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Taster Day at Private School not gone well

(22 Posts)
Morebiscuitsplease Tue 25-Nov-14 18:26:17

DD1 had her taster at our preferred choice of school. We really like the school and feedback from parents is all positive. My daughter's experience was not positive. Low level disruption in class, pencil throwing which hit her on the head and hurt. Her buddy gets out of seat and hits offender with folder. Comments made by buddy to friend that my daughter isn't bitchy enough ... Oh sorry that's not for little ears. Am aghast, this was not he experience we or my daughter hoped for. Should I feedback, daughter did not say anything to head in feedback ... Not surprised by that.., feeling really disappointed and not sure what to do

ComradePlexiglass Tue 25-Nov-14 18:27:33

Are there any other options?

beatricequimby Tue 25-Nov-14 18:36:18

It's a good thing you had the opportunity of a taster day to find out what it's really like. Tell the head but don't let him try to persuade your daughter to come in for another taster day. It sounds awful. Have you visited your local state secondary?

Leeds2 Tue 25-Nov-14 19:01:05

I am sorry it turned out like that, but it is probably a fair indication of how the children usually behave. I would look at all other options.

IndridCold Tue 25-Nov-14 19:16:47

There are Taster days and Taster days!

Was your DD the only child doing the 'Tasting' or was it a whole group of prospective new pupils? IME the two can give very different experiences.

When there are a group of children coming in for a test day, it can sometimes get rather out of hand like this.
If your DD was the only child going in to join a normal school day, then I would be a bit concerned.

mummytime Tue 25-Nov-14 19:26:55

Are those present pupils at the school? If so I'd go for an alternative, your local state school might seem like heaven in comparison.

Morebiscuitsplease Tue 25-Nov-14 20:23:37

State school is ok but felt private offered so much more.... Think I will feedback to see how they react.
Worked as a secondary school teacher in inner city for 5 years so am surprised by behaviour, would have expected better frankly. Small class 2nd set,....

mummytime Tue 25-Nov-14 22:40:16

Some private schools (some state too) really know how to say all the right things. However how that translates to reality may not be what you expect.

Purpleroxy Tue 25-Nov-14 22:53:13

If her buddy hit someone on the head with a folder, that's a poor indication. Buddies in these situations are chosen because they are well behaved, polite, will answer the visitor's questions etc etc. Is the hitting buddy the best behaved child they have?! My friend has a ds who is intelligent and well behaved and he is chosen to do this sort of stuff. My db is a teacher and did an example lesson at an interview. It was a "nice" secondary and he was so disgusted with the behaviour of the 12/13yos that he told the head that he didn't want the job. I would not send your DD to the school and tell the head why.

outtolunchagain Wed 26-Nov-14 08:08:31

Was your child in her year group or the year group she would be going into .Teenage banter between kids who have been together a long while may appear worse than it actually is , plus is she behind the move ?Also all girls or mixed ?

Theatre days are about finding if you feel comfortable , if she didn't well it's sad but at least you know

Morebiscuitsplease Wed 26-Nov-14 09:09:13

Outtolunchagain it was the current Y7, so a year above. Would expect y7 to behave on the whole especially second set and am surprised at that level of bitchiness, they are not yet teens....in my experience Y9 is the troublesome year.
My daughter was nervous but was looking forward to it...she is as disappointed as us. Fair to say our local comp is looking more attractive. And yes I am glad we know this now.

outtolunchagain Wed 26-Nov-14 10:12:20

I agree it doesn't sound brilliant but Zi do think that there is a huge difference between a year 6 classroom and year 7 . And in an established group a certain amount of banter may be normal but may intimidate a young year 6 . There may also have been a certain amount of showing off to the younger visitor . Not defending them but I wouldn't put a year 6 into a year 7 classroom I think there is a massive difference .

Whilst I would generally agree re teenage stuff I know at our school they regard year 8 as the worst year for girl friendship issues even having a special PSHE programme for this

rabbitstew Wed 26-Nov-14 10:35:40

A taster day is supposed to give you a flavour of the school. If you don't like the taste, don't send your child there!

Hitting a visitor on the head by throwing a pencil in their direction is a lousy advert for the school, as is the failure of the teacher to control the low level disruption. I would not send my child to a school where bitchiness is apparently a desirable characteristic and the children have no manners or respect, and no understanding of how to represent their school to outsiders. I wouldn't expect that sort of behaviour in a state secondary school and would complain about it in that context, so no reason not to let the headteacher of the private school know that the taster day was a disappointment because of the uncontrolled poor behaviour of the pupils.

One advantage of private schools is that you are the customer. If you aren't happy you can walk away and look at other options. Some private schools are great on all levels and some are not. If they can't even show themselves well on a Taster Day then I wonder if they really are that good.

outtolunchagain Wed 26-Nov-14 11:10:42

I don't think the visitor was hit on the head , It was the existing pupil hitting another . All I am saying is I can imagine some one jokingly swatting a friend with a folder as if to say "silly you" but someone who doesn't know them well and could be up to 2 years younger being intimidated by this.

Either way it sounds a but suspect so you are well out of it .

outtolunchagain Wed 26-Nov-14 11:15:37

Oh and definitely feed back honestly , the school

Morebiscuitsplease Wed 26-Nov-14 12:00:34

Outtolunchagain...yes she was hit by a pencil. Have left a message for HT to call as he was unavailable. Am still shocked and as rabbitstew says....so many reasons why it isn't good. I will be interested in their response but we will definitely be keeping all options open. Too much money if you have doubts, not sure it is worth it.

Celeriacacaca Wed 26-Nov-14 12:33:19

Presumably there was a teacher in the room - what on earth was he/she doing while all this was going on? Am assuming class sizes are smaller than state so difficult to disguise this sort of behaviour?

If that's the school's "on show" face then I would fear what goes on usually. Think you've already made up your mind but fwiw, I wouldn't pay to send my child there. At my DS's state secondary, teachers won't tolerate disruption and come down very hard on any disruptive behaviour. Pupils are clear on what's expected and what the consequences are.

Notinaminutenow Thu 27-Nov-14 07:06:58

If that is the behaviour on a taster day, I wouldn't touch it with a bargepole.

Always surprised that some people presume that behaviour in an independent is automatically going to be better than in a state.

That behaviour just would not be tolerated in my school.

In many independents the financial imperative that drives their very existence, allows bullying, bad behaviour and average results to go unchecked.

Coconutty Thu 27-Nov-14 10:34:45

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

amidaiwish Thu 27-Nov-14 10:48:09

run a mile.

Inatizztoo Thu 27-Nov-14 11:16:28

Not a good sign. This sort of low level disruption ruins learning. Their behaviour could be even worse on a normal day!

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