In my country, there are some certainties as regards education.
- Public schools are for all.
- Private schools are for the middle class and rich folks - at least, that's what they made us believe.
- All public schools are public, but some are more public than the others. 😂😂😂
- The hybrid school.
Growing up, the elementary school I attended was under the Anglican mission. It was a private school, but a well subsidized one. Due to this, we had access to a lot of facilities brought in by those Anglican missionaries without paying over the top. Also, we were streamlined towards religion and Christianity. The school motto says it all, "learning at the feet of Jesus."
The white missionaries that do frequent our school introduced acting and stage plays, and I could remember performing on stage a couple of times. The school really prepared me for what was to come in the next phase, which was junior secondary school.
When I got admitted to Demonstration Secondary School, I was proud of myself. The criteria for admission was tough, and the selection process was stiffer. However, the school I joyfully left home for brought out the demon in me. Both of my parents attended the boarding school as a kid, so they've made that silent pact that all their kids will also attend boarding schools. The belief was that boarding school is the perfect place to train a child. That was true in their time; in our time, it was a complete fallacy.
My first days at school were lonely because I've never been away from my family before. Eventually, I blended in, but I wish I never did. The seniors made life a living hell for the juniors. From getting flogged as early as 5 a.m. for not running to the early morning assembly, to fetching water for those seniors who were still snoring on their beds, the experience was gruesome. The surprising part of it was that the housemaster knew about those rough treatments and will always tell the juniors it's part of growing. How does getting flogged by and washing the clothes of my age mate who is just a class above me count as experience?
Well, I eventually quit the school in my third year. Asides the maltreatment all in the name of being a junior, a group of guys started practicing cultism. Unfortunately for me, my silly school brother was a prominent member. It's either I quit the school or join them. Well, I decided to quit. Like I earlier said, the school crushed all the good teachings I learnt from my previous school. I thought private schools were meant to be a lot more reasonable, this one was like the prison of deranged folks. I celebrated when I escaped that cell.
My next school ticked the awkwardly looking number 4 up there - the hybrid school.
School Of Science was supposed to be a public school. For the main part it was, until a group of parents who lived outside state wanted their kids to attend the prestigious school. For that to happen, boarding facilities must be introduced. Thus, the government partnered with the parents to start a public-private school, the hybrid school. Of course, I was in the boarding house. But this time, it was different. After being battle hardened in the previous hellhole of a school, I took nothing for granted here. Despite being more of a public school, the government did well to provide most of the equipment needed for effective learning. I developed a keen interest in scientific research over there. And, I dropped most of the bad habits I picked from my previous school.
My university education was at a public school. Though not up to the incredible standards of the foremost public universities in my country, it was still a good place to be. I enjoyed every bit of my time over there too.
Public Or Private?
I attended both public and private schools. I had my worst experience of schooling at a private school and the best ones at a public one. Does that mean public schools are better than private ones? Definitely not, the answer to that depends on personal experience. But, for my kids, I'd prefer they attend the private schools. Though it will be costly, as long as there is proper monitoring one will definitely get the value for money spent.
As for the third option, those from my country can relate to that. Some public schools, like L.A and Community High Schools, are more public than the regular public schools. Those are the worst of them all. You definitely don't want your kids attending a school where the teacher is more concerned with selling biscuits to pupils than actually teaching them.
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