The five most important considerations when choosing a school in Spain

Las cinco claves indispensables para elegir colegio en España

Choosing the right school for our children is a crucial decision that not only impacts their academic and personal development, but also the well-being of the entire family, because if they are happy, we are happy.

Spain is home to a wide and diverse range of educational options, and therefore a number of aspects must be taken into account before making this important decision. BSS will explain the five most important points that parents need to consider in our country to provide our children with a solid educational foundation that is adapted to their needs and leads them along the path to a successful future.

What should I take into account to choose the best school for my child?

Not all students have the same needs. Based on this statement, in order to find the “ideal school”, first we must understand the Spanish education system and identify our children’s individual needs and characteristics.

There are three different educational models in Spain: public, charter and private.

As it is not subsidised by the state, private education gives schools maximum autonomy in terms of curricular enrichment, organisation and management; allows establishments to be selective with their admissions; and offers absolute freedom of choice in terms of family preferences, location and specific educational goals.

Public and charter education are both state funded, the difference being that the former is completely free of charge and the latter has supplementary fees. These schools follow a standardised national curriculum. Therefore, if you can choose a private school over a charter school, you are guaranteed a higher quality education.

Let’s take a look at the 5 most important aspects to ensure you choose the best school:

  1. Location and accessibility:

It is important to consider the accessibility and location of the school in relation to your home. A nearby school can reduce journey times and make your daily routine easier, and it will also benefit your children’s friendships. Spain is a very safe country and private schools are always located in safe areas. If possible, choose your school first and then your house.

  1. Reputation, academic quality and language learning:

Investigate the school’s reputation and track record. You can get information about exam results, academic programmes and the quality of teachers. Feedback from other parents and the community can also be helpful. Private schools in Spain are highly focused on academic excellence and this will provide your child with a solid educational foundation. The language options on offer are very important. Private schools are multilingual, the language level is very high and students learn naturally as they start at an early age with native teachers. This aspect sets private independent schools apart from the rest. 

  1. Educational philosophy and environment:

You must understand the school’s educational philosophy. Some schools may take a rather traditional approach, while others use more innovative methods. Choose a school with a philosophy that fits your values and your child’s learning needs. You should also consider the school environment and whether it promotes a sense of community and the values that are important to you. This is essential in private schools, which take great care of the school environment and community. The relationship between teachers and students should be cordial and based on mutual respect. 

  1. Facilities, resources and extracurricular activities:

The school’s facilities and spaces, including classrooms, laboratories, libraries and sports areas, play an important role in developing the educational project. You should also consider which resources are available, such as technology, extracurricular programmes and additional support for students with special needs. An enriched environment can make a significant contribution to your child’s all-round development.

  1. Parental involvement and communication:

Active parental involvement plays a key role in educational success. Many private schools encourage family training and collaboration to get parents involved in their children’s education. Effective communication between parents and teaching staff is essential. Look for a school that fosters collaborative and transparent relationships between parents and educators.

Remember that every child is unique, so you should take your child’s specific needs into account when selecting a school. Visiting schools, talking to teachers and getting feedback from other parents can provide a valuable insight to help you make an informed decision.

How do you know if a school is good in academic terms?

Choosing the right school for our children is a process that requires time, research and reflection. Being aware of your children’s needs, assessing the school’s facilities, considering the academic reputation and quality of its teaching staff and looking ahead to secondary school are central to this journey. BSS knows that by making informed choices, we can provide our children with a solid, quality educational foundation to set them up for a successful future.

If you want to know more about schools in Spain and activities for your children, visit the “Living in Spain” section on our website.

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