Securing an education for your child is one of the most important tasks that you will undertake as a parent. After all, your children are the future and it only makes sense to want them to become successful, happy, and productive members of society. One of the best ways to get a head start on your child's education is by enrolling them in a private preschool. This is not only a great way to provide them with exposure to education early on, but it's also an excellent opportunity for socializing with other children.
This short guide will provide you with a primer on the admissions methods used by most private preschools. Having a good grasp of these fundamentals will give you the confidence you need to smoothly navigate the admissions process.
Parts of the Application Process
From the perspective of parents, the admissions process for most private preschools happens in three steps: an application, an interview with your child, and an interview with you. Generally, these steps will occur in this order, but some preschools may prefer to schedule parent interviews before playdate interviews. Likewise, you may find that some schools combine the parent and playdate portion of the interview into a single step.
Note that you may not always be permitted to fill out an application immediately. Instead, many popular schools will require you to first enter a waitlist or lottery. Once your number comes up (or you are randomly selected), you can then begin the applications process in earnest. The actual details of the application will not be uniform between schools, but expect to provide a decent amount of information about your family, your careers, and your child. You may be required to do some writing as part of the application as well.
Once your application makes it through this first step, you will then move on to the interview(s) phase. Treat these as you would job interviews, and prepare by knowing as much as possible about the school itself so that you can speak with the interviewer confidently. Prepare your child by being sure they will be comfortable during a short playdate that may include socializing with other children or adults.
Apply Early and Often
Since step zero of many application processes involves entering a lottery or waiting list, one of the most important things you can do is to apply early. This means that you may be applying for preschool waiting lists when your child is only a few months old. Many parents start researching schools as soon as their child is born or even earlier.
Because you will be one of so many applicants, it is equally important to apply to a variety of schools. Once again, treating this like a job or college application process will help immensely. Try to avoid tying yourself down to one favorite school and instead find a wide variety of options that you will be happy with. There are many phenomenal preschools, and becoming too focused on a single choice is not helpful to either you or your child.
Treat Each Application as a Learning Tool
Popular schools receive a huge number of applications and can sometimes have opaque admissions processes. This means that you may find yourself filling out many applications or attending multiple interviews before finding the right school for you and your child. This is a normal part of the process, and you should treat each school as a potential learning experience for you and your child.
If you begin this process early enough, then you will have plenty of time to evaluate multiple schools before your child is ready to begin attendance. Each admissions process that you go through will teach you more about how these applications and interviews work and will ultimately prepare you better for the next one. By treating this as an ongoing process, you will undoubtedly find the perfect school for you and your child.
To learn more about the admissions process, contact a private preschool like Paulding Preschool.