lnr: (Default)
[personal profile] lnr

Wow, I'm faintly astonished by the amount of stuff being posted here on DW at the moment. I think I'm going to have to investigate reading on my phone rather than just in breaks at work or I'll never keep up :)

So since we got back from the peaks:

  • The boiler broke, but was fixed within 24 hours with a £300 quid part. Thank goodness for the annual £160 service contract!
  • Easter happened
  • We had a visit from Rae and Adam and enjoyed the unexpected sunshine in the Botanic Gardens
  • We went for a bike ride over to Whittlesford and Thriplow, with a picnic lunch, and back via Harston Red
  • My phone came back from its holiday in Sheffield, safely in one piece
  • Primary school place application results were announced (more on that below)
  • The UK announced a snap general election
  • Mike had a birthday
  • We survived three lovely birthday parties for four four-year-olds in two days
  • Ireland seem to be on the way to huge changes in abortion law
  • The consultation phase on organisational change ends today

Many positive things there, but the organisational change and general election, on top of general brexit fears, are a bit tough. Still the hardest thing at the moment is probably the primary school results.

Shelford is our catchment school, but it's a CofE school, so anyone demonstratably Christian in the catchment gets priority over the rest of us, and then the remaining places are done by distance, and we were too far away to get in. Stapleford is the neighbouring village, and their school is a very similar distance from our house. All their catchment applications were accepted, but the non-catchment ones again were decided by distance, and again we were too far away to secure a place. So that was our two preferences ruled out simply because at under a mile we were too far away! They've allocated us instead the next nearest school with places available - the brand new Trumpington Park Primary, part of an existing trust, but only due to open this September with two Reception classes and no older kids, and over 2 miles away by the shortest walking route.

I was understandably gutted when I got the news on Tuesday morning, but there's nothing we could have done about it really - short of moving house or pretending to believe in God and start going to church - and I can't see that we have any grounds to appeal given they've accepted people according to their published criteria and they are both full at the maximum class size. In some ways it makes me feel like I don't even *want* to get into the church catchment school, but leaving it off our application wouldn't have got us into Stapleford either. Anyway at the moment I'm waiting for the offer letter with more information to actually arrive. Until it does I don't even have any proper contact information for the school! Once it does we'll talk to them and see if they can convince us of the benefits of their school, but I'm really really really hoping enough people say no to their offered places at Stapleford that we get in on the reserve list!

Finally, a meme:

Are you named after someone?
I don't think so.

When was the last time you cried?
Last night when I saw the news of the Irish Citizens Assembly's vote on allowing abortion with no conditions as to reason.

Do you like your handwriting?
It's OK. Not pretty, but generally legible. I print nicely for little ones to read :)

What is your favourite lunch meat?
Erm?

Do you have kids?
One, Matthew, aged 4.

If you were another person, would you be friends with you?
Probably, yes.

Do you use sarcasm?
Sometimes.

Do you still have your tonsils?
Yes.

Would you bungee jump?
I doubt it. I don't have a fear of heights but do have a fear of falling, when on steep uneven surfaces in particular (I blame the scree in the Atlas mountains in 1992). I'd have to be *very* convinced about how well attached I was, and would still find it very hard to let go.

What is your favourite kind of cereal?
Varies, I quite like granola, good porridge, crunchy nut cornflakes, bran flakes with raisins.

Do you untie your shoes when you take them off?
Generally only if they won't come off easily without undoing them, or if I know I'm going to be putting them back on very soon.

Do you think you’re a strong person?
Physically - fairly. Mentally: it varies.

What is your favourite ice cream?
Best I ever had was a chocolate gelato with orange sorbet ripple in Rome. But I still have fond memories of Kenya AA coffee dime bar crunch at G&Ds in Oxford.

What is the first thing you notice about people?
The things I *notice* me noticing are smiles, bright hair colours, kids who remind me of Matthew. I dunno.

What colour pants and shoes are you wearing now?
My jeans and my pants are both black. My trainers are grey and pink goretex ones because it was raining this morning.

What are you listening to right now?
Me and my office mate typing.

If you were a crayon, what colour would you be?
Purple or black

Favourite smell?
Roses maybe.

Who was the last person you spoke to on the phone?
Possibly Beverley in the TM Travel bus depot in Halfway, Sheffield.

Favourite sport to watch?
Cycling.

Hair colour?
As of last night, rose-red (aka a somewhat magenta shade). More typically a mid-brown with *lots* of grey in it.

Eye colour?
Grey blue. Sometimes described as "not brown".

Do you wear contacts?
I've occasionally worn coloured ones for effect, but never prescription ones.

Scary movies or comedy?
Comedy. I don't mind a bit of scary, but preferably not just shock horror.

Last movie you watched?
I think we watched one of the X-men ones on DVD?

What colour shirt are you wearing?
Black and white stripes.

Summer or winter?
Both, plus spring and autumn. They all have good and bad things.

Hugs or kisses?
Hugs probably, but only just.

What book are you currently reading?
A Clash of Kings, second of the Game of Thrones books. Surprised how much fun they are to read. Also in the middle of Iron Council (China Mieville) and a couple of non-fiction things.

What is on your mouse pad?
What century is this?

What is the last TV programme you watched?
Game of Thrones (season 3, episode 9) - I started the books after we started the TV series, so it's a bit weird being rather at different points in the story. I usually like to do it the other way round, but am enjoying it this way for a change.

What is the best sound?
Laughter?

Rolling Stones or The Beatles?
Both? If I *had* to choose probably the Stones.

What is the furthest you have ever travelled?
Morocco - also the highest I've been on foot at the top of Mt Toubkal :)

Do you have a special talent?
I don't think so

Where were you born?
Northallerton, North Yorkshire

Current Location
Cambridge University Engineering Department

Date: 2017-04-24 12:14 pm (UTC)
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
From: [personal profile] rmc28
*fingers crossed for you about schools*

Date: 2017-04-24 01:08 pm (UTC)
aldabra: (Default)
From: [personal profile] aldabra
If you don't get rejected by your catchment school then they're not obliged to try to fit you in to a nearby one, so you definitely wanted to apply to the church school even if you weren't going to get in. (Kathy had a friend, from a non-English-speaking background, whose mother accidentally applied to Milton instead of Milton Road; she didn't get in, and she didn't get in to any of her other choices either because they were prioritising the kids who hadn't got into Milton Road.)

I can't remember whether you're on the waiting list automatically or whether you have to agitate. People get in off waiting lists (although we didn't).

Date: 2017-04-24 04:05 pm (UTC)
aldabra: (Default)
From: [personal profile] aldabra
They said what?

That is really very bad. I think these federations of schools are unsatisfactory; Parkside seems to have gone downhill a lot since they started trying to carry Coleridge and expand into Trumpington. The main head of the federation is entirely occupied with business stuff rather than teaching (and he was previously head of Parkside and known for turning round and walking in the other direction in order to avoid saying hello to staff in corridors). I bet websites have been outsourced to someone with no background in education or council services.

I think I talked to someone in the council's education department about waiting lists, rather than the school. I was sure this would show up in my e-mail when I grepped for "seventeenth", but I don't seem to have documented it.

Date: 2017-04-24 04:26 pm (UTC)
aldabra: (Default)
From: [personal profile] aldabra
Seventh and fifth is quite hopeful at this stage, especially as the same people will be on both lists.

Histon is quite a way away.

Date: 2017-04-24 01:45 pm (UTC)
sfred: (Default)
From: [personal profile] sfred
Good luck with the whole schools rigmarole.

You were born where my not-really-godmother is from - I don't know Northallerton well but have great affection for it for that reason. I am from the very very southern edge of North Yorkshire.

Date: 2017-04-24 01:56 pm (UTC)
sfred: (Default)
From: [personal profile] sfred
*grins*

Date: 2017-04-24 02:11 pm (UTC)
catyak: Tesla (Tesla)
From: [personal profile] catyak
You're probably not in a position to do it, but there is always the option to do it yourself - educate at home and don't bother with school. Some do that with a view to waiting for a place at their preferred school, although that depends on how far down the waiting list you are, others decide to dispense with the school system permanently. There's a definite uptick in people asking about home education just after the school place allocation gets announced.

Date: 2017-04-24 06:36 pm (UTC)
juliet: (Default)
From: [personal profile] juliet
If you do become interested in trying to work out the practicalities (or the 'being cut out for it' -- it doesn't have to be at all teaching-like!), feel free to ask. doop & I both work part-time, though me being self-employed means I can work a Saturday without any issues which helps.

A friend's kid wound up in a brand new school as the first Reception intake. It worked out well for them in that it meant they felt involved in creating the school and the school atmosphere, iyswim? And the kids were quite enthusiastic about being "the first" -- only having 60 kids onsite the first year also sounds like it was very relaxed. Although 2 miles is 2 miles whatever the school is like :/

August 2017

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