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 Post subject: Managing friendships
PostPosted: Sun Apr 22, 2012 9:15 pm 
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Joined: Sun Apr 22, 2012 9:04 pm
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Hi, I'm new to the forum but DS is rapidly approaching yr 5 and we've started to consider the Gloucestershire GS's for him and our younger DD. Although we're willing to relocate if both or either DC manage to get into one of the GS it does worry me that they may potentially be at separate schools some miles apart in opposite directions and possibly many miles from home. I am a bit concerned that it won't be easy for them to 'drop' round to their friends' houses after school. This probably sounds really petty to some but it does concern me. I do think that easy access to a few good friends is important when growing up (and in adulthood too if I'm honest). If we stay where we are now (in the next county) and accept a reasonably good state school they would have easier access to most of their friends and an easy walk to school (for both of them). But the grammars perform so well and both DC are so switched on we'd love to try for them. I just wondered how other parents had coped when their children had managed to gain a place at a great school only to find that friends were miles and miles away and in all sorts of directions?


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 Post subject: Re: Managing friendships
PostPosted: Sun Apr 22, 2012 9:22 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 10, 2011 6:00 pm
Posts: 406
DD has got into GS a bus ride away (though she did have the option of the only 10 minutes walk away she did not like it). None of her current friends will be going to that school.
However, since we are in walking distance of her Primary, and all her friends are too, she and her friends are still going to be in walking distance of each other. I think it is just a case of being a little more structured when it comes to dropping by. DD and her 2 best friends have decided to set days once they know what after school clubs they want to do.


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 Post subject: Re: Managing friendships
PostPosted: Sun Apr 22, 2012 9:23 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2006 8:51 am
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We live v near a GS, surrounded by kids in the same year but the best friends are 10 miles away! You just can't choose your kids friends ... GS with big catchment areas always have kids scattered widely, and the kids tend to sort it out themselves - there are buses, sleep overs, trips into town, hours on facebook etc etc


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 Post subject: Re: Managing friendships
PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2012 12:44 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 13, 2007 8:03 pm
Posts: 1827
Location: Gloucestershire
Surely distance will not matter in the slightest - they'll be talking to each other all the time on Facebook, Skype and the like when out of school... At least, that seems to be the trend.

That said, my DD2 has been to sleepovers with school friends at Malmesbury and Ciren and meets up shopping in Stroud with children from outlying places - just needs a bit of parental transportation.

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 Post subject: Re: Managing friendships
PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2012 3:32 pm 
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Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2008 4:25 pm
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If I had a good comprehensive and children that were switched on to education then I would probably opt to stay put.

The Grammar schools in Glos do perform well but remember they are populated by a select group of parents. i.e those who have gone out of their way to enter their children for the test and will continue to give a good level of support to their child throughout their school career

Even with our poorly performing local comprehensive I know of a hard working DS with switched on parents who has got into Oxford.

Yes I opted to put my DSs into a Grammar school but that was because I wasn't confident that they would be self motivated enough to survive that particular Comprehensive. With hindsight my eldest would have been better placed in a well performing Comprehensive that provided extra support on the socio/emotional aspects. Unfortunately these are often harder to get places at than Grammars.

That said Capers comment on the distance/facebook habits is pretty spot on. They do get around it but be prepared to do some ferrying around, though as Herman mentions this is likely to happen in some Comprehensives with wide catchments anyway.


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 Post subject: Re: Managing friendships
PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2012 4:05 pm 
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When I was at school I lived 10 miles and 2 x bus journies away from school. All of my friends lived close to the school and it was a pretty lonely time tbh, especially during holidays as I always seemed to be "out of it". I vowed never to send my children to a non-local school. However, neither of my parents drove, so I was stuck at home. As has been said, provided you are prepared to become Mum's AtoB taxis I don't think it would be too much of a problem. GS pupils will be coming from all over Gloucestershire, so she may well hook up with someone more local. If dad is around to drive too then it will be much easier if there are clashes in kid's social events. You have to consider carefully yourselves as a family unit and how it will impact on all of you. There's no point putting yourselves out massively, including moving house and being a "slave" to a grammar school, especially if you have a decent comp nearby. Good luck with your decision


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 Post subject: Re: Managing friendships
PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2012 6:04 pm 
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Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2007 6:35 pm
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Hi, we have two kids who went to grammar in Glos,(one in uni now and a DD in y10) and spent years ferrying them to their friends houses and activities in Chelt etc. and we live 15 miles from Chelt. After a few years the cars know the way, and you get used to the lifestlye.

My two have never felt lonely or excluded from friends as they do the normal fb and txt all the time !! We are so glad that we decided to go down the GS route, it reallysuited ours and we feel that it kept them working hard as that is the ethos of the school and the kids that go there. The biggest plus for us is that both of our DC enjoyed every single day of their school life so all the ferrying is well worth it.


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 Post subject: Re: Managing friendships
PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2012 6:51 pm 
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Posts: 406
When I started Comp in Berkshire it was a 45 minutes bus journey, but all the children from my village went there, so most of my friends were nearby.

When we moved to Derbyshire, we lived in a house on its own at the top of a hill. My parents very rarely ferried us anywhere (unless it was on their route somewhere). If visiting friends, we had to walk 2 miles down to the village or to the bus stop. If we wanted to go into Stockport or Manchester (shopping, cinema etc) we walked 2 miles down to the bus stop, got the bus to the station, then the train. In winter we were able to sledge down the hill to the bus stop - but the walk back up...

I may initially do some ferrying for DD, However, when DD is older I expect to get her a monthly bus pass and/or train pass, so she can go from Stroud to meet any friends she makes in Cheltenham or get herself back from after school events.


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 Post subject: Re: Managing friendships
PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2012 12:53 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 02, 2010 12:28 pm
Posts: 417
Tolstoy wrote:
If I had a good comprehensive and children that were switched on to education then I would probably opt to stay put.

Yes I opted to put my DSs into a Grammar school but that was because I wasn't confident that they would be self motivated enough to survive that particular Comprehensive. With hindsight my eldest would have been better placed in a well performing Comprehensive that provided extra support on the socio/emotional aspects. Unfortunately these are often harder to get places at than Grammars.



I would second that Tolstoy. I would have done the same for DD1 with hindsight. I have not seen much evidence that DD1 has achieved more at GS than she would have done elsewhere. As long as the comp is decent then there might be much to be gained from ease of logistics.


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