'I posted this last summer - I thought I would post it again because it's still true.
"My dd is now in Year 9. Yesterday she met up with 10 on her friends from Priamry school at the swimming pool ,and I had a chance to chat to many of their parents. We were all reminiscing about their year 6 leavers party, and how hideous and traumatic the whole process had been, and how unhappy and worried many of us had been, and how anxious about the future.
The children all went on to a variety of schools - some "good" some "OK" some "bad". State, and independent, grammar and high. Some that their parents were happy and proud to send them to, some that gave them tears and sleepless nights.
What I want to say is that there were 10 happy, confident young people in that pool. All doing well, heading for the GCSEs of their choice. There had been bumps along the way - one boy is now being home schooled (he was one of the ones who went to a grammar) and one had moved schools in year 8, but now, nearing the end of year 9, they were all a joy and a credit to their parents.All busy and achieving.
So please don't despair. All the parents I spoke to agreed that the secondary allocation process was one of the most traumatic times of their lives, but that if they had known then what they know now, they would have stopped worrying. (Well, worried less, anyway!).
So try not to think of not getting the school you want as the end of the world. Yes, it's easier to do well in some schools than others, but children can achieve and be happy anywhere. And in three years time, you will look back and realize that this is the truth - however much you think I'm talking rubbish now!"