Speaking Up at Private Schools


Since private school education is a choice, parents need transparency to make an informed decision before choosing their child’s private school and in order to stay informed along the way. When parents choose a private school for their child, it’s usually because they love the school and believe it is a good fit for their child.

Concerned parents are noticing that some private schools seem to be pivoting from their stated missions, standards and curriculum, and more parents are starting to speak up. But speaking up can come with serious costs. Parents need to understand their rights and read their enrollment contracts carefully. Usually, switching schools is a last resort as parents typically want to maintain consistency and community for their child. Voicing concerns is a parent’s effort to protect their child, and their child’s school. And as paying customers, parents are a school’s key constituency! 

To be most effective, parents need to be polite and persuasive. Raising concerns with a child’s teacher to resolve the problem is a good first step. Next, parents can inform the school’s administration. Parents can be more effective when they connect with other parents and raise concerns together. The school’s board of trustees and donors may need to be informed as well. 

There are local groups and national organizations that provide support to private school parents. If you have an unresolved concern at your child’s school, submit an incident report on our website. Parents Defending Education is here to help!