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Schooling - thoughts on private or state
18-09-2006, 02:01 PM
Post: #1
Schooling - thoughts on private or state

Samuel will probably be starting at a private school next year (one of these http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/education/4633601.stm) which came about as his dad really feels a private education is better while I thought it sounded horrible, so we found a chain of tree hugging private schools and now we're both happy.

Anyway I just wondered what every one else's thoughts on schooling are. Obviously the school we have choosen is not your average private school (well as far as I know, never having been to one I have very little to go on) and the fees are low in comparison (cheaper than childminding Big Grin) but I still think it's an interesting subject.

If it had not been for Samuels dad I'd have put him into the nearest state school without a second thought, and only would have moved him had he had real problems. I don't really see myself that a private school is necessarily any better, I ended up doing a masters degree (albeit in media) and I only went to the nearest comphrehensive. Okay I didn't get very good results but that was through choice - I had older friends and I prefered to sit around and play video games with them all day than actually attend school.

Perhaps a private school would have done me better as it's very likely that I wouldn't have been able to avoid school so much (I was quite sneaky though, and my parents were mostly blissfully unaware, my mum was a teacher so certainly wouldn't have let me bunk!) and I might have had to put some effort in, rather than being certain I'd get okayish grades if I put the bare mimimum in.

What does eveyone else think? Anyone have children in alternative/independant schools?
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18-09-2006, 03:38 PM
Post: #2
Schooling - thoughts on private or state
A cousin of mine went to one of those schools. They're supposed to be excellent but he turned out a bit :blink:. Mind you, so's the rest of that bit of the family.

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18-09-2006, 03:41 PM
Post: #3
Schooling - thoughts on private or state
My kids are still at state primary school, they enjoy it and do well, and have loads of friends, which is all you can ask for really. Looking ahead to when our daughter moves to secondary educatiop no doubt we'll weigh up state vs private, my personal preference is for state, as long as it's a decent enough school, I don't like the idea of having to pay through the nose for it. Can understand why people go private, smaller size classes means closer individual attention, although this may be more useful for the withdrawn child. Also there are the wrong reasons, like wanting to show you're a bit better than the rest, or that your child is 'special'. I think if a child has enough go in them they will reach their own natural level whatever the environment. Another disadvantage of private education is it could make a child feel like a member of the elite, which won't do them much good when they have to face the world after their period of education.

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18-09-2006, 04:02 PM
Post: #4
Schooling - thoughts on private or state
Our boys both go to the same school now, which is a mixed state school. So far we have no complaints and the oldest one (now in year 9) is doing well and we are all very happy with the way it's going.

However, not having the choice, private education is not something we've looked into. I think if you're lucky enough to be in an area where there are good state schools, there is no real benefit to private education, apart from the smaller class numbers as Dave mentioned.

I don't see the point in paying for private just for the sake of it and actually have friends who can easily afford it, but have opted to send their children to state schools. There can be a tendancy, I think, for parents to use private education as a status thing (not meaning this about you Sammigel; I know you're as common as muck!) and it's more about the way they are perceived than the standard of their child's education.
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18-09-2006, 04:36 PM
Post: #5
Schooling - thoughts on private or state
I actually went to a private school and received the same education as the people who went to a state school. The only thing different IMO is that is taught me manners, respect and discipline which I think is lacking in so many schools these days.
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18-09-2006, 05:39 PM
Post: #6
Schooling - thoughts on private or state
Seabreeze Wrote:The only thing different IMO is that is taught me manners, respect and discipline which I think is lacking in so many schools these days.

This is what i have always thought is the benefit of private schools. There is more discipline, smaller classes and i think because a lot of the kids are from 'posh' families it instills manners.

But i could be talking out of my a*se.

One other thing is that the teachers are generally paid more so they attend school. I know when i was at school we had soooo many temp teachers. They would come into class, wouldnt have a clue what we were supposed to be learning, so we spent the hour reading our text books and not doing anything practical. It kinda made me think that if the teachers couldnt be ar*sed, why should we.

Luckily for me i had parents who made me sit down and do my homework. If it wasnt for them i think i would of lapsed hugely.

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18-09-2006, 06:11 PM
Post: #7
Schooling - thoughts on private or state
There are advantages to private education, smaller classes and individual attention. Teaching staff are paid more and have more incentive to want to teach. Disciplin seems better in the classroom, but outside the classroom they are just like any other children.

There is most definitely a status to being privately educated. A private schol mentioned on your CV and better exam grades, goes far in the world of employment.

Some state schools do seem to get better results than others, but ultimately for a child to do well here requires that the child really does want to learn and do well. If the child has no interest in education than it is obvious the child will bunk and stand less chance of doing well in the jobs market.


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18-09-2006, 07:02 PM
Post: #8
Schooling - thoughts on private or state
There really isn't much of a difference in pay between the private sector and state sector. I suppose the incentive is that the children are probably better behaved and their backgrounds won't have the baggage that some state schools have.

I suppose it depends on where your state school is, luckily we have a fab state school on our doorstep. It has won the HM Inspector reports for 2 years, making it one of the best schools in the area and that includes all the private schools.

Personally I hate the private school label but I think it is because people in Edinburgh make such a big deal about it - there are people who send their kids because they want the education but loads of parents I know send them because of the status element.

I have a friend who has taught at both state & private and hated working in the private sector - it was an girls school and it was the one she attended as a girl and ironically hated it as she was bullied there but nothing was ever done about it. Another one of my friends has just left a private school he taught at as he was unhappy at their teaching methods and claimed that a lot of their literature they were using was out of date. Plus some of the private schools in Edinburgh have increased their class size in order to cope with the demand and in some cases have class sizes that are the same as some of the state schools.

And as for the comment about private school pupils having more respect and good manners, that's a bit of a myth. I was at a party attended by a handful of 7 year old boys and their behaviour was nothing short of disgusting - they were giving the finger under the table, swearing and being very rude!

When I stayed in West Lothian and had to travel to work into Edinburgh there was a few public school-boys who used to get on our bus and again, if it had not been for the fact they were wearing their uniforms you would never have guessed they were at private school, the language and downright rudeness was unbelievable!

The other thing about the private schools is the parents but their is so much competition! At school sports day at Mary Erskine's the mothers turn up in their lyrca and spikes for the mum's race!! One of my friend's friend son attends private school and had his birthday party and again there is competition to see who can buy the best gift - they were spending up to £30/40 on a present!!

I think the thing about state schools is the severe lack of funding for basic materials and that it is left up to the parents to do loads of fund-raising in order to assist with their children's education.

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18-09-2006, 07:42 PM
Post: #9
Schooling - thoughts on private or state
Bella Wrote:And as for the comment about private school pupils having more respect and good manners, that's a bit of a myth.
Agree and double agree on this one Bella, in the town where I live there are at least four private schools and I can tell you now some of the little gits that come out of them are horrible. My children used to attend swimming lessons at one of them, and you could tell immediately which kids came from the private school cos they were all stuck up and full of themselves and their manners were appalling and the parents (when they bothered to turn up to watch their little darlings learn to swim) never corrected them.
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18-09-2006, 08:01 PM
Post: #10
Schooling - thoughts on private or state
Fee For All Wrote:A cousin of mine went to one of those schools. They're supposed to be excellent but he turned out a bit :blink:. Mind you, so's the rest of that bit of the family.

I was concerned until I read the last bit, and remembered how many of my family are a bit :blink: and they went to state schools - hopefully it depends on the kid. That said I'll keep a careful eye on him Big Grin

Patsy Wrote:Sammigel; I know you're as common as muck!

So true Patsy, in fact that was one of my first reactions when Samuels dad mentioned private schools - that I didn't want to raise a child who is embarrassed by me... before anyone points out it might take a miracle not to, I know this Big Grin

I remember as a small child being embarrassed at school to say my dad was a bin man, are you even allowed to say things like that in posh schools :unsure:

I've met some children who went private and are lovely with great manners, and also some of the little sods - maybe that's just the parents.
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