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These are perfectly valid reasons to choose the private school?

(116 Posts)
Fandanglethat Thu 09-Jul-20 14:02:29

We've opted to send reception age DS to private school where he has been at nursery (they are a 0-11 school, DD is also in the nursery). We chose the nursery because it was nice, mid priced, hours and location worked for us. We always intended that he'd go to the local state primary, and we applied there and got in. I then started planning for before and after school care, holiday care etc and it is an absolute nightmare! The state school relies on off-site out of school provision or child minders, which are all full. The off-site wrap around care is extortionate (£25 per day) and is block book per term only. So we'd need to block book full weeks, though would only need 3 days provision most weeks (but changes weekly, at short notice). Holiday club doesn't take reception kids. The only local one that does is 10-3 which is pretty useless. And the cost! It's almost the same per week as nursery!

The school attached to DSs nursery has onsite wrap around provision at £3.50 per session, no booking required. Holiday club is £15, 8-6, onsite plus a few trips which cost extra. The fees are £3500 per year but when I've done the maths it works out at about £50 per month more than state school when you include the wrap around and holiday care.

£50 for a lot less faff seems very reasonable!

But my mum and some friends seem to have a real issue with the idea of private school. Is it a bad idea? It's not a posh school, it's not full of really rich kids. Most parents are professionals like us and choose to pay for education over foreign holidays etc.

So we've put his name down and paid his deposit. Are we making a massive mistake?

Educationally both schools seem fine, they have strengths in different areas.

OP’s posts: |
CoveredInBeeeees Thu 09-Jul-20 14:16:28

shock Maybe it’s down to area but our local private schools are three times that cost, even for reception. I’d be tempted at that price!

You’re not wrong to consider it at all and it makes economic sense for your family. I’d consider what you want to happen for secondary and factor that in, but otherwise so long as the private school’s strengths are bigger factors for your child than the state school’s, I can’t see what the issue is.

DappledOliveGroves Thu 09-Jul-20 14:20:36

£3500 per year? Are you sure it's not per term? That seems extraordinarily cheap for an independent school. Most schools here have fees of between £12,000 and £14,000 a year for juniors, going up to between £18,000 and £22,000 for senior school.

TeenPlusTwenties Thu 09-Jul-20 14:21:17

Seems reasonable to me.

Have you considered hidden costs - uniform, trips etc may be more expensive at the private school. Also holiday club is for more weeks at private compared with state.

CoveredInBeeeees Thu 09-Jul-20 14:21:26

I’m glad it’s not just me because I can’t get over that figure...

TeenPlusTwenties Thu 09-Jul-20 14:22:08

Oh, and private fees tend to go up by more than inflation so you need to allow for that too.

britnay Thu 09-Jul-20 14:22:21

Are you sure that is per year and not per term?

TinySleepThief Thu 09-Jul-20 14:22:24

All the private schools around here are miles more expensive than that.

I would argue caution as you're looking at it based on what childcare your child needs at 4. Surely its one of those short term pain situations whereby when your child is older they wont need the child care but you will still be paying the fees, which will most likely have increased significantly each year.

ScatteredMama82 Thu 09-Jul-20 14:22:35

£3500/year?? Are you sure?

Neednewwellies Thu 09-Jul-20 14:22:39

At £3500 a year, that’s a massive bargain! I’d worry about how they could sustain that. If they close down this time next year, would you still get a place at your local state school it is it oversubscribed?

Are you sure it’s £3500 per year? Even the cheapest, pretty crappy ones I’ve seen were about £8000-£9000pa. Double check you’ve read it correctly as schools will often state under fee section £3500 but the assumption is that you understand that’s per term. It does sound much more like a per term amount but I hope I’m wrong. Although, as I said, if I am wrong I’d worry about how they manage that and the quality of provision.

Persephonecall Thu 09-Jul-20 14:23:08

Wow. I’ve never seen such a cheap private school!

mindutopia Thu 09-Jul-20 14:23:53

Yeah, agree, are you sure that isn't per term. £3500 per term sounds about right for primary age around here. But I don't think you need to justify it, if you can afford it.

Xiaoxiong Thu 09-Jul-20 14:24:02

I'd go for it and say forget what other people think - you make the decision that is right for your DC and for you.

Are you sure it's £3500 per year though? That's per term round our way.

chocolatesaltyballs22 Thu 09-Jul-20 14:24:28

The only thing I would say about private schools is that the fees go up every year as the child gets older. Not withstanding that, the fees you are quoting sound very cheap. But by the time you get to high school you'd be talking about £12k - £15k depending on the area where you live and the school.

My daughter is in lower 6th and has been in private education since reception year. She loves it, but I have nothing to compare it to. But I would just think longer term. Can you afford to keep your child in private education til they leave school?

loobylou44 Thu 09-Jul-20 14:25:40

That's got to be per term. I very much doubt a private school exists that costs that much per year.

Panicmode1 Thu 09-Jul-20 14:25:47

That is super cheap - as others have said - is it not per term?!

And check that they don't go up depending on the stage in the school - we looked for DS1 (before we had DC2,3 and 4!) Our local one started off cheaper than nursery, but ended up being £15,000 a year by Y6......

lifesalongsong Thu 09-Jul-20 14:26:22

So we've put his name down and paid his deposit. Are we making a massive mistake?

No one can tell you that, you know your situation best, don't be swayed by what relatives or strangers think.

Apolloanddaphne Thu 09-Jul-20 14:26:40

£3500 per term is more usual.

BlingLoving Thu 09-Jul-20 14:28:33

It does sound cheap. But I noticed years ago that the fee for nursery/reception at our local primary was significantly lower than for Year 6. So basically, you started off with a fairly affordable rate, but it went up significantly each year. You should check that too.

BerriesAndLeaves Thu 09-Jul-20 14:28:59

It must be per term as £3500 is less than is spent on schooling a state school child per year (£5000)

EatsShootsAndRuns Thu 09-Jul-20 14:29:10

I would double-check your figures. Private school cost more than that when I looked into it for DD - and that was 20 years ago!

KarenMcKaren Thu 09-Jul-20 14:29:25

Sounds very cheap. I would have thought that was closer to the termly fee.

RedskyAtnight Thu 09-Jul-20 14:29:25

... or possibly it's £3500 a year if the OP's DC is still eligible for 30 free hours? They won't be eligible for too much longer though.

EllaAlright Thu 09-Jul-20 14:29:38

Thats cheap, I live near 2 private schools and that would be the cost for a term here.

BerriesAndLeaves Thu 09-Jul-20 14:30:06

For primary that is £6200 for secondary

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