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PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2014 11:32 am 
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Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2012 3:25 pm
Posts: 56
Hi All,

As the CAF deadline is approaching, I wanted to get opinion of other parents who attended open mornings/evenings at these 3 schools: Maiden Erlegh (either Silverdale Road or the new one), Forest School/ Bulmershe.

Apart from ease of travelling we want a school with good maths teachers/department because that is my DS's favourite subject.

Maiden Erlegh is our closest school and would like my son to go there in case Reading school does not work out but the school seemed overcrowded and not sure if he will be able to get the attention of the teachers with such large intake.

I was pleasantly surprised by Bulmershe. I attended an open morning there and found children to be very well behaved and facilities were great and more on the way thanks to £6 million investment. Teachers were very responsive, straight and clear in their explanation when we asked specific questions. About maths, they have a special teacher with maths expertise to give extra lessons for 10-20 children that are at the top of the top set and those who come it at level higher than level 6 in Maths. I am not sure how much of it is true.

At Forest school I was impressed by the children giving us the tour. It also seemed like a very good school but again like maiden erlegh no extra lessons for children who excel in Maths.

Just wanted to check how other parents felt about these schools, may be you have children in these schools already and may have first hand experience. Would you lean one way or another for academic or other reasons?


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2014 12:51 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 16, 2011 1:05 pm
Posts: 4024
Location: Reading
We are in catchment for ME and Bulmershe, so my DD has friends at both.

We didn't like ME as we thought it was too big a school. It suits a particular type of child. A friend of mine aha a son at ME and it suits him well but she knew it wouldn't suit her DD, who is at Kendrick with mine. However I have spent time there and it is a good school. They split the school in two. However this does mean that there's no mixing between the two halves. I was working with some year 11s and they bearly knew each other.

We didn't look at Bulmershe as they don't do german, which was a must for us. However I know one of DDs friends is there and they certainly do a lot for the high flyers. Her parents are happy with their choice. Lots of investment going on and the new head arriving a couple of years ago seems to have made quite an positive impact. Apparently their science department is very good. They are seen as the poor relation to ME, which i can understand in previous years, but seems a bit unfair now. As a result the classes are smaller.

There is also the new ME in Reading that is going to be opening. Same ethos as ME in Wokingham but smaller, with teachers shared between the schools. This will be on the crescent road site next to Alfred sutton and the UTC. I believe the admissions will be based on feeder schools. ESP is counted but none of the other wokingham primaries are. Most of the other East reading primaries are, with one glaring omission, so Alfre Sutton, Redlands St Johns etc.

Also bear in mind that while you may be in catchment for ME in Wokingham, you may not get in. In previous years they have taken upto about a mile from the school, if you are outside of that, you are unlikely to get a place.

Sorry I know nothing much about Forest as I only have a DD. Haven't heard Anything bad though.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2014 4:44 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2012 3:25 pm
Posts: 56
Thanks Tinkers. It appears that we are blessed with choice of a few good schools around here and cannot go very wrong. We are within a mile of ME but just. Last year the admission distance expanded but I expect it to shrink again this year.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2014 6:22 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 06, 2014 12:18 pm
Posts: 354
When we bought our property 5 yrs back we were in clear catchment of ME, rather that was the criteria when we were looking for property. But with all the changes in ME catchment it seems we are just sitting on the fence (as per the Wokingham council). Yes, they said that last year it came upto my distance but this year it might be dicey :( for us, Bulmerche is sure shot and nothing else


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2014 8:28 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 16, 2011 1:05 pm
Posts: 4024
Location: Reading
ME is Reading might take the pressure off ME in Wokingham (I wish someone would have thought of a more original name for the new one :roll: ) for a bit so I don't think the effective catchment will shrink very much for a year or two.

Difficult to know though. Go for what you think suits your DC.


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