This Plus That Equals...

This Plus That Equals…. Choosing a School

This plus that equals…. Choosing a School

Here’s the latest instalment in my series of posts all about what makes our lives here at home tick. This week is all about choosing a school ready for L to start reception next year. sobs

Mummy and Son
We have so much fun, how can I not be emotional?


I usually try to make rather unemotional and practical decisions. I’m struggling with this one though.

For starters I’m just very emotional about the whole thing. L’s key worker at nursery has stated she is not worried about his transition into school, she is very worried about mine though. Ha! She’s right to be worried, I’m going to be an emotional wreck.

This is such an important decision though and I am trying to listen to my gut reactions as I look round these schools, as well as trying to be practical.

I am definitely over thinking things, I keep going round in circles with my thoughts, my husband has on more than one occasion mentioned I am being crazy.

#RailAdventure Somerleyton Hall
Location matters. Hopefully I won’t need a map!


To be fair I always just assumed L would go to our local school. It is literally just round the corner. We walked to it in under 5 minutes, in his time, stopping to look at things and not always going in the right direction.

There is a lot ot be said for a school we can walk to and one that even in the worst weather wouldn’t be a hardship.

It’s not a bad school, not at all. In fact had it been the only one I had looked at I would be more than happy to send him. It just wasn’t my favourite though.

My favourite, however, is a short car journey away in the wrong direction. even though I liked it better, do I like it enough to give up on the practicalities of having one just round the corner.

Maped Helix Graph'Peps
Reports, reports, reports. Put your red pen away


I try not to base too much on this. It’s subjective after all and I’m not sure I like the whole getting ready for an inspection thing, but hey, they happen and I would be foolish not to look into them.

One school we have looked at got a brilliant inspection but they haven’t had one for quite some time, so it could have changed. Hmmmm. Thankfully nowhere we have looked at has had a bad result.

Things I hate
It’s a team effort, so I need to like the team


I have to admit I am basing a lot of my decision making on what I thought of the staff and how they acted with the other children and how they interacted with L.

I feel bad doing this because I only met most of them for a couple of minutes. They are such an important part of his schooling though, in fact I think they are the most important.

So am I concerned that one school shares a head? Yes, I am. Did I take an instant dislike to one person I met? You bet I did. Did some of the teachers we meet really shine? Oh yes, they would be wonderful.

Feeling Calm
His opinion does need to matter

L’s Opinion

This is a tough one, because whilst his opinion has to matter, it isn’t based on anything sensible.

He got to play with a blue truck at one school, this was his favourite school, because it had a blue truck. Strangely, the blue truck status of school isn’t something we are actually taking into consideration.

But then he has also told me he liked the library better and prefered the lady. These are great reasons but I’m concerned they are really only linked back to the flippin blue truck.

How did you feel choosing a school? Any tips for me?

Finally, I’m linking up with #TwinklyTuesday, #Blogstravaganza, #StayClassyMama and #fortheloveofBLOG


Bringing up Georgia

22 thoughts on “This Plus That Equals…. Choosing a School”

  1. Thanks for linking up to #fortheloveofBLOG. I have this all to come next year and I agree with you that I’d go mostly on gut feel of how the people are – and how polite the school kids are!

  2. Thankfully I haven’t had to go through all this with my two. They attend an English school in Portugal so the decision was easy as there are only 2 where I live. I’m really scared of the day we have to return to the UK and I have to do it all there. Thank you for sharing with #StayClassyMama

    1. Oh that does narrow your choices down nicely. I had to stop looking after 3 schools as I was fully aware any more viewings wouldn’t actually help me, just make the decision harder!!

  3. Thanks for linking up with #blogstravaganza
    I had this trouble. The local infant school is outstanding but the juniors was recently in special measures (now doing better thankfully) Many other parent went for schools further away but it just wasn’t practical for me

    1. However much I would love to take him to the school I liked the best you do have to think of the practicalities, especially when the school that’s close is still a really good school.

  4. Oh it is so hard. We went to the school behind our house and disliked it so much that it didn’t even go on our list! I then went to the next nearest which was in requires improvement and liked it so much it went top of the list and he got a place. Then Ofsted went in just before he started and it’s now a good school. He is happy, the staff are lovely, the head is even lovelier and I couldn’t be more chuffed that I gave it a chance! A lot of it is about gut but you are right, you can’t ignore what ofsted say. The school behind our house has now gone from good to requires improvement and I can see exactly why that would have happened! Good luck with your decision making. Thanks for linking up with #TwinklyTuesday

  5. Finding the best school for your child is a stressful exercise and I get you on this. There are so many things to consider but the most important is that your child must be happy at the school and that they give him the best education possible. At the end of the day, he will be the one that will be there every day. My personal experience of selecting school has been stressful as I’ve written a blog post about it “The intense demand for space”. Our experience was again to get our child access into our preferred school. Good luck and I hope you find the best school for your son.#fortheloveofBLOG

    1. Thankfully being as rural as we are I am not concerned about getting him in where we want, it’s just where that will be that’s my issue. So glad I don’t have to also worry about it being over filled.

  6. I am looking at my 3rd finishing compulsory schooling this year yet I still remember your stage very well. To be fair we were also dealing with taking on Coombe Mill and moving to Cornwall at the same time so only looked at two of the local village schools before deciding. Both required a car journey or a hour’s walk, if I had one round the corner this would have been very appealing! #twinklytuesday
    Fiona Cambouropoulos recently posted…Discovering Dinosaurs layer by layerMy Profile

  7. It’s funny what you see and start to see when you look at schools. What I thought I wanted in a high school changed a lot over time, and changed with each child too….#mondaymusings

  8. Haha the blue truck made me laugh. I’m in the same boat with my little girl. I took her round 3 schools and she liked them all so the decision is down to us ( I was kind of hoping she’d decide for us cos they’re all great!) My only advice on looking at Ofsted reports is check if it’s the whole school or just the infant’s. 2 of our local schools have outstanding and the other has ‘good’…that’s cos the outstanding ratings are on just the infant’s and the juniors got a good. The other ‘good’ school was rated over both infants and juniors as a whole. Take Ofsted with a pinch of salt but the section “reasons for not receiving outstanding” can be very telling. They’re either silly things like at our nursery the slide was metal and it has be all natural resources or something more important like at one primary school they felt the levels were pitched right for the brighter children and communication with the parents could be improved. It’s such a tough choice isn’t it. Good luck and I’m sure wherever you choose he will thrive.

    1. I had noticed some of the reasons for not getting outstanding could be a bit silly! It’s such a hard choice, I actually kind of wish I hadn’t looked more schools.
      Good luck with your decision. Can’t believe we’re picking schools for them already. Time flies xx

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