Private schools are better

Elise Mariano , Staff Writer

When comparing schools, it is usually assumed that private schools are better than public schools. According to The Washington Post, however, a book entitled The Public School Advantage shows that public schools outperform private schools. The author of the book only looked at data comparing mathematics performance. In order to really be fair, you have to look into other academics, student life and even costs.

Comparing private school to public school is like comparing cats to dogs. They are two different things, and they each have their own pros and cons. One of the biggest cons for private school is the tuition. I believe that paying for tuition has its advantages, however. Public schools are funded by the government, and because of this, they function as part of the government and must follow government regulations.

Private schools are funded by tuition, grants, and if the private school is parochial, the school can get money from a larger entity, like the Catholic Church. Since private schools are not usually government affiliated, they can avoid a lot of rules and regulations that politicians set.

More classes equal fewer students per class, so teachers are more able to get on a personal level with student”

Having tuition also means having more funds for extra perks that public schools usually cannot offer. Private schools offer a greater selection of classes than public schools. More classes equal fewer students per class, so teachers are more able to get on a personal level with students, and this can really benefit them. However, even without all these extra benefits, students at public schools learn just as much as students at private schools. According to The Week, a study was conducted in 2007 showing that “private high school students scored no better on achievement tests in math, reading, science and history than their counterparts in public high schools.”

Still, test scores are not the only thing that matters. Student life is also a big part of the equation. Students at private schools engage in more school activities because they have the money to do so. Private schools also offer better (tasting) lunches to their students as opposed to public schools. Overall, student life at private schools may be better just because the school itself has more resources.

The range of classes that public schools can offer is really limited because funds are limited. This also means that classes tend to be larger in public schools because if funds are limited, classes may need to be cut. Tuition also helps pay for better faculty. However, teachers from public schools are required to be state-certified, while teachers from private schools do not.

Some private schools, like parochial schools, also integrate religion into their curriculum. This can either be a pro or a con, depending on how religious a person is. Personally, I am fine with religion being part of the curriculum just because it has been a big part of my life since I was young. I honestly think that religion does not affect the quality of education in any way.

The quality of education just really depends on the school, not the amount of tuition you do/do not pay. As a person who went to private school for nine years of her life and then transferred to public school for four years of high school, I can say that when I am a parent, I would probably send my child to a private/parochial school just because individual attention is more available. The choice between private and public school really comes down to personal preference and the amount of money one is willing to spend for education.