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Craigmount HS... thoughts?

(24 Posts)
seattleite1 Fri 10-Apr-15 23:49:11

Hello again... my DH is going to be offered a job in Edinburgh! If he accepts we would be moving from the US in June.

We've been in contact with the school council and were told that Boroughmuir, Gillespie, St. Thomas, Royal, Broughton and Holy Rood are all full with no hope of getting in even if we are renting in the catchment. Super disappointing as we had found a flat, literally, about 20 feet from Boroughmuir that we loved!

One school that we'd also been considering is Craigmount since it seems like it's catchment area actually extends fairly close to the city center (and we'd like to be close enough for DH to either walk or bus to work in 30 min or less). We'd been put in touch with a friend of a friend who lives in Edinburgh and his opinion on Craigmount was that it was a "quite rough council estate area and was known for the poor behaviour of it's pupils"

Now, I've read through a lot of the threads on here and hadn't heard such criticism of Craigmount. Is he wrong? I believe his children are adults now... so maybe this is outdated? On the school league table at least, Craigmount seemed to perform fairly well.

I also found out that while I thought my younger 2 (twins) would be in P7 they are actually going to be in S1. I'd love for anyone who knows to confirm this as it was a little confusing on the phone confused But if I'm understanding right the birth date cutoff for school year runs 1 March - 28 Feb. My oldest son is 13, born 16/3/2002, which puts him in S2. The twins were born 3/2/2004, which puts them in S1. At least, I think that's right!

It will be a HUGE change for them. Here, they are 2 years behind their brother, but now it will be only 1 year. I'm not sure how this correlates academically... but the thought of "skipping ahead" a year has them (and me!) nervous.

Thanks for any advice!

Sallygoround Sat 11-Apr-15 07:52:04

I have no information about Craigmount, sorry. However my dd has a birthday a week later than your twins (also February 2004) and is currently in p6, she'll be going into p7 in August. With children whose birthdays are in January and February you automatically have the choice of whether you want them to start school at 4.5 (and be the youngest in the class) or 5.5 ( and be the eldest).

Bearing this in mind I would have thought that they could go into either year, depending on what made most sense with their previous schooling and so on. At dd's school they work on the basis that older is always preferable, she is not the eldest in her year by a very long way.

GrooveeCar Sat 11-Apr-15 09:29:45

You could defer your younger boys in to P7 if the primary would allow it. Craigmount has around 1400 pupils.

Half of both my children's primary class have gone to Craigmount. There have been mixed reports from their friends parents. A few haven't been happy with dismissive attitudes to bullying. While others have found it ok.

3nationedinburgh Sat 11-Apr-15 09:46:26

I know a fair few teenagers who go to Craigmount through sport and music and they are lovely young people from good supportive families and one has just started at St Andrews university. Like any local comprehensive school it has a mixed catchment area of people from various backgrounds. Don't dismiss it because of one bad review!

catdil Sat 11-Apr-15 20:38:56

So I guess I would take the gamble and take the flat I loved me boroughmuir as things change all the time. The council will be giving worst case scenario and have a duty I would have thought to get you a place somewhere. I would have thought the twins would be able to get a p7 place at Bruntsfield primary. I am assuming you would be looking for entry after summer break (late aug) and new school year?

Eman83 Sat 11-Apr-15 23:24:43

Have you considered private sector?
I don't kow much about craigmount unfortunately. Sorry can't be of more help

seattleite1 Sun 12-Apr-15 02:53:54

Thanks everyone! I'm so relieved to hear that I could defer the twins and have them in P7. I think that would definitely be the best fit for them both academically and socially. Moving 9000 miles away is change enough, never mind also jumping ahead a year in school!

I understand why finding room for 2 new S1 students after the enrollment period has ended would be a tough proposition but...I'm hoping that Boroughmuir might be able to fit one S2 student and will call them directly to see if that is a possibility. And I'll give Bruntsfield primary a call on Monday and see if we would be able to get 2 P7 spots there as it is the school for the flat we are interested in.

Craigmount is definitely still on my list! I suspected that it probably wasn't as dire as this guy made it out to be. I know that, here in Seattle, we live in a pretty nice area and our high school is good... but it still has it's rough element.

seattleite1 Sun 12-Apr-15 02:59:57

I'd love to look at some of the private schools... but unfortunately unless I hit the Powerball between now and June I don't think will be an option for us grin

GrooveeCar Sun 12-Apr-15 10:25:09

Enrolłement for school is in November, out of catchment placing letters are due this month, which is why places in S1 will be hard. But there can still be movement between now and August but I would definitely consider the deferral route for your younger children as it would give them an extra year before they go to high school. The schooling system will be a huge shock. A number of friends have found moving countries and schooling has been hard for their children.

catdil Sun 12-Apr-15 18:45:48

Probably worth noting schools are
On holiday just now and not back until a week tomorrow I think.

lakewyola Tue 14-Apr-15 13:54:54

Hi Seattleite1,
Congratulations on the job and moving to Edinburgh! We were conversing a little in a different thread. I too am returning to Edinburgh with my kids and trying to figure out where to live and where they will get into school. it is definitely stressful, I entirely sympathize.
Since we last "spoke" I have been in touch with Portobello High school and they were very responsive to our questions. I have a good friend who lives in the area (with younger kids) and she asked around her friends about the High School ( as I was not all that familiar with it). Response was pretty good especially in the arts. Currently Portobello is the largest high school in Edinburgh and in a very inadequate building. However they have started work on a brand new campus which is due to be finished in June 2016.
We are now focusing our efforts on finding a place to live in that area so our kids can attend this school.
Portobello is a little out of the city center but a short train ride or bus journey in. It is a lovely community with a nice beach too.

Moomish Fri 17-Apr-15 07:24:54

your friend of a friend is wrong. Craigmount is not in a council estate estate has a mixed catchment, as all the council run Edinburgh schools do. And what a judgmental thing to say about families and housing.
I am not aware of any behavioural problems more than any other schools.

I am really cross at a perfectly good school, in a good area, with good results being run down by gossip and hearsay on an Internet forum. This can do real damage to school morale and children's perceptions of themselves.

Maybe you should visit instead of taking someone else's prejudices on board.

emma12344 Sat 18-Apr-15 20:35:54

Agree with Moomish. There seems to be quite a lot of judgemental snobbishness on this forum generally around Edinburgh schools. It's a real shame.

Buckeyedjim Wed 22-Apr-15 23:14:51

FWIW, in the last league table type news report I saw on this, Craigmount came out 7th in Edinburgh (for Higher results), out of around 20 schools.

StatisticallyChallenged Thu 23-Apr-15 15:59:46

I wonder if your friend is getting Craigmount mixed up with Craigroyston possibly - Craigmount is not in a rough area at all. It's a pretty good school and one which is well regarded in general and comes pretty high up league tables.

If I remember correctly Roseburn was a potential area for you guys to live in? I think Roseburn Primary feeds to Craigmount - it certainly used to. So you can still be pretty close to town and in Craigmount catchment.

Unfortunately I think Boroughmuir, Gillespies etc are all full to bursting and actually over their capacity. They're rebuilding Boroughmuir...but not making it much bigger which is crazy given the current issues.

I think Firhill has spaces and it might be another potential - the catchment doesn't come as far in as Craigmount's but it covers parts of Comiston etc which have great transport links.

Goddessofglam Thu 25-Jun-15 21:28:45

Only just discovered this thread and had to comment as I live in the Craigmount catchment area. Agree with Statistically Challenged that someone is possibly mixing up Craigmount with Craigroyston, however if they can't get their catchment areas correct they shouldn't be commenting on them. Craigmount has a huge catchment area stretching from Ratho to Palmerston Place and covers all manner of housing types, not just "council housing". A large number of pupils go on to study at university, including my own children and there have been a couple of Craigmount pupils who have gone to study at Oxford. (Yes, it is possible to go to a state school and end up at a top university). The catchment area also covers Murrayfield and Ravelston, two of the most expensive areas in which to purchase a house in Edinburgh. Its a very popular school so if you don't live in the catchment area you will probably struggle to obtain a place. My children all went to Roseburn Primary, one of the feeder schools, they all loved Roseburn and have very fond memories of it and its a great part of Edinburgh to live in, very convenient for walking into town.
Can't be bothered with all this private school snobbery, every parent who posts on Mumsnet about moving to Edinburgh generally seems to be told to investigate private school, yet there are some fantastic state schools in Edinburgh and its a terrific city to live in.

badguider Thu 16-Jul-15 13:18:32

Craigmount is totally fine in my experience. I went to a 'rough' school near craigmount and wouldn't send my child to the one I went to but I would to craigmount. But living in the craigmount catchment is either suburban or semi-rural, you really are not 'in town' unless you're in roseburn.
Whereas Boroughmuir is right in town, flats not houses, loads of coffee shops and small independent shops, I love the area. It's very population dense but there are parks etc too, just dont' expect good parking!
Bear in mind that Boroughmuir is moving, very soon, only about 500m down the road so it won't affect you if you're literally moving to withing a stone's throw of the current school but it will affect children travelling from the outer reaches of it's catchment. I anticipate the catchment will change in time, our son is pre-school but we didn't choose a house in the outer reaches of the current catchment as we suspect changes will come.

Gillespie's is an easy walk from Boroughmuir and indeed Bruntsfield primary used to feed into both.
If it was me i'd take the flat in bruntsfield, look to put the twins in p7 at bruntsfield and then the S2 child into either Boroughmuir or Gillespie's - both are oversubscribed for S1 out of catchment places but i'm sure you'd get into one or the other at s2.

StatisticallyChallenged Thu 16-Jul-15 19:48:16

I think the Boroughmuir catchment will change too- especially since, IIRC, the school now isn't actually in it's own catchment area!

angelsteeds Thu 01-Oct-15 06:45:17

OMG this guy is way off track, Craigmount is situated in an area of private housing and my 3 kids all went there. Its in Corstorphine a lovely part of Edinburgh and a 20 min bus ride to town. He prob talking about Craigroyston.

Fio2020 Sun 07-Oct-18 07:50:53

Craigmount does have a problem with bullying. Lots of fights just outside the school. As police have said there is a well trodden path. I got personal fed up constantly having to intervene in fights on my way home. Moved adults selling drugs with other neighbours. Contacted the school and police getting nowhere. I moved 5 years ago. Maybe it's improved.

Parrish Wed 10-Oct-18 21:44:16

I think things must have changed since you lived there. Your comments about the school and its community are not at all accurate. It’s not fair to state your previous experiences as today’s reality.

Fio2020 Sun 14-Oct-18 07:12:55

That's why I put 5 years ago. As I lived in the courtyards opposite the school I would say a better prospective than the family that lived further away and also kids at the school.

Parrish Fri 19-Oct-18 08:29:54

Your first line said “Craigmount does have a problem with bullying” in the present tense.
My friend also lives in those courtyards and has done for years and she has had a completely different experience to you.

Fio2020 Mon 22-Oct-18 08:19:53

I live right at the pathway by the crossing leading to the school. I would be walking up Craigs Road as the school kids came out. I saw everything.
I hope it has improved.
Someone ask for an opinion and I have given mine. Someone else also gave a poor opinion of the school and they were told they must be getting the schools mixed up. There's bullying, fights and bad behaviour in every school.
I saw what I saw. I've broken up fights. I've phoned the school and police on serious problems.
Selling of drugs and vandalism. Teenagers are not going to tell their parents.
Maybe I should of just buried my head in the sand as many adults did who drove or walked up or down to the road and walked on by too.
I hope the issues no longer exist and in hindsight the stress in stepping in breaking up fights and telling other adults selling drugs to move on was very stressful.
Craigmount is not s bad school and has many incredible nice kids.

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