Primary School Inverness, Scotland

(22 Posts)
MrsM11 Thu 17-Sep-20 16:10:27

Hi everyone,
Am looking into 2 primary schools in Inverness. The websites are very general and limited with the details they do have. Looking at enrolling my 9 year old into Year 5 at either CENTRAL PRIMARY SCHOOL or CROWN PRIMARY SCHOOL. All feedback is be greatly appreciated.

Kindest regards

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prettybird Thu 17-Sep-20 16:32:37

It might be better to post this in the Scotsnet topic.

doodlejump1980 Thu 17-Sep-20 16:43:36

Crown every time.

MrsM11 Thu 17-Sep-20 17:02:43

Thank you Prettybird, will do.

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MrsM11 Thu 17-Sep-20 17:10:42

Hi doodlejump 1980,
I appreciate that you have seen my post, but your comment does not assist my query. Why is it Crown, every time? What is it that they have or do?
I have asked for information from the school, and have received very general comments that answer nothing.
So could you kindly tell me a little about the school, their curriculum, the school culture, achievements, educational philosophy.
Do you have children there now?
Thank you.

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MrsM11 Thu 17-Sep-20 17:11:32

How do I get onto Scotsnet?

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prettybird Thu 17-Sep-20 17:13:41

Search the topics for Scotsnet. I'm on the app, so can't link.


stargirl1701 Thu 17-Sep-20 17:16:01

Every state school in Scotland has the same curriculum.

stargirl1701 Thu 17-Sep-20 17:18:49

Search here for the latest HMIe report:

They serve the same accountability function as OFSTED but have a different approach.

stargirl1701 Thu 17-Sep-20 17:21:07

Which month was your DD born in? Children attend Primary 1 (Reception equivalent) in the year they turn five (running Mar-Feb). The vast majority of children born in Jan/Feb defer entry.

Year 5 is Primary 6.

stargirl1701 Thu 17-Sep-20 17:27:53

Scotsnet is here on Mumsnet in the 'other' section.

prettybird Thu 17-Sep-20 17:39:16

It's not quite as simple as saying Y5 is P6: if you count back from the end of the school "life", Y5 = P5 confused

The confusion is because there isn't a direct correlation, given the different cut-off dates (September in England, March in Scotland but with the opportunity to genuinely defer - common for January and February birthdays).

England has 6 years at primary (following the child's 5th birthday) after the non-compulsory Reception year, followed by 7 years at secondary (combination of college/secondary and 6th form college); whereas Scotland has 7 years at primary (starting P1 between 4.5 and 5 years and 10 months in theory could could be almost 6 but in practice unlikely , with no reception year) followed by 6 years at secondary.

So P1 is like a cross between reception and Y1.

doodlejump1980 Thu 17-Sep-20 18:28:54

Have PM’d you OP.

MrsM11 Thu 17-Sep-20 19:43:55

Prettybird, thank you for all of the above. I will actually take some time and go through it. I should have mentioned that we are coming from London, and prior to that from Australia. I understand that the curriculum is the same across the UK. I was more trying to get a feel of how schools in Inverness teach. I heard that some of the schools use the Finnish method. I am trying to get a feel of the school community. I've been told by 3 schools now, that they use the curriculum of excellence. That's great, but it doesn't explain what that means.
But thank you for the attachments. I will read through tonight.

OP’s posts: |
stargirl1701 Thu 17-Sep-20 19:45:29


You're the first person I've ever known who has counted backwards to calculate equivalence! 😄 Do you then factor in the different degree structures?

Generally resources used in primary schools use the equivalence of R/P1, Y1/P2, etc.

MrsM11 Thu 17-Sep-20 20:18:06

Sorry, meant to thank you Stargirl for the attachments. Cheers.

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prettybird Thu 17-Sep-20 20:42:03

Maybe it's because my ds has now gone through the system so that I've had time to work it out from experience and common sense wink- and realising why there seemed to be inconsistencies confused. I used to think that Y2 = P1 but then I realised that it wasn't that simple grin. Both educations systems have 13 years of formal education (reception is voluntary): only one does 7 years at primary and 6 at secondary and other 6 at primary and 7 at secondary.

Both systems sit their 1st formal exams in their 11th year - GCSEs (which are the equivalent of O Levels) in Y11, Nat 5s (which are the equivalent of O Grades or Standard Grades depending on how old you are wink) in S4. Both have a further 2 years of education leading on to Uni - at which point you can go to Uni in any of the UK countries (although the fees differ wink) The only real difference is that technically you can go to Uni after S5 in Scotland (which I did when I went to St Andrews many many blush years ago).

Ds, in the younger half of his year, was 17 when he started Uni, despite having completed S6. If he'd been in England, he'd have started formal schooling a year later and only have been going into Upper 6th/Y13.

BTW @MrsM11 - just noticed a bit in your post: the curriculum is not the same across the UK. All state schools in Scotland follow the Curriculum for Excellence. It's more a way of teaching (and learning), and has been in place now for about 10 years. Prior to its implementation, we had Standard Grades but then the National 5s replaced them and then new style Highers and Advanced Highers.

From memory (when they were introducing it and explaining it to us), at primary school it means more cross-subject learning, so eg you're "learning" English while doing a history project, and acquiring numeracy skills doing a geography project. In practice, nothing much changed at ds' primary school as that was the way that they taught already.

Can't comment on the changes at secondary as that's all he experienced. Judging by some of the complaints about some of the early exams under the new system, it was more about having learnt how to apply the knowledge rather than just rote learning it. So in Maths and Physics, the exam questions would give you a often strange scenario and you needed to apply Maths or Physics skills in order to solve it. (So I'd have been stuffed as although I got As a loooong time ago blush for my Maths and Physics Highers, I was a good rote learner and crap at applied Maths confused)

You'll get mixed views about the success or otherwise of CfE. My personal opinion is that the principles are sound but the implementation wasn't necessarily consistent, particularly at secondary.

MrsM11 Thu 17-Sep-20 20:53:32

@prettybird, that's quite the break down of the schooling system 😎. Forgive me if I don't take it all in. Feel confused now. Might just dive into it and not over think it. Not sure about what grade/year equates to where my child is at. Have posted on Scotsnet to see if I can get some feedback on the actual schools from parents. Thanks everyone for your opinions and assistance 😍

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JellicleCat Thu 17-Sep-20 22:53:30

How long are you planning on being in Inverness? I am asking because in Scotland primary schools feed into secondary schools and it is usual for children to move to their associated secondary. You can apply to go to a different secondary using a placing request, but this depends on places being available. If your child will still be in Inverness when they start secondary, this is (roughly speaking) at age 12, then you should check out the secondary schools that Crown and Central feed into as this may influence your choice of primary. Central feeds to Inverness High School, Crown to Millburn Academy. There are 3 other secondary schools in Inverness - Culloden Academy, Inverness Royal Academy and Charleston Academy. They are not the same as academies in England, all are local authority run state schools and all follow the Curriculum for Excellence. Out of Millburn or the High, I would say Millburn would have better results but is a much larger school. I don't have children at either.

I'm assuming that you don't already have somewhere to live in Inverness? Children will usually go to their catchment primary school. There are catchment maps on the Highland Council website here but they're not always that easy to understand.

By the way, all Highland school handbooks should be available here

JellicleCat Thu 17-Sep-20 22:54:34

Should have said, sorry don't know anything about Crown or Central primaries either.

prettybird Sat 19-Sep-20 10:25:58

All the best with your move @MrsM11 thanks

Hope you all settle quickly and make new friends smile

MrsM11 Sat 19-Sep-20 12:14:30

Thank you Prettybird. Who knows, we may even cross paths 💖💖💖.

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