Public or private. For many middle class parents in NYC this is a hand-wringing, heart-wrenching question. Every parent wants the best education for their child, but the skyrocketing cost of a private school education in New York, not to mention the highly competitive admissions process, has made private school difficult or impossible for so many middle class families. Whether parents choose public school because they can't swing private or because they prefer it for social reasons, there are many public schools in NYC that offer educations that are just as good as the average private school - and some might say better. We call these the Public Ivies.
What qualifies a school as a Public Ivy? High test scores, ambitious curricula, unique, high-quality extracurriculars, teaching to the whole child, unique communities, or they have some outstanding quality (like an amazing physical plant, small class size, etc). No school will be perfect in all of these areas. It's kind of like finding a spouse, you need to choose the school that has the flaws you can live with.
For the next two weeks we are going to be talking about these Elementary Schools. If anyone wants to submit a school they think deserves to be included, email Mommy Poppins.