CHOOSING THE RIGHT SCHOOL: SHARON WITT
DJ1: Kids are alright with the child whisperer.
SHARON WITT: Good morning guys.
DJ2: Good morning child whisperer.
SHARON WITT: How are you? Hello. We are talking this morning about where to for highschool.
DJ2: Yes. But why? It’s only half way through the year.
SHARON WITT: I know, I know. And it would seem like a very strange topic to talk about this morning. But most schools now are firming up their numbers for next year for highschool. So, you know, this is the time where we actually, you don’t need to make those choices were well and surely before now, but most schools are finalizing. You need to let, you know, give schools a term’s notice. So if your school that goes to year twelve you have to let them know by the end of this term. Whether, they are, in fact going off to another school or staying at their school. So, there are few choices for parents. Okay, we’ve got local high schools, which are really good, I mean there’s fantastic state high schools in the local areas, you’ve got Catholic secondary school or independent secondary schools which can be upwards if you know, you can be looking at $18,000 upwards for a private school.
DJ2: Per kid?
SHARON WITT: Yeah, just for one child. So, you really do need to consider these things. And look, I would not say that, you know, one particular top school is better than another, there are fantastic state schools out there, there’s fantastic independent schools but you really do need to consider your particular, you know, needs for your child and you know there’s a number of things to consider. You’ve got you know, the size of the school, you know, some kids actually really like having a big school some like work well in small schools. You know, you’ve got your own budget.
SHARON WITT: I mean, you need to look at your budget, that’s a fair wack out of your income.
DJ2: Do you give your kids a choice? Do you say to them, where do you think you’d like to go? Or.
SHARON WITT: Well, I think it’s a tough one. I think if you actually financially need to go to, you know, a local public school, then, really, there’s not many choices in your area. You kind of, you know, do have to go to a particular ones and many of them, fondly enough, many of the local highschools, you actually need to apply for and they’re difficult to get into. So, they’re becoming more and more competitive now.
DJ1: It’s you’re saying like so competitive that parents thought when their kids are baby.
SHARON WITT: Absolutely. Some kids are, you know, are born and they’re pretty much filling up, you know, private school applications that is very competitive. Some people actually move into particular areas so their child can get into their zoned area to go into the highschool. So, you also wanna look at things like, you know, your child might be really gifted in music, or really wanna do language, or they’re massively into sport and you might wanna look at those K specials programs in some of the schools. You wanna look at the location, you may not wanna particularly choose a school that’s an hour away in public transport.
DJ2: No way.
SHARON WITT: The academic environment, but one of the big things you know, friends and social influences are huge, you know.
DJ2: So for good and for bad.
SHARON WITT: For good and for bad, you may actually wanna make your choice, you know, if you were into school now that’s got from prep to year 12 and things aren’t working really well, socially, you may actually wanna make a change.
DJ1: Is there, like, we’ve got conferences coming up to help us out here.
SHARON WITT: Yes, there’s a lot of open days at the moment, you know. If your open days, school or work days, get along to those. There are really good opportunity to see how a school really functions.
DJ2: Yeah, and ask questions I guess, just ask as many questions. Maybe at people who actually go to the school.
SHARON WITT: Yeah, and you might actually have, you know, a child that’s at the moment saying, I wanna go to this particular school, and it might be socially and friendship-wise. But, it might actually be that they can see something that actually, that they actually really want for themselves. So, I know with my parents they pulled me out of my secondary school in year ten and moved me across to another one because they could see that I needed something a little bit more, I needed a bit more of academic push. So I was carried, kicking and screaming to another secondary school. And sometimes parents do know best and sometimes, look, I think its good to have those conversations with your child. I don’t think you should leave the ultimate decision to them, I think it comes down to parents, but I think here certainly, you need to have those conversations and well and surely before now I think. Because, this is the time when schools are sort of cutting off.
DJ2: Yeah, get on it.
SHARON WITT: I just like to quickly mention, it’s on the community calendar at LightFM, this Thursday night at Mt. Evaline Christian School, a free event. Dr. Michael Carr-Gregg, the adolescent psychologist, he’s fantastic. He’s gonna be talking about the five greatest challenges for parents in 2012. Talk about drugs, alcohols, social stuff and I think that is really important. So, get along there at 7:30, free event.
DJ1: Nice work Sharon. You’ve done it again.
DJ2: Thank you, thanks for whispering to us about children.
SHARON WITT: Oh lovely. Have a great day.
DJ1: Put us in a great head space. See you next week.
SHARON WITT: Good. See you next week.