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School Choice - Herriots or St leoanards(7 Posts)
I am new to the forum but looking for advice on school choice. I have 2 shy , bright children and will be looking to move them from Fettes. The school is excellent but the fees are a strain and if we are going to sustain private education we need to consider alternatives. I am tempted with Herriots but wonder if the school is too large and whether they will become just a number. A friend suggested St Leonard’s but their experience was from years ago and it would mean locating closer to St Andrews. Dollar Academy has also been mentioned as a bit smaller than some of the Edinburgh schools. I am really torn and we may find we can’t get them for lack of spaces. We have just taken Fettes for granted as it is so small but the Fees are crippling. We have to make a choice now before my daughter chooses her subjects for GSCE. Any experience of these schools with shy children would great. Many thanks for reading this far. Xx
My DD2 went to St Leonards from Yr 6 up to the end of 6th form. She is quite a quiet girl and in her old state primary, with large classes, she was very overlooked. At St Leonards she absolutely blossomed and came into her own. She was pushed far more than she had been and her capabilities were far beyond what we had been led to believe before she moved. It was a great choice for her.
Thank you for taking the time to reply at this unsettling time. Stay save.
Would counsel you strongly against St Leonards - we had a terrible experience at the junior school which has undergone leadership changes and not for the better. There is a real difference in academic standards to what you are probably used to at independent schools elsewhere and the lack of discipline is shocking. Teaching staff generally unimpressive with a couple of exceptions (who interestingly are not in leadership positions) & a distinct lack of will to do a good job & actively respond to feedback. The senior school is supposed to be better but there is a higher percentage of international boarders to day pupils so bear that in mind in terms of parent community. St Andrews is also very small and insular and most parents live outside of it with the centre mostly populated by retired couples and students. It would be a massive change from Edinburgh. Based on our experience I wouldn’t recommend at all.
We have two in the Junior School at Heriots and so far we love the school. It does not feel large at all and has a real family atmosphere.
St Leonards has been great for our kids. Very happy. School's on it when there are issues. Really responsive. Gone from strength to strength in recent years. Our local friends aren't retired or students - though both categories make great babysitters! - because they tend to be other parents, but the generations do mix, which is nice. The place attracts lots of academics and medics and families connected to the universities and hospitals and businesses in Fife and Tayside, as well as from the rest of Scotland, UK, the world, so though the town is small and by the sea, it is far from insular. Love the school's and university's international approach - feel the richer for it.
So you'd rather move your whole family to Fife or Perthshire than send your kids to a state school in Edinburgh?