Moving to Chelsea from NYC looking for Academic private school for 7+ year boy.!!(32 Posts)
I am looking for any idea of a private school that would accept my son for year 7+, he is 11 for this September. I would like a classic school but we really want strong academics offered. Willing to travel a bit. Help!! ANy ideas?
11+ is the main year for transferring to senior school in the state system. But you're in luck as prep schools (private)m primary) prepare for 13+, and many will have space.
How long do you plan on staying? Do you want American system? Any chance of sending boarding at 13? All different factors to consider.
You may want to change the title of the post OP as it reads as though you're looking for the age 7+ exam entry (into Year 3) not 11+ exam entry in to Year 7. Or at least it's a little confusing.
Either go straight for Senior School entry, or look for a Prep School that finishes at 13+.
How academic is your child?
HI, yes you are right thanks for pointing that out. How do I change the message though? New to Mumsnet.
Do you want to tell us how academic your child is and if you have a preference for a 13+ Prep or Senior School, co-ed or single sex? Or an American School?
Then we can help with suggestions
If you want to change the title, click report on your post. Then you can ask Mumsnet to change the title.
You live much further west than me and I don't know west London all that well. It might be worth getting hold of a copy of the Good Schools Guide for north London.
If you are relocating for work, would they pay for an Educational consultant?
It might help if we knew what type of school you are transferring from in NYC to find a comparable. PS or private? Were you originally aiming for Sty/Bronx Sci or Horace Mann/Collegiate/Calhoun? The UK system makes NYC look like a day spa. Imagine ERB on steroids !
Subscribe to the Good Schools Guide. Then think about a prep that goes up to 13+. Thomas's Battersea, Newton Prep, Eaton House The Manor, Wetherby might be top choices but also Hill House, Eaton Square, Fulham Prep, Knightsbridge Prep and others.
Places at academic secondary schools are very sought after. You are far more likely to get a place for the final two years of a prep, which also allows your child to make the transition to the British system. Good preps have good links with senior schools and will know where your DS might fit.
Most schools that start at age 11 will be full for September so you options are a prep school for 2 years then move to a 13-18 school. This is a good option because it will give your ds the chance to move onto the UK curriculum and get advice as to the right senior school. Is he St Paul's Westminster material of more mingle of the road.
Another option is to look at international schools such as South bank international or Halcyon.
Third option to look at brand new schools such as Easton Sq upper. And Fulham prep is opening a senior department.
Portland place and Northbridge house sometimes have space
If everything fails the local education authority has to find your son a school place but it doesn't have to be your nearest school or a good school just one with space
Rather unhelpfully I have to point out that you have just exactly missed the 11+ entry process for the most obvious academic schools, (Westminster Under, Colet Court, Kings, Latymer, and the north London equivalents) and also the 13+ prescreening for the year 9 onwards most academic London schools (eg Westminster, St Paul's, Kings, City, UCS) who, rather oddly, select during year 6. (of course, it depends on how academic you want to pitch - Dulwich College for instance doesn't select until year 8, nor, I think, Alleyns).
I think your best plan would be to look at prep schools (to year 9) schools which have some boys leaving 13+ and who have less rigid 11+ entry proceedures to buy some time. Thomas's Fulham or Battersea, Newton Prep or Fulham prep leap to mind. But what you do after that isn't utterly clear, unless you would consider boarding (you have missed the most acadmic boarding schools too (Eton, Winchester, Tonbridge etc), but there are quite a few of the next tier which haven't finished yet (Marlborough, Wellington etc), although time is tight.
And there is the American school
Not madly cheering feedback. I think this is a case where an consultant might be a good idea (I am normally a bit doubtful about them) as you are hitting a tricky time. Some schools themselves might also be helpful.
This is based in St John's Wood but still may be handy - nice summary of schools.
I think this may be one where you need an education consultant (Gabbitas and Thring is the big name, Good Schools Guide offer it too, others are available).
You've just missed the admissions round for 11+ (as others have pointed out) but there might be schools it is still worth ringing to see if there is any way they can consider a late candidate. What do you mean by a 'classic' school? And do you have any preferences for co-ed or single sex?
How long do you think you will be in London?
If you go the prep to 13 route then Newton Prep and Eaton House the Manor are both easily reached from Chelsea on the 137 bus.
And Wetherby senior, but I don't think it would necessarily fit your classic but acadmic profile perfectly.
I was going to reply to your PM, but I think everyone els has already made all the suggestions I would have! All I would add is that because you'd be applying late, you may have to take whatever place you can find rather than being too wedded to the idea of somewhere in / v near Chelsea.
As others have said, these schools are very over subscribed and the ones which do have places may not be everything you hope for academically (such as Portland Place).
You guys are the best! So helpful. I will check out all of the schools you mentioned. You guys are so much nicer than the moms on Urbanbaby. THe NYC mom's blog. THey do nothing but bicker!!
I am not sure it is quite as problematic as Michaela suggests.
If somewhere like Newton, Eaton House or Thomas (Battersea or Clapham - Kensington only goes up to 11), will take you, which they probably would as they will have lost most of their girls at 11+, they will probably suggest catch up work over the summer (French, Latin, Maths) and then within a term or so will have worked out where your DS sits within his year group.
If he is very special - top 0.5% perhaps, a good head would probably be able to engage in some sort of dialogue with a very academic senior school about a late application. Otherwise a bright child will probably be aiming for somewhere like Dulwich (which does not pre-test) Alleyns, City etc. There will also be occasional places cropping up at schools without a formal 13+, like Latymer.
Schools like these would normally prefer to fill their places with a child who is up to speed in the English system, so with a good Head recommendation you are well placed. And if he is not quite right for these academic schools, the Head will recommend more suitable alternatives, some of which are mentioned above.
In short, use a good prep as your educational consultant.
Also starting into an established and small year group will help a child transitioning from a different educational system. An 11+ school might have 200 new students so would not have time to give the extra attention and support your son might need.
I would try Newton first. It is near the new American Embassy, and its head came from Dulwich College, which is a pretty good 13+ choice for a bright child.
@ OP if you hate the bickering then stay clear of AIBU and of the feminism board unless you're an ultra feminist!
Michaelah - Marlborough have also finished recruiting and have a waiting list.
It is a while ago - but when we lived in the area - sadly some time ago - I would absolutely agree with Needmore re trying Newton Prep. They do a decent job with London day schools and also (if you wanted it ) some of the better known boarding schools. Also I have heard very good things of the new Head. And in DS's day - there were places in yr 7 & 8 for the reasons explained above ( i.e. some girls / 11 + candidates leave then - but you can easily check that)
Marlborough have just finished their intake for 2018, not 2019, judging by my God daughter. But their registration list might be closed - I don't know strict they are about that
The other angle from a good prep, if your boy is v academic, is that some schools (Westminster and winchester yes, eton and St. Paul's maybe - I haven't checked) allow boys who haven't registered or pretested in year 6 to apply directly to sit their scholarship papers in year 8. They say that a place is only available as a scholar (which at westminster means weekly boarding and only 9 places) but I know of a boy last year who won a normal place that way. Clearly your boy would have to be very well prepared to essay that route.
And as another poster said, there is probably more movement in the system than at first glance appears - it appears we have consensus on you targeting a good prep school who will be able to find the routes in and , crucially, identify where he belongs academically. (Newton and Thomas's battersea both have a large us contingent which might be nice)
I don't suppose you do CAT tests in the US? I wonder whether that is something one can have done as an individual (or perhaps your current school could arrange it?). They are standardised tests in verbal and numerical skills and verbal and non-verbal reasoning which many independent schools use and are a useful shorthand when addressing which sort of school would suit. There are rough guides to what numbers would indicate super-selective schools. But do practice first (e.g. BOFA website) as familiarisation with reasoning tests is helpful if one hasn't done them before. Might be handy for "marketing" him, if you will excuse the revolting phrase.
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