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What is the best way to have a dig at a private school parent?

(232 Posts)
UrbanDad Tue 30-Sep-14 17:03:38

"No am I being unreasonable?" here. I am totally reasonable to have a go at an otherwise liberal mate who eschews a perfectly good state secondary school to send his DD to a private school miles away. He makes all kinds of rubbish excuses about how his DD needs nurturing, the local secondary is composed entirely of the Bash Street Kids and it doesn't have enough sporting or cultural activities. It's all a load of Horlicks and he knows it - it's just about allowing his DD (and him TBH) to mix with the "right kind of people". I cannot afford private school and even if I could or my DKs could get a scholarship I wouldn't send them there - I just think social apartheid for children is wrong and it's poison for social mobility.

He says "everyone wants the best for their kids". I agree, but my point is this - even for purely selfish reasons - I also want the best for everyone's kids (after a couple of generations I suspect I will be blood-related to quite a few of them as well) rather than to purchase a privileged status for my own. That will be poison chalice for my DKs as well - what? After all I spent on you, you can't even get a decent job? - and it inculcates them with a terrible ethos of "every man for himself" and "beggar my neighbour".

Does anyone have any other suggestions how I can humiliate, lampoon and pour scorn upon him for being a sell-out, please?

Georgethesecond Tue 30-Sep-14 17:05:50

Thing is, it won't work. All your words will be empty because he knows you can't afford it. So you don't really know what you would do if you could. And he knows that. And he will therefore ignore you. Sorry.

crossandcrosser Tue 30-Sep-14 17:08:20

Say nothing. Just be very smug to yourself when GCSE & A2 results come out.

StarlightMcKenzie Tue 30-Sep-14 17:13:11

You used to be able to say that at private schools the teaching was crap delivered by untrained teachers focussing mainly on exam coaching, ignoring the individual child and managed by throwing out anyone but the boring conformist kids.

But that appears to be all schools now sad

StarlightMcKenzie Tue 30-Sep-14 17:13:33

Or at least most.

captainproton Tue 30-Sep-14 17:13:37

hmmm what about class sizes? are they comparable? I want to privately educate my children, I went to a state school and the range of opportunites available to my children at private school is off the scale compared to what I had. I couldnt give 2 hoots how liberal you are. I feel sorry that your mate has to make apologises for putting his daughter into private education.

Sorry but you just sound jealous.

OracleOfDelphinium Tue 30-Sep-14 17:18:37

You need not say anything to him. He will have to spend most of his life apologising for and justifying his choice to spend his own money how he likes.

I hope your 'liberal mate' makes some nice private-school friends who don't have such huge chips on their shoulders.

emotionsecho Tue 30-Sep-14 17:20:43

Nothing you say will make any difference, numerous liberals sell out where their children are concerned. Interestingly some of the children of those who didn't sell out and stuck to local state schools have berated their parents for sacrificing their education on the altar of their principles.

molesbreath Tue 30-Sep-14 17:25:22

So you want to humiliate, lampoon and pour scorn upon your 'mate'

What a perfectly pleasant character you are...

mateysmum Tue 30-Sep-14 17:27:07

I really don't get your attitude. Your "friend" does not have to justify his choices to you. Sounds like you have already had a pretty good go at him and just want to impose your own narrow views on him and his kids.

Actually you could argue that him being able to send his kids to private school is evidence of social mobility, but people have many reasons for choosing private education. You are taking this very personally. Be happy with the choices you make for your kids and let him make his. Alternatively never speak to him again and create your own apartheid. That'd teach him to get ideas above his station!

TSSDNCOP Tue 30-Sep-14 17:27:38

Why are you this bothered though? He's made his choice, which he doesn't have to justify to you one little bit, and you've made yours.

Here's what I say when asked why my kids go to their private school: "my husband and I thought it was the best school for them".

As to anyone else's thoughts on the subject, well opinions are like arseholes.

Roseformeplease Tue 30-Sep-14 17:30:20

Tell him how much harder it is to get into University from a private school nowadays and that his child will need 1-2 grades more for the same place. Then go on to tell him that you are not prepared to risk your child's future by handicapping your child in this way.

Then run.

<Disclaimer. I am from a large family and passive aggressive behaviour is meat and drink to me.>

UrbanDad - it is his child, his money and his choice. If you really were his friend, you wouldn't be asking for ideas on how to be nasty to him about it.

Either you are jealous or a bully - either way, I am glad you aren't my friend. Grow up and learn that it is possible for someone to make a different decision to you, and for that decision to be just as valid for them and their family as your decision was for you and your family.

Branleuse Tue 30-Sep-14 17:34:54

I think you should certainly bring it up at every available opportunity.

You should also say OOOOH LAH DI DAH if he mentions something posh

And frankly, those of you going along with UrbanDad and giving him suggestions - you should be ashamed of yourselves.

If your child came home and asked for nasty things to say to a fellow pupil about their choice of sport or clothes or whatever, you wouldn't give them suggestions, would you? So why is it OK because the subject is private school?

Nasty, nasty, nasty.

madeofkent Tue 30-Sep-14 17:56:53

He won't care at all anyway, after a while. You probably won't be his friend. DH is a teacher who has taught at lots of different schools, and our DCs have always gone to wherever he is, so have notched up 15 schools between them of both types. Believe me, I preferred private every time. And I never, ever came across a private-school parent who said 'Oh I do wish my child went to the local college/comprehensive'.

Private schools make your children work and get their prep done, no excuses. They get used to having a work ethic. They get used to exams and interviews and dressing smartly for certain occasions. They are taught how to behave (even if they don't always use that knowledge). And their parents have so much invested in them that they are 100% behind the school, so the kids know they have to do as they are told. What they do when they leave is up to them. The parents have done all they possibly can to get them as far as they can, if the kids blow it, it's down to them. There are some pretty poor parents out there, really struggling to make ends meet in order to give their children a good start.

If you lived in an area where grammar schools existed (as we did, one of my daughters went to two, Kent and Lincs, while she did her GCSEs and A levels) and one child passed and the other didn't, would you tell the child who passed that they couldn't go, that they had to both go to the comprehensive so that they could pass on the uniform?

UrbanDad Tue 30-Sep-14 18:00:47

Easy, tigers! Some of you are clearly very sensitive about justifying your choice, aren't you?

And no, I'm not being "nasty". There's nothing wrong in ribbing someone who talks the talk about social equality then fails to walk to the walk - if he was a Boris Johnson type, I'd just have written him off as a "social conscience of nappy-less baby on a deep pile carpet" type. He's still my mate and he can (and does) dish it out as well when the mood takes him - I definitely think there's a bit more mileage in teasing him about this, though. He's essentially saying that he doesn't want his DD to hang out with people like my kids and frankly that's a bit rude.

By the way, I do agree that there is definitely a place for private schools - the 19th Century.

My children all went to state schools, and flourished at them, UrbanDad - and my dad taught in the state system all his working life, so I have no axe to grind for the private school system - I just think your request and your desire to have a go at your friend is nasty and smacks of bullying.

itsbetterthanabox Tue 30-Sep-14 18:04:01

I'd just say how disappointed I am that he is selfishly putting himself before the benefit of the whole of society. That a good person wouldn't want to perpetuate class and wealth divide in CHILDREN. It's his choose but he's made the immoral one.

minkah Tue 30-Sep-14 18:04:25

Urban Dad troll.

OwlCapone Tue 30-Sep-14 18:05:11

I don't have to justify my educational choices just as you don't have to justify behaving like a twattish bully.

celestialsquirrels Tue 30-Sep-14 18:09:13

So you think that your way is the right way and everyone else is wrong? Nothing wrong with having opinions and politics but insulting people who are supposedly your friends for having different ones just means that you aren't a particularly nice person. If your mate was posting saying "my friend is being a twat about how I educate my kids" I would be saying "those who matter don't mind, and those who mind don't matter."

You don't matter.

MindReader Tue 30-Sep-14 18:09:43

"easy, tigers" ??? hmm

But, honestly, what business is it of yours where he sends his kids to school? None, really.

UrbanDad Tue 30-Sep-14 18:10:25

By the way, have you noticed how those who do send their DKs to private school are always banging on about their own DKs and (implicity) never about the other children who apparently don't matter. Are we all lurching to the right in this country?

madeofkent - a system that performs the same social segregation function does not have "comprehensives" - it splits children aged 11 into grammar schools for well-prepped middle class kids and a "those who did not pass the Kent test" school (which is consequentially anything but comprehensive). Thank [insert Deity here] the grammar school system is dying out.

Sheldonswhiteboard Tue 30-Sep-14 18:11:30

Most good state schools have catchment areas where you have to pay an arm and a leg for housing, so there's social apartheid in the state system anyway. You sound like a jealous bully, get the chip off your shoulder.

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