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Schools In Lewes - The Perennial Question

On 10 Jan 2011 at 1:20pm Lewes Trousers wrote:
Which school to send Trousers Junior to ('shorts" to his friends), if you live in Central lewes the choice is impossible
Is it Southover the one all the middle classes want, but seems a bit dark and dingy and has a boring headmaster who stresses they are not all about academic reputation
Western Road whose new headmaster has turned the school from sandals and lentils into somehting bright and new with a uniform and some chickens, and is full of energy and evangelsitic zeal...where the class rooms and teachers are all bright and breezy but the academics are untried and untested
Wallands big and bright but a long way off for us and little "shorts" some lovely stepford children showed us round and everyone smiled.
Or what of St Pancras, where Jesus loves you but I'm his favourite is the name of the game.
Joking and some of the other schools apart, how the hell do you decide?
Anyone got positives or negatives to say on Western Road or Southover (do your kids go there now?) which I think is where the choice may lie.
On 10 Jan 2011 at 3:06pm Newmania wrote:
The young master is at Walland and I cannot speak too highly of it really. Great atmosphere ,commited teachers plenty to spark the imagination but a good spine of discipline as well.
We looked at results ,did some visists asked some questions but started with the presumption that all things being equal the local school was the best choice as it is easier to link up with other parents and get involved . That has worked out well( for her ...) so I would do the obvious unless there is a pressing reason not to.

Good luck
On 10 Jan 2011 at 3:18pm Ed Can Do wrote:
If you live in the middle of town then distance isn't really something that should influence your decision, all the primary schools are within reasonable walking distance from anywhere in town and a twice daily stroll might help stop young Shorts developing into a size XXL as a worrying number of kids do these days.
On 10 Jan 2011 at 4:01pm Parent wrote:
Which one did you and your child connect with most ? Academically they are pretty much the same and with a mixed intake most schools will have mixed rsuots each year anyway. If you go by ofsted reports, the value added section is probably the most useful - looking at the starting point of kids as they enter the school and the finishing point when they leave. If the school hasnt got a great value added score then its coasting. Other things to consider - outside space, how much sports the kids do, how much extra currcicula trips, the communication between parents and school, the links with local community events and organisations, how much arts takes place and how much FUN the kids seem to be having. The other thing is whether you want your child to be at a church school or community school - it does make a difference.

Personally I think Western Road coasts on its mainly middle class intake and its huge input by parents - taken rather for granted by the school. But it's hugely improved under the current head who is full of energy, if rather disorganised. But it's a very happy school with some good teaching particularly in the infants.
On 10 Jan 2011 at 8:22pm Winterbourne Wanderer wrote:
Ours are at Western Road and we're very happy with it. Southover seems good too: friends whose kids go there are happy. We chose Western Road over Southover because it was community rather than C of E, and because it was a smaller school. There's no such thing as a perfect school: every school has things that one might like to change. But most of the Lewes schools seem pretty good.
On 11 Jan 2011 at 5:33pm SHS wrote:
I say bring back the cane in all schools, kick out the computers and no talking in class.
On 12 Jan 2011 at 4:27pm bastian wrote:
Western rd mate,my kids went there when it was lentil and it was a good small school with a sound ethos,they left as the new man came in and I have to say he seems a good bloke.
On 12 Jan 2011 at 9:21pm Matt Kent wrote:
Mrs K has looked at South Malling, Southover and Western Road.
The children at Malling were enthusiastic, polite, mature and the classroom environment was vibrant with great displays. Fantastic outside space. Children showed the parents around. Good IT facilities. The only downside being a cabin building. Intake for 2011 will be around 30 apparently. Modern School. The head seems great. 9/10
The children at Southover seemed buried in their books at the time. The classroom environment not so vibrant, less effort with the school displays. The staff didn't really introduce themselves on the open day, including the head. Victorian School building. 5/10
The children at Western Road were engaged and enthusiastic. The head seemed to relish the fact that they had chickens in the school, but really wanted a goat. ESCC said no apparently. The head was very enthusiastic about the school. No particular religious ethos but possibly a happy medium between Malling and Southover.
Basically, pretty much all schools in Lewes are brilliant but it all depends what learning environment you think your children will flourish. Fun and enthusiastic, or more structured and academic, and some more religious. No canes though.
I think we have until the 15th Jan to select. Very simple to do online via the ESCC website. I hope this helps in some way Lewes Trousers.
On 12 Jan 2011 at 10:04pm Lewes Trousers wrote:
Thank you Mr and Mrs K but what marks for Western Road. Our choice is probably between Southover and Western Road, however I would agree with Mrs Ks assessment of Southover, though this is always a popular school amongst parents and has generally good external PR. Western Road has had a rough time, and a lot of changes, is bright and interesting but has had a staff changeover is it sustainable...? Its website is unfinished, where is its IT suite? A chicken is all very well, but IT facilities are essential. The energetic and vibrant head has changed the school and pushed it towards a more academic stance but will it all fall away if he leaves.
On 12 Jan 2011 at 11:07pm Brixtonbelle wrote:
Lewes trousers. Why dont you contact the head of Western Road and find out if he plans to leave ? And where the IT suite is.
I've heard very good reports of Malling as well. And if you're not happy where you kid ends up then try another school - it's fairly easy to get a place, I know lots of people who have moved schools and all have got places at the primaries they wanted.
One piece of advice though - a learning environment needs to be fun. if the kids don;t look like they are having fun and getting lots ofplay, especially in the early years, they don;t learn well and will get switched off very quickly. I would avoid anywhere that wants to load the kids with lots of homework and too much academia at such a young age. Its counterproductive. We probably all know that in europe most countries don't start formal learning until age 6-7 - and that includes formal reading. We could do well to bear that in mind in this country.
On 13 Jan 2011 at 1:15pm Matt Kent wrote:
@ LewesTrousers
RE:Western Road. A Len Goodman - SEVEN!
On 13 Jan 2011 at 4:15pm bastian wrote:
I would give western rd 8/10.Southover is the school for aspiring nouveau rich and you have to keep up with the croud, so if you want a relaxed atmos go for WRS....as a matter of fact in my kids secondary school it is largely WRS kids in top set english and maths so Southovers head down,no fun policey is not the only way to achieve.WRS is unchained from the church..hazzar!
On 25 Jan 2011 at 4:19pm CK wrote:
Hi, I am thinking of moving to Lewes, and I wondered which school would be the best for my daughter. She has a very inquiring mind, loves to play but also needs a lot of stimulation! The 2 nearest schools would be Pells cofe and Wallands I have read the ofsteds and Pells looks pretty dismal.. albeit the nearest as I would be moving near Landport road..I have also heard contrasting opinions on living on the Landport estate, please help as I dont want to move somewhere that is not habitable LOL
On 25 Jan 2011 at 4:38pm CK wrote:
Meaning does it flood..

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