Dundonald Vs Wimbledon Chase

(5 Posts)
kaliari Thu 05-Nov-15 23:00:29

Hi parents,

I am sure this topic has been exhausted, but we are currently fairly new to the area and live right in centre of the catchment for both these Outstanding schools, this is the Dilemma. As you can see from the subject are we still undecided for nursery and for my little ones future primary school.

So far we like the cosy feel of Dundonald, the Head teacher was very thorough and the open day tour gave us a taste of the classroom environment. With Chase we just mainly seen facilities and the administrator was very helpful but the school is huge with lots going on, not like a traditional primary school we are both used to.

So we were hoping if you lovely people can shed some light on this matter.

Hi Kaliari

You are very lucky indeed if you are in the catchment for both of these outstanding schools - it is a situation that many Merton parents will envy!

If there's little to choose from them on paper, I think it's important to feel (gut instinct) rather than think the decision-making too much. Hope that makes sense? (I say this is a parent myself).

Which one felt the right choice for your DC(s)? Did you visit the schools with them - what did they think?

I know that when we first looked at local primary schools for our DC1, I dismissed some schools from our shortlist simply because we weren't shown round by the Head Teacher - that can be a deal-maker/breaker.

And aside from considering their Ofsted status, positions in the KS2 League Tables (locally, within London and nationally even) etc..., never underestimate the practicalities for the school-run (long-term - you could potentially be doing it for upwards of 9 years!) in your decision-making. Can you easily get there on foot, is it convenient for popping into the shops en route home/public transport links etc...What wraparound care do they offer, what afterschool clubs do they run.

Hopefully some other Merton Mumsnetters with direct experience will add some helpful insights too.

Good luck!


kaliari Sun 08-Nov-15 12:37:51

Thank you kate,

You have given us more clarity on this matter.

On a practical side of things both schools are so close and hence the dilemma. Chase has more clubs, during lunch time and after school, has a breakfast club which starts early. But Dundonald just feels right from a parent point of view, whilst I am sure as a child my daughter would prefer chase.
During the tour at Dundonald, we got a good insight into the quality of the teaching there whilst visiting the classrooms, which was very satisfactory. However at Chase, we didn't get that same opportunity. This makes it harder for us to make any comparison. Ultimately, this is what we are most interested in, how well the children are taught in the classroom environment. It leaves us with no choice but to go with external sources such as the Ofsted reports.

We moved to the area for chase but now it seems we are swaying towards Dundonald. Not such a bad dilemma and we empathise with others in difficult situations.

Thank you once again.


Hi Kali

In light of your most recent post, I would suggest that you see if you can make another appointment to have a private tour of Wimbledon Chase Primary School, which should include seeing the children in the classroom environment. Express your reasons for requesting it (and indeed what you'd like to see second time around). This is an entirely reasonable request IMHO.

Hopefully, that will enable you to have a more accurate assessment of the school, and indeed to decision-make twixt the two schools you're intererested in.

Good luck!


Schmedz Mon 25-Apr-16 14:33:52

You will be lucky to get either, even given your home location! Pros and Cons of each, but all down to how many siblings are applying and how many others applying who live closer to the schools than you do.
Good luck - hope you got your desired outcome and have not been allocated a school that you cant walk to, as happens to so many in Wimbledon.
Do also remember the league tables reflect very little about the quality of teaching. The value-added score gives more information about how much children's results have been judged to improve compared to their expected levels on intake. League table positions can also change from year to year, depending on whether the cohort is particularly able or not
And I'm sad to say, but there is a real illusion of 'choice' for parents - in reality you will get the place the LEA allocates you, which (as many have experienced) could be neither school.
Hope your DC gets an offer you like.

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