By Dominique Barba.
Like we have repeatedly stated, education is a right. It is a duty of parents to choose which is the best option for their kids, they must choose between the multiple options offered by the school board. Keeping in mind that none of these schools qualify as private, we take the time to paint the panorama with additional information with the goal of helping you in your decision.
Traditional Public School: Administered 100% by the government through the school district. Aside from basic programs, public schools offer (varying by school) special programs such as AP, Honors, IB, Cambridge, etc. Each school has a predetermined radius of locations that determine automatic acceptance once all pre requisites are completed. (With the exception of over populated schools).
Magnet School: Far from traditional schools created to offer a curriculum tailor made for the each child’s individual interests, be it arts, sciences, technology, languages, etc. The goal is to attract students from different areas to obtain diversity and seek an integral education in a specific topic. It is vital for students to know their attributes and interests when choosing. Admission into one of these schools consists of meeting several pre requisites including academics, experience, portfolio, etc. It is only mandatory to live within the school district, not the school. Selection is done by lottery.
Charter Schools: Administration is shared between the government and a private firm. The differences in requisites in respect with the public system are explained in chart 1. Location is not a requisite for these schools; they have the right to choose their students, whether by lottery or specific selection. They comply with the public school regulations but not 100% as they have their own set of rules. They generally do not have special needs educations on their staff and are not forced to accept any given student.
- Magnet school applications are due on January 15, 2012
- For 2011-2012, 18 new magnet schools were created in Miami Dade County.
- The majority of magnet schools are high schools, but there are some middle and elementary schools. For information visit www.MIAMIMAGNETS.org
- 4 Miami Dade County High Schools were selected in the top US schools according to U.S News & World Report. The magazine recently published its annual list of high schools across different categories, including gold medal schools, top magnet schools, and top charter schools. On the list of America’s Best High Schools:
- Coral Reef Senior High
- Design & Architecture High School (DASH)
- Maritime & Science Technology Academy (MAST)
- The New World School of Arts
Comparisons Miami-Dade County Public Schools Charter Schools Principal Training/Certification Principal must be FLDOE Certified / extensive training No training, educational background or Educational Leadership certification required Teacher Training/Certification Teachers Certified by FLDOE Teachers Certified by FLDOE Facilities Facilities – Built to State Requirements for Educational Facilities (SREF) Compliance with Florida Building Code & Fire Prevention Laws Union Contracts Teacher/Staff Salaries Must follow Union Contracts Teacher Salary schedule followed Union organizations are rare Develops salary schedule Budget Central Office directed and monitored Oversight of budget(governing Board) & School Based Budgeting
School Choice & Parental Options is pleased to introduce Miami’s Newest Magnets:
Arthur & Polly Mays 6-12 Conservatory of the Arts ?Phone: 305.233.2300
Booker T. Washington Senior High – Academy of Engineering ?Phone: 305.324.8900
C.O.A.S.T. at Centennial 6-12 ?Phone: 305.235.1581
Cutler Ridge Middle – Criminal Justice & Forensic Science Academy?Phone: 305.235.4761
Hammocks Middle – Hammocks Academy of Legal Studies (HALS)?Phone: 305.385.0896
Homestead Senior High – Practical Nursing Magnet Academy?Phone: 305.245.7000
iPrep Academy @ Felix Varela Senior High ?Phone: 305.752.7900 x 5320
iPrep Academy @ Miami Killian Senior High ?Phone: 305.271.3311
iPrep Academy @ North Miami Beach Senior High Phone: 305.949.8381
José Martí Mathematics & Science Technology 6-12 Academy Phone: 305.557.5931
Miami Central Senior High – Engineering & Robotics ?Phone: 305.634.2621
Miami Jackson Senior High – Architecture / Digital Design Phone: 305.634.2621
Miami Norland Senior High – Bio-tech & Forensic Science? Phone: 305.634.2621
Miami Southridge Senior High – Criminal Justice Academy & Scholar’s Academy ?Phone: 305.238.6110
Riviera Middle – Science Technology and Investigative Research (STIR)?Phone: 305.226.4286
W. R. Thomas Middle – Cambridge Academy Phone: 305.995.3800