James Gillespie's Primary

(10 Posts)
rlouisemacleod Wed 11-May-16 20:50:21

Hello, we are relocating to Edinburgh as DH has a new job! I am excited as I love the city but it all feels like a rush as our DS is due to start P1 in August. Edinburgh Council advise that James Gillespie's and Sciennes have in-catchment places left for new arrivers but I know very little about JGPS. Are there any current parents on Mumsnet who may be able to advise? Many thanks!

catdil Thu 12-May-16 11:44:57

What do you need to know - my dd also starts p1 in August there :-)

rlouisemacleod Thu 12-May-16 13:06:44

Thanks Catdil, I think I am feeling nervous about signing up to a school I haven't visited! I have heard that the teaching is open plan at the school and can't imagine how that works in practice, also it seems from the newsletters that there is quite a high staff turnover. However the curriculum and activities look great and there is a lovely new playground. What were your impressions when you visited the school?
Many thanks!

catdil Thu 12-May-16 21:24:14

So I must profess I don't love the open plan. My ds went to bruntsfield which was a more traditional Victorian school. However all the parents rave about gillespies and say it's great. When we got shown round the kids were very polite and seemed to genuinely love the school. I wouldn't say staff turnover is any worse than else where and now they have a new head it will likely settle down. Tbh unless you go private I would say it's a safe bet and a decent state school which has the benefits of the new secondary next door with a pool etc.
There is a settle morning middle of June are you coming for that?

catdil Thu 12-May-16 21:28:38

One other point - after school care is a nightmare and over subscribed at all the south Edinburgh schools here.

I know people at sciennes as well - it is a more traditional Victorian school similar to bruntsfield. It seems very big in comparison - that sad gillespies has 90 kids this year in p1! Another option might be St. Peter's if that appeals? Private options are plentiful but not cheap!

rlouisemacleod Fri 13-May-16 10:25:42

Thank you Catdil! I may well see you in June!

Bellebelle Fri 13-May-16 21:45:38

Gillespies is a great school, I went to another similar open plan school in Edinburgh (Cramond) and it was never an issue.

Tollcross is another primary school in the area which is also great but doesn't get as much good press as its more of a city centre school than Gillespies even though the schools are barely 10 minutes apart. School roll is growing but only around 200 pupils at present so it's a small school in comparison to others in the area with lots of space due to the Gaelic unit moving to a new school a few years ago. Head teacher and teaching staff are great and very low turnover, everyone knows each other which is lovely.

rlouisemacleod Sat 14-May-16 19:58:11

Thank you Bellebelle, I'll have a look at Tollcross - the council didn't mention that one though so they may not have places

KingLooieCatz Tue 17-May-16 12:16:30

Gillespie's and Sciennes are very well regarded.

Tollcross tends to have places for out of catchment but gradually less so. It has breakfast club from 8am and after school club until 6pm, and there is no waiting list. The holiday club is 08.30-5.30.

Tollcross is not regarded as one of the top desirable schools, lacks the leafy suburb setting, but the last report was very good. It is much smaller than most of the south Edinburgh schools at just over 200 kids in total. Old fashioned Victorian build.

MumsKnitter Wed 18-May-16 13:30:19

What KingLooie said!

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