American family moving to Cheshire and looking for advice on schools(11 Posts)
We are preparing to move to the Wilmslow area with our four children for 2-3 years while my husband is on assignment. I have 5 year old twins and a 7 year old (all girls - lone boy is just a year) and am looking for a prep school in the area. I would be so grateful for advice/recommendations/places to avoid. Are the schools welcoming to families like us from overseas? We have only just found out about this move and are looking for a school beginning January 2014 - is that going to be difficult? I welcome any advice as I feel very much "in the dark" on how the schools work over here and how best to prepare for this move! I will be visiting in November/December with my husband to find a home and hopefully a school! Thanks very much for any help.
Hi there, I'm from Cheshire but not nr Wilmslow and I don't really know the area but the local authority (Cheshire West and Chester) should be able to help you - link here
You can also see on this page a link to details of local schools and Ofsted inspections; these are the schools inspector in the UK and give a rating - Outstanding being the best. You also need to look at the results for the tests each school undertakes at certain stages, you should find this on one of these links.
Good luck! Wilmslow is a really nice, affluent area so I would imagine all the schools will be good
Waves, am also in Cheshire but not near Wilmslow. I have to put up with CWaC for our LEA as well.
millermom asked for prep schools specifically. There are a number of excellent preps in the Wilmslow area. Try www.goodschoolsguide.co.uk for ideas. One I know is superb - www.theryleys.com. And no, I'm not connected with the school - no ulterior motive!
There are independant prep schools around but you also need to think about possibly looking north of Wilmslow to the Sale / Altrincham area which is in Trafford LA. You can approach independent paid prep schools directly and they should be interested in taking on three extra pupils.
Wilmslow is not Cheshire west and chester LA, it is Cheshire East. There are some good state primary schools (not fee paying) in the area but given that they will mainly be full, finding a state school able to take three children, all of whom are going to be classed as infants could be difficult. A problem you will have is that most schools / LAs will not consider an application for a place until you have an address where you are staying in the UK. So a Jan start may be a bit of a tight squeeze logistically if you are not going to be coming to the UK until Nov/ Dec.
Thank you. We don't really want to be much north of Wilmslow, as my husband is actually working in Crewe. And yes, one of the many reasons we are looking at prep is b/c we aren't sure how quickly the housing is going to come together and we don't want that to hold up the schooling decisions. We were looking at Pownall Hall, Wilmslow Prep and AEGS for now but only online as I haven't made the trip yet. If anyone has anything specific to share about these or other prep schools I'd be most appreciative. Thanks!
There's one called the Ryleys. I haven't lived in/near the area for years, but it might be worth checking out the website - http://www.theryleys.com/the-ryleys-home - as well as state school provision in the area.
I'm in Wilmslow - the local schools are excellent but there are waiting lists for most primaries. Our LEA is actually Cheshire East, it may be worth looking on their website for tips etc.
I honestly don't think you'd have any problems being made to feel welcome - thanks to the BBC moving up North, plus Astra Zeneca just down the road, it's actually a lot less 'suburban' than you might imagine.
Is in centre of Wilmslow
Alderley Edge School for girls is in Alderley edge near Ryleys school
http://www.cheadlehulmeschool.co.uk is not too far up A34 from there and know people who are happy with it.
http://www.terranovaschool.co.uk is in opposite direction more in countryside.
Some of these will have waiting lists. The rental market in the area is quite tough as there is a shortage of good properties.
There are also some good preps just over border from Cheshire in Stockport. Look at Cheadle Hulme School, Ladybarn House in Cheadle. Couple of miles drive from Wilmslow. Bit further afield but within driving distance of Wilmslow there is also Stockport Grammar School.
If working in Crewe also worth thinking about Hale as area. Straight off motorway so only 30 min drive. Prob as quick as travelling from Wilmslow.
And don't worry about settling. I don't live in area any more, but generally us Brits are pretty welcoming. Tip is not to wait to be invited to anyone. Make an effort to invite people round, for coffees, kids play dates anything really. Eventually you will find a group of friends you really like.
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