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Choosing a secondary school

(7 Posts)
IndigoBell Fri 26-Aug-11 12:25:04

With GCSE results out anyone else getting the wibbles about the secondary school they want to choose?

We have a choice between 2 schools. One gets much higher results than the other - but I want to choose the 'worse' school, because I'm convinced it's pastoral care will be better.

But boy it's hard to stick to your guns when the results come out smile

I mean I don't know which has better pastoral care, or which DS will be happier at.

Mainly my decision is based on the fact that the 'good' primary school he started at turned out to be awful, and transferring to the 'bad' primary school was a wonderful decision.....

lovecheese Fri 26-Aug-11 12:30:18

Watching with interest Indigobell as we have the same decision to make with DD1 this time; basically the choice of 2 schools, one good, one outstanding, although I take OFSTED scores with a very large pinch of salt. We are going to look round them both with very open minds...the trouble is most of her year will be going to one of them, and I worry that she will discount the other one - even though it may suit her much better - because of this...

nonicknamemum Tue 30-Aug-11 00:01:01

Why not start a thread that names the school you are thinking of and see whether any MNers have personal experience of the school?

mummytime Tue 30-Aug-11 10:39:06

I would be very cautious. One local school around here prides itself on its pastoral care, but having worked there it doesn't seem any better than the school my kids go to which is seen as a bit of a sausage factory (but I have had great experience of the pastoral care).

At the end of the day if the schools are "good enough" the biggest influence (which you cannot predict) are exactly what kids they will have in their class.

I would visit and then go with your gut instinct, knowing your child.

Lisa20b Tue 30-Aug-11 10:42:47

I am in the same position as you. I have just got my free tickets for the independent schools show, 2011. Check it out, i set up a thread a few weeks ago about it and got some really positive reviews. www.schoolsshow.com

An0therName Tue 30-Aug-11 12:16:43

have you been to visit both that might help
- and if you can find out about added value scorese that might help - the other school may just get better results as the intake is different

Ladymuck Tue 30-Aug-11 12:31:24

In terms of comparing the degree of pastoral care, is there any "evidence" to support your conclusion, eg does the 2nd school have a tutor or mentor system distinctly different from the first one?

We haven't opted for the school with the most stellar results, but we did look at setting and streaming policies carefully to consider what peer group ds would be with along the way. Are the subject choices different, and are you comparing like with like (ie be wary of GCSE "equivalent" qualifications)?

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