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Private schools get boost from new grammars

(24 Posts)
HPFA Sun 11-Sep-16 06:48:33


There's been plenty of talk on threads about how new grammars will spell the end of many private schools. Don't sound too worried do they?

And all those comps who've lost their high ability children and the middle classes won't be seen as second-best will they? No, just as the most suitable school for certain children i.e. other people's children

2StripedSocks Sun 11-Sep-16 06:57:55

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ThroughThickAndThin01 Sun 11-Sep-16 07:02:11

We have paid for our 3 dc to go privately, ds3 still at school. I really don't think any of them will be in a position to put their own children through private school when the time comes. or just have one child.

Private schools are increasingly pricing themselves out of reach of more and more families.

HPFA Sun 11-Sep-16 07:15:22

2striped Maybe, just maybe some of those parents are thinking that the state school in their area is good enough and that it's not worth bankrupting themselves for a middling private school? Perhaps those parents will make a different decision when the choice isn't a good comp but a secondary modern?

2StripedSocks Sun 11-Sep-16 07:19:58

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

2StripedSocks Sun 11-Sep-16 07:22:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

alwayssurprised Sun 11-Sep-16 10:13:14

The privates are putting up a brave face to reassure parents who already have children in there, or new potential customers. Who will pay shitload for a comparable education which is available in state? They will lose a lot of their best students.

HPFA Sun 11-Sep-16 12:30:46

I think people are missing the point that there won't be comp options once you get grammars back. You're just assuming that all those kids will be in the grammars. Which I suppose says a lot.

Katelocks Sun 11-Sep-16 12:52:51

I don't think it is a comparable education in most state schools though. In my experience, and I appreciate this is only my experience, what private schools offer is a culture of high expectations. This doesn't necessarily mean A*/A for everyone but achieving the best you can do, even if your best is only a C.

For this reason, I would chose a private school over a state school, if I could afford it, in nearly every circumstance.

pinkflufyunicorns Sun 11-Sep-16 13:00:21

This is exactly what I see happening in Kent. The grammar schools get better results than the independents and are free. If you can get DC into a grammar school you do. If not the secondary moderns are mostly dire, failing schools and so those that can afford it go private rather than go this route. Grammar schools are fantastic for those that can get in but for the majority who can't it's put up or pay up.

BizzyFizzy Sun 11-Sep-16 16:25:13

I have taught in a grammar school, yet have sent my five children to independent schools.

The selective nature of grammar schools is not a reason for us to pursue them when independent is within our reach.

I hated teaching in that grammar school.

Being able to afford independent schools simply gives you more choices. I would say from my experience that the independent schools my children have gone to have trumped the feasible grammar schools and comprehensives.

Offline Sun 11-Sep-16 16:41:32

I could see what he says happening here.

Here we have good comps and a few outlying super-selectives.

Even though the comps are good , mc parents like to tutor and have a go at the super-selectives, for whatever reason. (competitive atmosphere, kudos, high performing peers) but as I say the comps are good and send kids to good unis etc. So when they don't make it to the super-selectives they are by and large happy with the comps. There is no problem with telling people that your child is on the comp, and no-one talks about what sets they are in.

However, if the top sets in the comps are skimmed off into new grammars, I very much doubt that these parents will be happy to send their children to what will be downgraded comps: everyone will know that they failed the 11+, they will worry about the cohort in the comp without the top sets, and my guess is that the mc parents of just-missed-grammar and middle ability kids will indeed head Private if they possibly can. In London if they have been in their houses for 10 years or so they will release the equity

In my borough .the proportion of parents using private schools has shrunk - not because of the struggling finances of the mc (it's gentrification central) but because the local comps are good and have a good social mix. High FSM, a critical mass of bright kids (from all socio-economic groups) a critical mass of mc kids (of all ability ranges). If the bright kids are taken out in greater numbers than the tiny few who go to super-selective, the MC will flee.

This is what Neil Roskilly is saying. I think he is right.

I know London is different , but this effect could happen in many places. Perhaps more so because people outside London do not have such high living costs, and neither do schools, so more leeway to decide to find money for school fees.

Violetsarentalwaysblue Sun 11-Sep-16 17:13:52

I know East Kent very well where the state choices are grammar or poor performing comp. Private preps do well because parents pay to get good preparation for the 11+ and all I know who failed it then went into private secondaries, despite their parents earlier in their school careers saying they wouldn't or couldn't pay past yr 6. These private school are frequently described as "schools for nice MC children who can't pass the Kent test". So it would seem a fair assumption that if other counties copy Kent and basically, bar a few faith schools, only offer grammar or a poor achieving comp with the top 25% creamed off then wealthy parents will pay for education.

pinkflufyunicorns Tue 13-Sep-16 09:47:36

Exactly Violet although I do want to correct you and say we do not have grammar schools and comps we have grammar schools and secondary moderns!

MumTryingHerBest Tue 13-Sep-16 10:45:47

BizzyFizzy Sun 11-Sep-16 16:25:13 I have taught in a grammar school, yet have sent my five children to independent schools.

Based on your hands on experience, would you say that M/C families can no longer afford private?

MumTryingHerBest Tue 13-Sep-16 10:56:19

Offline Sun 11-Sep-16 16:41:32 In my borough .the proportion of parents using private schools has shrunk

I'm not questioning what you have said, just want to ask where you found this information. I'd be interested in knowing if it is the same where I am.

BizzyFizzy Tue 13-Sep-16 19:19:00

Bit of a non-sequitur, eh? I think middle class parents find a way. We did.

bojorojo Tue 13-Sep-16 21:19:51

A half decent senior school is £15,000 pa after tax. Three children? Then you have to find £45,000 pa after tax and that is a very reasonably priced senior school and not top dollar! You would need to have a fairly high family income to have nearly £4,000 a month available and with trips, music lessons etc it would easily be this for 3 children. So, who is middle class? Can a Deputy Head afford this? A middle class nurse? What about anyone in the public sector who is not a senior manager? These would all be middle class but their income would not support private education. Privately educated children are now the children of business people, the higher valued professions or those who inherit or have grandparents who want to spend money before inheritance tax is payable. Few ordinary middle class can scrape the fees together for more than one child.

Violetsarentalwaysblue Tue 13-Sep-16 23:53:23

Areas like East Kent are commutable (just) for London many we know sold over priced London homes, purchased large houses in Kent for less than 1/2 what they sold their London home getting rid of or significantly reducing their mortgage mortgage and freeing up cash at the same time. If their child failed to get into a grammar school. My children are now grown up so we're talking pre recession here, but time I know many felt if they'd stayed in London, with their state options being pretty dire, they would have had have payed for an overpriced home and school fees.
I do agree bojorojo these families I'm describing may not be what you call as "ordinary MC" they're often professionals maybe self employed, surveyors architects etc. or hospital consultants with small private practices, perhaps accountants/solicitors for largish firms, but I'm not talking about very successful investment bankers on large bonuses.

Offline Wed 14-Sep-16 07:26:15

MumTryingHerBest: Lambeth. I read It in a Lambeth report about the need to keep building school places, and it gave the numbers for the shift from private to state. It was a while ago.
I also saw a map showing that Lambrth was the borough where your child is most likely to be in an outstanding school.
It isn't uniform across the borough, not all schools are ones that would re-assure a private school waverer by a long chalk.
There are also schools good just across the borough line that attract mc parents, too. SE24 can get into Charter in Southwark, West of Brixton Hill to Chestnut Grove in Balham, Pimlico from the Notth of the borough etc.

MumTryingHerBest Wed 14-Sep-16 07:50:12

Offline Thanks :-) My local school planning reports don't take into account the movement between private and state, projections seem to be based on birth rates in the local area.

haybott Wed 14-Sep-16 08:50:08

So, who is middle class? Can a Deputy Head afford this? A middle class nurse? What about anyone in the public sector who is not a senior manager?

You are not taking into account that many families do only have 1 child (few have 3) and that families typically have two incomes. Lots of kids in my DC's school have one parent who is a deputy head, works in health service admin, something like this, with the other parent earning a similar salary. Many of these people doing "ordinary" jobs would be very vulnerable to significant increases in fees.

I agree that a lot of parents have relatively low mortgages, having moved out from London or purchased their first before the prices escalated in the 2000s. I suspect that parents now in their early 30s, with higher mortgages and more student loan debt, will find it harder to pay fees than those currently in their 40s/50s.

Peregrina Wed 14-Sep-16 08:58:23

It's hard to see exactly how this will play out. Some little preps which are crammers for the 11+ will spring up. Some Independent schools will lose children to the grammars, but at the same time, some less selective independent schools will attract those who don't get into the grammars. The big name independent schools won't be affected.

Violetsarentalwaysblue Wed 14-Sep-16 09:01:48

haybott you're right those in their early 30's with big mortgages etc will struggle. Also the fact that their parents are probably living longer and spending their cash and or selling significant assets like their homes to pay for care means that grand parents are less likely to step in to help and they will inherit less or maybe nothing at all and also importantly when they are older and their kids have grown up.

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