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At very early stages of looking at possible move to Joburg through DH's firm. He is quite keen, me less so. We love living in strange places and have done our time abroad but I am very unsure.
Anyway, I wanted to ask if anyone knew the private school picture out there? My 2 young DDs currently go to an arty, alternative (not Steiner) school in london. Do any joburgers know if there are any prep schools in Joburg we could a) get into and b) like... thanks
I lived in Joburg for three years, but pre kid.
Didn't really want to go but ended up loving it. Great lifestyle, great weather, great travel opportunities. Got involved with a local charity which was very motivating and rewarding.
Crime is a very obvious downside but this can be largely mitigated by living in a secure estate and not driving around in the early hours.
AFAIK from friends there with kids, there's a pretty big choice in pre schools so I'd assume you could easily find one that suits.
The private schools are very well regarded, both the SA ones and the more internationally focused ones.
Which area would your husband work in? Traffic is pretty terrible so you'd probably want to start looking in an area that would suit his commute.
Thank you Mango! Seems like his potential colleagues live in Northern suburbs mainly, Parkhurst was suggested?
Everyone I have mentioned the move to looks at me as though I have lost my mind.... feeling confused to say the least. Do you know much about the quality of life for expat families? Thanks
I grew up there and really rate it, but you will have to get used to a level of security/safety measures that will likely feel very difficult, coming from the UK (though it depends on where else you've lived).
There are good private schools at primary and secondary levels. I went to Redhill, but as PP said traffic is a real problem so I'd start with where your husband will be working and try to work backwards from there as to housing and schools.
Thanks Hummus, would you move there with your kids (if you have them)?
If there was anything that put me off moving there, it's that I still find it incredibly tense as to relations between various races (and latterly, classes). There's still plenty of hostility, and that would worry me if I was moving there with little ones. Over the last few months
(By comparison, I lived in Kenya for several years and would go back in a heartbeat.)
There's also no (even in gated communities) "playing out", and you need to be ready to ferry them to the mall / friends on a Friday, and ferry them back after. I wouldn't like that for mine (possibly more of an issue with teens, though).
Rosebank is a very nice area. There's "posh" Houghton nearby, Illovo and Hyde Park* are also near and have good housing options, as well as Sandton/Sandown.
*You'll quickly get used to the heavily borrowed English place names!
Ignore "Over the last few months" - I was going to regale you with details of SA's class divide, but it's really not necessary.
I grew up in Jozi as well and went to Sacred Heart College (co-ed).
That might be tricky to get to from the Northern suburbs, but Marist Brothers Inanda (boys only) might be easier.
Both school are Catholic and run by Marist Brothers (I am not even religious ... I went there because SHC was a such great school).
We were in the 'far' northern suburbs, Fourways. I do think your husband's commute would be a bit of a pita, although I know lots of people do make that journey to work.
Lots of expats in Fourways because it's full of huge gated communities (Dainfern, Dainfern Ridge, Dainfern Valley, Fourways Gardens and more). These are estates with hundreds of homes, tennis courts, parks, pool and, in Dainfern, a golf course. There are also some big security estates in Kyalami. Don't know if the commute would be better from there. Schools - Dainfern College, Crawford School in Lonehill, American School of Joburg. They all cater to a mix of locals and expats. There are also some very good traditional local private schools in the area.
In the northern suburbs closer to your husband's work, I think you'd be more likely to live in a cluster of homes. So about 6-20 or so homes within a security wall with gated access. Sandton, Houghton, Rosebank and places near the zoo are all nice. I also liked Bedfordview and my coolest friends lived in Braamfontein. Possibly those are a bit south (can't remember the geography too well).
Forgot to mention that I had a friend with a daughter at Kingsmead College in Melrose. They loved the school and the daughter was always busy with a ton of extra curricular stuff.
Trying to revive this thread as things are moving in the joburg direction. I am the sticking point
Is there anyone on here who actually lives there currently??
Also humus: how was Redhill? Have been looking online...
I loved Redhill. I had been at King David (Jewish) and Crawford before, and much preferred Redhill. A broad mix of abilities, but academic kids were challenged, lots of sports (like most SA schools) but also a real emphasis on cultural clubs, theatre, writing etc. I'd happily send my DC there.
I'm happy to discuss in more detail if you need, or please PM me if you prefer.
See the website Joburg Expat, she talks about schools.
We are moving to SA next year but not to Jo'burg.
I moved to Joburg from the Midlands and although I really did want to, I ended up enjoying it. Lovely weather, nice places to eat and seemed a relaxed and friendly place.
I went to St Andrews School For Girls, although academically one of the best I was bullied and made to feel very unwelcome there by the other girls.
We lived in Bedfordview and had lots of shops, close to the big malls and restaurants. Only downside was security guards on the gated complexes... made me feel slightly uneasy.