Trying to get non-catholic DS into catholic school..

(106 Posts)
VeryProbablyStupid Sun 18-Nov-12 08:21:50

I don't know if this is the place to post this..

DS is 27 months. I have started looking at the local schools etc. There are only three viable options. One school is in a kind of rough part of the area, although it does have good reports etc. Another is a welsh speaking primary, which Im not that keen on although I wouldnt count it out totally. The third is my favourite, its very small, only about 160 pupils in total, seems wonderful. Its a Catholic school, and they have told me seeing as DS is not in the actual catchment area and that he is not catholic, I would need to attend an interview to say why I would value a Catholic education..

There are a few muslim kids in the school, and I know they are not all Catholics, so Im confident there would be a place for him, but Im worried about what to say! I like the idea of there being a strong set of morals, and while Im not religious, I went to a regular school with Lords Prayer and hymns etc and I dont think its a bad thing for kids to be aware of this etc. Anyone been in a similar situation who can give me any tips?

weegiemum Fri 23-Nov-12 11:06:46

Why not go for Welsh? You'd be giving your son a genuine chance to be bilingual and there are loads of advantages that come with that, including more job prospects in the future, better results in maths, more skills in music, being easier to learn a 3rd language in the future.
I don't know how the Welsh system operates, butmy children are in the Gaelic medium education programme in Scotland. All 3 of them are performing above the national levels expected in both English and Gaelic, these English levels are the same as for monolingual kids. And though I've picked up a bit of the language, I don't really speak it at all, yet this hasn't held my children back.
If it's a good school, close by, then I'd look in to it and investigate the advantages of bilingualism. HTH.

HouseOfBamboo Fri 23-Nov-12 11:32:39

"I was referring to the fact that on their website they say they are happy to accept non faith children, but a few people on this thread have said that may not be true, but they will of course say it"

I think the fact that they almost certainly prioritise Catholic children above any other group means that their ideal is to fill the school with Catholic children - there's no getting around that.

I think some types of faith school which are largely govt funded are obliged to have a percentage intake from 'other' groups, but I'm not sure about the situation in Wales (which is presumably where you are?). If you google 'faith schools' you might find more info.

My point earlier was that if there aren't enough Catholic children to fill a school year then they will be forced to accept other children for financial reasons. Whether the school sees this as an ideal situation or not is a moot point... I'm not sure I'd want my child attending a school where they were offered a place effectively under sufferance, and despite their attempts at religious discrimination.

Having said that I'm sure schools' individual cultures will vary according to the staff and governors.

prh47bridge Fri 23-Nov-12 12:24:59

I sent this school's admission criteria to the OP offlist yesterday.

They appear to breach the Admissions Code for Wales in several respects.

- They do not prioritise Catholic looked after children ahead of all other Catholic children. Instead there are several categories of Catholic children and they only prioritise looked after children within each category. So, for example, some non-looked after Catholic children with siblings at the school will come ahead of looked after Catholic children who do not have siblings at the school.

- If there are not enough Catholic children to fill all the places they specifically state they will leave places vacant rather than admit children if the are unhappy with the parents' reasons for applying.

- No tie breaker is stated for placing children within a category in order.

- The governors have given themselves the right to allocate places at their discretion for individual or exceptional cases.

- There is a comment within the admission criteria that suggests the governors view the Admissions Code purely as a set of recommendations. They do not seem to understand that compliance is compulsory.

It seems the LA's admissions forum has seriously fallen down on the job. A number of schools in their area seem to have similar breaches of the Code. If they were in England and someone referred this school to the Schools Adjudicator they would definitely be told to change.

VeryProbablyStupid Fri 23-Nov-12 17:04:47

I will bear the welsh school in mind. I only worry because I am awful at learning languages and dont want my not speaking welsh to affect DS.

It seems to be such a complicated situation. I naturally assumed if they were under subscribed DS would get in but as the previous poster has shown, they really really dont want this to happen, so much so they will breach the Admissions Code!

BuddyTheChristmasElf Fri 23-Nov-12 23:33:55

"I will bear the welsh school in mind. I only worry because I am awful at learning languages and dont want my not speaking welsh to affect DS."

OP I don't understand this, I'm rubbish at languages, and as such I go out of my way to increase my DCs exposure to languages since they won't be getting any help with them from me IYKWIM, so because I am rubbish at them, a bilingual school would be more of a bonus to me than it would be if I had an aptitude for them myself so could help the DCs if they ever wanted to learn??

VeryProbablyStupid Sat 24-Nov-12 13:57:49

I think its a genuine concern. Whether it will improve ds's language skills isn't ny issue, I think a lot of people worry that if they don't speak Welsh they can't send their child to a Welsh school. Giving him the opportunity doesn't change the fact that there will no doubt be times that he will need help that I can't give him.

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