If you have a child in Year 5 or 6, you are probably looking at options for secondary school. And whether you’re at the very beginning of this journey, or looking for a place for September 2020, here is some useful advice to help you pick the right school for your child.
1. Take a look at their social media and website
You can often determine lots about a school’s focus and what they excel in by taking a look at their social media channels and website. Does it feel as though what they are offering suits your child? It’s also worth dropping them an email or message on social media and seeing how long it takes them to respond! This can often be a reflection of how responsive the school is as an organisation.
2. What else is on offer?
The academic provision is of course, paramount, but what else is on offer? Are there extra-curricular opportunities and how often? Research the sports provision and quality, as what is on offer can vary wildly. The same goes for additional support if your child is someone who learns differently to the mainstream. What is their Special Educational Needs provision and how is it staffed?
3. Health & well-being
As pressures on young people increase, the pastoral care that schools offer is increasingly important. When looking for a school, it’s worth asking about their pastoral care and how they ensure young people’s mental health is looked after. How will they put the appropriate care in place to ensure your child thrives?
It may sound simple, but it’s fundamental! Take a look at the school’s transport system and how long it will take your child to get to school. If the school has its own buses, are they run by an external provider or owned and staffed by the school with the appropriate safeguarding measures in place?
5. Visit the school
Take a good look at the welcome. How were you welcomed when you arrived? Was there someone there to greet you and were they warm and inviting? The strength of welcome often tells you a lot about the culture of the school and whether parents are actively encouraged to be involved, or not.
Fundamentally, it’s about finding the right match for your child and whether you get a good ‘feel’ for the place is really important.
Our Year 5 and 6 Discovery Day will be held on Saturday 5 October between 10 and 12.30pm. There will be a chance to take part in a number of exciting workshops, plus the opportunity to explore our beautiful school. Sign up here