Opinions on esms vs Watsons p1 entry(7 Posts)
As title suggests we have just applied for both ESMS and Watsons for our dd to start next August in p1. Been to visit both and interested in people's experiences. We live south Edinburgh so watsons is best location wise but I keep being drawn back to ESMS as I loved it when visiting. Also any feedback on assessments? Thanks
It will clearly depend on your daughter, but neither school take many at P1, so you may not get to choose (my friend's daughter got a place a year ago and she was one of 15 out of 60). The number of places will also depend on how many pre-school children defer and the existing boy/girl balance.
We really like ESMS, but think that location will also be important. Good luck!
I think they are both good, so would go with the one which suits your location. Once they start after school activities such as sports, choir etc it's just much easier to be nearer the school. Also easier if they want to see their friends.
DD1 is at GWC and loves it (now in P3) and we're about to submit the admissions form for DS1 so he can start next year. Its a big school, but nursery - p3 are in a 'mini-school' on campus called Lower Primary, so you don't feel engulfed by the magnitude of it all. We've been very impressed with the ethos of the school and the inclusiveness, and family orientation.
That said, we also like ESMS when we went to view, but location wise GWC was better for us.
We decided against entrance at pre-school as DD was happy at the nursery she was at. We also decided to go for just GWC, which when I look back, was a fairly risky strategy as if she hadn't got a place, we wouldn't have had any other options that the local school which we didn't like.
The assessment was pretty straightforward - DD was taken away for about 20-30 mins, she did a couple of puzzles and chatted with the teacher and that was that. I can't imagine they differ much from school to school.
In edinburgh location is importnt. My children went to Heriots and it was a wonderful school. My husband was ill from my daughters p2 and died when my son who was 2 years behind her reached S5. Their care was amazing
Anecdotally I believe that ESMS is harder to get into than Watsons as friends of ours DCs got accepted for Watsons but not the other. However having said that I believe that Watsons is also generally oversubscribed for P1.
DS is at Watsons - he was at the nursery as well, so the assessment was pretty low key. I'm very happy with it - I was concerned it would be too big, but as another poster has said, they split up the lower and upper primary so it doesn't feel that way.
We live in South Edinburgh as well, so didn't look at any other schools. I'm probably biased here, but I've been told that ESMS is hard to park at once your DC is no longer in nursery (when you can go into the car park) so that, coupled with the fact that it's on the other side of town, was definitely a factor in not considering it.
The other thing is that if you're in the catchment for South Morningside or Bruntsfield primaries, they both have great reputations. Therefore if you don't get your DD in private at P1, there may be other opportunities later on.
I have experience of both schools and while both are very similar academically you will find that you prefer one or the other as a good fit for your dd. I would go along with applying for both because as stated above you may not get a choice! If you are lucky enough to get offers from both then I suggest a return visit to both and see if you feel the same second time around.
And edinburghrookie I guess it is a little while since you last visited ESMS? They have a lovely new carpark and play area for lower primary.
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