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Sabbatical with primary school kids

(15 Posts)
Winnipegger78 Mon 27-Nov-17 02:31:13

We are set to do a sabbatical for the 2018-2019 school year, with partner working at the Cavendish lab.
Any recommendations for areas within pedestrian distance of Cavendish, in terms of quality primary schools (kids going into years 1 and 4). We have looked at Mayfield, Newnham Croft, and Arbury so far. Will likely have to fly over to see the lay of the land, but any insights are appreciated!
As we are likely having to apply after the deadline, we will be in contact with schools and the city for openings - any anecdotal experience for families in our boat? Every year and school is different, but good to hear how it's gone for others.
Excited to join you, and thanks!

Aftershock15 Mon 27-Nov-17 08:49:03

For the years you are applying to there is no application deadline - but you cannot apply until you are a resident, or at least have a rental contract. I think you will be considered an in year applicant even if you are starting at the beginning of the school year.

Remember Cambridge is very bike friendly and cycling allows you to extend your search area - partner could cycle into work, leaving a shorter cycle or walk for you to take the children to school.

I can’t recommend schools but I think at this stage I would contact schools and see which ones currently have space in the years that you are aiming for. If all the target schools are currently full you will be hoping that pupils leave in the correct year group, which may not happen. The problem will be your youngest child as they will fall into a class that has a cap of 30. If a school is currently undersubscribed then you would hope it will still have spaces when you arrive. Of course it might be a less desirable school or location.

Still Cambridge is a great place for kids

Aftershock15 Mon 27-Nov-17 08:51:47

This document here will help.

ClearEyesFullHearts Mon 27-Nov-17 10:47:04

The Arbury area was once described to me as "the Bronx of Cambridge." By someone from Arbury

But that was in the late 90s so things might have changed. hmm

AddTextHere Mon 27-Nov-17 12:24:34

Yes, that was the reputation but things have changed a lot. Many council houses have been sold, the area is now gentrified. Arbury school has good Ofsted reports.

RosieOnTheRooftop Mon 27-Nov-17 12:40:01

Aubrey school is great and has a fantastic head. We nearly sent our DC there even though we're not in catchment. In the end we decided to stick with a shorter journey to our local school, but I know more than one family who have gone for Arbury over closer options. Arbury as a neighbourhood is a genuinely very diverse area, there are people from all walks of life including academics from all over the world. Things have changed a lot even in the last ten years, let alone 20. Cambridge has become so expensive that it's inevitable -- many people had to make a choice between shipping out to a village or living somewhere which used to be considered the less glamorous side of town with the benefit of being able to cycle to work and the city centre.

Winnipegger78 Mon 27-Nov-17 14:57:58

Aftershock15, ClearEyesFullHearts, AddTextHere, RosieOnTheRooftop,

Thank you! We received a very nice response from Mayfield school, and it mirrors what you suggest. Will apply through the city in May, which gives us some breathing room from the Jan 15 deadline.
I took a look at the 'openings' doc, which lifts the veil! Good information.

We are very excited to join you in Cambridge, but of course there is some trepidation. Your responses and that from the school tell me this will be a good move and lifetime experience. Drop me a line if you ladies ever travel through Minneapolis or Winnipeg, hope I can pay your help forward with some good tips.

MsDeerheart Mon 27-Nov-17 16:33:45

The great thing about Cambridge is that there will be lots of people in your situation and the schools are used to it - it’s also a really nice place with young children - don’t rule out Chesterton and schools there - Milton rd very well thought but there are others -

RosieOnTheRooftop Mon 27-Nov-17 16:55:47

Yes, you won't be the only one! This year there are two children of visiting scholars in my DC's class, so although the school is oversubscribed, at least two places will come up next year, as both are here just for a year.

Winnipegger78 Mon 27-Nov-17 17:40:04

I will take a look at these additional schools! Seeing other threads about Chesterton, it looks intriguing. Good to know spaces are there even when over-subscribed.

MsDeerheart Mon 27-Nov-17 19:42:43

I wouldn’t worry too much about schools - my feeling is that all of them are pretty good and all will have quite a bit of turnover hence getting a place is pretty likely - I think the key will be finding somewhere to live which and then apply to the nearest schools!

Winnipegger78 Sat 02-Dec-17 00:47:26

Thanks MsDeerHeart!

kedy Fri 22-Dec-17 12:36:32

Have you considered Huntingdon Road area? Or the new Eddington area - where you can rent at subsidised rates if you are working in the Uni, and can use the Cambridge University Primary School. It will be very easy to cycle through Storeys way then Astronomy to Cavendish Lab. The university operates a nursery in the West area just 1 minute walk from Cavendish.

CarrotCakeMuffins Sat 23-Dec-17 10:26:32

Re the University of Cambridge Primary School - you would need to check if it had any spaces in the years you need and I wouldn't just assume that it did.

It will also be VERY big (3 class per year primary) when it is fully open in a few years which might not suit some people . It is already pretty big.

Winnipegger78 Thu 01-Feb-18 04:36:37

Thanks kedy and CarrotCakeMuffins! Will put these on the list/for consideration.

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