Muswell Hill primary school choice(13 Posts)
My daughter will be starting nursery next year, primary the year after and am trying to decide on where to apply to. We are in Muswell Hill and in the unusual position of being in catchment of several schools- 1. Coldfall 2. Our Lady of Muswell (distance and faith) 3. Tetherdown (distance 2015). Our neighbours kids go to Coldfall and seem very happy, although they seem to do a lot of homework. OLOM seems like a friendly school, but I don't know any parents there. However there seems to be a nice mix of nationalities etc. Tetherdown I also know very little about. Does anyone have any feedback on any of these schools?
Name changed as I'm certain my postcode can be pinned down almost exactly from this info!
I knows someone with two children at Tetherdown. She says that every child has a tutor from year 4 or earlier, many have two tutors. They are tutored for the 11+ (private and grammar) and to get into the top set at Fortismere. I believe they were downgraded from outstanding to good because they didn't stretch the brightest kids and relied too much on parental tutoring, so I would have a good read of the last OFSTED. No personal experience of any of the schools.
Thanks mouse, I'm concerned about sending DD to a pressurised environment at such a young age. She's only a toddler so no idea if she will be academic or not. I was quite under stretched and bored as a child in school so I know that's not ideal, but equally I think the first few years should be about installing joy in learning, not making it a job. I'm sure all the schools are fine, given the catchment but having some choice makes things harder!
Personally I'd take Tetherdown. Lots of kids from my son's nursery have gone there and been happy. Coldfall is the most regimented of the 3 on your list. Its nothing more than one person's experience but a friend's son received a sanction of writing lines during break time at Coldfall which seemed a bit old fashioned and not particularly constructive. It's also a much bigger school than Tetherdown. But some people love it. I'd go have a tour of all three and I think you'll gravitate toward one naturally. If you haven't already you can ask for feedback on the Muswell Hill Mums Facebook group.
You are in a great position OP. I am promoting Our Lady of Muswell (OLM) as I have had two DC go through the school (the youngest left last year) and it was a great school - very inclusive and nurturing and also very strong on teaching and learning. It also has a fantastic head teacher and staff. I can't recommend it highly enough. There are a mix of Catholic and non Catholic children at the school but its inclusiveness shines through.
Thanks all, yes we seem to have lucked out with primary choices. We moved in when I was pregnant and have had letters through the door every few months asking us if we are moving can we let x/y/z know! OLOM is our closest of the schools and is the one we have been leaning towards so it's great to hear your opinion orla.
I can't praise Coldfall highly enough, it is an incredible school. The grounds are really what sets it apart from the other Muswell schools. There is a huge amount of space, and being next to the woods means kids get the chance to do forest schools which is brilliant. I have never heard of anyone being given lines and have had kids at the school since 2009. There is very little homework compared to other schools I believe - one short piece once a week, either Maths, Engish or something arty, and spellings once a week. Being in such an enviable position though, the only way you'll be able to choose is by going and seeing for yourself on the tours.
OLM is a marvellous school. It has such a warm and nurturing environment and the children seem genuinely happy there. Like a PP has commented its about 50% catholic and 50% local intake. In terms of stretching their pupils of all abilities I know they do this well. They've just introduced the Singapore Method for maths, which is internationally rated one of the best methods to teach maths (to all abilities). The PSA is really active, so I dont think it would take long to get to know other mums, and in the past parents have set up closed / private facebook groups for each class so you get to know people and arrange parties etc.
From what I know they are all good schools. I would suggest that you just visit and use your gut instinct to choose, as, realistically a "wrong" choice not on the cards.
Another vote for OLOM! My DS and DD both attend and I couldn't be happier. They are both happy and thriving and have lots of friends. Both are sporty and get to do lots of activities in school and across the whole area. As NLondondad says all the schools in the area are good so you can't go wrong, but I am so happy my kids are at OLOM.
Thanks all, looking forward to seeing all the schools. Its great to hear they are all friendly, hopefully DD will settle wherever we decide. Definitely seem to be blessed with schools in Muswell Hill.
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