Phoenix Schools See School Choice as a Necessity

Neighborhood schools are quickly becoming a thing of the past. With such things as school rankings, school “grades” for each school, and the No Child Left Behind act, simply sending our children to the grade school down the street is going the way of the dodo bird.

Today, Phoenix Schools’ parents have the option of sending their children to almost any school they wish within the district serving Phoenix Public Schools. While some may indeed choose to stick with the neighborhood learning institution many, if not most, parents are enrolling their children in specialty schools that reflect their child’s interests, strengths, or just the style of education they want for their student.

Phoenix Schools now offer various Magnet Schools to meet the growing demand for school choice. Called “Signature Schools”, these Phoenix Schools offer numerous options for students attending a Phoenix Schools magnet program.

There is a downside to the Phoenix Schools magnet program. By sending children to schools further away from home families now need to import playmates or drive their kids across town to visit friends. Families in the Phoenix Schools need to balance their desire for the strengths of a magnet with the burden of travel time and being more spread out.

If you are interested in the magnet programs offered by Phoenix Schools here’s a partial list:

Montessori – This program serves Phoenix Schools students in PreK through 8th grade. It follows the international curriculum developed by Maria Montessori.

Performing Arts – Phoenix Schools students in 7th and 8th grades have the opportunity to participate in the performing arts throughout the school year with an emphasis on drama, dance, choir and instrumental music. Kindergarten through 6th grade students also participate in these disciplines.

Math, Science & Technology – Phoenix Schools 7th and 8th grade students focus specifically on math, science and technology. The science campus at Lowell offers special benefits to prekindergarten through 6th grade students, as well.

Traditional & Balance the Basics – Prekindergarten through 8th grade Phoenix Schools students engage in a heavy emphasis on reading, math and writing.

Global Community or Donde Vivo – Donde Vivo students in 7th and 8th explore their global community through an interdisciplinary curriculum. Each year the students have the opportunity to experience their global community by traveling abroad.

Second Language Acquisition – Second Language Acquisition is the focus of a program at Herrera School for students in kindergarten through sixth grade. Students are immersed in both Spanish and English in all subject areas.

Science Investigations – Phoenix Schools students in 7th and 8th grades engage in physical and life sciences during their regular science classes, as well as through an after school club with mentors from Arizona State University.

Magnet Schools offer options, but they’re not perfect. Most Phoenix Schools house magnet programs in less desirable parts of the city in an effort to draw more affluent and educated parents. But you and your child might find that it’s the right place for you.