Published On: Monday, April 8, 2024|Categories: Education Info, Learning Environment, Parents, Private School|

As the season for school tours approaches, families are getting ready to explore potential educational options for their children. It can be a daunting task, but with the right guidance, it can also be an exciting and informative experience. When visiting a school, there are several important factors to consider, from the facilities and resources available to the overall atmosphere and culture of the institution. So, let’s dive in and discover what to look for during these important tours!

The Prep Prior to School Tours

There is some prep to consider prior to doing a school tour. Each school and their admissions process is different, but in general they’ll ask for the following things:

  • Report Cards
  • Shot Records
  • Standardized Test Scores

While not required to bring these, having them readily available can speed up the admissions process and helps you stand out early on to the admissions officer. Here at The Tenney School, we give parents the option to bring these for the tour, but don’t require them until a family has already submitted and application.

The Arrival

It’s a good idea to arrive early for school tours. After arriving, it allows you to ask questions you may have to the receptionist or admissions officer prior to starting the tour. Schools will also factor in lateness to the admissions panel too. It’s best to get there early and come prepared with a list of questions written out!

Good Questions to Ask

Q: What’s your student teacher ratio?

This question gives you a great idea of how individualized the curriculum is. In general, the lower the ratio, the more teachers there are. Schools pride themselves on a low ratio so it can also mean that the school is a lot more selective with the types of students they bring in.

Q: What AP classes are offered?

This is a great question to ask if your student is in high school. AP classes are an important factor1; for all high school students who are considering college after school. Not every school offers the same courses, so it’s a good idea to make sure they have the ones you want.

Q: What extracurriculars/after school activities are offered?

Each school has a diverse range of extracurriculars. Making sure they have courses that interest you is great to confirm. After school activities are the same way. For families and students that want to be involved after school, look into the offerings available!

Q: What financial aid is available?

Many private schools offer financial aid and attending school tours presents a great opportunity to get more info on them. Admissions officers will be able to direct you in the right direction for applying too!

Q: Is transportation available?

Some private schools have their own buses. For those that don’t, they offer references to services that can assist with getting your child to school

What To Look For on School Tours

During the tour, take note of every detail within each facility. Are the classrooms well-equipped and inviting? Is the library stocked with resources? Pay attention to the overall atmosphere of the school, from the welcoming lobby to the bustling cafeteria. Engage with your tour guide and ask questions along the way to gain a deeper understanding of the school’s environment. Keep an eye out for signs of a positive culture, such as students actively participating in class and teachers who are engaged and supportive. Observing the passing period can also offer insights into the school’s dynamics. Remember, every aspect of the school’s facilities and culture plays a crucial role in shaping the overall educational experience.

If you’re looking for a school with a 2:1 student teacher ratio, be sure to check out us! You can watch a full walkthrough/tour of our school with the video below:

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