My oldest son will be entering high school next year. Please bear with me as I tell you a bit about him (brag). Brian has always been a smart kid. He's always read well above grade level, he has an incredible memory, and is in a gifted/talented math program. Math is a real strength for him, and he could do complicated multiplication/division in his head in early elementary.
Our town's pulic school system is a decent one (I survived it). However, we are getting pulled in several different directions. His uncle is a track coach at a school around 40 miles from us (1.25 hr commute each way) The school has agreed that since he has no kids of his own, they would allow him to have his nephew (Brian) attend for 1/2 tuition. The regular tuition is $8,000 per year. It's an all boy school with probably the second best reputation for a high school education in the state.
BIL is really pushing for this because my son is an excellent runner and would certainly help the school's track team. Brian loves to run, but he's also an excellent baseball player and soccer player. I KNOW BIL would pressure him to run track year 'round and he'd have to give up all other sports. I don't think Brian would be happy with that.
To make things even more complicated, we got a call from the coach at another private HS (I'll call School B), which is an amazing opportunity. It's approx. 30 miles away, except we would't have to go through a city, so the commute would be about 35 min. It's THE school to go to, education-wise in the state. They have an extremely high rate of kids that go on to Ivy League, something my son has in his head that he wants to do, or at least be accepted to. In my mind, being contacted is truly an honor. The kicker...tuition: $22,000 a year . Now, I love my son, but $22,000? LOL Even if I could afford it, is this reasonable for high school?
The school has offered a scholarship, but we haven't heard how much yet. They also want him to run for them, and I think he'd also have to commit to giving up the other sports.
Our local public school doesn't have a track team at all, so he'd be allowed to run with the next town over, while still attending our hometown school.
What to do? He also has two younger siblings, so can I justify sending him to a private school, wiping out all my finances for the other kids? How fair is that?
Also, Brian is very goal-oriented. He's not happy with straight A's, they have to be A+. He's a perfectionist. There are alot of down sides to that, though. He gets migraines at least once a week. He's very stressed and obsessed with perfection. He's 13. I want him to be a kid. He needs to just goof off sometimes, have fun. When I went to the website of School B, they have a link on there called "The Pressured Child". No way do I want him pressured.
When I ask him what he wants to do, he says he wants to be able to play whatever sport is in season, but wants School B for the education.
As far as his future, right now he talks about going to law school. His dream job is to be a sports agent, which is perfect for him. He siged up for Spanish because he believes it will improve his chances in the field (think latin american baseball players). To me, the average 13 year old just doesn't think like that, and he can do whatever he wants.
I know this is long and if you're still reading, thank you for listening to me brag about my kid. He really is special. If this was your kid, what would YOU do?