applicable).

Going Beyond

How does the institution reach beyond its walls? Strong communication is a hallmark of any good school. This includes clear and regular contact with parents and families, at all levels of the administration. Families need to have regular and ongoing opportunities to receive and give feedback not just at the classroom level but at higher levels where larger decisions are made.

Schools can also be very involved in their community by providing service opportunities, field trips to local institutions, or through other means. Stronger schools are typically active agents of participation in their neighborhoods.

Finding a quality school involves a diligent search, but the life-long benefits that it can bring to your children are worth the effort.

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