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Re: Emmanuel School...

by sandraletitia » Fri Feb 21, 2014 5:02 pm

In brief, our son, an extremely competent musician, had five very happy, constructive years at Emanuel (his brother went to a more academic School and that suited him)
What Emanuel gave him was the the opportunity to get involved fully in School life - he played rugby for the School and spent a lot of time in the Music dept., performing on many occasions.
What the School ALSO gave him, I truly believe, was the confidence and self-belief to move on at 16 to go to the Brit School in Selhurst where he is coming to the end of his BTec course.
Although not currently studying music, his passion won out finally and he applied has been offered a place to study for a 4 yr BMus in Jazz at a Conservatoire.
There is always far more to a School than its results. I would suggest a visit, talk to the pupils.....
Couldn't be happier.

Re: Emmanuel School...

by rooting4tooting » Fri Feb 14, 2014 1:06 am

truely an amazing debate. This has become a referance book for me. congrats to all.

Re: Emmanuel School...

by metoo » Sun Nov 24, 2013 11:19 pm

" mind" !!

Re: Emmanuel School...

by metoo » Sun Nov 24, 2013 11:18 pm

Back to the original question - one point that nobody has mentioned is that at Emanuel the pass mark for siblings is lower than for other kids.

We went to an open day a few years ago and the Headteacher mentioned the school's results not being as good as other private schools (at that time, maybe not now) and said it wasn't an excuse but to bear in my that their selection process sometimes produces a wider 'middle band' than the extreme top 95% selection process.

Having said this my son wasn't offered a place because although he passed the exam there wasn't a bursary for him (the pot is in great demand in the current recession). We rang and asked did he get a place or not - if we were able to find the money would he get a place- after much too-ing and froing they rang us back to say they'd looked at our form and we couldn't afford to go there!! I kid you not. Why do they think we applied for a bursary? After all that hard work I believe my son deserved a letter to say 'Yes, you passed the exam' and then we could have had a discussion about the lack of bursaries etc. We found it very shabby.

Re: Emmanuel School...

by ready2pop » Tue Nov 19, 2013 6:41 pm

KatherineHepburn - my kids are both at a private prep and it would be hard to find happier children.

Neither I nor they feel any hysteria about it all. From our point of view we feel we are giving them the best possible start to their education (and we are fortunate enough that we aren't quite reduced to bread and gruel to fund it). They get to learn in a lovely environment, with fantastic resources, small classes, low teacher to pupil ratios and amazing outdoor space to play in. Yes the school also has a good academic record but they are taught in such a way that everything is fun for them.

I think the hysteria comes from those who aren't completely confident in their decision whether it be state or private and that's when the kids are put under pressure i.e. extra coaching for state school kids to make sure they do everything the private schools do, private school kids needing to get in to 'top' next schools to justify having gone private in the first place etc... etc..

Discussions like this thread is fast becoming can only really make that worse.

Re: Emmanuel School...

by jg75 » Tue Nov 19, 2013 3:45 pm

I have observed this thread with interest and think that the arguments have probably run their course, but just wanted to say two things:

1. It's not entirely fair to state that the comparison is between outstanding state and private. There are very few outstanding schools that are an option to most (bearing in mind that unless you live on/near Northcote Rd and have access to Belleville/Honeywell, or are a strict practising Catholic and fulfil all the criteria - including tiny catchment distances - for the 'outstanding' Catholic schools in the area, you are facing a choice of some pretty decent schools but with some issues (whatever they may be), or, if you can afford it, private). But the problem with the 'decent' schools is that, due to demand in London, they are oversubscribed too. So you face the real option of being allocated a cr@p school (and, sorry, there are some - whatever you say, it's true - ones with behavioural issues, high absenteeism, low results, etc).

2. To me the only difference between sending you child to aforesaid outstanding state schools and private schools is that you can get a mortgage on your house loan but not readily for a loan for school fees (correct me if I'm wrong)! Why is it becoming a moral issue? Why are the private
school parents having a go at the state school parents and vice versa?

It is strange to me how emotive this whole subject is. We are unfortunate enough to live in an area where we are not particularly close to any state school, we are taking a gamble with the whole state school system, and we finally panicked and decided to go private instead. We are fortunate enough to have a choice but it will be a struggle and I still lay awake at night worrying about it.

If I could get my girls into an outstanding or even a good state primary I would have no hesitation in doing so.


Oh dear, I had better stop this outpouring of worry!! ;)

Re: Emmanuel School...

by Tinasan » Tue Nov 19, 2013 3:23 pm

Northcote please - I have at no point criticised people for choosing to go private! I stated in my first post that I don't have a problem with it. I'll go further now - I was in fact, privately educated! I was just trying to point out that, for me and many others, the difference between the two (around here, comparing outstanding state with private schooling) is 'peanuts', as Supergirl so aptly put it :) Although I have to say, I think a fondness for Landrovers is pretty much synonymous with either choice around here :D And I absolutely take on board your contention that some people buy into catchment areas when selecting a school. At no point in this discussion have I suggested that this is somehow morally superior to going private.

I also think your chess analogy is a poor one: we are all interested in education and do our research carefully into all our options. I don't believe knowledge of 'Indy education' is a specialised subject around here! Anyway, I should probably leave it at that as I have the feeling that we are going to have to agree to disagree!

Re: Emmanuel School...

by KatherineHepburn » Tue Nov 19, 2013 2:40 pm

When did private schools start being called independent schools? Is there actually a difference?

We'll happily be sending our kids to state primary and secondary schools. They will receive all of our support and enthusiasm for learning. As long as they are happy, we'll be happy.
They can choose their degree subject or university as they see fit and I don't doubt will go on to have great careers in whatever they choose. Be it banking, ballet, medicine or software.

This hysteria over private schooling has to be so tough on both the parents and kids. How nice to not be a part of it.

For the OP. My oldest has swimming lessons at Emmanuel and although it is through SWSS the grounds and facilities look lovely.

Re: Emmanuel School...

by supergirl » Tue Nov 19, 2013 1:06 pm

If you are lucky enough to have found a gem private school and lucky enough to be able to afford it all the way, then our opinion (my husband and i) is that a private education is by far better.
What is said about being academic doesnt frighten me because coming from the french system i am used to it. I think it is a bit scary that is starts so early though (7-8 and 11+) but on the other end if the french governement was to stream the children earlier maybe the whole system would be more efficient? (I am prepared ti be flamed for saying that).

I firmly believe that this debate is biaised. What is talked about on this thread is peanuts: you are talking about outstanding state schools vs. Outstanding (for most of them) private schools for whose parebts ARE very involved in their school life and education. Those kids are bright and lucky, challenged and priviledge for most.

I dont see a huge difference between kids at a private school and kids at BV, HW, AllF, etc. The only difference is the money you ve spent on your house (to live in tiny catchments) and the car you drive (land rover seem to be very popular) :lol:

Re: Emmanuel School...

by NorthcoteLuvvie » Tue Nov 19, 2013 12:27 pm

Thanks for the apology Affluent Parent, accepted.
Tinasan wrote:Northcote - look, I don't have a chip on my shoulder. I do have manners. And I do find some of some of your comments (not understanding nuances blah blah) incredibly patronising. I'm not some ill-informed oik who thinks all public schools were created equal. I'm well aware of the how all the popular/local private (and state) schools are ranked in terms of academic competitiveness/popularity. To be honest, I think you'd be hard-pressed to find a local parent who is not.
Indy schools are an area that are incredibly emotive. I get that and I think, for the record, that they're elitist and unfair. But they are there and I'll give my children every advantage that I can. We all try to do that whether by paying for the school, or paying for the house in the right catchment area etc etc.

I won't even get into people who criticise parents for spending hard earned cash to pay for a decent private education but then buy a house for a million quid that gets them into a middle class pocket of like-minded six figure earning families and somehow think they're being "mainstream".

Tinasan, if you were to ask a friend who is a chess nut about playing competitive chess you wouldn't call them condescending if they said "to an outsider the culture of chess competitions is confusing..." but again and again people who don't live, work or pay for Indy education dole out rudeness and poor manners because they think it's OK to have a go at people who do pay for it.

Re: Emmanuel School...

by Tinasan » Tue Nov 19, 2013 12:04 pm

Northcote - look, I don't have a chip on my shoulder. I do have manners. And I do find some of some of your comments (not understanding nuances blah blah) incredibly patronising. I'm not some ill-informed oik who thinks all public schools were created equal. I'm well aware of the how all the popular/local private (and state) schools are ranked in terms of academic competitiveness/popularity. To be honest, I think you'd be hard-pressed to find a local parent who is not. However, this doesn't mean that we all come to the same conclusions as you do about the best approach to education.

I DO agree with you that it is going to be harder for state school kids to get into 'top' private schools, just as it is going to be for the public school kids. There has been a big baby boom, and that will undoubtedly have an affect on school destinations. Already, we can see this is making schools that were less sought after before, more popular. I guess I'm fine with this though - I will be happy if my (very bright but not genius level) children end up somewhere they can do well but do not feel unbearable pressure. I completely agree with Normalmum's philosophy:

"is your child a true academic/genius ? - looking to the city/ Eton/oxbridge - at this point in time, I would advise getting them into the private sector as soon as pos. to get them into one of the top private schools - the competiton is crazy. Do you want all-rounded balanced education, between academic and the Arts/ Music/sports and social ?- then get them into the best state or private school you possibily can .......Be as realistic for your child as possible,in my experience, it is better for them to feel 'on top' at a less academic school. I suppose my point is; the academic bar, is being raised all the time, to almost unrealistic levels and lots of teenagers just aren't coping, where will this all end? Just make sure your child is happy and well rounded, then you will have absolutely have done your best for them."

Re: Emmanuel School...

by Affluent Parent » Tue Nov 19, 2013 8:06 am

Ok - the indy gag was a cheap one and I apologise for that but don't accuse me of having a chip on my shoulder. I don't. Why would I? My children are getting a brilliant education and it's free.

Re: Emmanuel School...

by NorthcoteLuvvie » Tue Nov 19, 2013 12:43 am

Firstly, thanks to Normal mum for the corroboration.
Affluent Parent wrote:I'm really pro state school and reading all these Private v State posts has only strengthened my view.

Here are some of the reasons why we haven't gone down the 'Indy' route for our kids for primary and don't intend to for secondary either.

1) Some people whose kids go to independent schools call them 'Indy' schools.
2) I don't want my children's life to be all about passing the next exam. Surely this isn't what childhood should be about.
3) Nurturing an inquisitive mind and being encouraged to think outside the box as well as for oneself are surely more important than being coached to pass exams and being told what the 'right thing' to say in an interview is.
4) I want my kids to grow up being socially aware and not having a blinkered view or a 'view from above'.
5) I want them to be able to go to local schools so that they can attend the same school as the other kids in their community and so that they don't have to waste precious hours commuting (there's plenty of time for that later in life).
6) I have confidence in my children's ability to thrive at our local state schools and make the most of the fantastic education that is offered.

I'm not saying that all fee paying schools are the same. I did once hear of a private school parent saying that 'sending your children to Hornsby House was like paying for your children to go to state school'!! It sounds exactly like the kind of private school I'd want to send my children to if I had to.
I'll try and reply to your comments in order

1. Cheap dig but hey, its ironic that the cheap digs in this thread are from the people championing state (the condescending comment one was another) and showing that the chips on their shoulders are affecting their manners.

For those that are being so rude can you not see the irony that you're claiming to uphold values like "inclusive" and "integration" whilst being unpleasant and rude in a conversation where the other poster is trying to help?

Quite unbelievable.

If I made sweeping assumptions about the way you speak or write and claimed that this was a reason not to send my kids to your kids school can you imagine the uproar?

What you don't realise is that they'll be a whole heap of Indy parents who are as bigoted as you nodding their heads as they read this thread and saying to their wives/hubbies "look darling, that's why little Tarquin can't go to Bolingbroke these state parents are so fighty and rude!"

2. For children of a certain age it is almost ALL about passing exams. Not for everyone and at every stage in their life but for almost *everyone* at *some* stage in their life. It may be that this is a fixation of the indy sector but maybe, just maybe, that's why they are more successful. And I'd like to define success. It's not about money but about having access to interesting and challenging career choices and feeling valued and enjoying your work and from what I've seen that is heavily influenced by exams that give you choices.

3. We do that to. In fact with 9 staff for 60 kids in reception, budgets for trips and walks and more resources and equipment than the Tardis we actually do this pretty well.

4. A good Indy school will have a well developed bursary system. Not all are good but I would never recommend anyone eats in a **** restaurant and I don't recommend you send your kids to a **** school. JAGS have their brightest kids teaching troubled state kids how to read at weekends, I reckon they probably have more access to a wide range of society than most teenagers.

5. Agree this can be an issue but the flipside there is a massive work ethic instilled young. Kids often leave the house early and come back late. That's not a bad habit.

6. I am sure they'll be brilliant.

So lets all calm down, remember our manners and also remember that it's about choices.

Re: Emmanuel School...

by Affluent Parent » Tue Nov 19, 2013 12:12 am

I'm really pro state school and reading all these Private v State posts has only strengthened my view.

Here are some of the reasons why we haven't gone down the 'Indy' route for our kids for primary and don't intend to for secondary either.

1) Some people whose kids go to independent schools call them 'Indy' schools.
2) I don't want my children's life to be all about passing the next exam. Surely this isn't what childhood should be about.
3) Nurturing an inquisitive mind and being encouraged to think outside the box as well as for oneself are surely more important than being coached to pass exams and being told what the 'right thing' to say in an interview is.
4) I want my kids to grow up being socially aware and not having a blinkered view or a 'view from above'.
5) I want them to be able to go to local schools so that they can attend the same school as the other kids in their community and so that they don't have to waste precious hours commuting (there's plenty of time for that later in life).
6) I have confidence in my children's ability to thrive at our local state schools and make the most of the fantastic education that is offered.

I'm not saying that all fee paying schools are the same. I did once hear of a private school parent saying that 'sending your children to Hornsby House was like paying for your children to go to state school'!! It sounds exactly like the kind of private school I'd want to send my children to if I had to.

Re: Emmanuel School...

by NORMALMUM » Mon Nov 18, 2013 11:59 pm

I would just like to put forward a very personal view, my own experience - no statistics etc.
Just a year ago, I would have disagreed with a lot of what Northcoteluvvie has been saying, from a state school background (husband also). But I have found her information re. the prep school system very insightful - thank you, particulary with events this recent year. My kids (3 of them) have all attended one of the most popular state primarys in the area and I always wondered, if you are lucky enough to get into one of these 'best' pimary schools, why on earth you would chose private over state and spent so much money and would have dimissed the advantages. These schools, have traditionally always managed to get most, if not all, kids who were always going to go private, into the top private schools ( yes, with an hour tutoring each week ) - usually around 50%, which has been the case, as far as I know, for the last 6 years, I have an older child of 18, who got into Allyens, Wimbldon and Clapham and Streatham - but, after much deliberation, we decided we just couldn't afford it, at that time.
But just this year, there has been a massive shift, having recently had a Daughter start at Emmanuel in Sept. She is a bright kid - not a genius, but as bright as her sister - if not brighter. We though she would have had no trouble getting into Allyens etc. and despite getting a super high result in the Wandsworth test and doing really well in entrance exams, the offers she got were from Emmanuel and Steatham and Clapham. Basically, the competion is fierce out there now and I know of parents who could have easily afforded/and wanted to send their children to private schools - who didn't get into ANY private schools and have sent their children to state school. I find more and more 'normal' (not so affluent parents) taking their kids out of these state schools earlier, to avoid the hassle at 11+, to get their kids into the private system ( a lot of what Nothcoteluvvie is saying, is unfortunately true )- if that's what you want.
It is now absolutely wrong to presume, Emmanuel and Clapham and Streatham are 'fall back' schools, their intake is demanding a higher and higher pass rate - too high for most. I find this trend really worrying, I always liked the idea, of a less academic, all-rounded school, we are a Arty family and Emmanuel, in particular, has valued other properties - as important as the academic and I fear this is changing fast and such a school, in future will not exsist. I am just observing, with the experience of having an older child. We sent our eldest to a good state Church school, she has done well, but had personal problems, which I won't go into, but it has been difficult- nothing to do with the school - which is why we sent our second private, to try to make it as easy/simple as pos - no guantees, I know....
My post isn't to scare monger, but to hopefully put forward a different perspective.... is your child a true academic/genius ? - looking to the city/ Eton/oxbridge - at this point in time, I would advise getting them into the private sector as soon as pos. to get them into one of the top private schools - the competiton is crazy. Do you want all all-rounded balanced education, between academic and the Arts/ Music/sports and social ?- then get them into the best state or private school you possibily can - they will do well, but I do fear all these schools are going down the same academic route, blame it on worldwide pressure on competing with China etc.- who knows...So much pressure is placed on teenagers at the moment and with the benefit of hindsight, I would not have focused so much on the academic with my eldest, even though she was very bright, the most important thing for them,is to be happy and well rounded. Don't place too much importance on the academic, a bright child will find their way. I know friends with children of the same abilitly as my eldest who got their kids into City Girls etc. ( 6 years ago - unlikely they would get in now) they are suffering from being the less able in the class- leading to low self esteem, amongst other, more serious problems. Be as realistic for your child as possible,in my experience, it is better for them to feel 'on top' at a less academic school. I suppose my point is; the academic bar, is being raised all the time, to almost unrealistic levels and lots of teenagers just aren't coping, where will this all end? Just make sure your child is happy and well rounded, then you will have absolutely have done your best for them. Please do not pick me up for any grammer errors, I am state school educated- remember!

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