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Director lists advantages of University-Model Schools

Written on July 20th, 2009

Schools are cost-effective, based on significant parental involvement and provide college-preparatory education

An innovative educational approach that partners classroom instruction with parental coaching has several distinct advantages, according to Barbara Freeman.

The University-Model School, which blends characteristics of traditional public and private schools with home schools, is a trademarked name and concept for institutions that are members in good standing with the National Association of University-Model Schools (NAUMS).

“Most exciting to me is providing a quality education to students while giving parents the opportunity to be with their children,” says Freeman, executive director of NAUMS. “As all parents know, this is a such a short window of time, and more and more worldly pressures – and pleasures – are robbing parents of this time.”

Students in UM Schools spend a significant amount of time at home with their parents in the primary grades, gradually increasing their in-class time as they move up in grade levels. (For a full explanation, see University-Model School solution for Christian education today, says director, July 17, 2009.)

“Parents have more time to impart their own faith and values to their children, and they also have time to teach students study and organizational skills,” says Freeman, noting that research has shown a high correlation between outstanding college performance and strong organizational skills.

Another advantage of the UMS model is that it is cost-effective, says Freeman.

Since students spend less time in the physical classroom, expenses are less. Similar to college professors, most teachers work part-time.

If schools are able to schedule elementary students on different days than secondary students they can serve a larger student population in a smaller physical space.

All of these factors decrease the cost of an education through a UM school; typically this is set at one-half to two-thirds of what one would expect to pay in any traditional private school.

The UM School schedule, which is similar to that of college or university – students only attend school when they have classes – is another way the model prepares students for post-secondary school education.

With 44 years in education, 33 of those in public education, Freeman notes that she has a strong basis of comparison between traditional education and the UMS model.

In addition, she has two grandchildren who graduated from UM Schools, attending since they were in primary grades.

“They both received excellent academic foundations and both received scholarships from their respective universities,” says Freeman. “More importantly, they have strong relationships with their parents and are committed to the Christian walk.”

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