Do you bring your children to secondary school open days or is it best to get your own shortlist first?

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hijklmnop
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Do you bring your children to secondary school open days or is it best to get your own shortlist first?

Postby hijklmnop » Thu Jan 06, 2022 9:10 pm

Hello there
Am about to start the rounds of going along to secondary school open days. My son is in year 4 of a local primary.

Does anyone know... would you bring along your child at this stage or would you wait until you had made your own shortlist or are open days just for parents in any case? Silly questions, I know... just a bit daunted! Thanks for any advice.
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gingerchocolate
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Re: Do you bring your children to secondary school open days or is it best to get your own shortlist first?

Postby gingerchocolate » Fri Jan 07, 2022 9:27 am

Hello there,
I had the same doubt with my twins, who just went through the application process: is it appropriate to take them out of school for open days?
I asked their headteacher, who said that it was appropriate, and indeed advisable for them to see the school in "operating" conditions - i.e., during the school day rather than on weekends/open evenings.
What we did in the end was to visit during the school day the ones that were a realistic option for us, and leave for weekends/evenings the ones that would make it to our list of 6 but were either less realistic due to distance or seemed less desirable.
Anyway, worth having a chat with your headteacher as they may have different views.
Good luck with your choice! it's daunting, but I came to the conclusion that there are so many good schools in the area that it's unlikely to get it really wrong...
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gingerchocolate
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Re: Do you bring your children to secondary school open days or is it best to get your own shortlist first?

Postby gingerchocolate » Fri Jan 07, 2022 9:37 am

sorry, I just see that your son is in Y4, so you have plenty of time ahead.
In my mind we would have started the tours at some point in Y5, but then Covid scuppered our plans and, with a couple of exceptions, we had to cram everything in September/October.
In that case, why not start attending open evenings/weekends with or without your child, and then narrow down the schools you liked most and visit them again during the school day next year?
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Starr
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Joined: Sep 2019
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Re: Do you bring your children to secondary school open days or is it best to get your own shortlist first?

Postby Starr » Mon Jan 10, 2022 9:25 am

I think year 4 might be quite boring and tiring for him. At the end of year 5 and beginning of year 6 makes more sense after you've shortlisted/ learned which schools are realistic.
As it happens we saw only 2 and the child had to sit exams and interviews for schools she hadn't seen due to the pandemic so that wasn't great. Definitely good to get your child involved in decisions imo. Also, if you are going for competitive schools definitely visit your state schools that you have a realistic chance of getting in case you don't get the selective school/s because things may not work out and important to be enthusiastic and positive.
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