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School admissions 2016- anyone else biting their fingernails and obsessing.

(18 Posts)
MaccaPaccaismyNemesis Sat 30-Jan-16 21:43:52

DS will be going to school in September. The school situation here is a bit pressured. The best school is a faith school and a lot of parents start going to church just to get the signature off of the vicar to show they are active church members. DHs family are all church goers and we did get DS baptised and went to church until we moved house and then stopped. We are probably out of the running but have applied anyway. The second school of choice we are out of catchment so probably not going to get in as it's very popular. The third school is rated 'needs improvement' and is generally seen as improving and doing well. The recent ofsted results haven't been published but the school have had good feedback. It's our catchment school and we are likely to get a place.

The thing is, I've stupidly set my heart on the faith school. I went there, so did my sisters and we loved it there.

Anyone else in the same or similar situation? I'm preparing myself for disappointment but still, I know what we want and I'm crap at hiding it!

MaccaPaccaismyNemesis Sat 30-Jan-16 21:47:47

Sorry if that was a bit long blush

KohINoorPencil Sat 30-Jan-16 21:51:35

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MaccaPaccaismyNemesis Sat 30-Jan-16 21:53:06

Oh, it was ages ago. Not cheeky at all. It still has an excellent reputation and I liked it when I visited it a few months ago.

MaccaPaccaismyNemesis Sun 31-Jan-16 09:13:14

Good morning, am I the only one feeling like this then?!

ChalkHearts Sun 31-Jan-16 09:16:48

My children have been to 4 different primary schools (between them)

And the things that were good and bad about the schools were not at all obvious before they started.

And all of them had good and bad points.

So, honestly, it almost certainly doesn't matter what school your DC goes to.

tiggytape Sun 31-Jan-16 10:40:28

There is now one national results day (April 18th 2016) so I think the countdown for most people comes a bit later - when some counties issued results in March and some in May, the whole process and worry could last a lot longer. But it is very normal to feel nervous about it.

That said, it sounds like you are in a good position: there are several schools nearby that you want or that are acceptable and you stand a good chance at at least one.
The catchment school you applied for seems to be on the up (some people apply to a 'good' school without knowing much about it only for it to then go into Special Measures after the application deadline).

The church school is a maybe and you may still get in depending on who else applies and which admissions category you are in. Ditto the other popular school you have applied to.

And you are in a position where you have one decent banker school (one that you will almost certainly meet the criteria for that is an acceptable school).

After April, you can still opt to go on waiting lists if you aren't happy with the outcome.

SpaghettiMeatballs Mon 01-Feb-16 21:48:39

It's not so much worry for me but I do want to know where DD will be going so I can talk to her in definite terms, know who she will go with from pre-school and sort my work and childcare arrangements.

ShelaghTurner Mon 01-Feb-16 22:15:09

I think I'm fairly safe - in catchment, signed off by priest (genuine mass attenders!) and sibling at the school but even so, I'd like it done and dusted.

8reasonstohide Mon 01-Feb-16 22:19:31

Not just me then and I think I am fairly safe!

Got the letter in September. Applied first weekend - put 3 choices down knowing that it is likely DS would get a place (he goes to the nursery attached although that is not a guarantee)! Forgot about it!

January 15th came. Two days later I started worrying that maybe my application didn't go through! I am sure DH got an email to say it had been received but he can't find it.

Rumours are that the 50 place school has only got about 35 applicants so even if I stuffed it up, he'd get a place.

Doesn't stop me worrying though!

MaccaPaccaismyNemesis Tue 02-Feb-16 19:16:33

It's the worry, and things like I want to start buying uniform because it's so expensive. Also, would quite like to get DS (and us!) prepared.

MaccaPaccaismyNemesis Tue 02-Feb-16 19:17:46

Oh, I did the same 8reasons, I rang the admissions to check it had been received 2 days before the deadline as I had a moment of complete panic that I'd not pressed send!

Inkymess Tue 02-Feb-16 20:30:53

8 - I'd phone the lea and check!! Others have no idea on applications... Uniform is cheap as chips really - a while set is about £10 in Asda...

MaccaPaccaismyNemesis Tue 02-Feb-16 21:26:08

This is the clear advantage of the catchment school as the uniform is cheap and readily available. The faith school has posh jumpers and silly rules. It looks nice but jeez Louise it ain't cheap!

ShelaghTurner Wed 03-Feb-16 07:53:06

Tell me about it! Logo'd bloody everything! Even the skirts are a particular type. The only thing I have free rein on is shirts. Big whoop!

HPFA Wed 03-Feb-16 08:42:08

We chose the wrong primary school for our daughter - it went from good to requires improvement (and that wasn't just OFSTED crap - parents agreed it was fully justified) and I always felt guilty about it. But you know, she was happy there, had lovely friends and now in secondary (outstanding comp)her academic performance has soared. Also, there'll always be an element of luck. You can send your DC to the best school in the world and they might be unhappy because they have a falling out with friends or can't get on with a particular teacher.
Of course, I'm not suggesting people don't give serious thought to their school choices -just don't beat yourself up about it too much.

tiggytape Wed 03-Feb-16 11:58:25

It does tend to work out just fine even if you pick the 'wrong' school, get allocated one you didn't want or miss out on one you desperately did.

Seven years is a very long time. However a school may seem now, it may be very different by the time a reception child gets to Year 6.

So even if you get allocated one in April that you have doubts about, by the time your child is in Year 3 it may be the one that everyone is clamouring for a place at.
People have said in previous admissions rounds how gutted they were to get their 3rd choice school only to be very relieved later on when the Head of their initial 1st choice school left and that school went into decline.

Many have also been surprised to be happy with the school they were allocated (but didn't want) once they'd experienced it.
Generally when it comes to schools - a very good reputation and a very bad reputation last far longer than they are actually deserved so negative and positive local opinion is often very outdated - sometimes by decades!

And of course everyone's experience of each school is very personal. One child's bully-condoning-hot-house may be another child's friendly school with the right amount of challenging work. It depends so much on the child, on the class teachers allocated each year and the mix of other children placed in the class.
Even siblings can have wildly different experiences at the same school.
One of mine was in the bookish, quiet class all the way through where the whole year group had a reputation for being mature and easy to manage.
My other DC was in a very 'lively' year group with very big personalities and a reputation for being the year group that was always in trouble.
Same school, same time frame, same Head, same rules but just some different teachers and different children.

8reasonstohide Thu 04-Feb-16 22:04:20

This was the case at our school!

New school arose from an amalgamation of juniors and infants. We had a lot of behavioural issues, a head teacher who was weak in a lot of areas, families left and we were 'fighting' against the good reputation of two nearby schools. Our numbers decreased rapidly within 3 years from 400 to 256 - lots of redundancies.

Now, 3 head teachers down the line, we are considered a 'good' school. We are now nearly full (except our Y5 & Y6 year groups but they are the 'last' of the low year groups that was the result of the 'bad years') and we are now 'over-subscribed' for YR every year.

The two schools that we were fighting against have actually worsened and OFSTED has rated one as RI for the second time and is in dire straits!

Also my local village school where I live went from Outstanding to Serious Weaknesses in just 3 years! The latter being, everyone suspects, political as it was graded 'Good' 18 months later!

So it goes to show; a good school may not always be a good school by the time your child reaches the latter years of Primary School. Anything can happen but also in my experience, a 'bad' school doesn't necessarily offer 'bad' teaching.

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