Advice needed - my twin boys didn't get the 4 schools I requested

(20 Posts)
mummyoftwinsage4 Fri 19-Apr-13 22:33:13

My boys didn't get places in any of the four schools I requested places for. We were offered a place in a school 4 miles away in an area of deprivation (not my words!).

After numerous calls with the admissions department I have found out that a request for reconsideration and furthermore appeal will be fruitless due to the number of such applications already received.

My parents have very kindly offered to place my boys into an independent school for their primary years but my concern is that as I don't have money myself would we not "fit in" with the other parents who can afford the fees.

I would add that one of my son's has a slight speech impediment and my parents firmly believe that a private school would be more beneficial to his requirements.

School fees do not include the extra curricular activities that I would have to pay for.

I have no idea what to do . Advice would be much welcomed.

AmandaPayneAteTooMuchChocolate Fri 19-Apr-13 22:38:17

Have you found out why you didn't get in? Do you have any idea what happened - did you expect to get in based on the effective catchment in previous years?

Waiting lists aren't about speed of response, they are still on admission criteria. The number of applications should only be relevant if what they are saying is that, based on admission criteria, you are no. 1001 on the waiting list.

tiggytape Fri 19-Apr-13 22:40:27

You may not have got a place initially at any of the schools you listed but do you know where you are on their waiting lists?
There can be a lot of movement over the Summer and if you are number 1&2 or 3&4 on any list (or even further down on many lists) you may well be offered places very soon.

You should check you are definitely on all the waiting lists as sometimes being added isn't automatic.

The advice that appeals are hard to win is true if there are 30 children per class in the schools you want (30 is the magic number for infant school appeals because it is the legal maximum class size). If no mistake in allocations was made, you would probably have very little chance of winning. If however there are less than 30 (or multiples of 30) per class, appeals can be won by setting out a strong case and you can get advice on that here.

I can't help with the private school options. I guess it depends on what is available in your area.

suebfg Fri 19-Apr-13 22:47:17

I wouldn't worry about not 'fitting in' at private school. I was worried about this for a while but I don't let it bother me now. It's about your children's education - not about the social circles you are mixing in.

I've never encountered any snobbery from the school itself - everyone is treated the same.

mummyoftwinsage4 Fri 19-Apr-13 22:53:54

I have found out that my 1st preference had 98 people apply for 30 places (all given to siblings), my 2nd choice 168 apply for 90 places (58 given to siblings), my 3rd school had 40 places (38 given to siblings) and my last choice had 45 places (39 given to siblings).

I didn't stand a chance. I moved to the area just two years ago and bought a house in a very nice area and assumed (very wrongly) that I would be given a place in the outstanding schools nearby. The fact is that I am just not "as close" to any of the schools I requested as other families.

I am devastated as I truely believed we would get a place on one of them even if not the first choice.

We viewed a private school very close to us which I love .

Is it a bad idea to have the boys privately educated when I am on benefits? (Although I am going back to work in October). I would add that I was privately educated and my sister wasn't because of our different capabilities.

heidihole Fri 19-Apr-13 22:56:50

Seriously. Grab your parents offer with both hands. You sound so lucky to have this chance for your boys. Many people will be in the same boat, it's common for grandparents to pay fees. Don't worry about the social circle.

mummyoftwinsage4 Fri 19-Apr-13 22:59:10

Thank you. I appreciate your supportive comment.

mummyoftwinsage4 Fri 19-Apr-13 23:03:48

Thank you

amidaiwish Fri 19-Apr-13 23:20:24

It's very common for GP to pay fees. Schools often have a wider social mix than you imagine. Grab the opportunity and be grateful you have this as an option.

MortaIWombat Fri 19-Apr-13 23:36:48

Bite their hands off, you ninny! grin

difficultpickle Fri 19-Apr-13 23:39:26

Extra curricular activities aren't compulsory and not all cost money. Very few of the activities available to ds at his prep cost anything unless it involves an external teacher, eg judo.

Apparently it is common for grandparents to pay school fees (I wish!). If it is then the parents who benefit from this keep it very quiet indeed and in any case no one discusses how they afford to pay school fees.

Like any school there will be a range of wealth at the school, ranging from those that own their own island in the caribbean to those who just about manage to pay fees. No one is better than the other and the children do not care at all.

If private school is something that you are interested in then it doesn't hurt to have a look. All I would strongly recommend is you are candid with the prospective school about your dcs' needs. You need to be certain that they can cater for their needs. If your ds needs SALT then you may find that you will have to fund this yourself. Ime anything ds needed via the NHS wasn't a problem but anything that would usually be funded by the LEA had to be paid for. In our LEA there is no provision to fund any SN for dcs in private school and if you choose that option you would have to fund it, even if it would be free if your dc was in state school.

SavoyCabbage Fri 19-Apr-13 23:40:41

I wouldn't worry about the not fitting in. They won't all be going skiing every half term. And your boys will have the huge advantage of having each other. grin

Mutteroo Fri 19-Apr-13 23:45:44

Agree with those who say take your parents offer.

We aren't not by any means your average private school family, yet we managed fine & found there actually is no average private school family. We are fairly laid back & can rub along with most people, even prententious snobs who believe they are better than wveryone. We would just have a good giggle about them when we got home.

Do look at state schools again in your area though. You may find a brilliant little gem you hadn't consider & that little gem may have two places.

mummyoftwinsage4 Sat 20-Apr-13 00:04:36

As I am very new to this site and only joined to find out what other parents in my situation thought, can anyone tell me what the following mean:-

I am a complete virgin to online talk sites so would be appreciative if anyone could give me a quick course in shorthand!!

TheChaoGoesMu Sat 20-Apr-13 00:18:51

Dear son, local education authority, speech and language therapy.

TheChaoGoesMu Sat 20-Apr-13 00:19:30

I'd take your parents offer btw.

CointreauVersial Sat 20-Apr-13 00:25:25

Go on the waiting lists for the four schools (as previously said, it has nothing to do with how fast you ask to go on the waiting list, they will assess on the admissions criteria).

There IS a lot of movement before September, so you may get lucky.

Otherwise, say yes to the offer of private education. Really, you don't need to worry about not fitting in. It's your DCs' education that's important.

AmandaPayneAteTooMuchChocolate Sat 20-Apr-13 07:55:55

Have those sibling numbers been given to you officially? They seem awfully high. At three of the schools all/almost all the places went to siblings. Now that's not unknown at one school, especially if they did a bulge class a few years previously. But it seems odd that three local schools all had this happen the same year. You would expect sibling levels to be around the 50-60% mark even in a fairly high birth rate area I would think looking at our local figures. Some of the children admitted each year you would expect to be onlies, or to be the youngest child of the family themselves.

If they aren't official numbers, you might want to get them double checked.

PlasticLentilWeaver Sat 20-Apr-13 08:06:01

Take your parent's very generous offer. You won't be out of place.

PlasticLentilWeaver Sat 20-Apr-13 08:15:24

Should add, we moved DS1 to an independent school last year due to an in year move and no local state places. We have no regrets about that decision, he is so happy there and DS2 will follow him next year.

I have no idea what anyone else's finances come from and it is none of my business either.

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