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PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 10:39 am 
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Location: Hampton
Would appreciate some views/opinions. Been unable to sleep for the past few nights worrying what is the right decision (and no it’s not the baby keeping me awake bless him!).

DD2 (4 this August) nicely settled in pre prep and due to go into Reception this September. But things have got very difficult financially.

Have been told verbally that DD1 will be offered guaranteed place at LEH senior for next year. Looking at my finances (and not relying on getting a bursary) I would not be able to afford both sets of school fees from 2010/2011. However if DD1 gets a GS place at either Tiffin’s (or possibly Nonsuch) all ok. But if she doesn’t and goes to LEH then will have to take out DD2 at end of her Reception year and find a state school for her to enter in Year 1.

So question is would it be better to take DD2 out and start her at a state school this September (we have been allocated a place at one of our local state schools), rather than waiting until we know what will happen to DD1, or should we hang on and see what happens next year. Will need to give notice to DD2’s school before she goes back after Easter.

Richmond


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 10:54 am 
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I understand you are tyring to balance the needs of the 2 children but it may better to look at them seperately and consider the options:

1 Both go to private school now - DD1 to LEH and DD2 stay at prep school - sound like a non starter financially and likely to get worse

2 DD1 goes to state GS - great , DD2 stays at prep - still quite a lot of money but not so much ...

3 DD2 goes to state and DD1 go to LEH more money than option 2 and you may have to pay out for DD2 at senior level.

4 DD1 goes to state GS and DD2 goes to state school (why not if you are considering it anyway) - no fees - save the money - nice financial cushion and they you are going to have to pay for Uni anyway....


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 11:06 am 
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If you've got a good enough primary shool I'd be looking at getting DD2 into state education from September - half the money saved already.

Then go all out to get DD1 into GS for 2010 (possibly home tutoring or paying a tuor to hedge all bets), saving even more money.

Hopefully DD2 will then follow DD1 into GS and subesquently baby will also follow the same path.

There's absolutely nothing wrong with state schools as long as they are good schools - why spend money if you don't need to!

............... and I'm not against private schools - just payng out money :lol: :lol: :lol:

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 11:27 am 
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Location: S East
I agree with Snowdrops and hermanmunster
If you have a choice between LEH and Tiffin for DD1, then you are a most fortunate position. :) Either is in the Top 50 in the country (FT). Nonsuch not quite in that league.
Thus if finances are difficult, Tiffin is the obvious choice. You always have the option of moving her to a private school for 6th form if she wants that.

For DD2, it rather depends on how good the State school is. If it is good, then that should be the choice. The fees you save can be ploughed into 11+ tutoring later for her. If it is not that good, then the money would be better spent on the pre-prep.
Do it soon though, not for reasons of money only, but because you are certainly not the only one in this position :( . A steady trickle to the State sector may well become a flood in a year's time. :cry:

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 1:09 pm 
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Location: Bexley
And when you are doing your calculations, don't forget to factor in an amount for school trips, music lessons etc. I've got 2 boys at GS and I've already paid out almost £1k in the last 3 months for school trip deposits (just the deposits!), music lessons, a new instrument for one of them etc. Some of the trips organised by state and independent secondaries are hugely expensive and it would be a shame to have to say no to all of them. Plus, when they get bigger they eat more, their clothes cost more and they're always wanting money to go out!


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 1:24 pm 
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Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 2:21 pm
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Location: Hampton
Thanks for your replies.

I think I have come to the conclusion that taking DD2 out would be the most sensible solution. I have no experience of state schools and so its a whole new ball game to me. The state primary is termed as good in its most recent Ofsted this year, and I liked the Head but its the size of the classes I cannot get to grips with and the amount of children in one school. I guess its fear of the unknown and I feel I have let DD2 down if she does not follow her sister's footsteps.

As for DD1 she is being tutored just for Tiffins. She is a bright girl but even with the tutoring I think she will have a hard time getting a good enough pass mark when its such a competative school.

Richmond


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 2:12 pm 
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Hi Richmond

Reckon lots of parents appreciate the feelings of trying to treat the children the same and worrying that you will let DD2 down if she does not have the same primary level education as her sister. This has happened a lot to people over time if you look at families - particulalry those with quite large age gaps, sometimes the finances improve and the younger children go to v expensive schools, where their sibs had been at the local school and sometimes they worsen and where eldest boarded, the younger ones go to local day schools.
The important thing is during their primary school education both girls will have had parents NOT worrying about money, DD2 will certainly not get the same education as her sister at the the private school if her parents are feeling the pinch and it is stressing them out.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 3:36 pm 
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Just another little thing to factor in when making your decision. You need to assess your chances of DD2 getting into the state school you want if you leave it until Year 1 stage. If the school is usually full it may not be possible to get a place and if an Infant Class Size situation applies (Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 are not permitted to have more than 30 in a class with only one qualified teacher) it becomes well nigh impossible to win an appeal for a place because the panel are severely limited in what factors they may take into account.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 4:03 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 02, 2008 12:18 pm
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Location: kent
You say you have been allocated a state primary school place for DD2 for this September.

Are there other state primaries you would have preferred? If so, try the following to hedge your bets even more:

-accept the place you have been given

-go on waiting lists and appeal for any other primary school that you fancy. It's always worth a go. You can appeal for schools that you did not put on your common application form as well as those that you did put on the form and did not get.

I agree with all the other advice. If there is possibility that the fees will be an issue during the primary school years, give the independent sector a miss if you possibly can. Nothing worse than child seeing you are worrying about money ( I could see my parents worrying even though they prob think they hid it). Kids are clever enough to know that their school fees don't help.


Good luck.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 06, 2009 7:52 am 
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Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 2:21 pm
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Location: Hampton
Thank you again for your replies.

No there is nothing wrong with the state primary (aside from size of class aspect). Its also the feeder for a good state junior where I notice from their website that a few children each year go onto the private sector. So I would not consider an appeal.

Thanks again. Maybe its not such a problem as I envisaged, compared with financial worries. Having a roof over our head is more important!

Richmond


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