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Private or State Secondary

(14 Posts)
cherish123 Sun 23-Apr-17 22:26:51

My son is currently at a state primary, doing quite well (but not excelling) academically and has a close knit group of friends. However, he does not push himself and I don't feel the school does either. He is interested in Rugby and having attended an independent school (as did my husband) I feel he would benefit from a private education for secondary. It had always been our intention to educate him privately but he has said he wants to go to the local comp (Balerno). My husband feels itis really up to DS but I feel the decision ultimately lies with the adults. While Balerno is quite academic, I am unsure if it has the same work ethic as a private school or if they encourage the same aspirations. DS is currently in P5. Any thoughts?

EdinburghPS Mon 24-Apr-17 16:05:22

Obviously this is a personal opinion....
I do believe private schools push the child more than state. Both my daughters are at a private school and I can't say enough how fantastic it has been been.
My husband went to a state school before being moved to a private for secondary and he said it was the best thing ever, he said you couldn't even compare.

Datec Mon 24-Apr-17 19:09:53

Hello.. it is a huge consideration isn't it.. just to warn you this post may attract lots of polarizing opinions but in the end the old 'what is best for your child' is true. I have experience of balerno ( not a parent or teacher) and I thought the staff were fantastic and switched on and passionate. The school has a rich mix of pupil demographic and uniquely in Edinburgh ( I might be wrong) has a large number of rural and farming families. I have friends who went there who are now working in successful careers. BUT it is a state comprehensive and if you are looking for more facilities and a push academically a lot of children locally do go to Watsons or heriots.. they do have a great swimming pool though!

coffeeCamelCase Tue 25-Apr-17 09:28:02

Do you mean you are considering Rugby School for him, or that he enjoys rugby football? I assume the latter, but then, why is it a key factor? Would you be looking for a school that plays a lot of rugby, specifically, or is it rather that "more sport" might be a factor that would make your DS prepared to consider a school other than his favourite, or what?

Personally I think school choice is a decision for parents; it is far too important and complex a decision to expect a primary shool child to make. How the child feels gives you important clues about what's best for them, of course.

Edinburgh has a very wide range of private schools: there's really no such thing as "same... as a private school". You need to consider specific schools. Why not start by contacting both Watson's and Merchiston Castle, which are both good schools that do well in rugby but very different in other ways, and then go from there?

(I think for Watson's you really need to do that this term; for Mershiston you have more time as their main intake is at 13, but they have children your DS's age too and will be happy to see you - they do quite frequent open mornings.)

coffeeCamelCase Tue 25-Apr-17 09:35:09

oops mis-spelt Merchiston. Of course second half of my post is on assumptions (a) that you aren't already very clued up on independent schools (maybe you just chose not to say which you'd intended for him, in which case sorry if I sounded patronising) (b) that it's not literally that you're considering Rugby. If it is the latter: why there? How does your DS feel about boarding? What other schools have/would you consider?

cherish123 Tue 25-Apr-17 18:36:19

Thanks. I was thinking GWC or George Heriot's. Ha ha, I meant the game, not Rugby School. Playing rugby or sports is not something I am bothered about, more from academic pt of view.

EdinburghPS Tue 25-Apr-17 18:42:22

If your looking for academics cherish I would suggest Heriot's. PM me if you have any questions

Buckeyedjim Wed 26-Apr-17 06:48:38

The one thing your ds enjoys is rugby but you say you're not bothered about it?
I would suggest your mind is made up for private so why not start a thread about which private school to go to, then I wouldn't have clicked on it! I would think it very rare for two Edinburgh parents who both attended private schools to not send dcs to one, unless it was for political principles or financial reasons.

Athensofthenorth Wed 26-Apr-17 21:15:51

Hi OP,
The stereotype is that Heriots is more academic while Watson's is the sportier option.

Somewhere inbetween lies the truth.

You really need to visit ALL schools that are an option for you and find the fit for you and your family. Trust me you'll know what feels right.

abisothergran Thu 27-Apr-17 18:24:33

My husband and I are those"Rare Edinburgh parents"-both privately educated,no political hang ups,could afford private secondary for our children but shock horror listened to their wishes and allowed them to attend what my daughter described as a bog standard comprehensive.Agree pushed harder and school expectations higher at private school.Teaching seemed to be just as good at the comprehensive and parental influence prevailed re expectations.Saved a lot of cash which helped kids with house deposits in due course.Children well adjusted.kept wide range of friends from diverse backgrounds.

badguider Thu 27-Apr-17 18:30:47

I'd be reluctant to send a sporty kid to her iota if you live in balerno. It's a looooong trek home from their sports grounds to balerno in winter.

cherish123 Thu 27-Apr-17 23:51:31

Thanks for replies.

AndyPerkins Fri 26-May-17 22:41:24

I went to both private and state. I have to admit that the state doesn't push students that much compared to the private. When I was young, I would like to enjoy more in a state secondary with my friends and hang out with them. But later on after what my dad told me about my future, I understood that I need to have my life changed. Therefore I went to a private school and had a wonderful time there. I learnt a lot and got into a university. No regrets!

tribal Sat 27-May-17 22:55:18

If your child is self motivated then they will do well at most schools. But if your child needs "pushing" then the majority of people will suggest that private will be better. Go and visit any schools you may be interested in. You will get a feel of which school suits your child best and offers the subjects that they are interested in. To be honest there is not much to choose from academically (in terms of results) between most of the private schools George Watsons, Heriots, Stewarts Melville. Also look at which school (and their sports ground) are on a reasonable bus route to where you live, although some of the schools do run buses from parts of east scotland.

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