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PostPosted: Thu Apr 11, 2013 1:07 pm 
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Joined: Thu Oct 11, 2012 10:31 am
Posts: 129
Hi,

We are now in the situation where we have been offered a place at Chis & Sid, having already accepted a place at Beths (our 2nd choice school). We are struggling to make a decision. We have only visited Beths once (Chis & Sid - we have seen 3 times), but we did like it. Chis & Sid is slightly nearer to us, for Beths, DS would need to stay on bus ten minutes longer. We think the results look slightly better at Beths, they have football, while C&S don't. C&S is mixed, Beths is all boys.

When we visited the two schools we didn't compare them like with like. We put C&S first as locally that is where most children go to if they are selective. We put Beths down second, because we didn't think we would be offered it, but we knew there were 32 extra places and so there might be a slim chance of a place.

Any parents who have been in this position, or know about either school, information from you would be gratefully received. What is "general opinion" of these two schools locally?


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 11, 2013 8:33 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 18, 2010 10:13 pm
Posts: 283
Hi Bromleymum1,

Well done to your ds that he has now been awarded his first choice ! Which school does he prefer ? The journey from Chis and Sid to Beth's with rush hour traffic will probably take longer than ten minutes . They are both very good schools, so you need to consider the following ; journey time , local friends he can travel with and whether you prefer a single or coed .

Ds2 is at chis and Sid and he has settled well . If you click on the parent portal link ( you may have received the log in details) you can see the extra curricular activities they have on offer . The boys play football at lunch time, but they have a sports specialism and as such rugby, hockey , badminton and cricket are played at various times during the year . Ds2 hates rugby so he is not part of the team. I find the communication between school and parents good . The children are tested after every unit and regularly . A lot of boys and girls travel from Bromley and therefore your ds will have friends to travel with . They have a lot of overseas trips, again if your ds is keen he can join. Music is also good, as my was asked to join the junior orchestra which he is considering. The older one is at a local indie school and if I had the choice at the time , I would probably have considered chis and Sid for him! Good luck but you will not go wrong whichever one you choose . Regarding gcse results , you can download both and compare .


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 11, 2013 8:40 pm 
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Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2012 7:22 am
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If I were you I would stick with Beths but only because I know of a couple of boys who really underachieved in their GCSEs at Chis & Sid and didn't get to go back for 6th form. By 'underachieve' I mean mostly Cs. It's very far from a representative sample, but just happens to be the people I know of.
Also, friends whose son did the Bexley test several years ago said they preferred Beths for their son as they thought Chis & Sid was really just like a big comprehensive. But he didn't go to either school in the end.


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 14, 2013 12:59 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 13, 2012 9:39 am
Posts: 78
Hi Bromleymum - me again :D

As you know, we have chosen Beths over C&S for our DS but I appreciate its such a difficult choice as each child is different.

How about asking yourself how you would feel if Beths called up and said 'sorry, been a mistake, we are withdrawing our offer!' - if you'd feel relief, then C&S if right, if gutted, then Beths it is!

<please note I am patenting this marvellously scientific decision-making process :wink: :D >

Good luck with your decision.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2013 5:41 pm 
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Joined: Sun Oct 14, 2012 11:32 pm
Posts: 28
Haha fingerscrossedmum - that's a brilliant solution! A similar alternative is to flip a coin, and then see if you feel happy or disappointed with the outcome.

Bromleymum1, what a wonderful problem to have (it might not seem it now, though!). Is visiting Beths now an option? If not, then I suppose all your have to go on is the "feel" of the school and any information you can get online. I gather Beths has an Outstanding OFSTED whilst C&S's is Good. I know OFSTED reports aren't an exact science, but schools really do have to be exceptional to get an Outstanding. Someting like 10-20% of schools get classed as outstanding each year, whilst 40-50% get a "good". Worth thinking about. Maybe have a read of the reports, too, and see if there is anything in either that worried you / makes you happy. The DFES performance tables site (not sure if I'm allowed to mention the name of it here?! sorry if not!) also has lots of information about the students and a more detailed breakdown of results information. You can look specifically at the things that are most important to you. For me, diversity of background is important, so I factored things like that into my decision and settled on a school which, amongst other things, has a higher than average percentage of children from disadvantaged backgrounds (for a grammar), an outstanding OFSTED - and, most importantly, that we loved when we visited.

Good luck! I'm sure he'll do well at either (which, I suppose, is the problem...).


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2013 7:41 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 12, 2007 1:21 pm
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I wouldn't go by an Ofsted grading!

There are some supposedly 'outstanding' schools I would not send my child to ... depends on WHEN they were inspected and how rigorous the team was.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2013 7:48 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 13, 2012 9:39 am
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For info, the Beths most recent Ofsted was done in Sept 2012.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2013 8:37 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 06, 2007 11:40 pm
Posts: 966
Just wondering - depends on WHEN they were inspected and how rigorous the team was (Guest55)- so is September good or bad? And which months are good? Or indeed bad?


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2013 9:32 pm 
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Joined: Thu Oct 11, 2012 10:31 am
Posts: 129
Hi all,

Many thanks for all your messages. Lots of comments to take on board. It's been a really really difficult choice, but we talked with DS and he has decided that he wants to go to Chis & Sid. Whilst Beths looks like a fantastic school, he has decided that Chis & Sid is the school for him.

Fingerscrossedmum, I am sure that your DS will have a fantastic time at Beths.

I feel a little sad but relieved that the decision has been made.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2013 12:16 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 13, 2012 9:39 am
Posts: 78
Well done to your DS - its good he's sure where he wants to go.

It must be such a relief to have made the decision - there was never a wrong answer, just the most right one (if you see what I mean!)

Maybe our boys will meet on the 269 bus!


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