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PostPosted: Thu Oct 14, 2021 8:05 pm 
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Hello! I realise I’m getting ahead of myself here but I am starting to think about whether selective school and in particular, Latymer is right for my DD and am seeking your input please especially as I have not been able to visit the school and will need to complete a CAF v soon!

My dd is bright (but not overly studious) and does well at her lovely state primary. She is sociable and her confidence is growing. She likes to succeed but doesn’t like too much pressure. Her strengths are English, especially creative writing. She enjoys reading but is not an avid reader. She has to work harder at maths. She enjoys art and drama. She doesn’t show a particular passion for music. She is good at sport and enjoys it but the pandemic has limited her sporting opportunities to date.

Latymer is obviously a very good and sought after school and we would be lucky to get a place there. However, is it right for all children who get offered a place or does it suit a certain type of child more?

Aside from Latymer, we have a very good local comp less than a mile away which her brother goes to. The benefit of this school over Latymer is that she can walk there (with no fear of muggings) with friends in our road who also go to the same school (different year groups) and most of her primary school friends will go there too. Although it’s a v good school, it’s results are, as you would expect for a non selective, significantly lower than Latymer. She is not phased by leaving her primary school friends and believes she will make new friends. Travel to Latymer is a bit tricky, a couple of bus journeys but definitely under an hour.

There is a slim chance of getting into DAO having sat the second round exam and this is her preference (although she’s never visited) but I think Latymer is the more realistic option (for now!).

Apologies for the length. I’d love to hear your views of Latymer and whether it might suit my DD and whether the opportunities it might provide her would be worth it?

Thank you in advance x


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 14, 2021 8:22 pm 
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Location: london
Super wrote:
Aside from Latymer, we have a very good local comp less than a mile away which her brother goes to. The benefit of this school over Latymer is that she can walk there (with no fear of muggings) with friends in our road who also go to the same school (different year groups) and most of her primary school friends will go there too. Although it’s a v good school, it’s results are, as you would expect for a non selective, significantly lower than Latymer.She is not phased by leaving her primary school friends and believes she will make new friends. Travel to Latymer is a bit tricky, a couple of bus journeys but definitely under an hour.
I think you have answered
your question in this paragraph. If, as you say, it is a good comprehensive, the results for the brighter DC are likely to be as good if not better than a grammar school
Super wrote:
There is a slim chance of getting into DAO having sat the second round exam and this is her preference (although she’s never visited) but I think Latymer is the more realistic option (for now!).
Do not place too much weight on an uninformed view - let alone from a 10 year old. Sorry to sound harsh but what is the reason for her preference? Does it hold any weight?
Super wrote:
Apologies for the length. I’d love to hear your views of Latymer and whether it might suit my DD and whether the opportunities it might provide her would be worth it?
Thank you in advance x
I like Latymer, but nothing is worth 2 bus journeys if you have a goof local option.

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mad?


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 14, 2021 8:40 pm 
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Location: Herts
Well she has actually been to DAO twice to sit the two exams so she will have actually have spent more time there than she would do on an open day or open morning.

She would probably have spent a total of almost 4 hours there. The current QE tour is slightly over an hour.

What would your travel be like to DAO? DG


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 14, 2021 8:57 pm 
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Thanks mad? for your views. I can see your point of view re a good local option although I suspect that lots of kids travel to Latymer and also have good other options.

DAO, thanks, DD liked the way the staff made her feel at ease during the tests but I think she likes it because we know a few children who go there so it has been talked about as a great school (whereas Latymer hasn’t as up until very recently we didn’t know any children who attended). I have visited DAO twice and really like the school. Travel to DAO would be similar (we live in EN2). However, I am very doubtful that she will rank high enough for an offer for DAO (although time will tell!).


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 15, 2021 2:30 pm 
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We had a similar situation. Very good local comp that is a 15 min walk or Latymer, which is nearly an hour's commute. DD chose Latymer and is happy there so far. She sounds quite like your DD, she's very into English, reading and drama, not that into music. She does say she's considered the arty one in her group which is quite a change from primary. She has found the maths quite challenging despite being top of her class at primary. There are a lot of kids there that are very good at maths, have been tutored since Y4 or came private schools.
I've been impressed by the lack of pressure on them this far (she's only just started), not too much homework, early finishes etc. They're keen for children to participate in things other than academia and have a lot of clubs, music & sports available. Although she has to get up early, she quite enjoys the journey as travels with other kids in the area and likes the independence.


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 15, 2021 2:55 pm 
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Location: Herts
Thank you.

This is really helpful.

DG


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 15, 2021 3:33 pm 
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Thank you Stowic. That is really helpful. They do sound similar. Did your dd get to visit the school prior to choosing? My DD is also top at maths in her primary but it is not her natural strength, English and the arts come a lot easier to her. I would hope a school like Latymer would pick up if children are struggling and offer some extra help...or perhaps children would need to get a tutor? It’s nice to know your DD has settled and has friends to travel with. If DD does get a place, I suspect she won’t have people to travel with (at least initially) as the majority from our area will go to our local comp which makes me feel a little like she will miss out on that. I don’t think it’s a deal breaker though. I used to travel on my own, on two buses and walk a mile to get to school!


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 15, 2021 4:48 pm 
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Hi Super, we didn't get to visit the school before choosing, other than DD when she did the entrance exam, so it was a bit of a leap of faith. I did know a couple of people with children there and most of what I heard was positive. On travel, they do have a travel buddy system and I think try and put kids from the same area in the same class. We missed out on some of that as came in off the waiting list, but the other people in our area has all met before the start of term.

In terms of Maths, I wouldn't say she's struggling, just finding it less of a breeze than primary, and getting used to no longer being top of the class. But she feels fine and points out that her English is still stronger than many of the others. I hope we'd be told if there were concerns with her maths, haven't had our first parents evening yet.


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 16, 2021 5:49 pm 
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Thanks Stovic. That’s nice to know about the travel buddy system. I think many Latymer entrants will also have to take a leap of faith this year due to the lack of visits. I know the school has a very good reputation and so many people would love their children to go there so that makes any decision easier. I’ve been speaking to my dd this weekend who has said she is quite happy to travel there even if on her own and that she wants to go to a school that expects the best of her so that she pushes herself! Let’s see what happens with the results next week. Thank you for your helpful posts and best wishes to your DD.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 18, 2021 12:39 pm 
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I have a Yr8 at Latymer and the travel is 1hr vs decent local comp a 15 minutes walk away. The travel is tiresome sometimes but mostly it is something positive. That is how they have been bonding (not least because this cohort started during the peak of covid). DC has formed brilliant friendships, not least due to the travel. It also teaches them to be independent. Remember that whilst they are 11 when they start, they are getting older whilst they are at Latymer. DC certainly needed change of environment.


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