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Opinions needed- Public vs. Private high schools?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by thadarknyte, Aug 6, 2006.

  1. thadarknyte

    thadarknyte Senior Member
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    I live on Long Island and think that the public school system here is great.

    I understand going to a "good" college makes the biggest difference in the world, when it comes to jobs, graduate schools, etc etc. So my question is this, is it the same advantage of going to a private HIGH SCHOOL as going to a upper tier college, or is there no difference?

    The reason I ask is because my cousin got a scholarship to go to a private school here, a $40,000 scholarship. That is a big deal because it is really hard to get, BUT, he really wants to go to a public school because he feels like he can have more of a social life, with u kno, more then 25 people in his class. At the private school, he will only have about 9 kids.

    What do you guys think is the best approach to take? Is it worth it to go to a private school?
     
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  3. Robizzle

    Robizzle 1K Member
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    :confused: :confused: :confused:

    do u mean he wants to go to a public school??

    and it really doesn't matter. all that matters is what he makes out of it..
     
  4. thadarknyte

    thadarknyte Senior Member
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    he is a really smart kid, i have a feeling he can get into a top 30 college easily...

    his parents didnt even think about it and just put him in the private school because of the scholarship...
     
  5. geno2568

    geno2568 Senior Member
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    i went to a public high school with a class size of about 700. Myself and 5 others went to Cornell. We also had 1 MIT, 1 Carnegie-Melon, 2 Columbia, 1 Duke, 1 Hopkins, and several to tufts, lehigh, nyu, etc. However, we sent 0 to Yale, and 0 to Harvard. And the kid that went to princeton got in on Baseball.

    So to answer your question, it depends on which college you want the kid to go to. If he's aiming for the big three, private is the way to go. If not, he should be fine in a decent public school, providing they have a good selection of AP classes.
     
  6. somemaybedoc

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    If the scholarship makes it affordable for his family I think private is the way to go. The small class size, combined with the relationship that private school's tend to have with upper tier universities makes it a better choice in the long run. At the end of the day, I never look back at my highschool social life and think it was all that important or fulfilling, maybe that's just me. The people I knew in college had far more of an impact on my life. I personally don't think a high school social life is worth the possible sacrifice of a long term opportunity.
     
  7. power_to_people

    power_to_people Junior Member
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    Depends on the school you go to. I whent to a public highschool but it was the best highschool in Houston public or private and it is top 7 in the state of Texas. So really you have to compare the public system where you are and whatever private school you want to go to. Because private isnt always better.
     
  8. somemaybedoc

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    With regard to my post I am assuming it's better, If the school system in the area is truly exemplary and better then that changes things. However, I am not so sure they could get off charging 40K if the local schools were better.
     
  9. mvenus929

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    $40K per year for a private high school? or is that for all four years? My boyfriend went to a private high school (not because his parents wanted a better education, but for religious reasons), and he said that his parents pay like 12K a year, minus 2K for an English scholarship he got.

    Anyway, I went to high school in South Carolina, which is noted for one of the worst public school systems in the US. However, my school was probably among the top in the state. We had the IB program at our school, so I participated in that, and my classes were small (there were only 42 people in the program, and we were almost always divided in two... the exception would be my bio class, cause hardly anyone wanted to take Calc II, and my math class, because only me and one other person wanted to take Calc I). It really prepared me for college, so I saw pretty much no transition going in. We did have one kid in our class go to Yale, and I think that others didn't get in simply because they didn't apply. One of the girls in my class went to Cornell, and our Valedictorian went to UVA. Most of our class either went to Clemson or USC just to stay in state, so others could have gotten into better schools and just didn't want to.
     
  10. Dakota

    Dakota Senior Member
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    This is an important point, the area I'm from has public schools that are much better than the privates. The private schools are mostly religious and don't offer things like ap classes, etc (too few students). It is important to consider what kind of private school and public school we are comparing.

    Edit: When I say the area I'm from, that IS NOT NYC . . . I've just relocated for medical school.
     
  11. Dakota

    Dakota Senior Member
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    Wahoowa . . . I loved my time at UVA . . . hope your friend did as well.
     
  12. Dr. Pepper

    Dr. Pepper Duffman in Disguise
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    I agree with this.

    I was offered admission to a private high school but I turned it down due to the high tuition.

    However, in terms of collegiate placement, there is significant difference.
    1 Princeton, 1 MIT, 2 Stanford, 1 JHU, 1 Duke, 1 Dartmouth..and I think that's about it for upper-tier privates. This is still very good, but the private school I turned down had at least 10 people getting into Harvard, Yale and Princeton and many getting into equivalent schools.

    If he got the scholarship, send him to private.
    -Dr. P.
     
  13. mvenus929

    Physician 10+ Year Member

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    I'm guessing he liked it. Not knowing the atmosphere, I don't know if the typical UVA guy is like him. We tried to convince him to untuck his shirt once in class, and he could only manage 5 minutes. He's good at debating, when he's not up against a bunch of smart, annoyed girls, which were always around when he started debating. Very conservative, very southern guy. Drove me absolutely insane.
     
  14. The Madden Bus

    The Madden Bus Senior Member
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    LOL. ARE YOU SERIOUS? MORE OF A SOCIAL LIFE IN HS??? LOL. High school is about hating everything and yourself. You're supposed to be unhappy and have no life, ESPECIALLY on Long Island. Out of curiosity, what private hs is this? (I know just about every LI High School)
     
  15. NonTradMed

    NonTradMed Perpetual Student
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    There are great public high schools and really great private high schools. If I had my choice of the two, I'd pick the really great private high school for the academic environment and high academic standards that only a lot of money and the selectivity of an academic entrance exam can produce (of course, major cities also have their own elite public high schools which are just as good as the private elites).

    I attended a "good" public high school and then went on to a selective private college. Yes, I got into a good college, but I had a hard time finding my footing there because there were a lot of kids who went to better schools (read: elite private schools) and had an advantage over me in classes. However, that isn't to say that all the top kids were from private schools, there were many that came from public high schools too. However, I can't argue that attending a wealthy school and with a bunch of smart kids were not good preparation for a surviving premed at a tough college.

    However, don't assume that if a school is private, it's better than a public school. Public high schools have to accept everyone in their district but a well funded one can also be good preparation for college. Private schools may not be all that good if it's poorly funded or poorly managed.....so my advice is to go to the best possible high school, private or public, if cost isn't an issue. If money is an issue, you can always get a scholarship at the private high schools. A friend and his brother did that, and his father's $70k salary managed to send two sons into elite $30k private high schools in the Northeast. However, if you live in a wealthy school district, the local school there may be a good option as well.
     
  16. power_to_people

    power_to_people Junior Member
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    Not true at my highschool you had to take a entrance exam and have a GPA of 3.2 or higher in middle school. That is how magnet schools work. Pretty much its just a free private highschool. My school was and still is really exclusive you cant come in after the ninth grade there is no exceptions because of the curriculum we had. So really there are public schools that run like private. But those schools like you said are mostly in big cities like Houston or New York. Also the district my school is in is not a good one. The only reason we are good is because we are affiliated with the Houston Medical Center so the students had to be great to keep up appearances which is not a bad thing because it gives many students who are zoned to bad schools a chance to go to a free great one also we got to have classes in hospitals which was so fun I felt like a doctor hehe. You are right the wealthier the school the better the students do. Like in Houston if you go to the affluant parts of town you will see their public schools have everything but you go to the poorer parts their schools are run down and their students are doing poorly because of lack of funding and support from the commuinty.

    p.s. I edited this post so many times because I just thought up of so many things to say :laugh:
     

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