I posted about two weeks ago, trying to find out where the best place would be to send my 7 and 10 year old gifted kids to in Wellington. Does anyone have any advice for me or can anyone direct me to someplace where I could find the info I am looking for?
[Copied from original post: We have 2 gifted kids (7 yr old girl and 10 yr old boy) who are in an accelerated math and language program and also in a special gifted '1/2 hour a day' program at their school in the US.
We might have the opportunity of relocating to Wellington (Miramar area) and I would really like to be able to place them in a school were they pay special attention to gifted kids and have special programs for them. I feel that in a regular public school without a special program they might become bored.
If anyone has some suggestions of a great school, whether public or private, please let me know. Many thanks!]
What we might recommend will probably depend on what your children are like - there will be different options depending on whether your children's giftedness is accompanied by a personality that's conformist/quirky/with behavioural issues, etc.
A boy my daughter was at kindergarten with moved to Scots College (private, near Miramar) last year because his previous school just couldn't give him all the stimulation his giftedness needed. He's thriving there. So you could look into that. My daughter now goes to Queen Margaret's (also private, not near Miramar) for much the same reason. However, both of them are well-behaved types, and private schools here can be reluctant to accept children with behavioural issues, thus the previous comment.
Have you come across the ERO report site (http://www.ero.govt.nz/)? You may be able to find some of the information you're looking for there. You could also look at which Miramar schools have children going to the Gifted Kids Programme (1 day a week) in Newtown (not too far from Miramar).
Feel free to email me (just take nospam out of the email address first...) if you want to have an e-chat about it.
Thanks so much Lute for all your info!! My kids are well-behaved too, so I will check does schools out and also that website. This is a good starting point in my research and I will definitely email you, if I have any more questions.
I know that several schools in the Porirua region have good G&T programmes. My own sons attend Papakowhai, as well as the Rangikura One Day School run by Gifted Education ( http://giftededucation.co.nz/ ), but I have also heard positive reports from parents of children at Plimmerton, Paremata and Pauatahanui schools.
I haven't heard *negative* reports from any of the schools that don't begin with 'P' either :-)
That URL should have been <a href="http://www.georgeparkyncentre.org/">www.georgeparkyncentre.org</a>.
Porirua is a coastal city within Greater Wellington, about 20 minutes drive north of central Wellington CBD.
My two boys are 12 & 9. The 12 year old has been attending the Gifted Education Centre ODS since he was 6. The younger boy has only been attending for the last 18 months or so. They're very different kids, but they both love it, and the school generally agrees with the approach.
Hi there - once you have narrowed it down, I was glad of the advice when we started this task to ask them whether they have had any experience of gifted children in the last few years (many haven't had any at all), and also their policy on acceleration or grade skipping. I asked this question a bit late even after reading this forum and was immediately thrown into the frustration of closed minds on this subject. Not always the best solution I know but nice to have the option to discuss. Good for you to be doing this research, good luck.
Hi, we've found Cashmere Avenue School to be very supportive. They have a coordinator for Able Children, as well as the 'special needs' (SENCO) staff member, and both - along with the teachers - have been very helpful. The school is also in the process of developing a programme for Able Children. Good luck with your choices!
Thanks so much Andrew, Wendy and Sean for your replies. It is wonderful to have all these possibilities to check out. I want to be fully prepared for if and when the job offer arrives (hopefully in the next week or so) and to know what my kids possibilities are in NZ in terms of education is our main priority. Thanks again!
My husband has been offered a fantastic job in Wellington but before we even consider relocating, would like to know if anyone knows of a school that caters for children/teenagers in the area that do not involve sending them away to private schools? They are in an idyllic situation now in the UK with a school that is within walking distance which satisfies their intellectual needs. I have 3 children, they are 15, 12 and 10 years of age. My eldest in particular would need the stimulation of a program that could challenge her and satisfy her curiosities. The move would be hardest on her as she has good friends here...Thanks!
Hi Micheline - Just to clarify you ask about "sending them away" to private school. There are a number of private schools in Wellington that are within walking distance of residential locations so you shouldn't perhaps rule them out on that basis? For example Marsden (private secondary school for girls so would work for your 15yo) is reputed to have a good gifted programme and is not far from 4 state funded primary schools (Karori Normal, Karori West, Northland and Kelburn primary schools) within 6-7 drive (1 within 2 min walk) plus a One Day School programme for gifted kids aged 6-12 also only a 5 min drive away. My 10 yo daughter goes to the One Day School but not the other schools so can't talk about them. You can look up government reports on all schools at www.ero.govt.nz to give you some idea. Otari School is also not that far away and runs a Montessori stream if that interests you.
Other options could be the Steiner school in Lower Hutt (runs right through primary ans secondary school) or Onslow College for Y9-13 (state funded) which is good for more creative "lateral thinking" kids (and not far from Cashmere Ave primary in Khandallah mentioned above).
Queen Margaret mentioned above is a private girls school that goes through to y13 but is right next to Thorndon School which is a really good little state funded primary.
Children go to high school in y9 here - normally when they are 13 or close to 13 so your 12 yo might also be going into high school if s/he turns 13 soon?
When moving here the best thing to do is work out the school you want and then find a house as schools are zoned. If you live within the zone then the school is obliged to enrol your child.
Many thanks for your reply! Sorry for delay in responding, thought the site would notify. I will look into all schools suggested. the "sending away" was what I got from another forum. I realise now there are many other options.