I have a friend who is considering going to a Private High School. Since I attended a private school for my first two years of high school he asked me what the differences between the two are. To start by making this decision one has to realize that they’ll be doing work wherever they go so do not make this decision based on what might be easier.
I will start with private school because I only just started going to public school and have more to say about private. Going into a school where you do not know anyone is very scary and it was very hard for me to find a friend group that I liked because there were just so many kids. Personally I really only found my solid group of friends after being at the school for about a year. Despite not really having a lot of friends private school is not necessarily harder than a public school it’s just that the workload increases. If you are planning on going to a fairly reputable private school make sure you are ready for at least four to five hours of homework per night on top of sports and travel time. The workload is one of the main reasons why I left my private school. I did not do bad at my old school, but the amount of work made my anxiety spiral out of control. Another thing to expect when you enter a private high school is expect teachers and faculty to be much stricter. At a private school the teachers and staff will get you in trouble for anything and everything especially dress code. However, there are some perks to going to a private school. One of which is that all of the teachers care about the students and that they comprehend what they’re learning. Whereas at a public school some of the teachers care while others do not. At my old school I really liked the religious aspect of the school and learning about the history of my religion among other things. This may not be for everyone but I thoroughly enjoyed the religious and spiritual aspect of my old school. A final thing that I liked about my old school is meeting people from all over the state and making friends from different towns that I never would have met otherwise. Going to a private high school for two years allowed me to broaden my social connections to people I otherwise would have never known.
Public school on the other hand is a lot different. For one at a public school I feel more free and open to express myself and my personality. Whereas at my old private school I always felt that I had to be stoic and proper. Another aspect of public school that I like is that the classroom is more fun and I get to have fun and make memories throughout my school day instead of having a teacher lecture for fifty minutes about some dead guy. The transfer process into my public high school was a lot easier and better than the transfer process into the private school. At the private school it was more like you came in and you were basically alone and had to figure out the school and school dynamics on your own. At my public school there was more of a process that brought me and the rest of the transfer students into the school and put us in groups and let us meet and talk to each other, which allowed me to meet new people before the year even started. A final aspect of public school that I like better than private school is the whole sense of community that I feel at school. What I mean by this is that I get to go to school and make memories with all of my friends that I’ve known since I was little. Then I can reflect back on them in twenty plus years with a smile. Also at private school there was no such thing as a pep rally, a spirit week, or anything that really showed emotion. The idea of an entire school coming together and having fun is incredible to me even if it is only once a year. Things like fun, liveliness, and school spirit are the stark differences between my public and private school experiences.
Reflecting back now I still do not know if transferring was right for me because there are perks and drawbacks of both schools. The reason why I left the private high school is because while on my outreach trip to New Orleans I had an epiphany that I did not have to go to school scared and anxious all the time and that I could be myself. If you are considering going to a private high school or transferring out of one do not just base your decision off of what I’ve said. Talk to people who go to both schools and people like me who have made the switch. Take time and ask yourself what you really want out of your high school experience. #askmatt