A comprehensive survey on schooling in America was conducted last spring. The report:
2015 SCHOOLING IN AMERICA, surveyed a wide range of topics including the direction of education, government spending on education, testing and accountability, etc. I was particularly interested in the section beginning on p. 23 which provided an overview on the grades Americans give to different types of schools and what it said about Americans’ preferences for schooling.
The survey shows that among those who expressed a preference between public, private, or charter schools, over 83% of them gave top scores to private schools. The top three reasons cited were: better education/quality, individual attention/one-on-one, and class size/student teacher ratio. Here at Our Savior’s Lutheran School, we have found that these are important factors for our families as well. The quality of our education is shown every year in the fact that our students consistently outperform on standardized tests. Last year’s fifth grade class average on the Otis-Lennon verbal ability testwas in the top 87% of the country, while their class average on the SAT-10 achievement test for reading and language arts was in the 92nd and 93rd percentile. The average non-verbal ability of the class was at the 90th percentile, but the average SAT-10 achievement score for math was in the 96th percentile! That’s a lot of numbers, but what it means is that in our small, nurturing classes our students are able to learn and achieve above their ability – and last year was no exception! These strengths and skills are not just about test scores. Our students go on to middle school and find it easy to fit in and be successful in the larger environment because they are confident in their abilities.
Another result showed that 83% of Americans who had an opinion about private schools gave a score of an A or B to private schools. Based on the reasons cited in the paragraph above, that is not surprising, even though most of the respondents have never attended or enrolled their children in a private school. Here at Our Savior’s Lutheran School we asked a similar question on our annual parent survey. When asked, “How satisfied are you with Our Savior’s Lutheran School’s Educational program?” 97% of our parents gave a response of satisfied or very satisfied! In other words, the actual educational experience, at least at this private school, is even better than you might have imagined it to be!