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Getting kids into central London for school

(33 Posts)
NotQuiteCockney Sun 23-Jan-05 17:57:08

Does anyone else here get their kids into central London every day for school? DS1 is down for an IS in the City, about two miles from us. I don't drive (and who would drive to there!). I don't think they have school busses. I could cope with taking the tube in with him a few times a week, but every day?

Do parents generally take turns bringing several kids in? Are there nannies or something who will do this for us?

(And how on earth will I get DS2 to a much more local school every morning?)

This is all nearly two years away, but that doesn't stop me fretting. Am I worrying for nothing?

aloha Sun 23-Jan-05 18:02:18

How old is he? My neighbour's daughter who is 12 goes to school in Pimlico from Camberwell by herself every day and is fine.

NotQuiteCockney Sun 23-Jan-05 18:03:25

Oh, should have said, he'll be 5.

I'd be ok with him doing that on his own at 12, or maybe even a bit younger, with a gang of mates. But not at 5, I don't think.

aloha Sun 23-Jan-05 18:05:59

Oh no! Not at five, of course. Could he not go to the local school? It sounds an horrific start to the day otherwise, frankly.

NotQuiteCockney Sun 23-Jan-05 18:07:51

He's already at a local IS (15 minutes walk away! Right next to the childcare co-op his brother will go to in a year!), which is where I'm inclined to keep him. But DH really likes the London school. It is nicer. But I like him going to school locally, having local friends and so on.

I don't have to decide now. I just look at mornings now, which are a bit hard, and think ... how on earth will that work with central London?

RTKangaMummy Sun 23-Jan-05 18:10:21

will itr make a difference when he gets to common entrance?

Does london one feed senior school of choice?

RTKangaMummy Sun 23-Jan-05 18:11:05

could he go at 7 and then little one be 5 and both go?

NotQuiteCockney Sun 23-Jan-05 18:16:53

Yeah, it feeds all the right senior ones. So does the local one, but not so much. The current head of the local one seems like a completely nutty insane senile-type person (JJ may know what I mean if she's about ...) so maybe things will change when she retires this year ...

And yeah, maybe they'll both go when the little one can go ... they'd be 8 and 5 ... I guess I'll need to talk to the school about the practicalities.

A neighbour says she'll take him in, but that seems like a big imposition. DH says he'll move job to near to the school, which isn't impossible, but a bit complicated. And either would only cover one way.

RTKangaMummy Sun 23-Jan-05 18:23:03

so in reality you are talking of moving him at the same time as new head arrives

is that correct?

Sept 2005?

A new head will really change school so perhaps stay and see what happens

but will he be able to join at 8?

NotQuiteCockney Sun 23-Jan-05 19:04:59

No, he's meant to move Sept 2006. So there's a year in there. I don't know when we need to give notice to old school, and when we need to actually agree to join new school.

The old school isn't dreadful or anything. I guess part of the appeal of the new school is that it's a lot like the one DH went to at that age, and loved.

Twiglett Sun 23-Jan-05 19:15:32

Gawd I wouldn't

primary school IMHO should be local .. ideally a short walk away .. local friends are important

the tube every day with a 5 year old during rush hour? [shudder]

NotQuiteCockney Sun 23-Jan-05 19:20:44

Well, yes, quite. I was bussed a long way to school, and had no local friends, and it sucked.

I would normally bike it, and maybe that's the solution. By then I won't be bf or pregnant (probably) so may well be up for it. And by then, DS1 could be on one of those things on the back that let him pedal, too.

The annoying thing is, from here to there is one bus. I'd just need to find someone going into work on that bus every day at the right time, and make an arrangement with them.

So who on earth takes their kids to these schools in the City? Nearly nobody lives there! Maybe they work in the City, and take them in with them? But this school kicks them out at 3:30, before any city folk have finished work.

RTKangaMummy Sun 23-Jan-05 19:23:01

If you both really want this new school could you move house to be closer?

Agree about local friends

If you try it one day with both DSs in the rush hour and see how it is

will that help you decide?

How far is 2 miles on the tube?

Is it one stop?

lockets Sun 23-Jan-05 19:23:13

Message withdrawn

lockets Sun 23-Jan-05 19:24:14

Message withdrawn

RTKangaMummy Sun 23-Jan-05 19:24:16

paths crossed oops

lockets Sun 23-Jan-05 19:47:54

Message withdrawn

binkie Sun 23-Jan-05 20:43:33

I take ds (5) and dd (4) to school on the Tube every day (and then I go on to work - not exactly on a direct route, I do a sort of wide loop) and though it couldn't be more rush-hour-y (we go through Paddington) truly we love it.

It's really good training I think - they are getting smart about slipping through crowds, keeping out of the harder-faced commuters' way - they're not naturally streetwise kids so I think it's altogether good for them - and then of course the bit of walking at each end is good too. I'm lucky in that my work timing makes it possible for me to take them - it's a time I wouldn't miss for the world - you can discuss stuff just as if you were walking and really it's not a stress at all (Tube staff particularly nice to us).

Actually the only strange bit is how very few other parents & small children there are doing it. Please join us & challenge the norms!

NotQuiteCockney Sun 23-Jan-05 20:56:55

I'm used to biking in traffic, that doesn't bother me. Biking probably is the best solution for whatever part of the journey I do.

I would love to live in the Barbican, which I think is the only nice residential bit near the school, but generally really like my neighbourhood.

On the tube, it's four stops on the Central line. Not much walking at either end.

Lots of stuff to think about.

weightwatchingwaterwitch Sun 23-Jan-05 21:00:20

Sounds like a nightmare. I think I'd go for the local school if pos and if not, hire a childminder to do the school run or move. You can't be in 2 places at the same time!

Caligula Sun 23-Jan-05 21:09:27

Does your DH work in the city? Can he take DS1 with him and drop him off before work?

NotQuiteCockney Sun 23-Jan-05 21:11:49

No, he works in Docklands. He says he'll move to working in the City (he has in the past), but I'd rather this sort of consideration didn't guide job decisions! (And anyway, I prefer that he works from 7 am to 6 pm or something, not 9 am to 8 pm!)

I could go back to working in the City, I guess, when they're both old enough for school.

JJ Sun 23-Jan-05 21:18:07

The only problem I can see when biking is when your guys get a bit older than mine are now. Will you have to take both of them to the school? I wouldn't trust my eldest riding on the streets now, if only because drivers here are so stupid about cyclists.

Plus, I like our school. She's a bit potty, but I love the education and overall feel. Should be interesting to see how it changes, though.

NotQuiteCockney Sun 23-Jan-05 21:59:49

Yeah, when they're old enough to go without me, they won't be old enough to bike on the road by my lights. Well, not on busy roads, anyway.

I like our school ok. It's a bit too English for me, but the other school is the St Paul's Cathedral school, so is an official C of E church school so even more English really. (They do have school dinners, which is a big argument for them. I'm already sick of making packed lunches.)

Oh, did you get a call about that Monday power outage closure? Nobody in the nursery school seems to have.

NotQuiteCockney Sun 23-Jan-05 22:02:18

I don't mind the headmistress that much (the nursery school one is a bit of a dragon, which I'm not sure is any better), but DH can't stand her. She's quite ... imperious and random ... like his mum. She brings him up in hives, pretty much.

I'm not sure how much influence a headmistress has, or what sort of influence she is ... how she is with parents isn't that much of a guide. (Ok, how incredibly rubbish she is at giving speeches at school fetes is a bit depressing.) At least, in theory, they'll now have all letters to parents checked for spelling and grammer ... according to the letter she sent me.

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