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What are your reasons for choosing a catholic school?
when the public schools around you are just as good?


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23 replies to this topic

#1 mrs

Posted 04 June 2010 - 10:13 AM

We are deciding between catholic and public primary schools, all these are good in our area.

We are catholic, my kids will be raised catholic whether they go to catholic or public.

How did you make a decision to choose the catholic one, can someone point out some differences for me please and why u chose it?

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#2 Anyway...

Posted 04 June 2010 - 10:38 AM

Well thankfully for us the decision was easier the Catholic school just happened to be better BUT if they were both just as good as one another it would probably come down to what made me feel more comfortable.

For this reason the Catholic school would have won out for me because I felt comfortable there due to going to Catholic schools growing up.

I would talk to parents if you can of both schools, the public school we looked at the parents USED to be happy but a lot of changes had been made in the last few years with a new principal and quite a few people I spoke to said the school just was not as good anymore.

Also I would look at high schools that the primary ones feed into, I realise things could change by the time your LO gets to high school but it might be a handy way to make a decision.

Hope that helps, its such a bloody hard decision isnt it.

#3 nicethel

Posted 04 June 2010 - 10:59 AM

I am not going to be much help as I have chose the catholic school as it is better than the public school. We are not Catholic.

#4 Heather11

Posted 04 June 2010 - 10:59 AM

QUOTE
Also I would look at high schools that the primary ones feed into, I realise things could change by the time your LO gets to high school but it might be a handy way to make a decision.


I think this is a really important point.  

The primary school my DSS went to was great but when he moved  on to the large public high school he became lost in the system.  To only be told after 11 weeks of schooling than he wasn't doing homework isn't good enough for me.  In fact if we were unable to get to the parent/teacher interviews it was possible we still wouldn't have been told what was going on.

In your case you will probably still be able to get into a Catholic Highschool if that is what you want based on the fact that you are a practising catholic.  If you weren't then you may face difficulties if you haven't gone through a Catholic PS.

QUOTE
Well thankfully for us the decision was easier the Catholic school just happened to be better


This is our situation too and the public high school that the primary school feeds into is woeful.  If that was our only option I would move before they had to go there.

Edited by Heather11, 04 June 2010 - 11:00 AM.


#5 PrincessPinkenIt

Posted 04 June 2010 - 11:07 AM

We just enrolled our DS in our local Catholic School due to it's great reputation for it's structure and schooling. When we went for the interview both DH and I felt comfortable with the school and decided to go with it.


#6 **Tiger*Filly**

Posted 04 June 2010 - 11:12 AM

We chose Catholic schools for our kids because we want them to go to school where the curriculum is framed from a Christian viewpoint. As far as Christian schools go, many of the other demoninations are out of our pricerange, so Catholic was the reasonably affordable choice in Christian schools. We didn't even consider the state system as Christian schooling was our priority. We then looked at several Catholic schools and chose the one we felt would suit our kids the best.

#7 Obesa cantavit

Posted 04 June 2010 - 11:16 AM

We wanted the pastural care aspect. The principle at our school knows most students by name. It is the same size as the local public school, which is also good, but is far better resourced. Also highschool feeded schools played a big part in the system we chose.

#8 Heather11

Posted 04 June 2010 - 11:20 AM

QUOTE
How did you make a decision to choose the catholic one, can someone point out some differences for me please and why u chose it?


To answer your question about differences between the Catholic and public schools this is what I have noticed.

The Catholic school has fantastic programs in place for those with special/additional needs as well as a gifted program.  

Security wise the only way in and out during school ours is to sign in at the front office.  School is totally high fenced. At the public school you can just wander in and around basically at your leisure. They would have no idea who was on school grounds.

When you enrol your child at the Catholic school you accept to abide by the school rules.  This includes school uniform, bullying etc.  If you as a parent don't won't to abide by them or don't inforce the school uniform  then I am sure they can ask you to leave.  At the local public school bullying is a real issue and they have school colours rather than a formal uniform and some of the clothing that is worn is inappropriate in my opinion.

That is just a few of the differences that I can come up with off the top of my head

Edited by Heather11, 04 June 2010 - 11:23 AM.


#9 Gen71

Posted 04 June 2010 - 11:24 AM

We chose a catholic school because that is what we both did, but are really happy with the choice.

For me the big difference is the emphasis placed on helping others, both in the local community and further afield. They seem to be forever raising money for SVDP or Haiti or something. (The local public school only ever raises money for itself!) This helps foster a greater sense of social awareness.

There is a bit of indoctrination! Religion is used as a forum to teach all subjects. But that can be good. They are brought up thinking it is normal to help others, to be tolerant, and to forgive.Yes that is something we all teach our kids, but when they are out of your influence for 6 hours a day, it is nice to know they are getting the same message.

If you send your kids to a catholic school, it is more likely they will be friends with catholics, who will have parents with similar beliefs to yours.
I am not saying we should segregate ourselves from the rest of the world. But at such an impressionable age, I want to have good influences around my children. Then they are more likely to grow into the sort of adult I hope they will if they are surrounded by like minded people.

For me the above reasons outweigh any academic disadvantage there may be at the catholic school. There are plenty of years at high school to make up that! There is so much more to an education than just marks! I want my children to come out well rounded individuals, and that is why we chose catholic schools.

Please note, I am not at all having a go at people who chose public schools! They are by no means inferior or bad people, so PLEASE don't take me the wrong way!!!


#10 ange78

Posted 04 June 2010 - 11:25 AM

We will be sending DD1 to the catholic primary near us next year. We are not catholic but the catholic school was better resourced than the local public schools. The biggest reason though was we looked into the highschools that our local public schools feed into and were less than impressed. The catholic high school in our area is well resourced and we believe will be better for her.

#11 mrs

Posted 04 June 2010 - 12:02 PM

Can i ask what u people mean by better resourced, just facilities ?

Dh went to cath school both primary and high, i went to public for both, in primary i had to go for religion classes after school at the local catholic school.

It did feel nice when i visited the school, although it was smaller grounds than the public ones and less faciliites, our local ps is getting air cond put in but I don't think i could choose a school just cause of that.

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#12 VeritasVinum

Posted 04 June 2010 - 12:32 PM

For me it is the SIZE of the schools.

We have a highly reguarded public school around the corner (advertising for houses in our area ususally has 'X primary scchol catchment' in the listing).

We have chosen the local Catholic one (both DH and I are catholic and went to catholic schools).

Reason being:
1) The catholic School is a small community of 200-220 pupils. The Public school is huge and 700-800 pupils. We feel the smaller school will be more beneficial for our children.
2)We want our children to go go Catholic highschool and you are 'higher up the list' if you are catholic going to catholic school for primary.

3)
QUOTE
If you send your kids to a catholic school, it is more likely they will be friends with catholics, who will have parents with similar beliefs to yours. I am not saying we should segregate ourselves from the rest of the world. But at such an impressionable age, I want to have good influences around my children. Then they are more likely to grow into the sort of adult I hope they will if they are surrounded by like minded people.


#3 I agree with too. Funnily enough most of DH's and my friends outside of school as adults have ended up being catholic with similar views (not that we ask religion questions on meeting people LOL!!!). We aren't very religious as such but in terms of values etc we are on the same page cool.gif .



#13 Guest_cathode_*

Posted 04 June 2010 - 12:46 PM

Our area has a good public school and a good Catholic school (high schools).
It comes down to, for us, mandatory uniforms, slightly better academic record and a very good arts and music program (at the Catholic high). Even though it is a bigger school than the public high (1700 students at the Catholic one), I feel they will get a slightly better education there.

That may change (their school records) by the time mine are ready to start high school,and if it does, I will be happy to send them to the local public high (our second choice anyway).

Currently the eldest is in the local public kindy and I have no plans to take him out. The public primary he will be going to has an excellent record. My other children will attend there as well.

#14 ange78

Posted 04 June 2010 - 12:50 PM

In terms of better resourced, there were a number of things.

The cathloic school offered Lote and music, the closest public primary school didn't.
The playground had more equipment and was more spacious than all of the public schools nearby.
The classrooms were more spacious and had large windows with lots of natural light.
More opportunities for extra curricular activities such as school productions, camps and involvement in the community.
We felt the pastoral care aspect was better at the catholic school with more communication with parents.
On going to the catholic school for the open day and the interview, it just felt right.

ETA
QUOTE
2)We want our children to go go Catholic highschool and you are 'higher up the list' if you are catholic going to catholic school for primary.


This was a hughe factor for us too.

Edited by ange78, 04 June 2010 - 12:54 PM.


#15 loubee

Posted 04 June 2010 - 01:04 PM

If you are Catholic and plan to raise your children as Catholics then it should be an easy decison. Unless there was something fundamentally wrong with the school that would be my only choice.

#16 Freyja

Posted 04 June 2010 - 01:10 PM

We didn't choose the Catholic school. The public schools in my area are good and have smaller class sizes in the lower grades (up to 20 for kindy). The catholic school kindy was closer to 30 in a class  ohmy.gif  This was the biggest deciding factor for me.

#17 mrs

Posted 04 June 2010 - 01:16 PM

The catholic school has 2 kindy classes over 30 kids in kindy yes, but in yr 1 this gets split into 3 classes in the low twenties, they have a teachers aide as well so this doesn't conern me at all, i counted the other grades as they each had their name on the class door  original.gif

#18 mrs

Posted 04 June 2010 - 01:17 PM

QUOTE (loubee @ 04/06/2010, 01:04 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
If you are Catholic and plan to raise your children as Catholics then it should be an easy decison. Unless there was something fundamentally wrong with the school that would be my only choice.


They didn't offer LOTC, was a bit upset with that, i visited another school and the principal said there is a new curriculum to come out next year with 11 subjects so i hope it will be included in the future afterall.


#19 3spunkrats

Posted 04 June 2010 - 01:26 PM

Hi there. We have chosen a Catholic Primary school for our children and we are not Catholic.
There were a few main reasons we chose this school.
* Community spirit. We loved the fact that the school was really community minded. The kids do monthly visits to the elderly home. Once a month the older kids run a community lunch program, where they provide meals to some of the elderly in our community.They also regulary run family days/nights.
* Sports program. They have a FT PE teacher, which the public school did not. They junior kids can participate in the athletics and swimming carnivals. I would rate the school highly on its health promotion and exercise cirriculum.
*Facilities. Could not even compare between our public and private. Indoor gym, computers in each classroom, smartboards in every room.

One thing we did take into account for our first child going to school, was were he would feel safe and secure and we felt that the Catholic school was right for him.

#20 **Tiger*Filly**

Posted 04 June 2010 - 01:29 PM

QUOTE
We want our children to go go Catholic highschool and you are 'higher up the list' if you are catholic going to catholic school for primary.
That's a good point. At the 6-12 school my eldest attends, and where my other children will be going, they basically fill all the places from their Catholic feeder primary schools. Officially they will take other children, but once they make room for all the feeder school kids there usually aren't any places left.

#21 If You Say So

Posted 04 June 2010 - 01:31 PM

We chose the catholic school as it is a very small close knit school (62 kids in total) and so DD will / does get more 1:1 attention than if she was in the public school. She also gets to do year 3 work (shes in year 2, but composite class) so that she doesnt get bored. There are 2 others in the same boat as her.

She did 1 year at the PS for Young Starters, but we had always planned to move her to the Catholic school for Kinder & up. It also helped that 4 other families did the same, so she already had 4 friends at the school when she changed.

Also, the fact that the local PS has a lot of very rough kids (eg yr 1 kids telling the teacher to "F off") helped make up my mind. Academically, however, they are pretty much on par with each other.

#22 mrs

Posted 04 June 2010 - 01:41 PM

I'm trying to put the facilities out of my mind, the cath school has less, but i dont think facilities make the person, i did like the students were polite, very confident speaking, how proud of their causes,the kindy classes were chocker block with the kids artwork which i also loved and they scored higher naplan that the ps though if thats anything to go by.  People do rave about the school but also do about the ps one too, both schools have around 400 kids.

oh so hard !

#23 ange78

Posted 04 June 2010 - 01:43 PM

OP, have you considered which high schools each of the primary schools you are considering feed into? This was one of the major factors for us.

I think it is best to consider each school on their own merits, not catholic vs public. There is so much that varies from school to school.

QUOTE
The catholic school has 2 kindy classes over 30 kids in kindy yes, but in yr 1 this gets split into 3 classes in the low twenties, they have a teachers aide as well so this doesn't conern me at all, i counted the other grades as they each had their name on the class door


This would concern me, 30 kids is alot to have in 1 room, yes there is a teachers aide, but is the aide working 1 on 1 with a student that has funding for the aide or with the group in general? It is also alot of people to have working in close proximity, esp if the rooms are small. However, the class structure can change from year to year depending on how many enrolments they have, so it might be worth asking how many they expect to have enrolled, how many classes there will be for next year and what the cut off number is for each class.

#24 mrs

Posted 04 June 2010 - 01:51 PM

I will ask but i think the aide works with the whole group, its only for one year that they have a big class, i think they do it to assess how to group the kids for the following year, so say they get 66 kids in kindy, they go into 2 classes, then they see how they go the year and split into 3 for year 1.  I will ask my friend actually as her DD is going there now in kindy.

haven't thought about hs, i can't think that far ahead, don't like the cath school but that is closest to us.

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