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Independent primary and secondary schools in South Manchester

(16 Posts)
Cloud144 Wed 03-Feb-16 13:12:01

My DD currently in year 2 goes to a state school in Cheadle. We always felt that we would send our DD to an independent/ SG in secondary but we are having to rethink this plan as we fear that our DD may not be upto the required standard for these schools if we don't send her to an independent at primary.The other option is to get extensive tutoring to get her to that level but that eats into her spare time and we don't want that pressure on her at such a young age.
We are considering the preps in south Manchester including, Moor Allerton, Ladybarn house, CHS,AESG, Greenbank and Wilmslow Prep with a view for her to go to Altrincham for girls or MSHG.
So far we have visited AESG which was lovely but I get the impression it is not very academic. I wasn't too keen on MA.
I would really appreciate first hand advice on these schools including any experience on the secondaries in South Manchester.

Kr1stina Wed 03-Feb-16 13:18:23

We always felt that we would send our DD to an independent/ SG in secondary but we are having to rethink this plan as we fear that our DD may not be upto the required standard for these schools if we don't send her to an independent at primary.The other option is to get extensive tutoring to get her to that level but that eats into her spare time and we don't want that pressure on her at such a young age

Can I ask - if you feel that your DD isn't clever enough to get into an independent secondary school without " extensive tutoring " from aged 6, why would you want to send her ? She won't be happy there .

Cloud144 Wed 03-Feb-16 13:26:00

My DD is a bright girl but want her to be working to her potential which I fear may not happen if you are in a class of 31. I am hoping that smaller class sizes will give her more attention from the teachers in providing a good foundation in her learning.

Kr1stina Wed 03-Feb-16 17:43:32

I'm sure you don't want to hear this but I'll say this anyway.

Mumsnet is full of parents who have " always felt that they would send their child to x type of school " , when they have taken little or no regard of their child's abilities and interests . There are posts on here from parents of babies ans toddlers asking how they can get them into Oxbridge !

Some of them are more interested education as a status symbol or a fashion statement . Others need their children to achieve certain things that they failed to do themselves . While still more want their children to keep up a family tradition , even though it might be entirely the wrong school for their child.

They push and harass and tutor their kids to within an inch of their lives to get them to " fight above their weight " and many of them end up unhappy or struggling in the wrong school / university.

I'm sure you are NOT one of these parents . So I'd suggest that you take a little time to work out what is going on with your DD, who is still very young.

Why do you think she is bright ? Why do you think she is not working to her potential ? Is she falling behind her class ? What does her teacher say? Do you have reason to think she has any specific learning difficulties ? Is she happy at school ? Does she like her teacher and have friends ?

A bright six year old in a good school with a happy home life should not be falling badly behind just because she's in a class of 31. There may well be something else going on. It may just be < whispers > that you child is average and not particularly bright.

I'm not saying don't move her. But please think hard about her needs and not just your own ambitions for her.

Noteventhebestdrummer Wed 03-Feb-16 17:55:09

Lady Barn is fabulous. Look at their Y6 leavers results!

Inkymess Wed 03-Feb-16 20:30:30

I think cloud is not unique in her concerns - certainly not in SMancs.
The Trafford grammar system in the next door LEA and number of top private selectives locally makes schooling a local obsession...!
Parents seem to fall into four typical patterns
A. Happy to stay in state as they are happy is a good rounded education in Manchester / Stockport
B. Want free state, but are adamant that grammar is the way forward so move house to Trafford state schools and tutor for 2 years
C. Start in state. See others in private and become convinced that small classes and paying hard cash gets a passport to massively selective grammars or highly selective private
D. Have the cash to never entertain state schools...
I know loads that are in camp B&C and a few in D. Most people I know don't have the cash to move or go private so make the best of what they have.
The belief that paying gets you into top schools is very common though and I have seen friends get sucked in at vast expense.
OP wants to understand her options, so I'm sure any help would be appreciated

Inkymess Thu 04-Feb-16 21:50:12

Btw Ladybarn is the one people rave about near me - plus Stockport Grammar

namechangedtoday15 Mon 08-Feb-16 11:30:16

There's another category that you've missed Inky. Live in the area, want state, tutor like everyone else for Year 5.

Cloud144 Mon 08-Feb-16 21:54:30

Kristina- you have made some very important points in your post and I have questioned myself on them prior to your post. I'm hoping to make the best decision for my DD to ensure that first and foremost that she will be happy.
Thankyou all for your suggestions it's a great help.

Kr1stina Mon 08-Feb-16 22:10:01

Thank you for taking my posts in the spirit in which they were meant .

I am genuinely trying to help and I have no agenda here - I have used both state and private schools for my children. Different children with different needs . Ditto Oxbridge.

Inkymess Mon 08-Feb-16 22:57:27

Argh yes Namechange. I missed out 'live in Trafford, in state school so tutor from yr5 for grammar'. The OP isn't in Trafford but Cheadle, so I missed that category 😉 The system does tend to make a lot of parents anxious however and paranoid that they are not doing the very best fir their child. I think there are so valid points about reflecting why OP thinks private is needed.
Most people I know who use private such as Ladybarn SGS and MA simply think that their DC will be pushed much harder academically, that small classes are better and money buys less classroom bad influences.

Inkymess Mon 08-Feb-16 23:01:03

OP as far as I know all the local High schools are good or outstanding? Or are you specifically asking about private?

namechangedtoday15 Tue 09-Feb-16 08:27:24

I agree Inkymess. There have been quite a few posts lately about the private v state debate. I do think Trafford is unique. My children wouldn't have had a better education had we paid for it but it's a very personal decision.

Inkymess Tue 09-Feb-16 13:42:57

I also think it depends how you define education. Mine are in mixed state education and I'm very happy with that as its a broad education in all aspects of life and. Not just academia, but life itself.

namechangedtoday15 Tue 09-Feb-16 14:22:18

Couldn't agree more. The school is pushy but also places really strong emphasis on personal values - my DS got the school "merit" award recently for a school trip showing an "outstanding contribution" and having "impeccable manners" smile. Sorry, that was a blatant PFB moment, I know they are banned on MN wink.

Catsbells1 Tue 23-Feb-16 00:20:54

Our daughters both went to Wilmslow Prep and absolutely loved it. Fairly small but a really great feel. Smaller classes so lots of attention and so friendly. They have always had great results for all the south Manchester senior schools' entrance exams at 11 (& Trafford). You can't beat your natural instinct for the feel of a school and you will know pretty quickly if it's right for your child. So go and have a look at them all. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend WPS. Good luck

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