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Bromley Bilingual School opens in Sep 2014

(69 Posts)
bonjourlondon Mon 23-Sep-13 15:08:14

Dear all,

This is to share this that I only discovered last week (apologies if already a well know information):

The Bromley Bilingual Primary School (due to open in september 2014) is taking applications for Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 now, closing date 15th january. It will be a free bilingual school in English and French.

A public/parent meeting is planned at 2pm Saturday 19th October,
The Lowell Room, Bromley United Reform Church, 20 Widmore Road, Bromley, BR1 1RY

I think this is an amazing opportunity for children and families. I'm posting this because I didn't find any information about it on Mumsnet and thought it could interest other parents on the Bromley forum. We've just applied for our son.


bonjourlondon Thu 28-Nov-13 14:59:19

Hi Nora,
As the plan of BBS is to teach in English half the day and French the other half, only the English curriculum, that should be enough of both language to create the bilingual experience.
It is true that one should speak their mother tongue to their child, but it is usually recommended to develop bilingualism that the minority language (ie English in our case as we live in France currently) is spoken at home, which is why we spoke to our DC in English a lot.

annazarzyczny Thu 17-Apr-14 17:54:11

is there anyone who got the place at BBS?

bannedyellowsheep Fri 18-Apr-14 10:14:40

I got a provisional place for my DC in y2.
Anyone else?
Does anyone else know when they will expend to Key stage 2?

annazarzyczny Fri 18-Apr-14 20:49:36

we get also provisional place for reception. I just wonder if there is someone else and what is your opinion about this school, as there is nothing to compare too.
my son got also a plce in 6th school on my list from the council, which i'm not entirely happy. now, have to decide what to do... not easy decision i must say
if there is anyone who would like to chat about it email me please

allyfe Fri 18-Apr-14 23:05:49

We got a provisional place for Y1. As far as I can see, a free school is essentially the same as an Academy, but with set up based on a group of parents, rather than the LEA, or someone like Harris.

I do have some worries about it, but I'm hoping that those will be answered between now and the school opening.

We met the Headmaster last week, and he was very impressive. One of the things he said was that he was very keen to set up a feeling of school community before it opens, so with lots of opportunity for parents/children to meet and to find out about the teachers/school.

Banned and Anna are bilingual or monolingual families?


annazarzyczny Sat 19-Apr-14 09:08:43

we are a multilingual family, polish/italian and ofcourse english. this is also one of my concerns, fourth language! i do love the idea of bilingual school, however not sure if we are not too ambitious here and that would be too much for our son...
i'm going to meet head teacher so i hope our idea will be clearer then
we also not live very close to the school (20min drive, or bus)

allyfe Sat 19-Apr-14 11:26:30

Hi Anna,
Wow smile One of the things I was worried about was my nonfrench speaking family managing with French, and about my daughter managing to do as well with her learning if she had to cope with French as well. But I was massively reassured about their identification of the crucial need for differentiated learning. It is obvious, but they are very much planning to cater the level of French to the need/background and knowledge of the child. As such, they are aiming for GCSE French level only (for written/reading - obviously spoken should be MUCH more fluent). I actually found that massively reassuring because it takes the pressure off in my view. At the same time, if they are doing well, then they will take it to a much higher level. For your son, I would imagine the spoken will come easily because of his language background.

The travel is also a major concern for us. We are less than 10 minutes drive away at 9pm at night, but during the day, with traffic, it could be more like 30 minutes+, and then drop-offs at the school could be really difficult. But with enough demand, they will think about a minibus because they don't want travel distance to be a hindrance. I am thinking that once we meet the other parents and families, it may become possible to lift share etc. as well. The problem for us is that we are in between Kent House and Beckenham Junction train stations (15 minutes walk each way), and not on a bus route to Bromley South. So transport is not straightforward!

I do think it sounds like it will be a very exciting school. It will be really interesting to see who the teachers will be too.

Ally x

bannedyellowsheep Sat 19-Apr-14 17:44:14

We are multilingual family but my my dc aren't bilingual. We live a bit far away from the school, I will drive or take the train.

But I have one older DC in Y4. So I am not sure how it will work out for us.

My only concern is if the school doesn't expand to KS2 and have to change school again.

It is such an amazing opportunity so I don't want my younger DC to miss out.

allyfe Sat 19-Apr-14 18:46:54

Banned the school is going to go up to 11, so it won't be just KS1. They just couldn't open all years at once. So I don't think you need to worry about that bit.

annazarzyczny Sun 20-Apr-14 12:52:44

we live close to lee green, where the way to school would be with really heavy traffic. there is also a bus. for now we need to consider all pros and cons really. it would be good to know each other and maybe found someone living close or on the way.
the main things for us is still the question if 4 languages are not too much?!

bannedyellowsheep Sun 20-Apr-14 18:32:24

Thanks Ally.

The same here weighting pros and cons.

allyfe Sun 20-Apr-14 19:22:32

I'm hoping that meeting other parents/children, finding out the class size, if everyone will already be French speaking, finding out where families are living (and how the transport thing is going to work/if there is scope for the minibus option or lift sharing or childminders) will all help us to decide. In principle, I get keener and keener each day. I love the idea of my children being bilingual smile

Apparently there will be another newsletter out this week, with some details/suggestions for getting parents together etc. I still have to persuade my other half. He isn't a French speaker and is a bit worried about the logistics.

NomDeClavier Sun 20-Apr-14 20:06:11

Is there no French curriculum input at all?

allyfe Sun 20-Apr-14 20:14:19

NonDeClavier as far as I understand it is very much national curriculum, but presented in a very themed way and with a real focus on projects which cover all aspects of the curriculum, and with a focus on creativity, critical thinking skills and internationalism (none of which I associate with the NC - and I don't mean any disrespect there to teachers, only the very fact based requirements of the NC).

I don't know anything about the French curriculum - what would you consider to be French curriculum input? Just curious smile

NomDeClavier Mon 21-Apr-14 10:19:00

Most bilingual schools incorporate material from the CNED or cours sainte Anne into their curriculum. For French children or those looking to enter the French system they would need to be up to speed on French handwriting, mathematical methods and French history too.

It also makes me wonder how well prepared native French trained teachers are to teach the NC, or whether the teachers are not native speakers or not trained. But this thread is the first I've heard of this school so I'm going to do some more research smile

allyfe Mon 21-Apr-14 18:35:38

NomDeClavier the teachers all have to be NC trained. The Head is French and he said that he himself had been surprised at the number of native French NC trained teachers. But I don't think the deadline for applications for teachers has closed yet, so we won't know the actual teachers for awhile.

Worldcitizen1 Thu 24-Apr-14 21:19:22

Hi, I've received a provisional offer for reception. I'm just wondering whether anyone else is coming from Orpington way? My son doesn't speak any French, he has done a few words at pre-school.

annazarzyczny Thu 01-May-14 08:08:50

Hi worldcitizen,
Did you meet the headteacher already? What are your feelings about this school?

Worldcitizen1 Fri 02-May-14 21:18:19

No I'm meeting him tomorrow. I think the bilingualism is fantastic if it's implemented in the right way - but as it's a new school it's hard to know what it'll be like in practice. I'm a bit worried about the building works and the place where it's located.

allyfe Fri 02-May-14 22:09:59

I'll be interested to hear what you thought of him Worldcitizen. I was talking this evening to another provisional reception parent who had met him. We asked similar questions about the location smile. Hope it goes well.

bannedyellowsheep Sat 03-May-14 10:16:53

I've decided not to accept the place for DD 2. It would have been to difficult to get there with DD1 in Y5 and my DS in preschool.

Good luck

Worldcitizen1 Sat 03-May-14 15:53:32

It went really well, such a friendly person. Everything looks like it's going to plan. They're now recruiting UK trained bilingual teachers. During KS1 they'll be learning to talk French if they can't already, with no formal French reading or writing - I think this is best as it could get confusing learning to read in two languages. They'll be following the national curriculum with the addition of French everyday and an emphasis on music. They are keen to build a strong community - they want to organise some social events so the parents and kids can meet up. The building work is supposed to be finished by mid August. Phase 1 is focusing on the first 5 classrooms.

annazarzyczny Mon 05-May-14 13:57:54

hello again, worldcitizen, what about transport? what are your options? are you going to drive to school?


Worldcitizen1 Mon 05-May-14 18:56:25

Yes I'll probably drive especially as they're so little. Not sure where to park though.

GirlFriday1975 Thu 08-May-14 14:56:34

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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