Move a shy child from a 3 x form 30 class school to a private 1 x form 10 in a class

(45 Posts)
Piggychunk Wed 26-Jun-13 13:54:36

Help!

I cannot decide if I am about to make a massive cockup.

My DS (reception age ) is very shy . It has taken him all year to be at a normal level and play happily with his peers. He is doing well academically ( just above average I expect ) I am happy with this side of school.

He tells me he sometimes has no one to play with at break but then I usually find out he does find someone at the end.

My dilemma is due to DH working in an independent school we can get DS fees massively reduced and he could go to the same school with a single class of 10.

DS has had a trial day and as he was so shy ( didn't speak or look at anyone ) came home and basically said he really doesn't want to leave current school.

He is 5 and I know cannot make informed decisions but I am stressing that will he have enough of a social mix with 10 kids , will it bring him out of his shyness or will it make it worse?

The main reason to move him would be so he doesn't get lost in a crowd , will be more confident to talk with only 9 others listening and not 21 etc etc

Sorry for long post as you can feel I am stressed and have days to make our decision

GW297 Wed 26-Jun-13 17:17:46

Could he do a trial day at the prep school between now and the end of term?

NotFluffy Wed 26-Jun-13 17:21:54

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Myliferocks Wed 26-Jun-13 17:24:04

We moved DD3 from a school where she was in a class of 38 ( year size 76 ) to a school where the class size was 23 ( year size 125 ).
I know it's not quite the same numbers!
DD3 is quite a confident child but she really struggled with going to a smaller size class. She found the dynamics difficult to adjust to.
In her old school there were 19 girls in her class but only 10 in her new one.

MumnGran Wed 26-Jun-13 17:24:11

I would go with the move ..... your child is shy rather than socially inept (as much as any 5 year olds are skilled socialisers!) so a smaller pool will absolutely offer more benefits than downsides.
Even the current teacher has said there will be real benefit to the smaller group.
Few 5 year olds want to change anything for something else that is an unknown. Parents just do have to decide the 'best interest'. Children adapt very quickly (even the shy ones) and it is much better to make the move now than in a few years time.

dippywhentired Wed 26-Jun-13 17:30:53

We aren't in the UK and when we moved here, my August-born DD would have been going into reception in UK. Here, there is only one small international school with just over 30 in the whole school (goes from 3-11), so we didn't have a choice.
She was a very shy 4 year old, who made friends, but was painfully shy with new adults. In her first year, there were only 8 in her class, and she was the only native English speaker as well. She is now coming to the end of her second year and has had 15 in the class. She has thrived in the family type environment, will stand in front of the group and give a presentation, will put up her hand to answer questions in whole school assemblies, and absolutely loves school.
Do what you feel is right for him.

everlong Wed 26-Jun-13 19:01:12

I took ds out of a boy heavy class of 30 into a mixed classe of 15 in reception.

He's August born and was quite reserved and not much confidence.

The difference has been amazing. He's end of Yr2 now and has grown in confidence, his learning is where it should be and he adores school.

I wouldn't hesitate.

wonkylegs Wed 26-Jun-13 19:07:26

We're having a similar dilemma. We are relocating due to work DS will be going into a new school in September. The local school to our house is full so the LA have offered us a place at a primary school 4miles away that is far bigger than DS is used to 3x30 per year, total nearly 500 children (currently at a 1st school with only 1x30 per year, total 120 kids). There are also some concerns about KS1 progress at the school.
We have looked at a local prep school which is approx the same distance in the other direction. That has a class size of 14 for his year and a total of 380 kids aged 3-18.
I've been to visit both and frankly am in no better position as to know what is best. Both have pros and cons and neither is the ideal situation of getting into the village school which we can see from our new house.
After trying to be rational about it I'm sitting here feeling terribly torn, convinced that I'm going to fuck it up.sad

Piggychunk Wed 26-Jun-13 19:27:07

Its a nightmare Wonky!

I know for fact if something happens I don't like at either schools I will say I knew I should have stayed put/ moved ( delete applicable)

mrsvandertramp Wed 26-Jun-13 19:45:31

We did this a year ago - moved DS and DD from school of 4 form intake to a small independent school and we're really glad we did as they have really come out of themselves and become much more confident. I always felt before that because they sat quietly in lessons and did what they were told that they were overlooked and weren't given much attention. In their small classes now the teachers are really able to know the children well and they have made so much progress academically. Also as they get older they have more chance of being in plays and sports teams, not that they are particularly sporty, but when you have nearly 100 in your year group you have to be pretty good to get chosen and that's really good for their confidence as well.
We are really glad we moved them and although it's hard financially they have never been happier at school which makes us feel that the sacrifices are all worthwhile.

curlew Wed 26-Jun-13 20:42:03

I know this is anecdotal, but I have never met a child who, looking back, says that they loved their teeny tiny school. I have met very few parents who don't think teeny tiny schools are wonderful. I think it's because we think of our children as little precious flowers who need to be nurtured, while children think of themselves as needing to grow and burst out all over the place. Even the quiet shy ones in the corner....

dippywhentired Wed 26-Jun-13 20:55:39

I loved my tiny school, Curlew, (50 pupils from 7-11), and yes I was also very shy. I would have been lost in a class of 30, as would my DD, and she does love school.

ipadquietly Wed 26-Jun-13 20:59:18

'The difference (of being in the smaller class) has been amazing. He's end of Yr2 now and has grown in confidence, his learning is where it should be and he adores school.'

You can't use that as an example of the advantages of a small class, as, chances are, the child would have grown in confidence whatever school he was at. The growth in self-confidence and social awareness between YR and Y2 is phenomenal in nearly all children.

To the OP - I agree with some of the other poster that 7 is a really small number for a friendship mix. What if 2 like football, 2 are 'bookish', one is unsociable and the other one's into Moshis (not an impossible situation)? Who would your ds play with?

curlew Wed 26-Jun-13 21:00:42

Dippy- as I said- anecdotal!

Piggychunk Wed 26-Jun-13 21:04:03

Ok drum role!.. Me and DH have come to a decision tonight after reading all the views on here and going round in many circles.

We have decided to keep him at his current school. We feel the larger choice of friends was the deciding factor. I couldn't bare the thought of him being left out or not liking certain games and him wondering around on his own.

I'm sure if we moved him he would excel academically but I just not sure this move is right for him.

Fingers crossed we are making the right decision

curlew Wed 26-Jun-13 21:31:57

Well done for making a decision! And for what it's worth, I think it's that right one. I think that aware, switched on parents can always fill in any educational gaps, but it's much harder to fill in social ones. Him being happy is the absolute key. Yay- I feel ridiculously pleased!

PanicMode Thu 27-Jun-13 08:14:17

I only saw this thread this morning, but we had same dilemma and decided to leave him - it was a really good decision. It's taken a while for him to find his confidence, and a group of friends he is happy with (non football loving, chess playing, maths loving boy!) but now he loves school, is flourishing and mixes with a very wide group of people.

FWIW a friend of mine moved her child into a class of 12 only to move back again due to the very narrow social opportunities!

Presumably you can always review again at 7 and see what you think.

ICanTotallyDance Thu 27-Jun-13 08:27:44

I have read the thread and I am too late to comment but I will say that I am pleased you made a decision and of course if it doesn't work out, don't beat yourself up because you can always change your mind later.

xylem8 Thu 27-Jun-13 10:12:02

I moved my very quiet DS from a large town school, to a tiny rural state school (13 in his new class) and it was the making of him.

wonkylegs Thu 27-Jun-13 10:21:00

We've decided to give the bigger school a chance, keep an eye on things and review in 6mths-1yr.
I'm still swirling in doubt but we tried to look at it as practically as possible and this seems the best idea at this time. I'm hoping it's the right decision.

GW297 Thu 27-Jun-13 11:55:10

Yes, you can review your situation periodically and act accordingly.

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