Moving to Edinburgh - but when and which school

(12 Posts)
CrazyMaizie Wed 14-Oct-15 21:23:44

Thinking of moving to Edinburgh (we've lived there before and it was always the plan to 'come home'). The question is when to make the move. DD 7 at the moment and in an international school overseas. Looking at ESMS as like the all round education it seems to provide, the fact that secondary is girls only and it has such a nice write up on the Good school Guide but really keen to hear views of people on here. Are we crazy to only consider one school? Perhaps more lazy than crazy! Also, is there a best time to make the move P4, P5, P6, P7, senior school?

WoodenPegs Sun 18-Oct-15 08:56:09

Would suggest you looking at Cargilfield at Barnton. Fantastic pastoral care; super sport, drama, DT, art; great academics; very friendly place.

PrimalLass Sun 18-Oct-15 10:16:18

Cargilfield is a lot more money, isn't it?

I think P6 is when most people move from state to ESMS. We are swithering over S1 entry we really can't afford it

Cargundian Sun 18-Oct-15 11:52:26

Cargilfield is more expensive than ESMS, but it's not that it's worse value: it's a different product. Longer day (and no homework, bliss!), smaller classes, more extra-curriculars included, etc. If the cost wouldn't make you rule it out, OP, I'd second the idea of going to see it. Really great school. Finishes at age 13, which is a plus or a minus depending on your point of view: the minus is that you have a new decision for senior school, the plus is that you are supported in choosing and getting in to the school that will be best for your DD at that stage (e.g., single sex at that point, if you want).

motherstongue Sun 18-Oct-15 16:24:17

I couldn't fault Cargilfield, fantastic school! However, it depend what the op really wants. Cargilfield will prepare for Common Entrance and their focus is securing places for their pupils at the big name boarding schools UK wide. Obviously a lot of the children at Cargilfield will stay local but if they do most move to Fettes, Merchiston and Loretto. Few move to the more traditional day schools. This in part is due to the fact that Cargilfield's education goes up to age 13 and most of the day schools have their main intake at 12. It can be very very difficult to get a place at a day school out with their intake years and you need to go on the waiting list for a place. If the op is looking primarily for a day school and wants single sex and wants an all through education then somewhere like ESMS would tick a lot of boxes. I would, however, be put off ESMS purely on it's size but then many of the day schools are huge compared with the boarding school options.

CrazyMaizie Sun 18-Oct-15 22:45:37

Thanks for your responses everyone. I'll look into Cargilfield, although I would probably prefer the simplicity of a school where we don't need to change again (especially if we join in P6). Also, whilst I am open to boarding, my husband really doesn't want to go down that route. Does anyone have knowledge about how selective the independent schools are in Edinburgh? If you pass the entrance exam do you generally get in? Do a lot of parents sign their children up for tutoring? Thanks again for your advice - it's appreciated.

starving Mon 19-Oct-15 21:04:47

I have personal experience (in different capacities!) of several of the Edinburgh private schools. My dd went to ESMS school so if you have any particular questions please send me a message.
While the ESMS schools are large in terms of pupil numbers, they are split into much smaller schools on different campuses, eg the infant school, junior school, girls secondary & boys secondary. Once in the school you stay there, unless you move etc.
Where do you plan to live in Edinburgh? That will certainly influence a decision on schools. I strongly suggest that you visit any school that you are thinking about as while academically there is not much between the Edinburgh Private Schools, the "feel" is quite different. You will know which one is right for your dc.
Some of the schools offer the traditional Scottish Curriculum for Excellence and other schools offer a more English style curriculum (GCSE & A levels). Some offer the IB. What is important to you? Some of the questions to ask.
And a girls only environment definitely suits some girls, but lets leave that debate for another day.

CrazyMaizie Tue 20-Oct-15 12:59:34

Thank you starving. We looked around ESMS several years ago and decided we liked it then moved away. Now we hope to move back and think it's still right for us (but haven't really reviewed the others other than looking through their websites). After the recommendations above, and on other areas of mumsnet, I did check out Cargilfield but there are 2 issues 1. It is quite a bit more expensive and would have an impact on our lifestyle (which I would be prepared to do if it absolutely was the right decision for us) and 2. The issue of changing school again at 13. My daughter has already been to two schools and she's only 7. In the international environment we are currently in children are moving on all the time and is like her to have some consistent friends.
Re. Location we are thinking about Murrayfield - but that is due to school location rather than anything else.
Do you have any advice on the entrance exam? Is it pass/fail? Do they give a mark? I think my daughter is average ... Her teachers say things that on face value seem to imply she's ahead, but when I look at her end of year 'marks' they look average to me.

starving Wed 21-Oct-15 20:45:31

CrazyMaizie have sent you a message

DreamingOfThruxtons Wed 21-Oct-15 20:48:37

Or, the State schools are perfectly fine?

DreamingOfThruxtons Wed 21-Oct-15 20:50:58

(My daughter will go to James Gillespie's, which is very well regarded.)

CrazyMaizie Wed 05-Oct-16 09:39:53

Hello again, we went back to ESMS last year and had another look. A lot still seems really great, but I was a little put off by the lack of outdoor space for the P5/P6 children - is that an issue for any of you with children there? Also, the classrooms we saw were all pretty tired looking. I know there are big renovation plans but I feel my daughter would suffer the building works but not get to enjoy the finished product. Would be great to hear from anyone with children at the school as to whether these are things I should be concerned about.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now