Yes I did. I liked my school until later years when I did feel a bit overwhelmed and honestly thought I was failing with my 75% even though I was ib the top English class. I had a lot going on outside of school so I think I put too much pressure on myself until I ended up doing just enough to pass.
I think with the right support it is great for kids to be in an environment where you fit in.
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He went to the school's open day afew weeks ago and loved it soooo much, he really wants to go there. I told him he has to sit a test and he said that's ok. I told him that we will do a few practice tests to prepare for it and he said that's ok too.
He didn't want to sit for the OC because his friends didn't.
I have spoken to his teacher about him potentially going to the school and she has similar thoughts to me- she thinks the environment/peers would be amazing for him, but she says it's hard to tell if he would cope or not with being towards the middle or even bottom of the class. But she does say it's worth trying.
And similarly I have spoken to his psych who says the same thing.
Oh well the choice is out of my hands anyway really. If he gets in, great. But if he decides he doesn't feel like sitting a test that day he won't try hard anyway. And he'll be up against a lot of highly tutored kids too.
I got a place but my parents (along with me) decided not to take it.
They wanted me to be in a Catholic school and they also wanted me to be in a local area so that friends would live close by. The merit select school was a lot further away from where we lived meaning long commute on public transport. Luckily our local catholic school was very big so had options to do extension subjects and extra curricular geek challenges.
I just wanted to go to the same school as my cool older sister and I also wanted to get an after school job as soon as I was old enough which I wouldn't have been able to do with the longer bus ride home.
Personality would have a lot to do with it. I was quite self-motivated when it came to study and was not fazed by being bullied for being smart. My group of friends had very mixed academic capabilities which I think is a healthy thing. (My bestie at the time left in year 10 to go to secretarial school!)
Having said all that, I would consider sending DS to one if he wanted to go.
OP, I guess all selective schools are different in the amount of pressure, and kids are also different in what they expect of themselves. My school was well known for being "high pressure" and now there are lots of kids who are tutored to get in. It was expected that we would go to uni and also that we would do a fair bit of homework. About 15 kids moved to other schools by year 10.
This didn't bother me because I didn't take the expectations that seriously (although I did OC so was probably a bit prepared), but I know others experienced it more like Atropos described.
If he does want to go, maybe take him to visit the school beforehand and get a feel for it. Ultimately though, the amount of pressure he feels will depend on his expectations of himself and whether he can meet his own standards. Is he someone who puts a lot of pressure on himself? I get the sense that his temperament is a bit more "go with the flow" than that?
Also, if he's able to get in without coaching and too much extra effort, he may well be able to keep up without doing hours of extra study each night.
I know it's another year away, but hope you pick a school that works really well for him.
He sounds interesting. I guess lots of us worry more about things where we have less control or ability. If he is good at school, perhaps he can relax a bit more in that area, knowing he'll be fine.
I was also thinking about how he didn't want to do the OC test because his friends weren't. It has crossed my mind throughout this thread that he may need someone to push him a bit so that his talents aren't wasted. I don't mean loading him up with homework, but just challenging his thinking a bit so he thinks about the choices he makes and really uses school to set himself up for success in his life. If he is gifted, there will come a time where he will be able to make a big contribution to society. When that time comes, he will need to be brave enough to stand out from the crowd.
I hope that doesn't come across as rude or arrogant - I just mean that I hope he can be the bright little fellow that he is without fear of what others think.
I went to a selective school and found it hard to adjust from being a top student in local school to being just middle of the pack in subjects like English and math.
Year 10 onwards I had lost a lot of motivation to do well. In hindsight I would have been better off in a local school.
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