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Old 07-25-2017, 03:11 PM
 
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Originally Posted by 46H View Post
Many of the better qualified teachers will leave as soon as they can for the job security of public schools.

Although such is the case that there really are not that many openings in the public schools to accommodate the number of applicants. Hence, private schools in the NYC metro area are also able to hire very good teachers.
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Old 07-26-2017, 09:25 AM
 
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Also, religious Jews often pay for private Yeshivas to educate their kids. That is why they often live in areas that do not have very high taxes and extremely good school. Like Passaic Park for example...
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Old 07-26-2017, 07:00 PM
 
Location: Mid-Atlantic
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Originally Posted by DefiantNJ View Post
Also, religious Jews often pay for private Yeshivas to educate their kids. That is why they often live in areas that do not have very high taxes and extremely good school. Like Passaic Park for example...
Lakewood.
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Old 08-07-2017, 03:56 AM
 
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Originally Posted by NJpoliticiansarecrooks View Post
What would possibly make the education better at those schools? Do they use some secret textbooks or have some mysterious lesson plans no one else knows about?
Having gone to a public high school for freshman year (Cliffside Park) and then to one of NJ's top private schools (The Dwight-Englewood School) for the rest, I'll tell you the differences (but I'm not making an argument for one over the other...just explaining.)

1. Yes, there are secret textbooks: top private schools use college textbooks not high school textbooks. There are a couple of different reasons for that but one big one is that high school textbooks are chosen in a very political process and so whitewash history, for example. All honors classes at D-E were Advanced Placement tests so they counted for college credit, which meant I basically got to skip a semester of college because I'd already taken those classes in high school.

I'm trying to think of an example and for better or worse, what's coming to mind is that we had to read "An Economic Interpretation of the United States Constitution," which argues that the Founding Fathers had no loftier goal than protecting their wallets from taxation. The author was a socialist who co-founded the New School. The point is we'd be given books to read that directly contradicted what our textbooks said, for example. The point was always to have contrasting viewpoints and to form an opinion on your own. At C.P.H.S., we were "taught" whereas at D-E, we were expected to challenge our teachers and even argue with them...nothing made them happier, in fact.

2. Private schools set their own curriculum so there's more diversity in what's taught. So, for example, I was in honors English in public school and while we read Romeo & Juliette, etc, we were also allowed to read Stephen King for credit. At D.E. that would have been laughed at. At C.P.H.S., we took tests to prove we read the books but at D.E., we had to write critical papers on the books (make an argument and support it from the text.) I actually struggled quite a bit when I transferred because no one had ever taught me in public school how to write a paper like that.

Also, the books were more complex. I remember in one book we read, there was a fairly graphic rape scene. That stuff wasn't censored in private school as the approach was that we were young adults not children. Likewise in Latin class, we translated some pretty steamy stuff. It made you feel like a grown up. (Also, as a side note, no hall passes or anything. You wanted to leave class, you left class because you're an adult, right?)

Also, everything fit into everything else. So, for example, if we were reading "the Odyssey," in gym, we might play a game related to the Odyssey. In chorus, we sang songs in Latin. In English class, we might read a play about the world's first love poet whose work we were reading in Latin class. If we were learning about the Great Depression, we might stage a play by Clifford Odets who was a prominent playwright during that time whose play, Waiting For Lefty, brought Broadway audiences to their feet in its calls for the people to rise up.

3. Hiring: teachers at private schools don't have to have a teaching certificate. This is actually a really, really good thing because we had teachers who majored in the subject they were teaching rather than in education. Lots of young Ivy League grads who might be deciding whether to go into law school or business or teaching came through our classrooms at D.E. and they taught what they knew. At C.P.H.S., you had career teachers who taught according to a curriculum whereas at D-E, the teachers taught what they were passionate about.

This is no small thing, it meant that our French teachers were native speakers from France. My Latin teachers all had Masters or PhDs in classical studies whereas at C.P.H.S., my Latin teacher had a Bachelors in education and then took one class on how to teach Latin. In classes like theater, etc., our teachers were working actors or professionals from the New York theater world. Paul Sorvino came to talk to us about how he prepares for roles.

Also, the students got to vote on potential new hires. So, candidates would teach our history class and then we, as students, would make a recommendation as to whether they should be hired. That meant that all new teachers had to pass the "good teacher" test before they came on staff.

4. Classes at D-E were based around discussion, not lectures. So, in classes like English and history, we sat in a circle and argued about the books or the history we read. The intent was to learn from each other more than from a teacher telling us what to think.

5. Equipment/facilities: C.P.H.S., standard high school with what you'd expect. D-E had professional grade facilities for lack of a better term. To give one example, the theater at D-E had a revolving stage and rain-making equipment. The kids who worked crew on theater productions were taught by Broadway theater crews how to do their jobs, move scenery, call lights, etc. We did "West Side Story" and the school hired a choreographer who had worked with a Jerome Robbins.

6. Much greater emphasis on class outings at D-E. My European history class took a class trip to England for a week so that we could see the places we were learning about. Or we would read a play and then go see it performed in New York.

7. "Culture of learning" at C.P.H.S., we had our studious kids and our burnouts. In private school, 100% of the students are going to college which creates an atmosphere where learning and achievement are valued. At C.P.H.S., it might be cool to play football. At D-E, it was cool to be on the debate team.

Also, there was zero tolerance for dodgy stuff. Two students in the year above me stole a test one time? They were expelled on the spot. The school was supportive but if you couldn't hack it, you would "not be invited back" for the next year.

Those are the big differences that come to mind. C.P.H.S. is probably middle-of-the-pack of NJ public schools. I have friends who went to top NJ public schools like Northern Highlands and their high school experiences seem not too far from mine at D-E.. I think a kid going to a really good public school with parents who emphasize academics and provide that "extra" education (theater/museums in NYC, for example) would do well anywhere. What I'm kind of saying is that in private school that was all "built-in."

One thing I will tell you, when I got to college (University of Southern California), most of my fellow students were struggling to keep up / had to adapt to a new level of education. For me, I sailed along because my high school was actually more challenging.

Anyway, like I say, motivated students with supportive parents would likely do well anywhere. For me, private school was really inspiring. I grew up in Cliffside Park and so I'm still friends with the people who went to the public schools there and I don't know how to explain it but my world is just much bigger than theirs and that's definitely due to my switching high schools. D-E gave me a sense of possibility about things.

I'll tell you what my mother, who attended a public high school in New York says when my siblings or I wind up having a conversation about history or literature or whatever: "You know, I was taught what to think and you kids were taught how to think and I think that's much, much better."

That's what you get for $45,000/year (what my h.s. costs now...which is insane but if that is nothing to you, then the above is what it buys.)

Hope that explains things at least.

Last edited by edgy555; 08-07-2017 at 04:51 AM.. Reason: Typo
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Old 08-07-2017, 08:11 AM
 
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Pretty sure number #3 isn't true any more,if it is it's the only state in the country.Wife and two daughters are teachers and have taught in Maryland ,VA,NC and CA in public and private and all needed "certification".
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Old 08-07-2017, 04:37 PM
 
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Originally Posted by G1.. View Post
Pretty sure number #3 isn't true any more,if it is it's the only state in the country.Wife and two daughters are teachers and have taught in Maryland ,VA,NC and CA in public and private and all needed "certification".
It may have to do with the schools themselves but in New Jersey at least, state laws don't govern private schools at all. In fact, whereas the public schools in NJ have to attend school 180 days, we only went 165.

https://www.thoughtco.com/do-private...cation-2773331
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Old 08-08-2017, 03:45 AM
 
16,826 posts, read 6,846,958 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by edgy555 View Post
It may have to do with the schools themselves but in New Jersey at least, state laws don't govern private schools at all. In fact, whereas the public schools in NJ have to attend school 180 days, we only went 165.

https://www.thoughtco.com/do-private...cation-2773331

Then that happens in NJ only. State boards of Education rule and there are requirements all schools must follow,state and Federal.
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