For any youngster starting at a new school, the experience can be incredibly daunting – even more so when all the teachers are casting knowing glances in their direction because of their older sibling’s reputation!
Many siblings can’t even settle on what music to listen to on the school run, so naturally many parents worry about them co-existing in a school environment. Will they get on? Will the younger sibling feel they are being constantly compared to their older brother or sister? Will it have a positive or negative effect on my child’s wellbeing?
There are a multitude of pros and cons when it comes to sending your children to the same schools – here we go through them all and help make the decision a little easier for worried parents.
Let’s starts with the cons:
- When a younger sibling starts at the same school as their brother or sister, they can easily become ‘overshadowed’ by their predecessor’s reputation. For instance – some teachers can assume that, just because the older sibling is great at music and art, the younger sibling will be the same. This can put pressure on the younger sibling to live up to expectations set by their elder.
- With an older sibling to run to everything things get hard, younger children can be reluctant to form their own independence. Whether it’s finding their way to a certain classroom or joining after-school clubs, it’s important that younger siblings have the freedom and space to figure things out on their own.
- Many parents make the choice to send their older children to a certain school because of its compatibility with their strengths. They may have chosen a local academy that specialises in science, because their eldest has shown a particular talent for all things biology. But it’s important to remember that the younger children might not have this particular interest – their strengths might lie in arts or the humanities. It’s important to consider what’s best for each individual child rather than conforming to the path set by older siblings every time.
Now let’s take a look at the pros:
- Sending your children to the same school means only one school run! It’s practical and simple – you drop them off together and pick them up together at the same place every day. For busy parents, this is a crucial consideration.
- With both children in the same establishment without their parents, a stronger sibling bond can be formed. Older children can become very protective of their younger siblings, while the ones who have just started at the school will naturally look to their older brother or sister for guidance. As long as their independent development isn’t affected, this can be a real boost for both siblings, and could even help improve their relationship at home.
- Don’t discount the possibility of… well, discounts! If you’re sending your children to a private school, there’s a small likelihood that the school might consider doing a deal on the fees that you pay, to thank you for your loyalty.
Our conclusion is that this is a very individual decision that can only be made by the parent of the two children in question. There are lots of things to consider – the needs of each child, the practicality of two different schools and the cost… but we hope by putting together this blog, we have made the process a little simpler.