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Best independent prep schools in Altrincham/Sale

(18 Posts)
mu10na Fri 12-Jan-18 16:58:33

Hello All, We just moved to Altrincham and am looking at some of the Independent schools in the area for my DS. The below are the ones in the vicinity,

- Altrincham Preparatory School
- Hale Preparatory School
- Forest School
- Forest Park Preparatory School
- St. Ambrose Preparatory School
- Abbotsford Preparatory School

We are looking for schools that provide overall development both academically and in terms of extra-curricular activities. We were told by a couple of friends that Forest Prep School and St. Ambrose Prep are good choices.

Can the esteemed members recommend which of the above suits that bill please. Any input would be very helpful to make a decision.

Leicesterpiggott Fri 12-Jan-18 17:14:44

Those areas have some of the UK's best state primaries. Why are you so set on private? Not a dig, just genuinely interested.

Leicesterpiggott Fri 12-Jan-18 17:15:23

Only asking as my sister moved to the trafford area specifically for the fantastic and outstanding state schools. Primary and Secondary.

mu10na Fri 12-Jan-18 17:26:18

@Leicesterpiggott, as mentioned we just moved to Altrincham and to be honest not very sure how to shortist either State Primary or Independent schools. Any direction in this regards would be helpful.

namechangedtoday15 Fri 12-Jan-18 19:56:04

Abbotsford is Urmston so not local. Some of those are boys only, some are mixed. Also, some (e.g. Hale Prep) are likely to be booked up, historically people put their child's name down from birth.

St Ambrose Prep is no longer fee paying, so a slightly different option than the others.

It also depends on what you intend (or would like) to do in terms of secondary school. St Ambrose children tend to go to St Ambrose (but that's a Catholic grammar). Lots of boys from APS go to Altrincham Grammar School for Boys but slightly easier to get into if you live in catchment.

It really depends what you see in the future and whether things like co-ed are important to you.

namechangedtoday15 Fri 12-Jan-18 20:00:00

Sorry that info about fees isn't correct for St Ambrose, it is fee paying. I'm out of date!

Bigfanofforest Fri 12-Jan-18 21:55:51

Hi, I would not choose St Ambrose because they don't really prepare for the 11+ exams. Hale prep is nice, charged us a registration fee, then informed us that there is no places and a huge waiting list. Forest prep is more academic than the Forest park. However there is a group of very unpleasant (and very orange) insecure mums in Forest Prep who rule the playground and can make your child's life a misery. Altrincham prep is quite academic, but I am not that keen on headmaster. State schools - Stamford park is ok for infants but not that great for juniors.

Onceuponatimethen Sat 13-Jan-18 00:02:23

The waiting lists are big for preps in this area. How soon do you need them to start?

Onceuponatimethen Sat 13-Jan-18 00:21:53

We struggled ringing for reception a few months ahead - we were very late!!

mu10na Sat 13-Jan-18 10:07:45

We plan to start in the coming Autumn term for reception.

Monkeymonstermum Sat 13-Jan-18 11:59:34

Closing date for state school applications is either tomorrow or Monday! Look on the Trafford website for info. Amazing state school in this area so I definitely wouldn’t just look at preps personally. I would definitely apply then look round later as you’re so close to the closing date.
Hale prep and forest are both tiny with very few facilities (eg I know Forest have to have nativity play in a local secondary school in the evening as don’t have hall big enough). I don’t get paying that much for so few facilities (and I went to an independent school so not anti at all...just personally couldn’t justify paying for a school that had fewer facilities - we may well do independent for secondary though).
I believe APS is very boys boys but has a good reputation.
Personally wanted co-ed and you can’t get that and good facilities without going further afield (eg Ladybarn or Cheadle Hulme). Therefore decided state was better option as outstanding schools and great facilities.

mu10na Sat 13-Jan-18 13:32:23

Would you be able to suggest good State Schools; do we look at the Ofsted reports to determine how good they are. Also do state schools provide good exposure to extra curricular activities as Independent schools?

namechangedtoday15 Sat 13-Jan-18 13:46:34

You also need to look at catchment areas for stats schools are most are oversubscribed. If you go on the Trafford website you can download a booklet called applying for primary school (or something like that) with all the relevant info. You are unlikely to get a place at a school a distance away (rather than your local one) unless it's for example a faith school.

Personally I don't think Ofsted is particularly helpful as pretty much all state schools locally are outstanding (hence the demand). I would also suggest here (it may be different in other areas) that state schools provide masses of extra curricular activities- far more than the local preps.

namechangedtoday15 Sat 13-Jan-18 13:48:23

Ps. Have you bought or are you in rented? You will need to check that you meet the criteria for having a "permanent residence" in Trafford in order to be eligible for a state school place.

NotPennysBoat Sat 13-Jan-18 21:15:31

What are your catchment schools? Do you have a religious (or would you consider a church school)?

Lifechallenges Sun 14-Jan-18 20:05:36

Do you want all boys or COED? Are you catholic? Do you know which have space?

firstboard Wed 14-Feb-18 15:40:45

One word answer - APS is best and cut about the rest. DS was there from Reception to Year 5, moved to MGS in Year 6.
Their results are excellent .

bizmum1 Fri 04-Jan-19 15:38:42

Agree with firstboard - APS is outstanding if you can get a place. My ds is flying there.

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