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3+ 4+ 5+ 7+ support thread 2013

(323 Posts)
mumteacher Wed 19-Dec-12 22:26:41

I have had a number of messages asking if I have any spaces in my classes. I'm really sorry but I have been at full capacity for some time now.

However, I do appreciate that this is a very stressful time of year for parents who have children sitting these private school assessments in January 2013. So, I'm hoping that by setting up this support group thread I can help by answering some questions you have about these assessments.

Hopefully this thread will also contain some useful insight from the experiences of parents who have already been through the process.

Twistynickers Fri 01-Mar-13 11:39:36

Hi mumteacher,

Could you just post the advice here so we can all see it?

Cabbagecarrot Fri 01-Mar-13 14:05:47

Hi mumteacher, note you don't do 11+ tutoring yourself but if have any good recommendations for best tutors who do, it would be very appreciated - am looking some years ahead as missed the boat on 7+ but hope to be prepared if need be for next time ...

Iggity Sat 02-Mar-13 22:56:57

Not sure if this is the right place but there seems to be a lot of prep school experience on this thread so thought I would ask.

DS has been offered a place at a London prep for reception entry. Originally he was on the reserve list but a few weeks later, we were called to offer him a place.

When we first heard that he hadn't made the first cut, we had decided just to wait for the state school decision in April as our first choice is an outstanding ofsted rated faith school with the top SAT results in our borough.

Now we have been offered a place at the prep school, it has thrown us a bit. We want the best for our DS but neither of us were educated privately so we feel a bit uncertain.

My question is around the deposit you pay when you accept a place. The deposit for this school is nearly 1k and whilst we are prepared to pay it, the Ts and Cs seem to imply that if you accept a place, you have to give one term's notice or pay one term's fees minus the deposit if you decide not to take the place.

Given that our DS isn't even at the school yet, can anyone explain what this means? I think notice has to be given a few days before the term actually starts. I had wondered does this mean that we would have to give notice that we didn't want the place a few days before the 17th April which is the state school decision day and also the beginning of the Summer term.

We don't want to deprive another child of a place but I suppose we had hoped that the school wouldn't come back to us prior to the 17th April.

stretto Sun 03-Mar-13 12:28:34

Mumteacher (and anyone else who can advise)
How many schools did you register your children for?

Our daughter (21 months) is registered for Highgate, Channing (at 4+) and Avenue. I thought about signing her up for Charterhouse Square, but have just seen that they require a £4000 deposit shock more than a year in advance to secure the place.

We hope to move to Highgate, but are considering deferring our move until we know where she will go to school. Are we complacent to have her signed up to just 3 schools?

thaliablogs Sun 03-Mar-13 21:52:37

Iggity afraid if you withdrew once the money is in you would lose it, that's the deal they are doing with you. It's only refundable on the terms you state once the child is at the school, eg you could tell them in sept that your child will leave in January and get it back, but you will not get it back if you simply don't start.

It's extremely hard making these trade offs. Worth going for a visit to help you decide?

Primafacie Sun 03-Mar-13 23:28:00

On the school deposits point, the OFT issued guidance in 2006 basically telling independent schools that they must refund the deposit if they manage to fill the space left vacant, as they then suffer no loss - so keeping the deposit amounts to an illegal financial penalty, which is prohibited under the Unfair Contract Terms Act. The Independent School Bursars Association, as far as I know, tells its members they should refund these deposits. However, most schools still try to keep them. It is very annoying (not to mention expensive!) and I am convinced schools stagger their offer dates to maximise the number of deposits parents end up having to pay. <dons conspiracy theorist hat>

If it helps - you may want to see it as the drop in the ocean that it will be if you educate privately from 4, or as a small dent in the enormous savings you will make if you don't!

PM me if you need more details.

Turniphead1 Sun 03-Mar-13 23:34:06

Stretto I would add Hampstead Hill to your list if that is a feasible commute for you.

mumteacher Wed 06-Mar-13 00:58:20

Really sorry that I've been off MN for a few days and missed the requests for advice for Habs 5+ boys. I know it's Tom so too late in the day now!
Good luck x

mumteacher Wed 06-Mar-13 01:00:50

For advice on schools and deposits/ fees etc you may get more responses if you try and set up a new thread. X

stretto Wed 06-Mar-13 10:49:01

That's very interesting about the deposits, Prima. I imagine any attempt to get a refund would get quite nasty though!
Turnip - thanks, I will look into Hampstead Hill. We haven't moved yet, so we might just stay in our one-bedroom flat until we know where our daughter will go to school....

stretto Wed 06-Mar-13 12:22:26

Thanks mumteacher. Studying this thread has given me a good idea of quite how much competition there is out there for places so I think we will make more applications than we had originally planned to do. Thanks for setting up this thread!

11plustutor Wed 06-Mar-13 15:10:06

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

mumteacher Wed 06-Mar-13 19:59:45

Um 11plustutor I don't think you can advertise for work on MN in this manner, I'm sure someone will be along soon enough to 'tell you off'! In the meantime hope it works out for you and you little man x

mumteacher Wed 06-Mar-13 20:01:10

How did the 5+ Habs boys round 2 go? Would love to know what came up. Please pm me if you're not happy sharing on here.

OliviaMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 06-Mar-13 20:28:55

Well we don't like to "tell people off" as often it's a genuine newbie error and we understand that folk didn't know.
But we do have to apply our talk guidelines fairly.
11plustutor we will mail you.

Thanks MNHQ

Twistynickers Thu 07-Mar-13 12:28:49

So round 2 done and now it's just a waiting game.

Not sure my nails are going to survive the next week!

The assessment seems to have covered the usual stuff that you would expect a reception child to be able to do. I am not sure how a tutor would have improved DSs chances, had we decided to go down that route.

So not regretting at all our decision not to bother with tutoring.

mumteacher Thu 07-Mar-13 20:04:30

If you helped your child prep for the assessment then you wouldn't need a tutor. It's about an adult - any adult having the time to spend with a child.

For example Round 2 covered reading - a child having put in just one term in reception without further help from a parent/tutor wouldn't have been able to do that easily.

All said and done pleased for you and your Ds by the sounds of it it went well. Hope next week brings good news for you. X

Twistynickers Thu 07-Mar-13 20:17:02

I didn't "prep" him.

But I made pencils available so he could draw or colour whenever he felt like it. And we read and talked about stuff. And this was complemented my the reading, writing and number work he did at school.

I suppose I just don't get how a one hour session or even two session a week would have made any difference.

mumteacher Thu 07-Mar-13 23:45:11

Maybe you're right an hour a week, 52 hours a year isn't a lot!

Yet just days before the assessment you were on MN asking me to post advice!

If you didn't prep your son what exactly were you going to do with the advice I gave?!

Twistynickers the assessments are done and dusted and I'm sure your son would've done great. But don't kid yourself, if I had said last year the boys were asked to ride a scooter - you would've dug out the old scooter and taken your son for a spin!

We all do what we can so that our children can have the best possible start in life. Tutoring, prep, guiding, helping, coaching, encouraging, 'talking about stuff' call it what you might - mounts to the same thing......'a rose by any other name would smell just as sweet' X

Millhillmummy Fri 08-Mar-13 13:21:21

Hi, does anyone know if they had second Habs assessments on the Friday as well? Or was it just Monday - Thursday? Thanks in advance

snowmummy Fri 08-Mar-13 13:51:11


Let me know what assessments your sitting and I'll try and help.

You're your. Anyone?

grimsleeper Fri 08-Mar-13 17:44:00

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Millhillmummy Fri 08-Mar-13 18:12:38

Thanks grimsleeper.

Glad this week is over and all the best to everyone who sat. Roll on next Thursday! X

berrymummy Mon 11-Mar-13 11:08:45

Hi mumteacher
Thanks for all your ideas, my dd is only 2 but havin just looked around some of the hampstead schools I realised how cazy the assesementa game issad I likes at Christophers the most as seems to take a range of personalities as head was very approachable which I think is very important. We'd be looking to try get her a place there. Would you suggest something I could focus on with DD? She's very happy, engaging and confident but then she's only just. Turned 2 and I don't want to go crazy and let her be herself at the end of the day. I think she'd be happy at st christophers but so much competition means parents are left terrified of what to teach their DC just to stand a chance...

berrymummy Mon 11-Mar-13 11:09:56

Sorry for all the typos- hope you got the gist ( am on iPhone)

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