Common Doubts and Questions about Schools 2023
By Madhurie Singh, April 05, 2010
I started to write this as a reply to a comment by a member but later when the words became too many, had to move it to this as an article.
The school discussed is Vidya Valley at Sus Village.
There are too many parts in a comment that needs to be answered one by one:
School Infrastructure is an important factor when you look for a school for you child. I too was initially of the same opinion that a good school must have a good infrastructure. But I am not ashamed to acknowledge that a good school has nothing to do with a good infrastructure hence I was wrong.
Aman Setu School proved me quite wrong. It’s a lovely school which is run by a very experienced and conscious lady. Always look at a school’s head and the driving force than the infrastructure. Though Aman Setu is growing literally like a baby does, with a few classes added structurally each year, the school is a phenomenon in itself and in the way they teach.
When I checked Vikhe Patil, there is only construction all around. Only imagination works there. The financial status of a school is definitely reflected by the structures like Sharad Pawar International, VPMS, DPS, BISHOPS, ST MARY’S, ST Arnold’s, etc. But, mind you if the management is really stable, they will also not ask for under the table in the name of development cost.
Fee / Non-refundable development fee / Donations / Bribe these are some words that naturally pop up in our minds when the school admission search starts.
The fee is directly proportionate to the infrastructure or the age of the school.
If a school is 100 years old, it would have either been funded initially to be constructed by the government or missionaries. As a result, the fee is always nominal as there is no burden of loan repayment by the school management. This means that all the fee charged, is actually used for monthly expenditure only. Hence any such school like St Mary’s is there for making good profits as there is no EMI to be paid.
A school that is newly constructed, say in the last 7-10 years will have to pay for the loans taken to construct the school. If they bought the land during the land boom time, then the poor school will be shelling out a huge amount as loan repayment, even considering all the subsidies.
Now how are they going to recover all this cost? No prize for that answer. 🙂 We the parents have to pay for it! And hence the huge development cost that any such school demands have to be paid for during admission time. Also, it is non-refundable, as it’s gone as part of the EMI payment to the banks! How will any school pay you back what they do not possess.!
So that again comes back to those old-age schools that demand development costs or admission fees. Now that’s nothing but pure profits. And why not? If it’s a missionary school, these will all be accounted for. Every penny will be well spent. But anything that is transacted under the table will be badaa boom badaa bing…;)
Affiliation Board is an important factor when searching for and finalizing schools.
Why are there so many international schools all over the city? Did it ever occur to you?
Lemme tell you why? It’s easy to get an International School affiliation as compared to ICSE or CBSE. CBSE is the longest it takes.
So what is the way to work around it? Simple, get an IB or IGCSE board. Wait for a few years and then move to ICSE or CBSE board.
So the benefit is that the school can claim to be IB / IGCSE, follow their syllabus, make the most out of the course, and later shift over to the Indian board. That also starts another doubt. Do read about Which Board to choose here
International Board Fee
Why do IB/ IGCSE boards charge such a huge fee?
Well, the schools have no choice as they have to pay per student fee back to the IB board, that too in dollars or pounds!
So if you want to put your kid in any school that is IB, make sure they thoroughly follow that board and its teaching methodology, as definitely, I guess that is something that is the need of the hour. A board that does not pressurize our kids into useless subjects and a rote system of learning.
School Transportation Services
Why do some schools have compulsory buses?
Well, it ensures safety as the school takes responsibility for the transportation. But it’s the other reason that I prefer the bus compulsion, i.e. arrival of all kids on time. The headache of a parent lessened is definitely one more reason. But if the school is not taking kids out to field trips every month then they are making huge profits. DPS is now overloading the bus with 3 kids in one seat. I think I may have to write to their management, before writing a review.
The last point is the most interesting and I have come across the first time.
The school asking kids to change their subject line from Math n Science to Arts and Commerce!
The school in question is Vidya Valley.
The complaint is that the parents of a few students were advised to change the line of subjects of their kids to arts and commerce line from Science and Maths.!!!!!!
I really have no idea if a school can or has the ability to do so! I will definitely look into this matter.
But, that has definitely started an interesting discussion in my mind, which is what I have been toying with for the last few months.
Suppose I were a parent whose kid was asked to change over from Maths, Science to Arts field, what would be my reaction?
I guess, earlier a few years back, I would have raised the hell! 🙂 But today I am more sensible and mature about the needs of my kids and their happiness than my own needs. It’s not important what makes me happy, it’s more important what makes my kids happy. Trust me, it’s most difficult to let yourself believe that what you want is NOT what they want! So when a school advises me that my kid needs to shift over, it just means the kid is not able to handle these subjects intelligently! The best option would be no doubt for me to help my kid by getting rid of these subjects that don’t make any sense to him!
Why make your kid struggle and waste time on that subject which will be a burden on his life long! A burden that will never be enjoyed, hence your kid will never be happy! And who has ever succeeded in life without following his happiness and passion? Passion is nothing but doing what you love the most and will do without anyone coaxing you ever.
Everything that I see or read or write boils down to one thing. Let your kid follow his heart, no one can stop him from succeeding, even if it’s not being a doctor or an engineer! 🙂
And thank that school that is giving an option to the kid to become successful not an average rat.
Well like a friend always quotes, even if we are number in a rat race, we will remain a RAT. So why not take a diversion and be something other than a RAT! Trust me, it’s the most courageous act, yet will be the most satisfying one.
This post was an example of how I break down each school query that is asked by parents like you into simple parts. Then answer them one by one so that you are sure about the schools you are shortlisting. Then start picking the schools that have the maximum number of positive factors and suit your requirements. Remember Best School means what is Right School for your child. You may want to read about the Transfer Certificate post and What documents are required for the school admission process?