Hi All, been having a read of this thread as we are another load of mainlanders hoping to invade the island! (Although DH was brought upon the island and mil and sil still live there!) Have been holidaying/camping on the island for years and have always said we'd love to (retire) there, but looks like we will be in a position to make the move very soon - hoping for Sandown/Shanklin area.
I have 3 dds currently in years 6, 4 and 1. So dd1 will start at secondary school in September. I have read the other schools thread on this topic, and it doesn't look great - are things really that bad? Given that the "new" schools are still settling in to the new way, are there still any that we should avoid like the plague, given the area we're hoping to move to? We're not religious so doubt I'd be able to get them into faith schools if they turn out to be the best ones! Are the schools still on their original sites (I think I'm right saying that the infant/junior schools have amalgamated?) or have/are new sites being looked at? Would appreciate any info, good and bad! Thanks
Hi Mrs Smooth We moved over 8 years ago when eldest dd was 1 ( hadn't even occurred to us to check out schools!) just as well because we might not have come! I love it here we are in Ryde as we both commute so I can't really tell you much about schools in Sandown, Shanklin. My girls are in year 2 and 4 at a nearby primary school and will stay there till year 6. All middle schools closed last year and our small school moved sites to an old middle school. All I can say is that I am happy with the progress my children have made - my eldest is bright and has been pushed. The youngest has had some problems and has had lots of extra help. I am worried about the secondary schools and sorry but I have heard that Sandown academy is awfull tbh though you need to visit them all yourself and make your own mind up. There is a good private school but I don't think we can stretch to it, like you we're not religious so I'm just crossing everything that by the time my 2 move to secondary school things will have improved. We don't for one minute regret moving here though, yesterday evening we walked along Bembridge shore finishing at the Crab and Lobster. Tomorrow it's a picnic at Appley after School!
Thanks for your info bumbez. I guess with the middle schools closing last year, we need to give it a bit of time for it all to settle into the new routine [hopeful] but like you say, we'll have to visit the schools (especially the secondary one) and go by gut instinct. Fingers crossed one will "fit the bill". We too have thought about the private school (Ryde School?) but we just can't afford it - especially when we have 3 dds!
It feels to me that Islanders are more or less happy or don't want to diss their schools as I am always told that 'my kids did just fine' or 'its part of a kids education to have to put up with this that and the other' and I'm made to feel bad to be worried. I am frankly very worried about secondary school as they are all shocking in comparison which good ones on the mainland. One of the main problems is that the teachers do not expect much (even at primary) - there is a general exceptance that most kids can only work at a certain low level whereas the expectations are just higher on the mainland. I don't think there are problems with disclipline on the whole - teens here are polite and friendly - its an attainment thing and the other big issue is attendance. Its not that there are just a few kids who hardly attend school but a general view that it is fine to miss school fairly often and to have family holidays in term time as well, and due to the low expectations thing there are quite a few who have just given up going to school. Small wonder there is a big community of home educating parents - about 300 children are educated outside of school. there is another smaller private school called Priory which is cheaper than Ryde. Also I think Cowes is worth looking at as it is getting a brand new building and it is smaller than the others. The other schools are in pretty worn out buildings and Sandown at least is simply huge. The final thing is that all the new schools have the most ridiculous school uniforms ever with the idea that school with blazers and kilts have the best results. They might do but its not the blazers, piped edges to jumpers, ties and kilts which do it, is it?