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PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2008 7:16 pm 
I wanted to ask anyone who disagrees with independent education if they think there are times when it is the only option for some children, and therefore these schools have their place in education.

I know there are some state schools which have done fantastically well by some profoundly gifted children but they are few and far between and not everyone is prepared to or can move to a school. Equally if a child is floundering academically, behaviourally or socially in a non-selective state school, do you think an independent school with a smaller class size or more disciplined approach has its place also?

I'm not talking about the top Public schools and I'm also not criticising state, but just wondered what your thoughts were. :)


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2008 8:00 pm 
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I'd like to make it clear that I am not answering this question as someone "who disagrees with independent education". I do think that it still has a place in today's society. However your initail post appears to make some assumptions that differ from my experience.

My children attended independent schools and I can't say that the provision for 'gifted' pupils was any better than at state schools. In my experience, independents have much more of a 'one size fits all' approach than state schools; perhaps this is because they have a narrower range of abilities to cater for? Provision for SEN pupils, again in my experience, at independent schools is poor (and expensive). Oh, and - smaller class sizes do not always = better discipline.

Independent schools have many good points but I fear that People often choose them for the wrong reasons. Again, I must state that I am not anti independent schools but I do worry that People think they are the ultimate panacea. State education is extremely effective when faced with a 'special' (be it gifted or otherwise) child.

Back to the original question: "...if they think there are times when it is the only option for some children, and therefore these schools have their place in education."

No, I don't think that independents are ever the only option for some children. But I think they are often the only option for some parents.

Forager


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2008 8:14 pm 
I have to say that I have no experience of comprehensive secondary schools and I expect they do to cater for gifted children better than at state primary school. If a 7 year old has a mathematical ability of an 18 year old but virtually all the primary school teachers have few maths qualifications then who can stretch this child? It is also harder, in my opinion, to control 30 7 year olds than 30 16 year olds so I think its easier for some children with SEN or who are gifted to fade into the back-ground.

My kids have been in two independents where one size fits all but this has also happened at state schools where they have been to. I don't blame state school teachers for not coping with my sons abilities as I think they work jolly hard and too much is expected of them. BUT there are children who are in limbo - too bright for a special-ed school but not coping in the mainstream and I do think independent schools offer a valuable service.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2008 8:16 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 02, 2008 12:18 pm
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Location: kent
I am not anti-independents either. And independent schools have their place, but not solely because sometimes they might be the only option for one particular child. Equally state schools might sometimes be the only option for one particular child.

I like independent and state schools - depending on the school. And I love your posts. But sometimes you yourself seem anti-state schools in the same way that some people on this website seem anti-independent schools.

There are good and bad schools in both sectors, and small class sizes are not always the best thing. You have obviously had the good fortune to only experience good independent schools. But maybe because you know so much about a lot of them, this helps you make an educated choice about which independent school(s) would be best for your child.

When you study at Cambridge, you will come across many highly intelligent, extremely well-educated students from the state sector, as well as from the independent sector. You will not come across the stupid, or badly educated ones from either sector.
Enjoy it!


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2008 8:26 pm 
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T.i.p.s.y wrote:
BUT there are children who are in limbo - too bright for a special-ed school but not coping in the mainstream and I do think independent schools offer a valuable service.


On this I TOTALLY disagree! (sorry) There are many AMAZING state schools for children with special eduactional needs. Independents cannot offer what they do as it is not cost effective.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2008 8:31 pm 
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I think that in some areas there are independent schools which offer a good SEN service; there are ones I have seen in this area, but they offer additional AEN support (as they call it) at an expensive hourly rate in addition to the standard tuition fees. So they might be a good option for someone who can afford extremely high fees.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2008 8:35 pm 
I'm not going to get into Cambridge! :(

My son was in an independent which was rubbish and a two others I didn't like, although I could see they had some positives! :lol: My sons were also in a really nice state primary and the Head tried to do her best my DS1 but she didn't have the resources. I would send another child to that school without any concerns until Year 3 and if I couldn't afford independent school, then for longer. I would also be comfortable with GS schools depending on the area they were in but if I'm honest I wouldn't send my son to a comp and would home-ed instead. I know some faith comps are good but we wouldn't get in.

I was bullied for being bright at my sink school (it is a sink school still) and I don't care what anyone thinks but my son would get slaughtered at a comp. When you see really bright kids on TV :wink: , you think Oh My aren't they weird - and we're intelligent adults who think like that, so how much worse would their peers treat them!

So, I suppose it all depends on the kids and some kids don't benefit from an independent education, and some really need one.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2008 8:39 pm 
[quote="Forager]On this I TOTALLY disagree! (sorry) There are many AMAZING state schools for children with special eduactional needs. Independents cannot offer what they do as it is not cost effective.[/quote]

Don't apologise! :lol: This is what I mean by assuming all inde's are the same. My son was at a cheap, no facilities school where they had a blind child, a deaf child and a physically impaired child and the school got no government funding for them and did not charge them for individual tuition but offered it for free.

If the argument can be made that not all state schools are bad then surely the same argument stands for independents?


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2008 8:48 pm 
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Sorry about Cambridge; are you sure there isn't a way you could do it?

There are some good comps around in the UK - not just faith ones, but they tend not to be in the areas that have a reasonable number of selective state schools.

Quite possible that your son would be slaughtered at even the best of them though. But then, there would be independents he would be slaughtered at too. There might be a comprehensive somewhere at which that would not happen.

I think I would be slaughtered at the independent school that my step-daughter goes to as I don't like shopping.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2008 9:31 pm 
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Location: East Kent
T.i.p.s.y wrote:
virtually all the primary school teachers have few maths qualifications .


what evidence do you have for this generalisation Tipsy?


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