I’ve had a lot of questions recently about updates on our school situation with Little I, who is starting reception in September, so thought I would do a little update post.
To hear the full story of our primary school admissions drama then click here, but in a nut shell we didn’t get any of our chosen schools and got allocated a catchment school which we just didn’t see her going to. I really didn’t get the right vibe from it at all. I’m sure it is a great school for some children.
What I ended up doing was booking onto an open day to see a local independent school and phoning up admissions religiously to see where we were on the waiting lists for our chosen schools (9th and 28th). I LOVED the independent school. Loved the small class sizes, loved the ethos, loved the setup, loved the facilities, pretty much loved everything about it. Just didn’t love the thought of not being able to save for a house deposit anymore due to the fees (even though they were really reasonable for a private school!).
I wasn’t holding out any hope on the waiting lists, and so was about to pay the registration fee and deposit for the independent school, when a few friends shared a social media post from another school saying they had places. It was a really great school, just in a different town from us so we had never even thought to apply with being so far out of catchment.
I also went back to see the catchment school for a second time, just to see if anything would change my mind, or if I’d just gone on a bad day last time. Unfortunately, although I saw a few more things than last time, it still didn’t change my mind.
I called up the new school to see if I could go have a look around. They asked when would be good and I went ‘this afternoon!!’. I got away from work for an hour to go see it and really liked it. The setup is great, they do a lot of outdoor learning and have a HUGE outside area for reception, there’s a lot of extra support and service family support, they mix with other year groups, it’s right next to the Junior school too for the future, lots of great things going on. Quite a few different members of staff randomly came up to introduce themselves and answer any questions, which was great as well. All in all I just got that vibe I was looking for. The illusive vibe! I feel like R Kelly every time I say that word – viiiiiiiibe – haha.
They have no idea why they’ve got places this year! They are always oversubscribed apparently. They do have three reception classes, instead of the two a lot of other schools have, so I’m sure that helped. Whatever the reason, I’m very grateful.
I had brought a completed late application form (late applications have to be done via post in our county) to the visit and the school posted it off. I called up admissions to say that it was on its way and was told I’d probably hear within a week via email. I waited two weeks then phoned up and was told that actually they were still working on late application forms from almost a month ago and that I’d hear via post in the next three to four weeks.
Panic set in slightly that we wouldn’t get the place and a lovely girl who follows us on Instagram, who actually works at the school, messaged to say she’d ask to see whether the school would hear first. I got a reassuring phone call from the admissions lady at the school who said not to worry, and that a place would be offered to us. She sent out the registration forms and gave us the dates for all the transition activities etc.
At the end of that week we got a phone call from the county admissions office to say they could offer us the place and did I want to accept it? YES PLEASE! OH THE RELIEF! The official letter came through a couple days later.
It’s a bit out of the way commute wise, especially with L still being in nursery, but it will be worth it!
I’m so happy that we can now focus on the fun and exciting parts about Little I starting school. EEK. SHE’S TOO GROWN UP!
Did you have any primary school application dramas at all?