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Tips For Making the Switch From Public to Private School

2021 Local Private School Resources


Parents have many different reasons for sending their children to private schools. Switching from public schools to private schools can require a significant emotional and social adjustment on the part of students and their families.

Transitioning to private school also may require adjusting to an entirely new educational philosophy and curriculum. These tips can help make the transition from public school to private school go smoothly.

Class size

Class size plays a significant role when parents decide to send their chidren to private school. According to Noodle, an online education search and rating resource, public school classes may include 20 students or more, with some even as large as 34 students at full capacity. Private schools tend to have much smaller class sizes and a smaller teacher-to-student ratio. This can translate into more individualized attention for each student. It also may mean heightened scrutiny, which is something students may quickly discover and not be accustomed to from their public school days.

Students who thrive with more frequent teacher feedback may like the change to private school. Others who prefer not being in the spotlight may need more time to adjust.

Take a tour and get involved

Familiarizing oneself with the school can make the first day of school that much easier. Most schools will offer tours for prospective new families; otherwise, parents can reach out to the administration to schedule private walk-throughs. Some private schools also pair up potential new students with current student ambassadors to provide a students' perspective, which can be very helpful.

Families also can attend school-sanctioned functions, volunteer for parent-teacher association committees or encourage students join sports teams or extracurricular clubs early on to help with making friends.

Be open to change

Many private schools do not have to conform to state- or province-sanctioned curriculums. This can come as a shock to students who were working on a certain math or language arts program at their previous schools. Other changes to expect may be uniforms, religious-based foundations and classes, and less leniency when rules are broken. Some schools also may be male-only or female-only. These issues can be discussed before the first day of school.

Keeping an open mind and getting the support of parents can help students navigate the transition from public to private school.


Garces Memorial High School

2800 Loma Linda Dr.

Bakersfield, California 93305

(661) 327-2578 | www.garces.org

9th-12th grade

At Garces you can explore a rich world of academic and extracurricular possibilities while making real connections with a diverse student body. Our staff and faculty are committed to the task of educating young people to live full, responsible, and meaningful lives strengthened through the curricula and experiences unique to a Catholic school.

One thing uniting all our students is the desire for an excellent college preparatory environment. We offer 31 honors and AP classes, taught by outstanding and responsive faculty members who are invested in their student's success.

Being your best self also means being empowered to reach your full potential spiritually, academically, and socially. With more than 20 student clubs, 3 academic pathways, 4 academic teams, fine arts programs, and 38 athletic teams, there are numerous opportunities for challenge and growth.

Each year our graduating seniors overwhelmingly cite a sense of family as the best characteristic of Garces Memorial High School: family is cultivated through retreats, community service, and a vibrant faith-filled community.

 Contact our admissions director to set up your tour today!



Olive Knolls Christian School

6600 Lucille Ave.

Bakersfield, CA 93308

(661) 393-3566

Olive Knolls Christian School is looking for parents who want to build resilient and capable kids of character.

The culture we live in does not want to pay the price to grow resilient children who will mature into prepared, confident, and moral adults. The price seems too steep. It requires adults to allow their children to struggle. It’s the struggle to learn a new academic skill; it’s the struggle of working through difficult relationships with their peers; it’s the struggle that comes through all their endeavors to excel that will transform them so that they experience lives of happiness, meaning, and success.

But the struggle, the pain, the strenuous effort, needs to happen within a happy environment of caring adult partnerships – parents, faculty, and staff – in order to bring about the victory we envision for our children.

OKCS is that school for the few parents who are not afraid to guide their children through the normal pains of life – instead of avoiding them! OKCS is that safe environment where children will learn NOT to live as victims. Instead, no matter what circumstance your child faces in life, and no matter what sort of hand your child has been dealt, your child will know that he/she is strong enough to overcome it! We build resilient and capable kids of character! Is this what you want for your child? Then Olive Knolls Christian School may be for you.

Olive Knolls Christian School was established in 1979 and has an accreditation from both ACSI and WASC.

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Tags: Education, Featured Story, Tweens & Teens

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