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"I could never send my dcs to grammar school....

(771 Posts)
winkywinkola Tue 12-Jul-16 20:51:24

...because I think it's unfair on all those children who can't get in because they couldn't afford tutoring for 11+. But I will send them to prep and boarding school."

I was a bit perplexed to hear this from a mum at the school gate. Aibu?

EenyMeenyMo Tue 12-Jul-16 20:58:03

It does make sense - she is basically saying she won't abuse the state system by paying for tutoring and then getting schooling free. She's prepared to pay for schools so doesn't want to take up good free schooling she doesn't need.
I know a number of people who deliberately spend money on tutors and private independent school so as to get into good grammar schools- its cheaper than paying for the whole of school.

Witchend Tue 12-Jul-16 20:59:57

I would interpret that as "I don't think my child will pass the exam" but maybe I'm too cynical.

ThePyjamasOfACat Tue 12-Jul-16 21:00:53

Another parent who assumes all great school pupils are there through tutoring angry

belleandsnowwhite Tue 12-Jul-16 21:01:27

Yes you are, because private education is not payed for by our taxes.

CocktailQueen Tue 12-Jul-16 21:01:43

Agree with Witchend! Not all DC are tutored for the 11+.

MachiKoro Tue 12-Jul-16 21:02:46

Usually only uttered by those whose children are not suited to the grammar system.

peachpudding Tue 12-Jul-16 21:04:18

Witchend speaks the truth!

MollyTwo Tue 12-Jul-16 21:06:50

Agree with Witchend.

ConfuciousSayWhat Tue 12-Jul-16 21:09:23

Spot on witchend I have a dc at grammar and the kids come from all walks of life - we are a low income family ourselves and home tutored for the 11+ (read did a few bond books when we remembered).

What does make grammar schools prohibitively expensive is the uniforms which cost twice that of the local comp and nearly meant we had to withdraw our child from their place

WhoTheFuckIsSimon Tue 12-Jul-16 21:10:55

I suppose if that's their genuine opinion then it's nice thag someone is recognising grammar schools for their intended purpose.

There are too many kids round here who pass and then don't get a place because the wealthy parents rent a cheap house near the grammar for six months (never live there) and then because the school allocate places on distance they get places and the kids three miles up the road whose parents can't afford to rent don't get a place. All the time wealthy kid actually lives eleven miles away!

ConfuciousSayWhat Tue 12-Jul-16 21:12:43

In our county we have a mix of super selective (no catchment) and catchment area schools, with the catchment schools they accept a certain percentage from out of catchment but mix them in with the marks for in catchment kids iyswim

winkywinkola Wed 13-Jul-16 07:31:48

I do think her child would pass the 11+ though.

She's very fortunate though because at least half of her boarding fees will be paid for by the MoD.

In general, is using the private education system contributing further to the educational inequalities?

In terms of tutoring for the 11+, surely anyone can buy and use practise books. There's loads out there.

I would never send a child into an exam - any exam - without some sort of preparation at home or otherwise.

Renting a house in a catchment area is a different matter though. Schools are pretty hot in investigating this though, aren't they?

x2boys Wed 13-Jul-16 07:38:26

Sadly my child will never get a chance ar grammar school as there havent been grammar schools in my area for about 30 years i do think its a completley unfair system.

TychosNose Wed 13-Jul-16 07:41:40

Let me guess op you are tutoring your dc, but you couldn't afford prep and boarding school, so you feel personally slighted by this mum's position?

Foslady Wed 13-Jul-16 07:44:36

It's the intensity of the tutoring though - my dd did the practice papers advised by the school and got in - I know of one kid who had tutoring for over 2 years and then extra crammers every night for the week before........

TheRealAdaLovelace Wed 13-Jul-16 07:45:00

In fact I think that simply paying school fees is a lot more honest that fiddling the system, eg, lying about religion to use Catholic schools, or buying houses in the catchment of 'outstanding' state schools and therefore denying a genuinely local child a place, or paying thro the nose for tutoring for 'grammar' schools which are in fact way more elitist than private schools.
Therefore I agree with this woman that OP objects to.

TheRealAdaLovelace Wed 13-Jul-16 07:45:53

a lot more honest than....(obvs)

Huldra Wed 13-Jul-16 07:53:00

I used to live in a wealthy place that was also a Grammar school area. It was very common for children to be sent private at Primary school level and the tutoring would start 2 years before the exams. The thinking was that they could get into outstanding secondary education without the more expensive fees. She could be telling the truth and not trying to take advantage of the situation.

n0ne Wed 13-Jul-16 07:56:02

WTF?! My sister and I certainly didn't have tutors and we both got into grammar school. My best friend got in without help too. And conversely, a girl in my junior school DID have tutoring and didn't make it.

What a load of tosh.

StillRabbit Wed 13-Jul-16 07:58:31

I refused to have my daughter tutored as I figured that if she needed tutoring to get in then she would probably need it all through just to keep up. She got into the grammar school with no problem and is now waiting for her A level results.

My son MIGHT have passed his 11 plus with tutoring so I simply didn't put him in for it. He is at a local comprehensive and is doing okay.

Each to their own....

GinnyMcginface Wed 13-Jul-16 07:58:32

A bit off topic but

the MOD will pay half the boarding fees

The MOD pays 90% of the fees BUT this is CEA-continuous education allowance. It isn't to be used as a subsidy for private school, it is something military families who have moved and are likely to keep moving regularly can apply for so that their children's education isn't disrupted by military posting; one of our children went to four primary schools (in two countries) before they chose to board at secondary level (we, incidentally, chose a state school with boarding facilities) When you quote what she said, it sounds like you have added on the 'but I will send them to prep and boarding school' rather than it being a direct quotation from her. I can't lie, and maybe I'm being a bit over sensitive because of the MOD comment, but I think you sound a bit jealous, or at least a bit put out that she can send her child to private school. Apologies if that's not the case but it certainly sounds that way to me.

winkywinkola Wed 13-Jul-16 07:59:50

I don't object to this woman's view. I was perplexed by it as I thought it was contradictory.

I'm tutoring my dcs myself, yes, using books.

And I can afford private education. Lots of assumptions on here!

I'm not sure why any child should do an exam unprepared? Aren't parents supposed to work with their children? Would you not help them revise for their GCSEs? Or is that giving them an unfair advantage too?

winkywinkola Wed 13-Jul-16 08:04:02

Ginny, I don't understand. "....but it isn't to be used as a subsidy for private school."

It is used as a subsidy for private school. Boarding school in this case. I'm not anti that at all btw as continuity in education is a good thing.

sharknad0 Wed 13-Jul-16 08:08:49

buying houses in the catchment of 'outstanding' state schools and therefore denying a genuinely local child a place

sorry, I don't understand what you mean by that? If you only renting in a specific area for the shortest possible time, then yes, you would be fiddling the system (cue all the recent complaints about siblings being allocated a different school but in the correct catchment)
If you are relocating however, then you are becoming a local, so there's no problem.

Grammar schools are not necessarily the best choice anyway. In areas where they don't exist you can find some comp with much better results (and I don't necessary mean listening to Ofsted). You can also argue that a gifted child will do great in any decent school, whilst some won't achieve much wherever they are. Nothing to stress about.

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