Listen, we all think we’ve got smart kids. It’s a mother’s duty to raise them up to believe in themselves and their abilities. Sometimes, yes they disappoint us and don’t turn out to be what we envisioned them to be. But the reality is they are their OWN person. So whether they go on to graduate from an Ivy League school or scoop up garbage for a living, some way, some how they’ll make us crack a smile in whatever endeavor.
Do I want my kids to be career pooper-scoopers? Hell to the no. Is it a possibility? Anything is possible. So with that said I’m doing my very BEST to put the BEST choices before them. I’m giving my kids exposure to the best resources, starting with the BEST schools. This past weekend, I visited Whitefield Academy, a private Christian school that is leaps and bounds above the rest when it comes to a top-notch education for my kid.
I’ve filled out every piece of paperwork, dotted every “I” and crossed every “T”. I have to wait until the second week in April to see if Kaitlin makes the cut. But I swear if she does there is nothing else more I could possibly want in life that I’ll ask for. NOTHING. You can tell I’m a parent, right?
So how did I prepare Kaitlin for this big step?
- Raise a kid who loves to read – If you’ve got a kid who whines and moans when you even mention a book, that’s a problem. Cultivate a kid that loves to read all kinds of books. Infuse books about poetry, history and literature into the mix. When your kid prepares to take a mandatory test like the SSAT which Kaitlin has to take to be admitted to Whitefield, it helps that they have been exposed to all kinds of vocabulary which will help boost their scores in reading and vocabulary. Kaitlin is such a book worm she will read a book while I’m driving in the car. Books make a big difference.
- Exposure to activities –Most of these schools want kids who are well-rounded. What is your kid into? (And no playing X-Box doesn’t count unless they are programming their own games). Does your kid play an instrument? Are they artistic? Do they dance, sing or play a sport? If not, get your kid into an activity outside of school. During the application process they will have an area where you will have to list your child’s activities. At least be able to list two or three things.
- Make the Grade – Grades are important. Period. Make sure your kid is serious about their grades and has great study habits.
- Squeaky-Clean Record – Having a good discipline record makes a difference. Private schools are privy to picking and choosing who they want to occupy their corridors. Your child’s discipline record needs to be clean. That means that getting suspended or getting expelled will get their application thrown in the trash. No one wants to enlist troublemakers into their school. Your child will need to learn early on that how they act in school will follow them and affect them years from from now.
Another thing to be mindful of is your child’s attendance record. Missing a few days because of sickness is acceptable. But missing large chunks of days because you didn’t feel like driving them there will be frowned upon by any school you are looking to get your kid into.
Just know that a private school may not be a good fit for your kid, and that’s OK. I’m not sure all of my kids will attend one too. But if you are going the private school route, then get ready in the early years. And start saving now. By the way, Whitefield Academy costs $20,000 a year. They do offer financial aid but they also let parents know that they have to pay a substantial portion. I understand and I’m ready. All I need is for my Kaitlin to get in!
PS. Congrats to Kaitlin for being inducted into the National Junior Beta Club last week!