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Would you recommend Y7 or Y9 for secondary school?

(22 Posts)
ccnet Sun 19-Dec-10 15:08:27

Thanks for any advice. I am in the middle of prepping for Jan secondary school exams (fingers crossed) but still unsure as to whether DS should go in Y7 or Y9 (if he gets into his preferred schools). DS is bright but extremely disorganised. His maturity level and confidence goes up and down (commendation one day, lost backpack the next). The schools he is looking at are academically intense. On the one hand, I think DS needs a fresh start and will rise to the challenge. On the other, two more years at current school could give him a chance to mature and hit the ground running in secondary school. Also, there is question of best friend likely to leave at Y7. Any advice?

seeker Sun 19-Dec-10 15:16:40

Don't understand - how old is he and what year is he in now?

CuppaTeaJanice Sun 19-Dec-10 15:19:50


pinkteddy Sun 19-Dec-10 15:21:00

Is he at a middle school? Most secondary schools start at year 7 in England.

magentadreamer Sun 19-Dec-10 15:22:43

I think it depends on when the main entry is. If the majority start in yr7 then I wouldn't put off a start till yr9 as it might be harder to settle down and make new friends as friendship groups could be 2 years strong by then. My DD was a scatty yr6 but took to High School like a duck to water.

magentadreamer Sun 19-Dec-10 15:23:36

I'm assuming he's sitting exams for entrance to an Independent school?

NoahAndTheWhale Sun 19-Dec-10 15:25:29

Is he at an independent school?

ccnet Sun 19-Dec-10 15:30:40

Really sorry about not being clear (my first MN post). He is 11 years old now and has option to either stay in his current school until he is 13 years (i.e. to get a place in the secondary school and defer pending Common Entrance results) or to attend new school next year (when he is still 11 years old). Yes, the 'secondary schools' are an independent and a grammar (again, still getting my head around terminology so I do apologise). Does this clear it up a little?

exexpat Sun 19-Dec-10 15:37:26

I would guess he's currently at a prep school that goes through to age 13, but you're planning to send him to an independent school that has intakes at 11 and 13?

From the social point of view, I'd say go at 11 if that's when the main intake is (usually the intake at 13 is much smaller) because friends and interests are much more fixed by 13. But if he seems young-ish for his age, it can be good for the confidence to be a big fish in a small pond for a while, so staying on to be one of the oldest ones at prep, and taking on more responsibilities etc, could be good for him.

On the other hand, my DS is also bright but disorganised, and much to my surprise he started getting much better as soon as he started year 7 - wrote down homework, remembered to take things he needed to school and so on. We did have a couple of lost PE kits, and raincoats always seemed to have been left at school on days he needed them on the way to school, but on the whole he did a lot better at the organisational stuff than I expected.

Really there are so many variables - size of schools you're looking at, relative size of intake, how your DS feels about friends leaving, and so on - that you will have to go on your own gut feelings.

ccnet Sun 19-Dec-10 16:19:45

Thank you! It is reassuring to hear about DDs and DSs maturing in Year 7. My DS did a big maturity jump from Y5 to Y6 but I wasn't sure how much weight to give this. I also think you are absolutely right about gut feelings - but it really is reassuring/elightening to hear about experiences of others (good and bad). Much appreciated!

PixieOnaLeaf Sun 19-Dec-10 16:22:31

Message withdrawn

ccnet Sun 19-Dec-10 16:45:18

Good question. DS is undecided. Originally, he wanted to go at 11 to his top choice but current school has done a bit of a hard sell from the current Y7/8 boys who have remained (although to be fair, they are just raising very valid points regarding more responsibilities, opportunities, etc). So he is looking for more guidance from us (understandably . He recognises his organisational challenges (as every teacher points it out...wink) but is chilled about it for some reason. hmm

My small advice on your Y5 DS is that if he is clearly ahead of the academic crowd now, you will know by Y6 whether the friendships of those who stay will still be such a major factor in the decision (or if he will be chomping at the bit for a more cademic environment).

PixieOnaLeaf Sun 19-Dec-10 17:05:54

Message withdrawn

ccnet Sun 19-Dec-10 17:13:04

That's a very good way to think about it. And ditto on the how much I like DS' current school - I will have a younger one still there but will miss lots of things/people and life for me would be easier if I just kepthim there. Ah well...

Abr1de Sun 19-Dec-10 17:16:27

Actually for boys, the main intake is usually at thirteen, or it is for the more traditional public schools.

My son stayed at prep school until then and grew up a lot. It was good for him to hang on there for the two years.

ccnet Sun 19-Dec-10 17:19:49

Why was it good for him to hang on? What big changes did you see?

Abr1de Sun 19-Dec-10 20:20:21

He was more mature and confident. Better able to deal with a big, acadamic, boys school.

Abr1de Sun 19-Dec-10 20:24:28

He was more mature and confident. Better able to deal with a big, acadamic, boys school.

Abr1de Sun 19-Dec-10 20:24:54

Academic, that should be!

santadefiesgravity Sun 19-Dec-10 20:27:02

If your choice of school has a Year 7 intake then I would go for that. Does it have an attached 7-11 prep. My dc's prep is attached to a senior school and whilst a few children join in Year 9 from a nearby 7-13 prep the vast majority go in Year 7. Even those at the 7-13 prep generally leave in Year 6 unless they are applying for schools furhter away or boarding schools.

If however you are looking at a more tradidional public schoolwhere all go in at Year 9 then stay for CE.

ccnet Mon 20-Dec-10 20:12:03

Thank you...that sounds absolutely logical. Again, really helpful to hear how others think about it! Many, many thanks!

mummytime Tue 21-Dec-10 06:58:11

My local good boys independent has an attached prep (11-13) but most boys from the prep go to the senior school at 11. Boys tend to stay at the prep because: they are advised they need the extra couple of years (academically or socially) or they are aiming for Public schools and CE.

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