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Best primary schools in Cambridge??

(95 Posts)
4cookies Thu 25-Feb-10 12:44:54

We'll be moving to Cambridge next fall and are trying to find out which primary schools are best. Any tips on the best areas to live in or schools for our children?

Thank you!

Builde Tue 20-Apr-10 20:58:51

'Best' school is such an unintelligent definition.

A-level results are really only a reflection of the intelligence of their intake. The same child (unless easily lead and of weak character) will achieve the same in most schools.

I am sure that I would have got the same A-level results if I'd been to The Perse that I got at my comp.; e.g. all As. And I can see that my girls are doing as well (or better) at their 'poor' state school as they would be doing at a local prep. 'Poor' because it has some difficult children who bring down sats averages, but it doesn't effect what my children learn, or how intelligent or motivated they are.

The poorest teaching I ever experienced was at the 'best' university' in the UK.

eo2011 Tue 27-Apr-10 00:50:31

Does anybody know anything about Newnman Croft school?

hopkins1 Fri 30-Apr-10 18:24:20

I agree that some children seem to flourish in state system (maybe because they have such a limited curriculum base at state schools, whereas public schools teach in far more exspanse and depth and also because some children are able to remain at the top of the class throughout and work hard to maitain that position) however these children are the exceptions, rather than the rule. I have children in both state and public schools I can see the benefit of paying for the education far outweighs its cost. At my eldest son's school (state) there is one teacher to 30 pupils, at my youngest's school (public) there is one teacher to every 10 pupils.My youngest son has learnt to read at 4 years and 1 month in just two weeks. There can be no comparrison.

hopkins1 Fri 30-Apr-10 18:26:05

Oh, and the "best" quote was from the telegraph, builde.

NoahAndTheWhale Fri 30-Apr-10 18:33:20

I think there can be a comparison. My DD learned to read in about 4 weeks aged 4 years and 3 months at a state school. And we could never afford private education.

Would also say that I achieved more in state education than DH in private education.

But of course those are only two examples. Would need a slightly larger sample size to compare properly smile.

Sorry, was just annoyed by the suggestion that state schools places where children "seem to flourish".

annapet Thu 06-May-10 11:35:02

We are also moving to Cambridge from Norwich. I have a son in Reception and a daughter in Nursery. We will move to Cherry Hinton area and the closest schools I have found there are Cherry Hinton C of E Infant School and Colville Primary School. Could anyone advise me on these schools? For me it is very important that the school is clean and the children are taking care and then only the academic progress.

eo2011 Sat 08-May-10 14:50:35

We are moving from New York City to Cambridge. I wonder if anybody can advise about Newnham Croft school, since it is the school that was recommended to us. We have no friends in the area, so I really look for some feedback about this school.
Thank you.

Octavia09 Sat 08-May-10 22:26:36

What about The Spinney? It is not in the city but regarded as a very good primary school. Or is it not anymore?

Flakita Wed 28-Jul-10 12:33:27

Probably worth mentioning that Perse primary fees are about three and a half thousand pounds per term! grin

ampere Fri 30-Jul-10 21:00:00

And the poncey purple/black/white stripy blazer costs £104 for a 7 year old.

sishnayzjhz Fri 19-Nov-10 13:10:30

Could anyone give more comments on Ridgefield Primary school? Thanks

stleger Fri 19-Nov-10 13:26:22

My kids had a spell in Newnham Croft a few years ago when my dh was in Cambridge on Sabbatical. At that point, I found it good - it had a new IT room and good for arts. It is 'international' due to its location near various graduate colleges, many pupils would have English as a second language. The staff were able to deal with it, standards of academic work were high (probably also partly due to the fact that a lot of kids had academic parents). It also seemed quite laid back about SATS compared to the experiences of schools attended by my nephews. (And the local shop is fabulous).

maggie73 Fri 11-Feb-11 13:28:57

Does anyone have any recent information about St Paul's school? Thanks

86talktime Sat 26-Feb-11 11:17:33

Skip Newnham Croft. If you are looking for academics, then this school is not the place.

RobynLou Sat 26-Feb-11 11:23:32

I don't think you need to pay for good A level results in Cam when there's Hills Road for free!

I grew up in the villages, went to Hauxton CPS, which was very good, but that was a couple of decades ago! I have a friend who taught at Milton Road which seemed a very good school.

We're in London now though...

Dukeleto Sun 27-Feb-11 11:33:02

No-one's mentioned St.Matthews? I've worked as a playworker and TA in several Cambs schools now, and St.Matts seems like a great school to me, really open, helpful community and great staff. Tony Davies is a fantastic, friendly, energetic head.
Very oversubscribed tho, you'd have to live in the (tiny) catchment area.
Where in the states are you moving from?

SallyBig Mon 21-Mar-11 20:20:05

A bit late to this thread, but sishnayzjhz was asking for more on Ridgefield. It's not had the best reputation, and I was a little concerned as it's our catchment school and my DD4 wasn't likely to get into any schools outside catchment.

We visited it and really liked it. It has a really nice atmosphere, and the teachers seem to do well with the kids. DD now goes there and enjoys it, and we're impressed with what we've seen.

I understand it's not had strong leadership for the past few years, but a new head started in September, and is doing a lot. I can't say first hand what the school was like before, but from what I've heard from people whose kids have been going there a few years the head has had a great effect.

I hope this helps. I found the ofsted reports pretty depressing reading, so all I can say is go and see the schools.

ZigaZig Mon 09-May-11 21:14:05

Belatedly re: St Philips in response to JumpJockey. It's a mixed catchment, community C of E school. The head is well liked by staff, pupils and parents and was hired from a London school. In spite of a slight tendency for religious zeal, she heads up a school where pupils are happy, creative, encouraged to achieve and are supportive of their peers. Links with the community are excellent and it is a school which truly refelcts the diversity of the surrrounding community. Recent years' intakes have witnessed an increase in the St Phil's school gate`yummy mummy' - testament to the slow gentrification of Romsey and the fact that this could be the area's hidden secret.

Biased? Of course I am! I have 2 children at the school who are happy, have fantastic, dedicated teachers and who are in no way underachieving. Why fork out 10K per annum when this is on your doorstep? Ultimately, an OFSTED report is just a snapshot.

Good luck to everyone deciding on schools. Go and visit them. It is such a personal choice.

101learnmum Wed 20-Jul-11 00:11:42

Skip Newnham Croft. They can't keep a headteacher.

ektorpjennylund Thu 28-Jul-11 17:25:21

Resurrecting this thread as I am also moving to Cambridge from the US and DS aged 4 will be starting reception mid-year.(October)
I have lived in Cambridge before many yrs ago so have an idea about the areas etc.
From all I have read and seen online it seems that most state schools in Cambridge are good to v good in Ofsted reports. I would prefer to go with state anyhow.

I have 2 questions:
1. We are thinking of living in one of the southern villages. Any suggestions re primary schools there? Little/Great Shelford? Is Harston nice?

2. Mentioned above is "one school to avoid like the plague" --- it's not named but can you give me a hint so I can strike it off my list?


MovingAndScared Sat 30-Jul-11 13:59:47

Hi - its really dependant on where you are living which school you go to in general -most people in the villages go to the local school unless there is a good reason -and really its best as then DC has friends near by - and if you need school pick off/drop that is easier - I am sure the school mentioned will NOT be in one of the south villages - and it may be out of date anyway
ring the local authority - cambridge county council - and find out which schools have places in the areas you are interesting in living - you can't apply until you have a signed tenancey agreement
have a look at the ofsted reports
and have a look at the cambridge local mumsnet section there are some thread on schools theretoo

thaiapple Mon 07-Nov-11 13:33:44

I can tell you about the Primary school in Swavesey Village up north west from Cambridge along the A14. The school is good and gets good scores from ofsted and the kids score good on tests. My impression is that the kids are bit noisy/ rowdy and the teachers strict. The English system seems to be focussed more on learning math/ English in a formal way, while in other countries learning-through-play gets more emphasis. Each primary school is very different because it are the teachers and students together who make up up the school. I'd very much appreciate if people describe here the schools they know.

Cambs Tue 22-Nov-11 14:47:04

Does anyone have any experience of the Spinney or Queen Ediths? We have been to see them both and they are very different schools. Are there any advantages/disadvantages of a bigger school? I'm not sure the Ofsted reports are that important, it looks like they transcribe a lot of the previous reports.

Somebody asked about Little/Great Shelford - it is supposed to be a good school and Little/Great Shelford are pretty affluent villages. It is a C of E school and their admissions criteria takes into account whether the parents are regular worshippers.

This is the link for Cambridge admissions and if you look at the First Steps pdf it indicates how oversubscribed each school was last year.

Tiredofitall123 Sat 30-Jun-12 21:31:46

I wouldn't bother looking at Newnham croft - there are about 5 staff members leaving all at once!!!! that should tell you something and i know for a fact that parents are really unhappy with all the changes and are taking their children out. not to mention their satisfactory OFSTED report, all in all it seems that the school is going downhill fast!!!!!!!!

pasttense Sat 30-Jun-12 22:03:38

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