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to not choose a school based on the fact that the Head shouted at DS when she was showing us round

(68 Posts)
Notalone Tue 08-Jul-08 17:39:36

I am changing 6 year old DS's school due to a change in my childcare arrangement and took the day off to visit two local schools. The first one seemed lovely, very relaxed, happy kids, nice teachers and good ofsted report. The second seemed to have better KS achievments and a big brand new building with fab facilities but the head was horrid. When she was showing us around any smile she decided to bestow on us didn't meet her eyes and she just seemed like a cold fish. The icing on the cake was when she took us into the school hall where they had balls left out from the earlier PE lesson. DS got bored while we were talking so picked up a ball and kicked it against the wall. She literally bellowed at him to put it back and not to behave like that, which he did. He then picked up some other apparatus and asked her what it was. She then shouted at him to put it back without even answering him and basically showed us out of the school straight afterwards.

AIBU to think that DS should not have been told off for kicking a ball in a purpose built hall? And AIBU to base my decision on this alone. I just feel that if there were any problems with DS if he went there, she would be as much use as a chocolate teapot.

mrsruffallo Tue 08-Jul-08 17:43:54

Go for the first one

meemar Tue 08-Jul-08 17:44:08

Sounds like she did a poor job of showing a good first impression of the school.

However, realistically how much contact would your son have with the head? She may be shouty but I would go on the other stuff you saw. You say the children look relaxed and happy, the teachers were nice and it has a good ofsted report. So she must be good at her job - that would be more important to me.

meemar Tue 08-Jul-08 17:44:45

sorry I misread blush - go with the school were the kids were happy!

bumpybecky Tue 08-Jul-08 17:45:09


from what you've said there was nothing wrong with school #1 and although on paper #2 school might appear better, now you've looked round and met the head, you know differently. Just as well you looked round really.

amethyst8 Tue 08-Jul-08 17:45:50

It would be a cold day in hell before I sent my child to a school where the head showed her claws right there in front of me. What is she like when parents are not around? Perhaps telling (not shouting) him not to kick the ball might have been ok because it was not appropriate at that time but not to even answer him when he asked her a question.

She sounds like a cow listen to your instincts. We have a sixth sense for a reason even if we ignore it most of the time.

itati Tue 08-Jul-08 17:46:57

It is the sort of thing that would put me off too.

Go with your instincts but don't miss out on the chance of a good school from one meeting or one person.

Aero Tue 08-Jul-08 17:46:59

IMHO, a good HT is paramount in the decision making process and should there be any problems you really want one who is approachable. I would definitely not choose this school based on what you've posted here. I could never respect or feel comfortable around someone such as you've described.

Our HT isn't great, but she is definitely approachable in the event of a problem arising.

Notalone Tue 08-Jul-08 17:47:14

The worse thing was I was so shock I didn't say anything. The way she looked at DS when we left was like he was something she had trodden in too sad

piratecat Tue 08-Jul-08 17:48:54

the first one the first one.

nice people are important v snotty head bitch teacher.

indianajane Tue 08-Jul-08 17:49:28

Sounds like you had a lucky escape then. What a cow. Thank your lucky stars you know about it now and not after sending your ds there.

LynetteScavo Tue 08-Jul-08 17:51:34

YANBU I would run a mile from the school with the horrid head.

Notalone Tue 08-Jul-08 18:21:50

Yes - you are all right as usual. One of my friends said I should go for the one with better results but my gut feeling is the first one without a doubt. As IndianaJane said - thank god I found out before I sent him there

RubberDuck Tue 08-Jul-08 18:23:37

The head (in my admittedly limited experience) makes a huge difference to the atmosphere and effectiveness of the school. I think you're lucky you found out her true colours this early on, tbh. Steer well clear.

Hecate Tue 08-Jul-08 18:25:34

I don't think it's unreasonable. I know from experience that the head makes or breaks the school. Their attitude affects the staff, you see. A good head - good policies, lots of support, good morale happy staff. A terrible bitch or bastard of a head - some shitty policies and practices and unhappy staff.

The head has things run their way. If they are unpleasant, they make the school an unpleasant place to be.

ime, anyway.

itati Tue 08-Jul-08 18:27:35

Our Head is v scarey but the school is good.

cocolepew Tue 08-Jul-08 18:31:17

Sounds like my DDs school. On her first day my DD got shouted at by the Head for coming out of the bathroom with her shirt untucked. She was 4.

BouncingTurtle Tue 08-Jul-08 18:36:49

She sounds a right Miss Trunchball! Go with your gut, the first school sounds lovely - I'm sure your ds will thrive better in a nicer atmosphere.

mumeeee Tue 08-Jul-08 18:42:49

YANBU. Choose the first one.

Guadalupe Tue 08-Jul-08 18:43:44

trust your instincts

Notalone Tue 08-Jul-08 18:44:16

See I tolerate a shouty head. In DS's current school the deputy head is really shouty but also she has a heart of gold and will do anything for anyone. This head didn't seem to have any heart at all - I know it sounds strange but from the second I met her I knew what she would be like. She gave out a horrible vibe

pagwatch Tue 08-Jul-08 18:49:45

when we were looking for a school for DS1 we visited a lovely one and the Head was fab.
Ds1 had passed their entrance exam with nearly top marks. Head was thrilled with him. All seemed fab and cosy.
We were taken on a little tour by a female member of staff. During the proceedings DS2 started to play up quite badly.
I explained that we would have to come back anothertime to view as DS2 had autism and was starting to struggle.
"He has what?" she shrieked. Turned and pointed at mortified DS1 "what about him - does he have it too?"

She was joint Deputy Head and special needs co -ordinator shock !

No . He didn't go there.

Cammelia Tue 08-Jul-08 18:53:25

shock at your experience pagwatch - unbelievable!

Notalone - avoid the shouty head school like the plague.

PrettyCandles Tue 08-Jul-08 18:55:50

I do not like the sound of that head. Very wrong and OTT reaction. KS results are not the be-all-and-end-all of schooling, especially at this age. From what you say my gut feeling is go with the good all-round school, nto the 'academic' factory.

PrettyCandles Tue 08-Jul-08 18:56:28

Pagwatch shockshock[shcok] unbelievable!

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