From Homeschool to Independent School
Note from the editor: Please welcome ThomasP! Thomas is a new student blogger who will be sharing his perspective on considering and applying to independent school, as well as tips for SSAT practice. Read more about Thomas on our Student Contributors page.
Since everyone’s situation will differ, there may be as many reasons for a student to seek out an independent school as there are students. My perspective on independent schools is probably a rare one; this is because I have been homeschooled for the past five years. Homeschooling has worked well for me because my schooling has been custom tailored exactly for my educational needs, interests, and individual pace. However, with high school approaching, I am exploring independent schools because there are many ways in which an independent school can provide the finest education of all.
For example, independent schools have the best resources, top teachers who are true experts in their fields, and many unique opportunities in the academic, athletic, and social realms. Like everyone, I’m searching for the school that will be the best fit for my personal educational goals so that I can develop my skills to their fullest on the road to college.
What I’ve found so far is that it’s vitally important to visit a school in person, take a tour, and ask questions. If possible, take a tour while classes are in session, so that you can get a real feel for what the school is like. Some schools will even allow you to be a guest in the school for an entire day, which is a great opportunity. The more familiar you are with a school, the more you can let your instincts have a voice in your decision. Often you will just “know” if a school is right for you or not.
Don’t give up hope of getting into the perfect school just because it is too expensive, because most schools offer financial aid or even scholarships. Schools love students who work hard and excel, and often this brings rewards. It is impossible to know which doors will open unless you try them, and in the same way it is impossible to know what scholarships or acceptances you can achieve until you try to achieve them. If your dream is to have an educational experience that is the best fit for your passions, talents, and goals, then be sure to explore what independent schools can offer you.