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The 'better' school or the closest school??

(10 Posts)
fourlittleangels Mon 20-May-13 12:35:31

I have the choice of two good but very different schools.
Both have just had their OFSTED inspections one received good with outstanding features. The other has just had its third outstanding in every area.

Saying that they both have their individual qualities in different areas due to being quite difference schools in terms of size etc.

So the school I consider to be 'better' one happens to be a 10min drive the other a 5min walk.
We live in a rural area so it's not totally for a recently to drive to both schools in question.

So when choosing a school which is more important, choosing the school you feel is better all round or the school that is closest?

fourlittleangels Mon 20-May-13 12:37:16

*we live in a rural area so it isn't unusual for a percentage to have to drive their children to school! (Predictive text)

Pyrrah Mon 20-May-13 12:38:01

Have you visited both?

If so then I would go for the better school every time.

fourlittleangels Mon 20-May-13 12:41:38

Yes I've visited both and been into both on several occasions.

Tough choice on community (althougha percentage travel into the nearer school too) and walking or driving to the 'better' school. Neither are bad but completely different from each other.

noramum Mon 20-May-13 12:56:59

What does your gut feeling says? We had a choice of two great ones and went with our gut feeling.

In the end, if the teaching is good in both, it is about how you feel your child will cope there. What kind of set-up suits it better? Great Ofsted and great results are only one part for me. Very important is more that my child will love going to school, will hopefully thrive in a warm and caring environment.

We saw one school. outstanding Ofsted, great SATs but it felt like a grade-machine. All the head could talk about was how good the pupils were. When we were shown round by a Year 6 pupil she was either very shy or had nothing good and interesting to say about her school.

fourlittleangels Mon 20-May-13 13:02:47

It's very tough as one is tiny but is warm, caring, family like but I have concerns about mixed classes (only three) and lack of extra curricular activity (but that could be gained outside of school) they do some but with tiny numbers it is difficult.

The other has an extremely good head and reputation, innovate curriculum still lots of focus on PSE, all the teachers seem lovely. But by its nature of being bigger it probably won't have quite the same family feel
I agree re results and ofsted etc and both school have equal attachment anyway and I don't feel either are paper/test pushers.

fourlittleangels Mon 20-May-13 13:04:02

Like I say they both have good qualities in different areas - one definitely edges it in terms of interesting and fun learning.

The other edges it on family caring feel due to being small. All teacher know all the children well etc.

scaevola Mon 20-May-13 13:11:49

I thought I wanted small and nurturing for PFB. But I found I preferred the 'buzz' of the bigger school. And with the blessing of hindsight, for us it was the right decision to go for the bigger one.

Because unless the pastoral care is dreadful, then they'll be fine irrespecitive of total school size , when in reception. And they grow. And by the time they are in KS2, they will want things like enough children to play team sports and a good range of clubs.

fourlittleangels Mon 20-May-13 13:34:29

That's what makes it tough - we moved to a village for a small school and because I wanted to walk my children to school.

Both school do very well in terms of academia. But like you say scaevola the bigger one form entry does have a buzz about it. Lots going on, exciting lesson plans and don't want to out myself but the report states it being an exceptional school with excellent innovate learning methods rarely seen in primary school, and that's been reflected in what I have seen.
But can't help thinking the more local school is part of the community it's pupils do still do well and it's within walking distance.

If I could merge both I would have perfection lol

GhoulWithADragonTattoo Wed 22-May-13 10:55:12

I wouldn't underestimate the value of being in the local school. Practically your life will be much more straightforward if you only have a 5 min walk to school. If it snows you will still be able to get there pretty easily etc. Also your child will be able to make lots of friends locally and go round to play with them easily. And you'll feel part of your local community. As both schools sound good with good academic results I'd go for the local one.

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