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This is a nurturing environment where children, staff, parents and governors know each other and share a common understanding of the School’s purpose – to ‘aim high’ and through shared understanding of Gospel values, ensure that the potential of every child is fully achieved. Our children are happy, sociable, well-behaved and value our diversity, which enriches everything we do. We are recognised as ‘outstanding’ by the local authority and are confident this will be endorsed at our next Ofsted inspection.

Secondary transition


Please note that there will be a briefing/Q&A session at the School at 6.00pm on Tuesday 21 June 2016 at which parents of Year 4 and 5 children will be able to ask questions about their children's secondary school transition.

PLEASE NOTE THE FOLLOWING, OR ANY OTHER, GUIDANCE GIVEN BY THE SCHOOL DOES NOT SUPERCEDE THAT PROVIDED BY YOUR LOCAL AUTHORITY AND YOU SHOULD RELY ALWAYS ON THE INFORMATION AND TIMESCALES PUBLISHED BY YOUR LOCAL COUNCIL AND BY INDIVIDUAL SCHOOLS.

The School does a lot to prepare its pupils, especially in their final year at St.Mary Magdalen’s, for the transition to secondary school.

Parents too, by their children’s first term in Year Five, should have started to think about secondary school options for their children.  This is not always a straightforward matter as it’s important for you and your child to find the school that’s right for them - and there are a variety of options.

SOME QUESTIONS YOU WILL WANT TO CONSIDER

Do I want my child to go to a Catholic secondary school?

Do I want my child to go to a mixed ability or selective school? (e.g. Bexley, Bromley and Kent all have selective schools in their areas to which you can apply if your child satisfies their criteria)

Do I want my child to go to a mixed or single sex school?

Do I want my child to go to a school close to home?  If so am I in its catchment area based on the previous year’s applications/offers?

Do I want to apply for a music or sports place (sometimes called a ‘scholarship’) at one of the nearby schools that offers these?

What sort of school is right for my child and will best enable them to fulfill their potential?

THE SELECTIVE ROUTE

The formal timescale in relation to selective schools and music/sports places starts before the Summer holidays (i.e. when your child is in Year 5), when you will need to submit supplementary forms.  Also, well before that, you may want to think about preparing your child for their selection test, music audition or sports assessment.

If your child is going to sit selection tests you may want to think about getting a tutor early in Year Five and consider buying books of selection test ‘mock’ tests (e.g. those published by Bond, Walsh or Eureka).  The School (or parents of Year Six children who have already been through this) may be able to advise you in these matters and the School may be prepared talk to you about the suitability of the selective route for your child.  It is important that you think carefully about this as there can be a lot of work involved in preparing for selection tests and your child’s confidence may get dented if they sit these tests and don’t achieve a high enough score to get accepted into the selective school they’ve set their heart upon.

FINDING OUT ABOUT SCHOOLS TO HELP YOU MAKE YOUR CHOICE

You will find plenty of useful information on the Lewisham Council website – see here.
You can read the latest Ofsted inspection report on any school by visiting http://reports.ofsted.gov.uk/

One of the best ways to find out about a school and whether it’s right for your child is to visit on one of its open days arranged for prospective new pupils.  See individual secondary school websites for further information.

DON'T MISS THE DEADLINE FOR MAKING YOUR APPLICATION

You will need to make an application, on the ‘Common Application Form’, by the deadline date in the October when your child enters Year Six at primary school.  You should use your home borough’s application form, on which you can list up to six choices including schools outside your home borough.

It is easiest to do this on-line but you can submit a hard copy application if you so wish.

Please read carefully your local council’s guidance on how and when to complete the application form.

Catholic and other faith schools also require completion of a supplementary form (a different one for each school) which will have to be signed by your priest or pastor before submission to the school in question.

NATIONAL OFFER DAY

After the October deadline for admissions your local council’s school admissions team will liaise with schools to seek to allocate each child to the highest choice school on their form that is able to offer them a place.

National Offer Day has historically been at the very start of March each year.

SOME SECONDARY SCHOOLS TO WHICH OUR PUPILS HAVE MOVED IN RECENT YEARS (n.b. this is not a comprehensive list and inclusion here does not constitute a recommendation)

Bonus Pastor Catholic College (mixed ability, Bromley) - Flyer 
Coloma Convent School  (girls mixed ability, Croydon)
Conisborough College (independent school, Catford)
Forest Hill School (boys mixed ability, Forest Hill)
Haberdashers' Aske's Hatcham College (girls/boys (separated) mixed ability, New Cross)
Haberdashers' Aske's Knights Academy (mixed ability, Grove Park)
Harris Academy Greenwich (mixed ability, Greenwich)
Kingsdale Foundation School (mixed ability, Dulwich)
Newstead Wood School (girls selective, Orpington)
Notre Dame School (girls mixed ability, Southwark)
Prendergast School (girls mixed ability, Ladywell)
Prendergast Ladywell School (mixed ability, Crofton Park)
Prendergast Vale School (mixed ability, Lewisham)
St.Dunstan's College (independent school, Catford)
St.Matthew (RC) Academy (mixed ability, Lewisham/Blackheath border)
St. Michael's Catholic College (mixed ability, Bermondsey)
St.Thomas the Apostle College (boys mixed ability, Nunhead)
St. Ursula's Convent School (mixed ability, Greenwich/Blackheath border)
St.Olave's Grammar School (boys selective, Orpington)
Sydenham School (girls mixed ability, Sydenham)
Townley Grammar School (girls selective, Bexleyheath)