Private School Vs. Public School Statistics-Part 2
Private schools are not bound by state mandates, and are capable of constructing their own curriculum individualized for the students, and teachers are able to make use of the newest and best teaching techniques such as conversational learning. Discipline and safety is a major characteristic that makes private schools considerably safer and more conducive to learning than public schools, and also teaches students necessary self-control that they will need to be successful in college. Private schools, specifically at the high school level, are more college focused and in addition to the more stringent course requirements they offer programs and assistance for college preparation that leads to 95% of private school students to graduate high school and continue to college. Statistics for the 5th grade and private middle schools are not readily available, however, general insights regarding private schools and some statistics are provided below.
- Private schools are not bound to the same limitations of curriculum as public schools and therefore are able to offer content that is suited to their goals such as peripheral subjects such as arts, theater, music and other subjects. Schools at the high school level focus on college preparation in the curriculum.
- Due to the lack of state regulations, private schools are able to work around government regulations and modify their curriculum to introduce a wider range of topics than public schools are able to do including content focused on religion. Many offer advanced sports programs as well.
- Private schools are able to avoid a heavy emphasis on testing, which can allow a focus on other competencies. The curriculum is focused on the individual students and not on averages and test scores. Private high school students have more criteria to maintain G.P.A.s and require more academically rigorous curriculum than public high school students according to National Center for Education Statistics.
- Private schools can be highly specialized, offer differentiated learning, advanced curriculum, and programs geared towards specific religious beliefs as well as develop its own standards and assessment procedures. Curriculum can easily be tailored for individual students' needs such as those in performing arts.
Religious And Moral Instruction And Activities
- About 79% of private school students attended a religiously-affiliated school, the largest sector in the private school sector. Catholic schools make up the largest majority of private schools with over 1.9 million students enrolled, however, 18.4% of those are not Catholic lending to the preference of the structure of private schools even if it is of a different religion.
Discipline and Safety
- The majority of private schools place an emphasis on discipline, and 63% of private school teachers reported having a lot of influence on setting student performance standards and 48% reported influence on student discipline policy compared to 38% and 30% respectively for public school teachers.
- Stricter disciplinary policies also equate to safer educational environments, and private schools are not as plagued with typical crimes like public schools. The School Crime and Safety Report reports that 37.3% of public school students were more likely to see hate-related graffiti compared to 16.8% of private school students.
- Nationwide surveys of principals find that private schools have a statistically significant advantage for each of the 13 discipline problems identified at public schools. The safety benefits of private schooling are described to be large by the Washington Examiner who shows that private schools are about 8 percentage points less likely to have physical conflicts between students, about 18 percentage points less likely to have gang activity at school, and 28 percentage points less likely to experience students in possession of weapons.
- In comparison to public school characteristics involving events such as random dog sniffs for drugs and passing through metal detectors, private schools offer a safer, more healthy environment that is more conducive to student learning. Surveys show that private school students are generally less fearful about daily safety, which makes focusing on learning easier.
- Private high schools are said to instill college expectations. Research has found that students that attended private school in the 8th grade were twice as likely as their public school counterparts to complete a bachelor's degree or higher by their mid-20s.
- The installation of discipline in private school settings teaches students self-control which will be a requirement in college when they have to be responsible for their attendance and achievement.
- Private school counselors spend an average of 55% of their time on college-related counseling compared to 22% of public school counselors. 95% of private school students go to college compared to 49% of public school graduates.
- Private schools at the high school level focus on college preparation and offer more extracurricular programs, AP courses, and other offerings geared towards the college admissions process.
- Teachers are afforded more flexibility to be creative in the classroom and with the curriculum which leads to better outcomes for the students. Private high schools are half the size of the average public school, which provides students and teachers greater opportunities to form relationships that lead to greater academic success.
- Private schools are able to utilize the most recent teaching techniques as they are not bound by the same guidelines as public schools. The conversational technique is used by a lot of private schools due to its effectiveness at keeping students' attention and interest, and improves their ability to communicate, make decisions, and retain coursework.
We first searched for preexisting statistics comparing the quality of private and public schools, and this search yielded some useful insights regarding public schools and private schools in general and for high schools.
As another strategy to identify statistics, we examined sources such as the National Center for Education Statistics and Private School Review for statistics regarding the benefits of private school by grade level, this strategy revealed some statistics mostly focused towards high school or about private schools in general.
As another attempt to find statistics specific to grades below the high school level, we searched for articles, surveys, and blogs for information regarding insights or statistics regarding the class sizes, curriculum, and other characteristics of academic quality. This strategy did not reveal statistics specific to private middle schools or 5th grade private schools.
Although there was not a lot of statistics available regarding private middle schools, we were able to identify useful insights regarding private schools in general and statistics regarding private high schools and included those in our findings. The lack of statistics is likely due to the fact that grades 1 through 4 are considered prime elementary years, and the National Assessment of Educational Progress does not begin to measure student success until the 4th grade and then in the middle school and high school years.