Whats is like for a teenager on islands?
Does anyone have advice on raising a teenager here? What is the schooling system like? Ive lived in the Keys for 8 years and it is quite good here.
Advice: read, read, and read some more. Lots of posts on this board about the schools and teens.
Wife and I have a 16 yr old here with us.
The short of it:
1. Teens can do great here, if you put them in private schools.
2. More than half the kids here go to private schools.
3. If you don't have the money to put them in a private school, don't bring them.
Why wouldn't they find it very hard to assimilate into a private school then??
It would be the same island population except ,according to you; the children at the private school have parents with more money - don't the private schools have the same problems as the public ones? It wouldn't seem that the cultural aspects would be that different.
The private schools are much more "Americanized" than the public schools. Technically all VI schools are "American" but the private schools tend to be run by mainlanders, which would make it easier for a mainland teenager to assimilate. As a result, private school students tend to be more exposed to the "American culture" than public school students are, though this is not always necessarily true.
I am trying to distill the replies so far.
Is it really a true statistic that 'more than half the kids here go to private school'??
What culture are they exposed to in the schools that aren't 'Americanized'?
The private schools are run by 'mainlanders'? Is this really the case?
There are no other white anglo students in the public schools?? because?? the parents all have more money??
Don't the public schools send graduates to college?
Isn't there a lot more to "what it is like for a teenager" here than school?
Have the people who posted here raised their children here?
If the public schools can't get rid of mold and supply basic items such as clean drinking water and toilet paper consider the education they might offer.
I know plenty of parents that send their kids to private school and have very little money. It's a struggle...but a priority.
I would bet anything the percentage of kids from private schools here going on to college far surpass those from VI Public Schools.
Maybe the teachers on this board will chime in.
St. Croix resident since 2000
I have a six year old son who is in private school. I do not believe the private school are more Americanized. His school is very diverse. His classmates are from all over. West Indian,White Crucians, South American, Chinese, East Indian and both black and white stateside transplants. The public schools are mostly West Indian. The public elementary school closest to my house has white and hispanic children attending. This past year more and more white stateside children are going to this elementary school. There was a poster on this board that is a school teacher whose white child attends the educational complex and seemed to be doing well. I think most people try to put their children in private school because the public school education is substandard and the condition of the schools themselves are very poor. I personally would not put a stateside teenager in the public school system here.
This issue is so complicated and so important I think you must come down and see for yourself. if you plan for private and find that the public schools are good for you -- that's great. But plan for private and you won't have a crisis if the public school doesn't work out.
My husband and I are teachers in the public school system here. We are both white. And, yes, there are MAJOR differences between the school system here and on the mainland. At the school my husband teaches at, he is the only white teacher, and there are 2 white students. At the school I teach at, I am one of two white teachers (a recent addition this year), and there are no white students. It's not the color that makes the difference, but the lack of cultural diversity that makes a difference. Because everyone is the same (except for myself and my husband), the expectations for students and teachers is very different.
Quite honestly, I don't think anyone can make the decision to send their child to public school or not. The child needs to make the decision. Let them visit the school for a day. Are they uncomfortable? Will they feel OK using the restrooms? Are there adequate books and supplies to help them get an education? Is teaching (or babysitting) occuring in the classroom? Will they be prepared for college?
Yes, there are some fantastic teachers in the public school system. But, will your child get them? Yes, there are some decent public schools here. But, unless you visit the schools, you won't know for sure. I believe in what I am doing, and am happy to be teaching in the public school system. If I had a school-aged child, I would probably put her in the public school system. BUT, I would be able to keep an eye on things more closely - because of my relationship with the teachers and the school system.
I hope this information helps. Please feel free to PM me if you have additional questions.
If in the states you lived in an area that bussed your child to a "ghotto" school, would you be happy. There is a chance that there would be great teachers and some great kids. However there would be a cultural difference as well.
I think Meowruff idea of attending for a day sounds good.