Friday, October 17, 2008

Look carefully at those lollipops

You like lollipops? I like lollipops. I like the colors. I like the flavors. Show me a place the sells lollipops, and I'll show you a place that knows what kids like. What kids need. What kids crave.

Schools know that kids like lollipops. More important: they know parents like their kids to have lollipops.

During open houses and tours, schools like to show their good sides, their cool stuff, their lollipops. The cool stuff that wows kids and parents. And let's be honest - some schools have some great lollipops.

But we can't live on lollipops, can we? Nope. We live on food. Real food. Protein, fruits, veggies, fiber, carbs. When it comes down to it, what makes a school successful is the education that happens there. You know - the meat (or tofu, if you prefer) and potatoes. Are kids learning? Are they learning what kids at other schools are learning? Are they on par, academically, with kids from other schools? Are they learning what they'll need for the next level of education? Are they prepared to move toward a life as successful adults?

So when it comes to looking at schools, savor the lollipops, but be sure to compare the main meal. If you forget what you're really looking for, you might end up surprised, just like Jemima and Jeremy Potts as they were lured by the Child Catcher's lollipops...

1 comment:

The Grauke-Collins Experience said...

Oh, my god, you referenced the one character from my childhood who continues to scare the tuna salad out of me...The Child Catcher from Chitty-Chity Bang-Bang.

Great post. I'm amazed at the parents whom I've met that mention the extras that some schools offer, but haven't asked or aren't interested in things like curriculum, student-teacher ratios, test scores, parent involvement, or discipline.