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Secondary Schools Fife/Kinross/Stirlingshire

(18 Posts)
oldmac Fri 27-May-16 13:42:50

I am hoping to get some personal insight from fellow mumsnetters about secondary education in these areas of Scotland. We are hoping to move in the next few months and while I have read all there is to read about particular schools, there is nothing like first hand knowledge. HMIE reports can tell me attainment etc but not what the school is really like. So I am looking for information on how nurturing, anti-bullying, encouraging, supportive, both academically and socially/emotionally, etc these following schools are and any other information that you think could be helpful in deciding between them.

The schools we are thinking about are Dunblane, Wallace High, Kinross, Madras College, Bell Baxter, Waid Academy, Balwearie and Inverkeithing.

Necky Fri 27-May-16 15:31:11

My son attended Balwearie High until last year. I found the school to be helpful both academically and socially. If I had any issues their open door policy made it very easy to speak with the senior management team. There is hugely varying mix of pupils, from quite well off right down to less fortunate. I would recommend the school, however the kirkcaldy area not so much. The town is on a downward slide, there is very little entertainment for teens in the local area. No cinema, bowling or even fast-food establishments on the high street.
I also have experience of Wallace High. Recently built, lots of extra curricular activities, very inclusive. Although Stirling has its not so nice areas on the whole a much nicer place to live imho. Plenty of entertainment, excellent transport links, very central. HTH

oldfifer Fri 27-May-16 19:43:20

Mine all went to Kinross High. Got good grades etc. New school building is well equipped, lots of activities, draws many kids from rural areas. Quite a lot of relatively well off families. Good sports and music. Used to have a truly excellent head but he went last year and new head still bedding in. I have seen a slide in the standard of uniform wearing, if that's important to you. The guidance team proved to be excellent with DS who found it hard to settle. He got a lot of help. Decent school.
Wallace High School is good, good reputation. Stirling is a great place to live. Great transport links, excellent countryside,good wee university on the doorstep

oldfifer Fri 27-May-16 19:45:03

Erm my MN nn is not oldfifer. Not sure how that happened

Necky Fri 27-May-16 19:56:54

I think you use a different nn for local oldfifer

littlewhitebag Fri 27-May-16 20:58:37

Dunblane HS. Good school. Very middle class area.

Wallace HS. Probably ok. Don’t know much about it. Pretty good catchment area.

Kinross. Lovely new school and good area.

Madras. Catchment widespread. Split campus. Good outcomes for uni etc.

Bell Baxter. Generally good but very mixed catchment are.

Waid. Good school.

Balwearie. Best school in Kirkcaldy but could have issues wth bullying.

Inverkeithing. Don’t bother

(I am a social worker and have covered both Stirling area and Fife)

littlewhitebag Fri 27-May-16 21:06:23

Gosh that is my original nn. How did that happen?

oldfifer Fri 27-May-16 21:15:06

I don't know. I am dementedma on all other threads

Charliesgotachocolatefactory Fri 27-May-16 21:20:51

When I opened this post it offered me the option to name change just for the local board. So I did. Let's see if it works...

Charliesgotachocolatefactory Fri 27-May-16 21:23:41

Yes, this is my specific 'Fife' name! How funny.

Anyway, Has the Madras building situation been sorted yet? Last I heard the application to build a new school out of town had been binned and they are still stuck in the two old buildings, with particularly ruinous bits deemed out of bounds.

littlewhitebag Fri 27-May-16 21:27:07

I live in St Andrews and i can tell you quite definitively that there has been NO resolution to the new school issue.

PrimalLass Sat 28-May-16 21:08:34

Although I've always wanted my kids to go to Madras, like I did, I wouldn't move us all back there just now because the schools are both falling apart.

We have the choice of Balwearie or Inverkeithing. At the moment we'll go for Balwearie, unless we decide to pay and that will likely be Dollar.

oldmac Mon 06-Jun-16 17:28:00

thank you for taking the time to reply. PrimalLass are you in Aberdour? I know it used to be the case that Aberdour had the choice of either school but I had heard recently that it was no longer the case and they had to go to Inverkeithing?

PrimalLass Wed 08-Jun-16 10:35:53

We are.

You can do a placing request. We've been told that as new houses are being built in Kirkcaldy then there won't necessarily continue to be places for out of catchment, but tbh I can't see them wanting to turn down Aberdour kids blush as they tend to do quite well.

PM me if you want to know anything.

Leeanneod30 Mon 20-Jun-16 19:45:41


We currently live in Fife but want to move so that our daughter can go to a better High School. I went to Kinross so would be keen to send her there but was just after some information on Inverkeithing... Just noticed one of you said not to bother?! Thank you xxx

Mummybilla79 Sun 02-Jul-17 23:53:58

I too would like some info on high schools in particular your thoughts on Queen Anne in Dunfermline?

Charliesgotachocolatefactory Mon 03-Jul-17 08:18:05

I would steer clear if Dunfermline if you can at the moment, the Education provision is in turmoil as they have woefully misjudged the impact of thousands of new houses over the last 10 years with thousands more planned. Huge review of catchments being instigated this month with some absolutely bonkers recommendations. They have constantly changed the primary catchments over the last few years too. They just don't seem to have a clue. If you had to live in Dunfermline though, Queen Anne or Dunf High are the better bets, in that order. Woodmill and inverkeithing are in a terrible state and whilst Woodmill is the best school academically at this point, it's full to bursting and the building is deteriorating fast. Inverkeithing is in an even worse state.Avoid.

I live here and am really, really pissed off about it!

HuglessDouglas Tue 04-Jul-17 10:20:19

I second what Charlie said about Dunfermline. If you can get Queen Anne or DHS they're better schools, but you'd need to live somewhere where they'd be unlikely to change the catchment. New houses are going up in Wellwood which will naturally fall into the QA catchment.

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