Is It Time for School Admissions, Moms? The Struggle Is Real And I’m Sharing Mine with You!
Mariam Youssef
12/24/22, 2:00 PM

One year ago, I was in the dilemma of choosing a good nursery for my child. That took a lot of research and effort, and I thought “Oh my God! That was tough.” Little did I know that I’ll be going through this hectic journey again, and oh boy it is not a fun one.

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Whether your child is going to school for the first time (like mine) or you’re transferring them from one school to another, choosing the right school isn’t an easy decision! Many factors decide whether a specific school is right for your child or not, such as curriculum, distance, and overall feel, to name a few. Now, how can you pick a school where your child can learn, succeed, and be happy? The following tips will help you choose the right school for your kids.

Consider Your Own Time at School

I was advised to look back at my own time in school and consider my experience. I figured out that doing this will influence my school search by how I used to view education and what I enjoyed best—or worst—about school. So, my advice to you is to spend some time writing down what you loved, what you learned, and who taught you the most. Note anything else you didn't like as well. After that, consider the whole picture and keep in mind that your child may require different things. For example, if you wished to have a bigger playground when you were little, you may look for a school that provides exactly that - among other things of course.

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Think About Your Child’s Needs

Although your child may be too young to know what his needs are, as a mom, you need to figure out the best thing that works for them. Take a moment to consider your child's best environment for learning. Do you foresee any particular needs your child may have, such as special teaching methods? Your child may be motivated by a particular theme or subject, or perhaps they do better in a smaller classroom. Jot down your thoughts on paper to help you make an informed decision.

What Are Your Goals for Your Child?

This part is completely personal and subjective because, in a way, you’re adjusting your child’s education to your own circumstances, and I’ll tell you how. Some moms may want their kids’ English accent to be good regardless of anything else, while others want their kids to learn in schools of an Islamic nature or a single-gender school. You may also think that the educational system in German schools is the best, given your German education (for example). Moreover, your older son may have acquired amazing skills from his school and you want his younger sibling to be with him in the same school and acquire the same skills. Write down your exact requirements so that you don't forget any details.

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Will Your Budget Be Sufficient?

This is both sad and hilarious! Remember how much your school fees were back in the good old days? I was in utter shock when I first asked about school fees (although I’m only applying for national or semi-international schools). 

Choosing a school for your child has become trickier than it was 20 years ago. The number of schools, educational systems, and benefits is overwhelming, which makes the decision even harder. So, when you’re filtering through a number of schools, always consider your budget. This budget includes all your kid’s academic years, not only the year you’re applying for. Will you be able to afford the school fees for the coming school years? Remember that you need to consider the fees for uniforms, books, and, of course, transportation! So, after calculating the whole sum, you should be able to not only afford the fees, but also leave room for emergencies or any sudden circumstances.

Image credit: @karenwazen

The School’s Location

I was under the impression that since there’s a school bus, I don’t really need to worry about how far away the school is. I mean I’m not going to choose a school in the 5th settlement when I live on the 6th of October city, but you know what I mean! Well, it turns out that not only does the school have to be in the same area where we live, but it also has to be close! Hear me out. I don’t drive, so I won’t be able to drive him to school, should he wake up late one day and miss the bus. In case of an emergency, I have to rush to my son’s school, and it won’t help if it was too far. Moreover, if the school isn’t close to my home, the bus fees are likely to be higher, considering gas and distance.

How Does The School Look to You?

After filling out the admission form, you may get a call from the school asking you to come over to assess your child and give you a tour of the school. I have been through this and, at this point, I had to trust my gut. Probably all the schools I applied to look decent, clean, and kid-friendly. However, there was one school that gave me the creeps. The buildings inside the school were okay, but the surroundings were terrifying. I had to go with my gut and walk away immediately because I didn’t feel that this school was safe.

The school you’re choosing for your kid has to meet certain criteria. Some schools are old and that’s totally okay, but they have to be hygienic and safe; that’s the main and most important factor. You may also need to look at the classes to check the conditions of the desks, air conditioners, and boards. Furthermore, you need to run a background check on the school’s teachers to ensure that your child will be getting the best education.

From a mother to a mother, I hope and wish you all the best in this not-so-easy journey. Although it takes a while to look for appropriate schools and select the best of them, it’s all worth your time and effort, especially when your child is all dressed up in their cute uniform and ready for their first day of school.

Main image credit: @nouraridaofficial

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Mariam Youssef

Growing up, I've always wanted to become so many things: a fashion designer, painter, singer, actress, and anything that revolves around art. It wasn't until I watched "How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days" that I realized that writing is the one thing that will enable me to write about all sorts of things and all types of art. Writing is one of the dearest things to my heart as it expresses who I am and what I stand for. My wardrobe is pink inked, fashion is my passion, beauty is my duty, and cats are my best furr-iends❤️