Wentworth Military Academy
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Mrs. Wentworth

Dear Mrs. Wentworth: My son is doing all right in school but he's struggling with math. He's also a bit lazy and could be doing so much better with all of his subjects. I am considering sending him to summer school but I'm afraid the local school just won't help to instill in him the habits he needs to succeed. On the other hand, summer should also have some fun in it. What should I do? A Worried Parent

Dear WP:
Today, getting into the best colleges and universities is very tough...and expensive without assistance. This reality demands that a student be very focused and committed to achieving the very best grades, almost from the start of high school.

I think you're very wise to consider summer school. There are many good programs and it's a matter of choosing the right balance of convenience, cost, location and quality. The place to begin is to sit down with your son and write down your goals. What college does he aspire to? What profession? What personal qualities, like manners or integrity, does he want to develop? Then examine the various schools you're interested in and see whether they help to fulfill these goals.

As an example, Wentworth, where I've been for 47 years, offers a six-week summer school that not only provides a rigorous review of core subjects such as English and math but also provides a structured environment that builds good study habits, character and leadership. Students spend half a day in the classroom and half a day doing activities or participating in Camp LEAD, designed to build self-confidence. It's a summer that perfectly balances learning and fun. Where he ends up going is for you to decide but the key is to take the time to map out your son's 'success strategy' and then follow it. You and, especially, he will be the happier for it.

'Mrs. Wentworth' is Norma Maring, Director Emeritus of Alumni Relations at Wentworth Military Academy. Write Norma with your questions at 1880 Washington Ave., Lexington, MO 64067 or send email to mrswentworth@wma.edu.

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