So… apparently it’s not Christmas. If only someone had told the shops about this. Ever since we took the Microbe shopping IN OCTOBER he’s been under the impression that Father Christmas might pop down the chimney at any minute.
Tsk. It’s not as if I am even a grinchey person. I’m a bit of a Christmas-a-holic myself but I do at least try to keep things under wraps until December.
Not so the rest of the world…
Not only have the nursery microbes been rehearsing their Xmas play for a month, but with each passing week, it’s harder to screen out the 8000 Santas that have popped up all over SW London. As I type, our local Xmas lights-switching shebang is going on. This always draws a big crowd and involves a christmas market, grotto, fairground rides and so on. G and I were in two minds about whether to take the Microbe along after nursery or stealth him home unawares. (I am afraid to say, dear blog, that the allure of a Chinese takeaway has won the day and we snuck off home without a thought of festivity – but we’ll make it up to him in prawn crackers)
In other news, the deadline for submitting school applications is fast approaching. The three schools that are within immediate walking distance of our flat are all wildly oversubscribed and, so far, we’ve visited two of them. The third has been spectacularly unhelpful and will have to remain a mystery school.
Thanks to bloody OFSTED the one that has been top of my list for the Microbe since birth has suddenly been jettisoned to the top of everyone else’s list too, after getting an “outstanding” last year (tsk).It’s the only community school in the area and has 60 places, half of which to siblings and the rest based on proximity. You’d think that a 4-minute walk would count as sufficient proximity, but in our baby-boomer ‘hood this gives us about a 50/50 chance.
Last week we were shown around the school by a 9-year-old Hermione Grainger who informed us earnestly that “bullying would never happen here” (bless!) We were left with the impression of a magical little bubble of safety and liberal values. Also they have lots of nice extra curricular stuff and their ethos is all about ensuring that every child is confident, included and valued.
Our #2 school also takes in 60 per year and got an OFSTED of “good” a few years back. We went to an open evening and it seemed ok. Not quite as lovely and magical as the first one but I think we’d be happy enough if the ‘crobe got in there. (It does have the best uniform - bright red & black)
Mystery School #3 has no options for open days or visits and presumably coasts along on its “Outstanding” rating. It has twice as many places as the other two but still gets hugely oversubscribed (not helped that quite a few places are reserved for church-goers and siblings.)
Anyway they’re all probably fine. We’ll just have to hope that we meet the proximity rules for at least one of them. It will be a MAJOR pain if we get shunted out to some other school that’s miles away. However – given that reception year is really just an extension of nursery, I am not finding myself overly concerned. There’s also a chance that we might move house at some point and have to go through this whole process again before school becomes a serious matter.
Oh dear - that was a dull old ramble, wasn’t it? I really didn’t intend to waffle so much.
I shall go away now and leave with the news that the boybot is to be known colloquially as “James Chocolate Masters“. This is courtesy of one of his nursery homies who can’t say his real name.
James has decided that G’s name must therefore be “Daddy Chocolate Masters“. (I can see this catching on)