Education deliberation

Posted on: 30/03/2011

What would you choose?  A great house in a convenient location, with so-so schools, or a less great house in a trickier but more beautiful location, with amazing schools?

Do you put the children’s education above the other desires for where and how you want to live?

Let me show you the dilemma.

House one – discovered a couple of weeks ago.  Slightly too small to be the perfect house, since we can’t easily tweak a chalet bungalow, and a considerably longer commute for the loved one.  But has amazing views, nice garden, lovely village location, and amazing schools too.  Infant school at end of road.  Picture-perfect; just a bit small and rather far away from the station.

Agent: Philip Green & Partners

House two – fresh on to the market in an area we love for its convenience and beauty (town location, but between large park and woodland) – though not a patch on the beautiful village location of house one.  Great for commuting.  Gorgeous art deco house with lots of potential to expand and suit our family perfectly.  So-so schools up to age 11+, after which same schools as all the others.  Schools some distance away regardless.

Agent: Wye Residential

House three – found a while ago, probably beyond our budget. Enormous. Hideous and needs a lot of work (previous owners divorced whilst renovating).  Good schools nearby.  Shops nearby. Reasonable views but definitely suburban location.  Commute not too bad, but not as good as house two.

Agent: JNP Partnership

How do you prioritise your priorities?  Bearing in mind that whichever house we go for, we plan to be there for an extremely long time.  I don’t want to be moving the moment the children complete their schooling, I want to stay forever. So I don’t want to regret the decision.

And just how important is the school in this decision?  If I go for the biggest house with the good schools, will I regret continuing to live in suburbia?  If I go for the smallest house with the best schools, will I be constantly tripping up over everyone with loved one coming home exhausted every night from such a long commute?  If I go for the nicest house with the fast commute, will my children turn into thugs from the catchment school in the not-so-nice area across the other side of the park?

Seriously. How do you choose?  I’m flummoxed on this one, and I need to make my mind up about what’s most important to me so that when loved one gets all excited about the convenience of house two, I’m not regretting being dragged along for the ride because I didn’t have a strong enough opinion.

And can you make up for a so-so school in other ways?  Tutoring, and the like? You may already know that I don’t like the idea of fully-fledged home education, but perhaps a little extra home education is a way forward.

Maybe I should be a pushy parent.  Ensuring my children’s teachers are on their toes, challenging my children.   And hassling them should their efforts not be adequate.

What makes a good school anyway?  Are Ofsted reports really a good guide?

So much to consider.


4 Responses to "Education deliberation"

Sacha, where ever you live I believe home is where they learn their morals. Being influenced by peer pressure happens in the best areas, best schools & best families. You have to bring your children up to the best of your ability & then hope what they have learned from you will guide them through the pitfalls of todays society. Schooling is important but being a hands on mum you will know where they are failing & give them that extra help. Stop worrying as a christian pray about your judgement, besides you can always move again, haha.

Thanks Sally! I tell you though, I am never moving again!

Worth visiting the schools at least, don’t take Ofsted’s word for it. What you value may be different from what they value.

Also, it might be that even the least good school is still pretty low on ‘bad influences’… it is a fairly nice part of the country generally!

Thanks. Another friend said the same thing!

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