How important is your child’s primary school for you? I grew up in a small town where we simply attended the closest public school but in big cities things are much MUCH different. Especially in Montreal.
Montrealers have the option of sending their child to French public school (free), English public school (where only certain children qualify due to language laws), French private school (which is subsidized and somewhat affordable) or English private school (which is not subsidized and very pricey). On top of that there are art focused schools, religion focused schools, alternative schools, schools which focus more or less on both languages and decisions about transport.
And they’re only five.
And how do you even know if a school is better or worse than the next?
I was talking with some friends and we all agreed that talking to other parents was a great way to get a feel for the school but that’s a toughy. Some parents have extremely high expectations or are OK with a different set of standards.
Another suggested observing the school from afar. Did the kids look happy? Were they well behaved?
My sister in the UK told me that the government classifies every school and daycare. The highest classified schools raise house prices and have huge demand. In Quebec we have rankings for higher level schools but none at the primary level.
And, at the primary level, does it even matter?
It can be pretty intense. I was talking with a mom the other day who wanted to move to a larger house. She was stressed out because she felt like where she moved and subsequently the school that her daughter attended would determine her child’s future. Another friend revealed she moved without giving it much thought, confident it would work itself out. Another friend decided to send her kid to her local, well ranked, small and community friendly primary school. Only hitch? It’s Ukrainian and catholic. Her daughter has no Ukrainian roots and is not catholic. She’s happy with it though and decided to continue sending her child there.
We’re pretty set on sending our son to the local public French school which has a good reputation and is within walking distance from our house. But, it’s also HUGE which we don’t particularly love.
I’d LOVE to hear your thoughts. Does it matter to you which primary school you send your child to? How did you decide? Would you move somewhere specifically to be in the schools cachement area?
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