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Forest Prep, Timperley, advice please(8 Posts)
Our son is currently in reception at APS. He has been there since nursery (3 years now) , is doing well and is happy and settled. Out of the blue, we were contacted by Forest Prep saying a place had come up and asking if we would be interested in taking the space. This has come as a complete shock and, whilst we are generally happy with APS, I feel that we do need to give Forest some serious consideration too. We have roughly a week to decide whether to accept the place or not, so would be extremely grateful for any opinions - good or bad, especially from parents who have experience at Forest. If we take up the space, he will be joining the year 1 class in September.
The things we are considering are:
1) It will be a big change for him moving from an all boys school to a mixed co ed setting.
2) LB is in a very small class currently (15) whereas at Forest there will be 24 children in total.
3) From the work we have seen from Forest, it looks very academic. Will my little one keep up?! Whilst he is considered 'exceeding expectation' now - will he still be that at Forest, or will he move into a 'meeting expectation'/'below expectation' . I am worried what impact this might have on his confidence.
Both schools are great but we are hoping our little one will consider MGS at some stage, so it would be good to know which school will give him the best chance of getting a place there.
Any help, advice or opinions welcome!
You could try asking both schools for their statistics as to what % of children per year go to any of the local grammars or MGS in particular.
I would question why you're keen on MGS if you're concerned about your DS's academic ability. If you think the DC would be ahead of him at Forest then they would be at MGS too.
Otherwise you could look at MGS junior school as an option for Y3 onwards.
Ask for stats to state grammar - this will give you more of an idea about how academic they are - I’m not sure if it’s true but I heard that Forest didn’t get any in last year.
I’ve heard v mixed reports about Forest but not having a child there difficult to comment. The thing I think you may be disappointed in compared to APS is the lack of facilities. I believe they don’t even have a hall big enough to have concerts/nativity.
I would be asking to look at the work done by the reception children so you can compare to what your child is doing (and ask for a selection, not just the child at the top of the year group).
Would you consider asking for a meeting with the APS head or at least form teacher before you jump ship?
Personally I would be loathed to move if they are happy and achieving, although moving to co-ed may be enough of a draw to make the move.
Good luck. Whatever decision you make all the schools in Trafford (state and independent) are very good so you can’t go far wrong.
Many thanks for both of your responses.
As we have still not made up our mind, I am a little reluctant to ask APS for leavers information, in case it raises any suspicions. Although I have asked Forest, the admin directed me to the website - which whilst it does have some information, isn't as extensive as I would like, so I will endeavour to get more statistics.
We have had a brief look at the work Forest do and it is very impressive. The difficulty is, we have not had the opportunity to see any of our son's work at APS, so I don't have much to compare it to. We have organised a taster session so I will hopefully be told at the end of the session where DS will sit in comparison to the rest of the class.
Forest is a much smaller school in comparison, however I love the fact that parents are kept very much up to date with their child's learning (3 reports followed immediately by a parents evening) whereas APS only have a parents evening in October and then the next one isn't until May. I also love how nurturing Forest is - they have put a lot of thought into how to train the children to be kind and respectful to each other, and do a lot to encourage good behaviour.
We will have a tour of the school next week so hopefully will be better able to judge what is right for our LB.
But you are correct in saying we are very lucky to have such a good choice of schools in Trafford!
Thanks again to you both for your comments!
Agree you don’t want to speak to APS if you look round and discount it, however if still seriously still considering it I would speak to them before you agree to the move. I think Forest talk a good game...I’m not sure their results match that. I don’t think academically they are ahead of the best state schools around here (if not behind) therefore don’t think they’d be ahead of APS.
If you’re moving for the smaller environment, that’s a whole different matter.
Thank you for that information! I was under the impression that Forest are more academic than APS...so that news is certainly important. Whilst academia is important, our hope is that our little boy will turn out to be a kind, respectful and well rounded person. From what we have seen so far, Forest excel at nurturing those 'soft' qualities. However from a long term perspective, if MGS is our aim then we have no choice but to take into consideration which school is the more academic. This is such a hard decision!
Thank you for taking the time to reply though - I will see how the taster session goes and if we are still undecided then I will somehow try to squeeze a meeting in with his teacher before they break up for Easter! Wish me luck!
But remember, I’m just a random on the internet! No one can know except you. Also, at the end of the day one decision isn’t going to shape your child’s life (however big this feels now). We have multiple excellent schools here and children succeed from a range of them.
Just came across this thread and was wondering what decision you made in the end? Forests or APS? I am interested to know if you got hold of the stats to grammar schools of both schools. Thanks