So a little over 5 years in the field I am at a crossroads, and I figured that I might get some good advice from you folks, most of whom have been at it much longer. I am currently Sous Chef of a smallish country club where I have spent the bulk of my culinary career, having worked my way up from prep cook. I left briefly to run my own kitchen at an upscale pub and decided that it wasn't the sort of place where I wanted to work; too much emphasis on pumping out deep-fried pre-made crap as fast as possible, too little emphasis on quality. Fortunately, the club was eager to have me back, and I'm happy to be there for the time being, but I don't want to do the same thing forever. Right now I am weighing three options. 1) Culinary school in the fall. The next logical step for me would be to move on to one of the local casinos or hotels, but most of these places require two years of training regardless of your work experience. Having learned on the job, I would need some school to go in this direction. Downside: I am reluctant to cut back how much I'm able to work, especially since I already know a good deal of what I'll be doing at school. 2) Stay at the club. When I mentioned I was thinking about school (Which would mean having to step down from the Sous Chef position), I was immediately offered a raise and an eventual promotion when the current head chef retires. There is no firm timetable on when that will happen, but I don't think he wants to spend more than one more summer in the kitchen full-time. Downside: I will miss out on the opportunity to be exposed to new things. 3) ACF apprenticeship. This is more appealing than school, but I have no idea how to set it up, how widely available they are, or if you can use financial aid or if you get paid while you apprentice. It is important to mention that I am married and have two small children, so financial security is important and it isn't practical for me to go run off to Paris and apprentice under people with Michelin stars or that sort of thing. Thanks in advance for any input you guys can offer!