Local Talk

Open seats in primary year 3&4

(4 Posts)
SpeechGarden Sat 08-Jun-13 21:53:34

Hello new friends!
Our family is moving from US to Reading in August and we are looking at either the Caversham or Wokingham areas. Of top priority is to find a home with a good primary school AND open seats for our dc, who will be in years 3 & 4 next year.
DH needs access to UofR daily, but he will inconvenience himself slightly for the kids to have a good school.
What is your advice? Overall, the schools in Wokingham seem to be better, but it's hard to tell from the internet which schools may have open seats. Do you suggest contacting each school individually or will the LEA provide information about open seats at given ages for all schools?
So far, we've been using Olfstead ratings and the school's websites to virtually tour each school. Because of the summer break, it is highly unlikely that we will be able to tour schools before selecting housing.

Thank you for your advice and we can't wait to arrive!

NewtoCharvil Wed 19-Jun-13 20:16:02

We are in a similar situation, we are moving from South Africa in Aug. I spent many many hours doing research online and eventually decided to focus on an area where we were almost guaranteed to get our kids into a good secondary and where none of the Primary schools are bad since as a late applicant you can't pick your primary school. We decided on Charvil/ Twyford so I contacted the Wokingham school admissions department to ask where there was space and they told me however I knew that was no guarantee of getting those places as you can only apply when you have a lease proving you will be living in the area. We found a home, signed a lease and then immediately submitted our applications and fortunately a week or so later I received the confirmation.

Good luck!

SpeechGarden Sat 22-Jun-13 04:50:31

Thanks, NewtoCharvil! I do appreciate hearing your story, although now I feel behind, since you already have a lease and a school slot! How we're you able to secure housing without being on the ground there? Did you lease sight-unseen and choose schools through websites?

What was your method of contact for Wokingham admissions? Trying to avoid a high phone bill, I have emailed them several times with no response.

It would be nice to have school places set before summer break starts!

NewtoCharvil Sat 22-Jun-13 18:31:51

Hi, just internet research, looking at areas within 10 miles of where my husband will be working, then narrowed down to areas with decent train times to London then started looking at all properties to rent and for sale on rightmove. Some areas were not in our price range or just looked horrible so immediately crossed them off and then with the ok ones, I looking at distance to schools, looking at ofsted reports and then googling the schools etc. Sometimes there were only bad schools close by so crossed them off or the schools were so oversubscribed that you had to live about 0.5 miles away to be sure to get a place which was too risky for me so by then I really only had 2 options left. We looked at houses to rent for a while online but were nervous to do purely based on seeing it online having never been to the area so I decided to make a trip out last month. I am glad I went as now I know what to expect although to be honest I am not sure it was necessary as we had chosen the house we wanted from rightmove and it was the first I saw and said right there and then I wanted to rent it so I guess I could have just as easily done it remotely!

I did email the school admissions few months ago and then applied a month ago via email too but had to attach a copy of signed lease and copies of passports too.

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