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Top 50 Grammar versus top 200 Independent

(104 Posts)
schoolfloosie Sat 22-Dec-12 12:44:11

Which school would you choose between these 2:

Super selective Grammar vs Selective Independent

Does anyone have any strong feelings on these schools. Should add that DD is already at the Independent with a 40% scholarship and is happy there but the chance to go to the Grammar has come up as someone has left.

LIZS Sat 29-Dec-12 07:38:48

Good letter from Joan. Perhaps also say something about this offer being a surprise (otherwise they may think you have initiated it) while you have been reappraising the situation after the first term.

JoanByers Fri 28-Dec-12 23:23:06

I would send something like this:

Dear Head,

I am writing to you with regard to my daughter, Jo Doe. We have been finding the strain of paying her fees, bus fares, and so on to be a considerable burden, and have been appraising our situation in view of this.

She has been offered a place a at XYZ Grammar School as a result of another child leaving that school.

We feel that while both XYZ Grammar and your school offer comparable educational outcomes, the music provision at your school is unequalled, something that my daughter, as a music scholar, very much appreciates. However we are finding that she is unable to take full advantage of the musical opportunities due to the timetabling of lessons after the buses have left at the end of the day, and we are therefore uncertain that she will be able to access all that your school has to offer.

As I am sure you can understand we are in a difficult situation as your school and XYZ grammar are both outstanding schools, but moving to XYZ would relieve the pressure on our finances.

I would appreciate your consideration to both of these matters.


Mrs. Jane Doe.

Mutteroo Thu 27-Dec-12 00:26:38

OP don't be too elaborate but agree with focusing on the good points of the school & how you don't want to move DD. FOIR years ago I begged (literally) the HT & governors for a bursary to ensure my son could weekly board at the school of his choice. I had an added bonus of DS's prep school HT who also wrote to the school. DS gained that bursary (Or should I say I got him the bursary!) The challenging part is the extras but even this we had help with so its worth asking. The fact your DD is already in the school will add weight to your claim and I hope you achieve it. If the school turn you down you've lost nothing have you?

DoesntTurkeyNSproutSoupDragOn Sun 23-Dec-12 17:03:14

I've just looked through the letter I sent. I was right - it actually asks them for nothing although I have no doubts that they knew exactly what I was after.

schoolfloosie Sun 23-Dec-12 16:21:07

mysteryfairy could you elaborate more on how the letter might go - I have seriously lost the plot now due to massively over-thinking the whole thing.

Thanks smile.

Turkey, that sounds ideal - well done.

DoesntTurkeyNSproutSoupDragOn Sun 23-Dec-12 15:27:19

I managed to negotiate a financial discount for DS2 to attend the same school as DS1. He had been offered a scholarship at another school in the group but not at our preferred school. I don't think I asked them for anything, merely set out our "dilemma" pointing out that he had been offered this scholarship and also passed the entrance exam for a local secondary and super-selective grammar. I had an offer in less than 48hours with the promise of more depending on his end of year exams.

mysteryfairy Sun 23-Dec-12 15:07:06

Schoolfloosie - I think it might still be worth writing a letter but a very different and brief one. My eldest son is at an independent and also went to their junior school. When he sat senior school exams he came top both for his current school and for another (to us less desirable) school, which promptly offered him a 100% scholarship. I didn't ask his current school for anything at all, just asked for educational advice about moving DS to x school and to receive it quickly as I was under pressure to reach a decision. The current school very hastily invited me in. In the discussion of the new option I commented it was tempting to move DS as I had two younger children and needed to ensure I made choices that ensured all three the best possible educations and it was unlikely either of the younger two would get the same offer (as though both able they are not outstanding like DS1). School then made a scholarship offer beyond what they would normally do to keep DS without me having to say more. He is in sixth form now and we are paying less for him again as his GCSE results meant he got a further sixth form scholarship so worth checking if there's that potential for future.

schoolfloosie Sun 23-Dec-12 11:10:40

Your son will have already missed the opportunity to apply for a Grammar School place. He will be in Year 6 which is the last year of primary. The only Grammar school that I know of up that way is Heckmondwike Grammar and there are 2 Grammars in Halifax which isn't that far away either. You could call the schools directly and see what they suggest.

ibrano Sun 23-Dec-12 10:44:10

Hi, we are planning to move to Leeds in Feb after being lived in republic of Ireland for 12 years, my eldest son, (10.5 years) is in claas 4 in Ireland,
Two things i like to know,
First, is he going to be put in class 4 in the Uk education system, secondly, any grammer schools in North Leeds, and how can we prepare our child for the entry test for the grammer school,
thankful to the person who have this information

difficultpickle Sun 23-Dec-12 10:42:46

If you consider a bursary application you may want to think about applying for a flexi boarding place. The day fees are very low but obviously the boarding fees are higher. The associated income level for a bursary would no doubt be higher for a boarding place. Flexi boarding means your dd could stay at school when convenient rather than committing to being there every night.

The senior boarding school I'm interested in for ds has quite a high income level for bursary applications.

Coconutty Sun 23-Dec-12 10:18:05

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LIZS Sun 23-Dec-12 09:49:18

Sounds like you've made a provisional decision to stay put. Can I suggest you make an appointment to meet the Director of Music and Head of Year to see how you can manage logistics. If that requires an extra expense (for travel, boarding etc) then you can ask for an increase. Meanwhile use the parent network to look for a lift share , presumably even part of the way would help unless you are very remote.

At the moment it just sounds as if you didn't do your sums initially and that isn't really the school's fault. I'm surprised you couldn't be considered for a bursary as well though hmm, assuming financially you met criteria. Might be worth exploring that route with the bursar again.

schoolfloosie Sat 22-Dec-12 23:15:06

Thanks bisjo smile.

difficultpickle Sat 22-Dec-12 23:05:50

Good luck with working out what you want to do. Sometimes it is hard to know what to do for the best.

schoolfloosie Sat 22-Dec-12 22:49:19

Again, thank you all for allowing me to work through this, it's very helpful.

difficultpickle Sat 22-Dec-12 22:47:23

Then that's what you need to think about when you write the letter. If you haven't had the offer from the grammar yet I would be surprised if it arrived whilst the school was closed.

schoolfloosie Sat 22-Dec-12 22:46:38

OK, I'm coming to the conclusion that we should just see this as a sign that the Grammar school may be a realistic option for the boys and to put our energy into that.

schoolfloosie Sat 22-Dec-12 22:43:00

No bisjo, and it wouldn't help...

I don't want DD to go to the Grammar, I am v. happy with how things are currently I just wish we had more money.

difficultpickle Sat 22-Dec-12 22:38:16

How would mentioning lack of piano lessons help your case? Was the cost included in your dd's scholarship?

Floralnomad Sat 22-Dec-12 22:36:30

I wouldn't have thought that you'd have an answer from the school that quickly taking into account the holidays ,so perhaps your decision needs to be made on what the exact situation and funding is now.

difficultpickle Sat 22-Dec-12 22:35:24

I would mention the school if it is a realistic option (you will definitely move dd if no more money offered soon). Otherwise you have no way of putting a deadline for the current school to respond. It could be left to be reviewed at Easter or the end of this academic year if you don't mention that you need to consider your options now.

schoolfloosie Sat 22-Dec-12 22:34:45

It took the school almost a term to arrange piano lessons which is something that we were not very happy with. Should I mention this?

schoolfloosie Sat 22-Dec-12 22:31:29

Grammar wants an answer 10 days after we get the letter, so less than 2 weeks I guess.

schoolfloosie Sat 22-Dec-12 22:29:53

OK, I take your point about the first sentence...

Floralnomad Sat 22-Dec-12 22:29:42

Write the letter without mentioning the other school ,just explain that having reviewed your finances after the first term,which your daughter has thoroughly enjoyed for x reasons etc, that its more expensive than you thought for transport etc and these are your concerns re the music stuff after school . You do need to move fast , when does the grammar want an answer by?

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