Why All Parents Need this Website

The choice of your child’s secondary school is arguably one of the most important decisions you will have to make on their behalf. Success at school can bring great rewards in adulthood. There is a common consensus that ‘doing well’ at school usually results in ‘doing well’ in life, and every parent wants their child to have a bright future. Many of us are scarred by memories of difficult times at school ourselves and want our children to avoid similar experiences. Some parents regret their own lack of academic achievement and do not want their children to make the same mistakes.Working on the Computer

But finding the right secondary school is a difficult process, not helped by regular scare stories in the media about substandard schools. There is a lot of misinformation about the nature of state secondary schools. It amazes me how the knowledge of many who comment on education amounts to little more than having gone to school themselves. I have heard journalists and politicians voice strong opinions on state education without ever having attended, and rarely been in, a state school. Parents then are often forced to make this important decision about their child’s future, without very much quality evidence on which to rely.

Parents often take drastic steps to access their preferred school, sometimes spending more on a new house in a school’s catchment area than private education would have cost them; or children travel distances to school further than their parents would tolerate for their own commute.

But these steps are often ill-advised. For example, I have found that parents might choose a school because of a reputation that could well be years out of date. Or they favour a school because it is oversubscribed, when the justifications for the oversubscription are long since gone. A school which suits one child might not be right for another. Children are individual and unique, as are schools, and their needs should be matched to what a school can offer.

This website attempts to give clear advice that will help parents make an informed decision as to the secondary state school that is right for their child. I aim to fill the vacuum of information and evidence that surrounds the issue of choosing a secondary school. I explain what sources of information are currently available, and how to interpret them. I outline the actions that parents can take to give themselves as full and complete a picture as possible of the secondary schools that are available to their child.

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