decision on 1st March? Anyone want to sit and sweat it out with me?

(418 Posts)

Urgh I am starting to feel queasy. I just want to know now. PFB (dd1) doesn't care which school she gets into and dh is being irritatingly pragmatic.

Is anyone else twitching nervously?

ByTheWay1 Sun 17-Feb-13 18:20:34

Nope - there is a massive chance chez ByTheWay1 that the first choice will be given.... her sister goes there, it is in catchment and her birth year locally is soooooo low that her current class has 20 in - and it is the same at the 6 other feeder schools.... will be a BIG shock if she doesn't get in.....

so not twitching, but available to hand hold and soothe worried brows..... can supply (virtual) lemon drizzle cake too!

gazzalw Sun 17-Feb-13 18:26:06

I don't envy you at all. We were at this stage last year and will be again in a four more years for DD. Just hang on in there and don't panic. I know it's easy to say, but it's worth remembering that even if you don't get your first choice school, there's an awful lot of movement in the first month and if you hang on in there you will probably get the outcome you are hoping for! wink.

To be fair we are lucky in thay we have 2 great schools and a good one as our 3 nearest schools. Our first choice is an academy though so it is a lottery and distance doesn't matter within our LEA. Second choice we are borderline for getting in based on the last 2 years furthest distance. Third one is farthest away and all 3 are massively oversubscribed sad I keep worrying that we will get offered one of the 2 next nearest which are both AWFUL sad

SoImpatient80 Sun 17-Feb-13 19:36:35

I'm counting down the days! DD is quite cool and calm about it and DH is so laid back about it all he's almost horizontal lol. Just so nervous she won't get her first choice and its where she really wants to go! Next 13 days are really going to dddddrrrrrraaaaaagggggg!

tiggytape Sun 17-Feb-13 19:43:53

Agree with gazzalw - I was waiting this time last year but we had a terrible outcome on March 1st - no offer made at all as all local schools were oversubscribed including the ones we didn't list. We were one of several hundred families in London to get no place. I sobbed fretted pretty much for 2 months and then DS got a place off the waiting list at a school which has been brilliant and we're really happy with.

I'm not trying to scare you all witless honest! Just to reassure you that the chances are you'll get a school on March 1st that you're totally happy with and that will be the end of it. But, if you don't, it isn't the end of the process at all. The lists move relatively quickly (but not for the first two weeks) and places at excellent schools can and do become available.

Of course though, it is much nicer if you know you have a safe bet and March 1st isn't too much of an ordeal.

I'm a nervous wreck waiting, but Mankyboy1 couldn't care less, and isn't bothered which school he is going to.

SoImpatient80 Sun 17-Feb-13 21:21:38

My DD1 passed the Kent Test and the GS that is our first choice own test but it'll come down to distance for us so its 50/50 for us. DD1 is quite cool about it and is very much 'I'm happy with getting any of the choices' but she also said she didn't mind either way about the Kent Test and danced all round the kitchen when we got the result that she had passed!! Think shes being brave for me lol

sausagesandwich34 Sun 17-Feb-13 21:31:21

we have a low birth year so pretty likely to get our first choice, our second choice isn't bad and I'm still waiting on a bursary appeal from a v selective indie

doesn't stop me fretting though

dd is more concerned because a large chunk of her friendship group live further away than our first choice state

she's accepted that if she goes to the indie she wont go with her friends, but if she stays local and they end up at different schools she will be upset

I went through this two years ago. I managed to hold it together till half term, but then I was pretty much beside myself until we got the email.

This time is not nearly so bad as DS2 will definitely get a place at our first choice school on at least two admissions criteria, possibly three (and we only need one).

Three did you get the email at midnight or later in the day?

We also have 2 dds in year 4 so this will also determine their education too. I really want them to be at the girls academy.

xyx Sun 17-Feb-13 21:52:33

Hi MsInga, Im fretting a bit now, but nothing we can do. Touch wood (touches head) for you!

Tiggytape, I'm expecting to be in a similar position to you on March 1. Choice 1 is a superselective, 2 is DC1 school; we're going on catchment as there's no sibling policy but we're twice as far away as last year's cut off, so unlikely; DC1 got in on med grounds. Choice 3 is an oversubscribed Church school; we don't fit all the criteria. Choice 4 is our nearest school but so oversubscribed that even 10-15 minutes walk is possibly too far out of catchment. Choice 5 is very nice but too far so I'm not keen even if we did get in and Choice 6 is just ok, better than the others round here so we put it down to avoid them.

What do we do if we get, for example, Choice 5? Do we have to turn it down and go on the other 4 waiting lists? Or can we accept the place, go on the waiting lists and ...wait? Do the schools deal with all this or is it back to the council?

Thanks!

BoringSchoolChoiceNickname Sun 17-Feb-13 22:02:20

Accept your offer xyx. If I've learnt anything from MN education threads it is Always Accept Your Offer. Nothing good will come of rejecting it.

Then go on every waiting list you fancy, even if you didn't apply there in the first place. Then wait and pray.

xyx Sun 17-Feb-13 22:09:24

Yes better to accept than not. Good advice, thanks

tiggytape Sun 17-Feb-13 22:20:29

xyz - it does sound very much like our situation. DS passed one 11+ but for a super selective school a fair trek away and didn't get an offer in the end (more pass the test than can be offered places). We didn't mind that so much as we have decent local comps but, as it turned out, we lived too far from even the nearest one to get in. Ditto every other school in the area so we didn't get any offer at all. It was a low birthrate year but the population around here is dense so the schools fill up quickly with tiny catchment areas plus a lot less people opted for private that year than in previous years.

After Easter we got offered a good school but miles away from home. It was far from ideal but we accepted it. Really, you have to accept any offer you are made even if it is awful because the LA only have an obligation to make you one offer. If they make it and you reject it, you're on your own - there is no obligation for them to find you anything else. We stayed on every waiting list though and started preparing for appeals.

Then in early Summer we got another offer from the waiting list for a local school so we rejected the first school and accepted the second and breathed a massive sigh of relief. By that stage we had appeal dates lined up and were glad they weren't needed.

As I say, it has worked out very happily for DS. He is in the right school for him and doing really well. I'm not pretending it wasn't a stressful process but it definitely worked out for the best in the end. Mind you I am not looking forward to going through it all again for DC2 (we get no sibling priority and still live in the same house)

We got the email at about 5pm ish on March 1st (Hertfordshire).

tiggytape Sun 17-Feb-13 22:30:34

In London, parents can log on to the online admissions service from 5pm - it didn't crash last year and was ready on the dot of 5pm.
Emails were also sent at 5pm but took several hours to actually arrive in some cases
Letters arrived in the post the next day to confirm the news.

All of that side of things was very well organised but it was a little frustrating waiting all day to hear. It also meant having the children at home when the news arrived rather than having time to process it and telling them later. In other counties, they get the emails or can log on just after midnight on the 1st.

Bati Mon 18-Feb-13 00:13:03

Massively nervous, thinking about it continuously
Dd sat 2 different 11+ exams and passed them both. 1 of them covered 2 schools so it has given us 3 grammars to choose from.
Our 1st choice allocates on distance and last yr they went to 7.9 miles. We live 7.1 miles away. This yr more children sat the 11+, no idea how many passed so really worried over the distance.
2nd choice is a catholic grammar which allocate to catholic children 1st. We are catholic so pretty sure if we dont get 1st choice she will get this school. 3rd choice was the remaining grammar.
My main worry is my dd fell in love with the 1st choice school and I know she will be heart broken if she doesnt get it
I phoned our school allocations to find out what time I can log on for results and was told half past midnight (12.30am) so will be sitting up to find out.
Hope everyone gets the results they want

thininside Mon 18-Feb-13 09:14:56

5pm!!! I was to log on at one minute past midnight!!

tiggytape Mon 18-Feb-13 09:22:27

thininside - many parents were of the uncharitable probably well founded suspicion that the Admissions Office closing at 5pm just as the results went 'live' was no coincidence.
There were discussions on MN last year where we imagined one lady hovering with her hand on the light switch whilst another Admissions Officer pushed the 'send' button before they all legged it out of the office shouting 'don't answer the phones'

In Essex you can log on at midnight and, since some of Essex borders London, some people in the same neighbourhood got results long before others.

thininside Mon 18-Feb-13 09:27:26

Haha !!

Yes, can imagine it!

Think I might still try at 00:01 though, they might be nice in our area.

SoImpatient80 Mon 18-Feb-13 09:41:59

In Kent apparently we get an email at 4pm bu this has been know to take a few hours to get to some!! A couple of years back a friend of mine logged on to the admissions website on the Sunday when the allocations were due out on the Monday and the allocations were there! Don't think I'll be able to resist checking the admissions website during the day wink despite being at work all day arrrggghhh

gazzalw Mon 18-Feb-13 10:01:57

Gosh Tiggytape, I just remember you being so helpful last year at around this time! I can't believe you had major probs getting a school for your DS - thank goodness it all worked out in the end...

Yes, I remember having 'clocked' the logging on in the dead of night on the off-chance that the offers would be 'up' but it didn't happen in our London Borough. I suspect that for whatever reason (possibly it's related to the number of disgruntled parents there are going to be!), the London Boroughs run a very tight ship on Offers Day.

A tip though....if you are on a waiting list for your DC's preferred choice school keep up the contact with them. DS got his 3rd choice grammar school but really wanted the second choice one and we discovered that he was 9th on the waiting list, having got the cut-off score but living further away than a lot of the other boys. Well, within a month he had his place - the irony was that the school sent us the offer directly and then we confirmed with them and our local Borough too - the latter was not happy that they'd been circumvented in the offers process! I think we'd possibly have waited another two weeks if it had gone thro' official channels first. If you build up a good rapport with a school's admissions department it really helps as they will give it to you 'straight'

Good luck everyone! We have friends with DCs in Year 6 this year so it's stressful again. Curiously though a lot have gone down the private school back-up option route, just in case.

I am dreading this whole thing with DD as she, as with your second DC, Tiggytape, will be part of the baby-boom cohort. I cannot help but think that the Boroughs/Education Authorities have not really acted to increase the number of secondary school places in anticipation of the upturn in demand which is just around the corner. hmm.

This is the thing. DDs friends are apparently all going to our 3rd choice and she wants either that one or the all girls academy. I am fairly confident that her 2 bffs are going to a local independent which isn't an option for us. We wanted her to choose a school assuming that she would be going to school with no friends from primary. That's the all girls one. She will know someone whichever school she goes to hopefully.

Would I be really pushy if I called the LEA to ask when we can access the decisions?

xyx Mon 18-Feb-13 12:13:18

gazzalw, thanks for tip about phoning schools (til they get completely fed up with me!) when we go on their waiting lists. May have to do that. Re: your dd, the grammar school competition will only get worse, may have to start prep earlier or try a prep school for y3-6 as some include vr and nvr in their curriculum. It's not for us, can see dc2 following dc1 into a school where they'll be less stressed trying to keep up. Doesn't quite stop the guilt of not doing enough for grammar entry though! Good luck!!

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