Choosing The Right College For Your Child

Cover pic by Siora Photography on Unsplash

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I can’t believe we are finally at the stage where we need to think about what Eva does when she finishes school! This is her final term and this past week we looked at courses online at various third level institutions. She’s not 100% sure of what she would like to do and at the moment studying is so different for our third level students with so much of it being done online.

She would love to move out of the home, to study further afield in the UK, Europe or even South Africa and we are encouraging her to do so as Athol and I both left home after finishing school ourselves and found it a valuable experience. It is an exciting time of broadening horizons and developing independence, but I do know I will miss her like crazy, and lie awake wondering how she is.

In this blog post I have teamed up with a guest writer who has put together some handy tips on how to choose the right college, and so I will hand you over to what they have to say in the rest of this piece:

Tips for choosing the right college

When it comes to choosing a college or university for your child it is easy to be lead down a rabbit hole and left confused about which institution is best. We have gathered a few points that you should consider on your hunt for the best option.

Prioritise Your Child

An obvious one to most people, but sometimes during our search this might be overlooked. Most parents will send their child to the nearest college or university without really considering what it has to offer.

When choosing think about the needs of your child, do they require educational support or an interpreter. Check that the college you’re considering has the funding and other resources in place to accommodate your child’s needs. As your child approaches third level education age they have their own thoughts and feelings on where they want to go, it’s hard after parenting so long to step back and allow our adult children make their own choices, but it’s necessary.

Photo by Poodar Chu on Unsplash

Location

As mentioned above, the majority of parents and students may end up choosing the closest college for convenience over anything else. If you and your child believe this is the best college then that’s great, sign them up. However if after researching it turns out that the college isn’t the best fit then you should consider other options.

It can be hard to see your child fly the nest, especially if it is to a foreign country, however, there are many student accommodation options to choose from.

You can find a great example of student accommodation in the UK if you click here. We think it is a great idea for your child to experience living away from home and what better way than in a secure looked after accommodation which is a great transition before they move out into private accommodation.

Research

You want the best for your child so ensure you do a lot of research before you decide on a college or university. Compare how different institutions approach their curriculum and if they have a good Ofsted rating.

If your child has special needs then check which colleges have a good system in place to help your child through their academic years. If you are still finding it hard to decide, talk to some parents or students at the college and see if they recommend it.

Check The Colleges Safety Procedures

We all want our children to be safe when attending college, so check the procedures that each college has in place. This doesn’t just apply to fire safety, intruders or other emergencies but also to how they deal with threatening situations from their peers within the environment of the institution. When researching a college you will be able to feel whether you’d be comfortable sending your child there, always trust your gut instinct.

We hope this has helped you when looking for your child’s new college. Have options when putting down your choices so you are not disappointed if you don’t get your first choice.

Whilst you are here check out Our Biggest Back to School Concerns During Covid-19 in Ireland

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