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IB secondary schools for US kids?

(10 Posts)
Moving616 Wed 09-Nov-16 18:17:08

Looking for advice on how to research and apply long distance. I'm a UK citizen, but know nothing about London schools or resources/reviews for learning more.

Daughter: US grade 6 (UK year 7) currently in a test-in selective state school with an advanced curriculum in literature, writing and media. Loves reading and art. A creative soul and more of an introvert.

Son: US grade 4 (UK year 5) currently in a selective state school with an advanced curriculum. Loves Science, math and all sport. More of an extrovert.

Our family is American, but of British and Colombian decent with some experience living abroad. We're moving from Washington DC. The kids both speak some Spanish.

I'm interested in an environment that is welcoming, international and academically rigorous. Any ideas? Even though they are in the (horribly named) "gifted and talented" program, they are not geniuses or anything - just academically minded. Will they be far behind their London peers? Have a hard transition academically or socially because of coming from the US? I'm not excited about the idea of the American School, but perhaps that's our best option (the fees seem outrageous)?

We don't know our future plans, but if we have to come back here, their local (non selective) school has an IB program.

I welcome any guidance on social or academic issues. Thank you!

LIZS Wed 09-Nov-16 18:24:43

Very few schools in UK do the primary and middle years programme. It is slightly more common at sixth form (yrs 12 & 13) as an alternative to traditional A levels but more so in the independent sector than state schools. The IB website lists participating schools. Do you plan to stay in UK or move on in a few years?

LIZS Wed 09-Nov-16 18:32:18

http://www.ibsca.org.uk/index.php/schools-map/all-ibsca-schools

You can narrow the search by area. The American Community Schools are popular with others in your situation but they are expensive in terms of fees and accommodation nearby. You'd have to make contact with each potential school for info about applications and vacancies, or employ an agent to do so on your behalf.

For state schools you'd need an address from which to apply and would be allocated a vacancy for each child , rather than have a choice of school. When are you moving?

Moving616 Wed 09-Nov-16 19:01:23

Thanks for your reply. We would move over the summer, but potentially my husband would go first (do we just need an address, or do the kids need to be at that address?).
I'm hopeful the company would pay all or part of any school fees, so I'm focused on independent schools. There seems to be so many, I don't know how to begin, as we can choose our neighborhood after choosing a school. I'm from NYC and not afraid of city living.

Mary21 Wed 09-Nov-16 19:12:04

There is ACS Hillingdon , Dwight. International school of London. South bank.
There is also a Spanish school near Portobello Rd
Another option would be to look at U.K. Private school but your dc will probably need to do entrance exams.You could look at a London prep that goes to age 13 such as Newton prep or Hill house (if you can cope with the uniform) they would the be up to speed with the uk curriculum to change schools at 13

LIZS Wed 09-Nov-16 19:14:46

Not many of those linked to have a primary department which would be where your dc2 would fall. Most start at 11 or 13 but as I mentioned most follow a traditional GCSE curriculum until 16, so if you plan to move before then choosing an IB school may not help any transition. For independent schools you wouldn't need to be resident to apply but for state the children would, or be imminent arrivals. Remember the school year here runs into July in most cases.

LIZS Wed 09-Nov-16 19:51:44

This site breaks the list down by programme, http://www.ibo.org/programmes/find-an-ib-school/?SearchFields.Region=ibaem&SearchFields.Country=GB&SearchFields.Keywords=&SearchFields.Language=&SearchFields.BoardingFacilities=&SearchFields.SchoolGender=&SearchFields.ProgrammeMYP=true showing those offering myp, for example.

ilovegreen Wed 09-Nov-16 23:08:40

I had an American (girl) friend who went to Godolphin and Latymer in Hammersmith (London). Think it might be good. Don't know for your son though.

Mary21 Thu 10-Nov-16 16:16:02

Will your dd be year 7 in September or now. If September you could just consider on of the London days schools. The entrance exams are usually in January. You woul need to register now and arrange to do the exams abroad and also see if you can do the interview by Skype. All London schools are cosmopolitan. It goes with the territory.
If you go down this route pick a selection of academic and less academic schools. Maybe Kingston Grammar. Closing date for applications Dec 1st.
Ibstock place. Usually considered slightly less academic and Kew House usually considered less academic again. Another to consider is Harrodian.
I stock, Kew and harrodian have their own Junior schools which would be helpful for your ds.
Kgs doesn't so you would need to find a prep school for him.
Kgs does have sample papers on their website

mummytime Thu 10-Nov-16 21:20:14

I have know American children get into pretty Academic private schools as allowance was made for their different academic background and they showed potential. But it does depend on if there is room.
Plenty of students go to US universities with GCSEs and A'levels so that wouldn't be a huge worry for me necessarily.

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