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Primary school dilemma - WWYD

(17 Posts)
fufulina Fri 14-Mar-14 13:21:56

Moved into our current house in October last year, so having started Reception in one school, DD moved to a new school in early October (although had only just finished her settling period).

The school we were offered was a school we hadn't even considered, or applied to as is on the other side of the tracks to us (Crouch End), and we're on the Harringay ladder. But is highly regarded and tiny catchment. We were very lucky.

Now, one of the schools we did do an in year application for has offered us a place for her.

Educationally, I don't see that there is much in it; both good schools, both have good SATS, the new school has a really impressive head who is doing good things and has massively improved the school in the last 3 years. Current school has a good, long track record.
Distance - the new school is five minutes walk, current school is a 20 minute walk.
Stability - current school is in a very stable, residential area; not much movement. New school, the population is more transient, so more shifting of classmates.
After-school - we currently have a nanny, but when DD2 goes to school, we won't, and the current school has brilliant wraparound care - lots of parents who work. New school - they have afterschool club, but it is offsite.

I am completely torn. I feel terribly guilty about potentially moving DD again when she is settled and happy, and making good progress (afaik - have no benchmark), on the other hand, would it be preferable to have them both at the very local school, and put up with the inevitable disruption?


SapphireMoon Fri 14-Mar-14 13:35:34

Will your children [2?] be able to go to your current school?
If that is the case, and you don't mind the 20 minute walk, I would stick with where you are.

tethersend Fri 14-Mar-14 13:39:34

Don't underestimate the value of the wraparound care.

20mins really isn't much of a walk.

On balance, I think I'd stick where you are unless you have an issue with it.

maillotjaune Fri 14-Mar-14 13:39:57

I wouldn't move the oldest as long as you know the younger one can go to the same school. A 20 min walk is still pretty short - certainly close emo GH to feel like school friends live nearby, and although only you know how your daughter might cope with another move I think I'd avoid it, personally.

fufulina Fri 14-Mar-14 13:40:01

Thanks Sapphire. I just checked with current school and sibling forecast for 2016 (when DD2 will start reception) is 9, in a class of 30. So unless things change dramatically, DD2 will have a place at current school.

Why do you think we should stay where we are?

fufulina Fri 14-Mar-14 13:42:03

Cross-posted. Thank you Tether and Maillot. My thought on moving her is that catchment for both schools is about 0.1 miles, so classmates live very very close to schools. We don't. If we move her - all her class will live in spitting distance. I really don't know what to do! Hugely appreciate the replies.

tethersend Fri 14-Mar-14 13:44:07

Have you been to look round the nearer school?

SapphireMoon Fri 14-Mar-14 13:47:00

If dd is happy and wrap around care good it seems shame to move her.
Good reason to move her would be if youngest would not get into current school due to admission criteria.
Still not thinking distance too much of an issue with friends unless you feel it will be?
If you all happy why cause disruption?

fufulina Fri 14-Mar-14 14:27:03

Yes - had a look around nearer school on Wednesday. You have all helped enormously. Needed the MN clarity of thought. Thank you.

CecilyP Fri 14-Mar-14 14:28:07

I agree with others that 20 minutes really isn't that far (and will seem even less as your DCs get older) so on that basis see no real point in moving. Presumably there will be other DCs who live near you, or at least somewhere between your home and the school. And the on-site wraparound care sounds like it could be real boon to you in future.

BackforGood Fri 14-Mar-14 14:50:47

In the first instance, I would consider being very local to a school to be a real advantage, but in your case, I think keeping her where she is makes more sense for the following reasons :
- It seems you are happy with the school - you know this, but can only presume you will be happy with the other one.....
- The fact she's moved once this school year already. It was unfortunate timing, but it seems she's settled happily, but I think it's a big ask to expect her to attend 3 different schools in her Reception year
- Mainly, the excellent wrap around care - massive plus point
- It's still walkable, so not the same as putting a drive to school into the equation.

Hassled Fri 14-Mar-14 14:53:56

I'd leave her where she is. 3 schools in one year is a lot for any child to deal with.

fufulina Fri 14-Mar-14 15:01:44

Thanks all, very much. You have all been enormously helpful - and the three schools in one year was really playing on my mind.

tiptabletops Fri 14-Mar-14 15:06:44

I agree with the others. There is no compelling reason to move.

fufulina Fri 14-Mar-14 15:12:21

100% consensus from MN. A rare thing! We're keeping her where she is. Delighted that's the decision made.

Cakecrumbsinmybra Sat 15-Mar-14 10:26:22

I too would keep her where she is.

nlondondad Tue 18-Mar-14 10:42:12

I agree: Stick with the school you are in. I also agree that a 20 minute walk is managable.

Your story highlights how, even with a school fully subscribed on paper, on the first day of term, vacancies open up.

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