St Martin's school Mill Hill

(16 Posts)
stella1356 Wed 22-May-13 23:07:38

My daughter's school has just informed us about 2 weeks ago that the school will be closing down. So I am looking for a school for my child. I visited St Martin's school in Mill Hill , its very small. Does anybody have children in this school? I have also visited St Hilda's in Bushey. Your views on these schools would be appreciated.

LePetitPrince Thu 23-May-13 00:11:30

Which school is shutting down and how old is your child? i would be iinterested to hear..

stella1356 Tue 28-May-13 20:09:59

Hi LePetitPrince, PSM in Stanmore is shutting down in July and my daughter is 7.

LePetitPrince Tue 28-May-13 23:00:18

Hi Stella, I hadn't heard that.. I do not have a child in St Martin's but someone I know withdrew a child after a very short time. Basically there is very little room on the site and the school itself is cramped. But there have been some people on here who have raved about it.

Have you thought about Belmost in Mill Hill? A lovely well rounded school and really beautiful grounds.

Kitchencupboards Wed 29-May-13 00:14:15

It's tiny and cramped with absolutely no facilities but academically good. Personally I think there are better options. Have you tried Aldenham?

fishtofry Tue 03-Sep-13 20:40:10

Hi my son is at St martin's and he is thriving - depends on your daughters character if it suits. have you thiought about The Mount School - just up the road form St.Martin's?

fishtofry Tue 03-Sep-13 20:43:38

meant to say they have spacious grounds and is much bigger

Lauriepops Mon 06-Oct-14 20:21:46

I have some dear friends that used to have children at St. Martin's. They were removed. It is very small, dated with a lack of facilities you would expect to see in a school. One child complained lots about being picked on, and intimidated by a certain teacher.....he had tales daily with whom this teacher picked on each day and what was said. . . Or "verbal abuse" as he liked to call it. He is now doing brilliantly and his confidence has excelled since leaving. He is achieving much higher grades. I'm not sure what it's like now, and I don't know any one else's opinion on St. Martin's so this could well be only a few children and parents that I am aware of that didn't like it.

FredRidgemont Wed 06-Apr-16 17:17:58

hi

may I ask in your opinion what sorts of children would thrive there? i've heard it is sort of place where "you get a hug when you come" and as it is very small so it really has a family feel. I found this rather appealing.

the facilities and space are not major issues I wonder if they are academically good at the end of the day, and considering that the fees are >20% cheaper ...

do people still take their children out after year 1? seems they no longer enrol new pupils after year 1. was it just the nursery/reception/year 1 that were not so great?

Sistersweet Fri 08-Apr-16 13:19:13

They've just had an inadequate ofsted and had over 25 children removed from the school over the summer holidays. You shouldn't have a problem getting a space but it doesn't sound positive there.

FredRidgemont Sat 09-Apr-16 09:05:26

OMG, many thanks for pointing that out, I didn't realize that at all.

By over 25 children removed, does it mean that parents take their children out, after seeing the report?

FredRidgemont Tue 19-Apr-16 23:18:25

Does anyone know if there were changes in teaching staff recently? seems no longer there's PE coordinator?

according to ofsted the fee has increased from £6,069 to £7,790 in the last 4 years, however looking at their fee sheet it only increased £100 in the last two years, was there a big increase back in 2012/13?

Many thanks!

FredRidgemont Sun 24-Apr-16 19:31:30

Now I've just had a good read of the report...Have to say this inspector seems more fussed on non-soft things such as process, procedures and standards.

The main issues seem to be procedures, as they get inadequate Leadership and Management because: 1 safeguarding procedures, fire assessment; 2. Parent's concerns are not heard and are not informed adequately about children's progress. However it says despite these failings, pupils do feel safe

It's still appealing to us reading the Behaviour Section: all children are courteous and considerate, no disruptions in classes, no bulling, strong community spirit, respect and tolerance, strong spiritual and moral awareness

Teaching and Achievement are good, not outstanding, but I've not seen any schools in the area with outstanding Teaching and Achievement. From Y1 they focus on extending vocabulary and fluency, from Y4 start preparing secondary school entry and most gain their 1st choice of school.

In 2011 report, the inspector mentioned about "Pupils’ undoubted musical, speaking and dramatic skills ", "family feel", but words like these were not seen at all in the new report.

I guess what really concerns me is that from what Sistersweet said above, that's about 20% of the students there, this could result in huge impact on their financial matters and staff moral.

1LuckyGirl Sat 30-Apr-16 04:43:02

I read this post with some concern when I was recently looking to send my children to St Martin's. My children were unhappy at their previous school and I was concerned and unhappy with how impersonal, inflexible and uncaring their old school was.

St Martin's school had come highly recommended by several people: three who'd known the school over the course of the last twenty years and two who currently have children at the school. This post, combined with the recent OfSTED report, made me very apprehensive.

HOWEVER, I'm glad that I went to see it for myself, made my own judgement and took a huge leap of faith in changing my children's school. It was not an easy decision to make.

It's true that a number of pupils have left/ are leaving at the end of this term. However, there has historically been movement at the school with pupils leaving as new ones start. In fact, what some parents find appealing for a child age 4 can become the very thing they decide that their child has outgrown by the age of 8 (ie physical facilities for sports on site, etc.). But I'm not interested in that. I wanted a school that was academic, nurturing and physically smaller in both class size and school population.

St Martin's is robust and well-led by a very caring team of staff who are genuinely interested in the academic, social and emotional welfare of each and every individual at the school. It's a gem of a place and quite unlike any other school I've come into contact with (as a teacher or parent).

The school doesn't profess to be a big sporty product. Yet that doesn't mean that sports is overlooked. The children use a large, local sports centre for PE (gymnastics, swimming, etc.) and enjoy making use of their excellent facilities.

Is it a school I'd send a sports-mad child to? Probably not. But I wasn't looking for that. I was looking for a school that prided itself upon academics but not at the expense of instilling a sense of joy for learning, a caring and secure emotional environment and an emphasis on the arts. The small class sizes and physical feel of the place is second to none.

For those who've not yet experienced a larger environment with bells on as far as facilities are concerned, the allure is understandable. But not justified. As with all schools, it needs to be a good fit. We had tried the bigger, more soulless, academic hothouse. I'm also privileged to have a good understanding and an insight into reading between the lines of OfSTED reports. In fact, having worked at a school many of the pupils leaving have head to, I pay even less heed to reports!

My children were not happy - or academically stretched at another well-reputed prep school with a good OfSTED report. Here, they have been. Unequivocally.

I'm not an easy customer to please but I've had excellent communication from the staff (Headteacher as well as all staff members). It's an incredibly flexible and accommodating school. If your child is gifted, they can adapt like no other school I have known. Equally, there is a range of abilities among pupils and all are catered for rather than pushed into square-shaped pegs.

If any parent has a child they feel would benefit from small class sizes, a nurturing environment and academic excellence, I'd highly recommend it.

Summydays Wed 04-May-16 12:00:24

Hello,
I felt compelled to write my own opinion on this thread due to the fact that my child currently attends St Martin's School.
This is a completely unique school, my child is one of 16 children in her class with two amazing teachers. Children get a lot of attention from teachers, on a one to one basis in class. This is alongside the high levels of academia, which children are taught subjects French, Maths, English etc at a level where they are challenged as individuals.

In answer to the question posted by FredRidgemont, "in your opinion what sorts of children would thrive there?"

I think that all young children girls and boys alike, do thrive at St Martin's. Each child has there own personality with there own unique qualities. St Martin's is a school who will work with the parents to bring the best out of your child, encourage confidence and bring a sense of being grounded, supporting each child to focus and enjoy school life.

Perhaps come and see the school on one of their working open days the next one is actually tomorrow, Thursday 5th May. Get a chance to see the children in class and also talk to teachers.

Gclana7 Mon 27-Jun-16 13:59:14

I have 2 friends who have recently withdrawn their children (5 in total) from the school. I'm thankful that I didn't opt for St. Martins.

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