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Chatsworth International Orchard vs. Avondale Grammar School

Discuss various schooling options for your children here.
nsa71
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Chatsworth International Orchard vs. Avondale Grammar School

Postby nsa71 » Wed, 05 Jun 2013 1:12 am

Hi all,

Just wondering if anyone had any personal experiences to share with regards to Chatsworth International Orchard and Avondale Grammar School.

Both schools are smaller and seem more nurturing than some of the larger International Schools.

I have visited both. Chatsworth has better facilities (i.e. swimming pool) than Avondale but it seems to be in desperate need of renovation. I was shocked in fact. Although all of the pupils seemed very happy and engaged. The same for Avondale but their premises were better maintained.

Chatsworth are obviously the more established of the two schools and more international. The bulk of the pupils at Avondale are Australian or British.

Can anyone share their experiences of either or both?

Thanks.

katbh
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Postby katbh » Wed, 05 Jun 2013 7:35 am

Some of this depends on the curriculum you are looking for - or looking to return to in the future.
Avondale I believe follows the Australian, whereas I believe Chatsworth follows IB and British (and in later years you can chose IGSCE or American Diploma or IB.
But I may be a bit out of date as my child left Chatsworth 2 years ago.
So firstly look to curriculum. One mistake here is that expats think, 'oh...I am only here for 2 years, so we will slot back into our local system when we get back'. Then the stay gets extended and extended again, suddenly your children are in secondary and you need to make choices about the correct curriculum for when (or if) you return to your home country.
The next place to look is not facilities but rather the school population, the types of children and the happiness of them.
Chatsworth is right on orchard which is great for older kids.
Both schools I think are pretty short on the space front - not much playing area.

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Postby katbh » Wed, 05 Jun 2013 7:36 am

Remember there is also Chatsworth East that has better space.

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Postby Hannieroo » Wed, 05 Jun 2013 9:10 am

+1. Go for a happy school that teaches in the language you use at home. That really is all you need.

We're english and my eldest is 15. He spent the first 2 years in the US public school system, 2 years in a British (english because Scotland is different) international, 1 year in an international that was Scottish/Australian based, 1 year in England and 4 years in Scotland. Academically he is right on target but we have kept him back a year because 1 year of studying standards is not going to help him with GCSE because the course format is different. I know to a lot of people that sounds all over the place but the upshot is his education is fine and socially he's pretty advanced.

I don't know how old your child is but if there is any chance at all that you'll be here for IB then look at schools that offer alternatives to the full IB course. US high school or part IB courses. Some schools cannot offer anything past 16 to children they feel are unsuitable for full IB.

nsa71
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Postby nsa71 » Wed, 05 Jun 2013 9:20 am

Thanks for replying everyone. Apologies, I forgot to mention that my daughter is 5 and would qualify for Year 1 at Chatsworth and Foundation Year at Avondale. I'm British and my husband is Australian. We would probably be moving to Australia after Singapore but we're not 'hellbent' on an Australian curriculum. Does anyone else have any experiences to share? Thanks in advance.

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Postby Ozmum1 » Tue, 11 Jun 2013 4:33 pm

I would strongly urge you to not send your child to Avondale. The facilities are extremely poor, and you'll pay some of the highest fees in Singapore! The principal is way out of her depth (she was previously 'retrenched' from a private school in Sydney and it's not hard to see why. We have removed our child and we are extremely glad we did!

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Postby Pixie22 » Tue, 23 Jul 2013 5:48 pm

@nsa71 - I must strongly disagree with the view of Ozmum1 who, for whatever reason, has taken it upon herself to defame Avondale and its principal. I wholeheartedly recommend Avondale for your daughter - I have several children at Avondale and cannot fault the education and care they receive.

We came from a US system, and they have slotted well into the Australian curriculum there, which also has an IB slant in the Middle Years (Grade 5,6,7). The principal is a person of great integrity and has successfully taken the school to the next level in just 18 months. She is an excellent communicator, administrator and teacher who only has one thing on her agenda - the personal success of Avondale children.

My children are happy, engaged and respected young people at Avondale. The staff are warm, innovative, engaging and inspirational. The Avondale community is welcoming, social and inclusive. Oh, and my children are learning! And growing and succeeding in their studies, and values. Avondale has an excellent academic record which you can obtain from them.

Avondale is a small school that is growing in leaps and bounds. I am certainly happy that my children are a part of it.

It's never an easy decision, so good luck nsa71 in finding the right school for your daughter!

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Postby sunnydebruyn » Mon, 19 May 2014 7:39 pm

Older posts (from 2009 to 2011) talk about Avondale and Chatsworth having poor facilities, and Chatsworth being really run down. Can anyone update me on this? Have facilities improved or been updated? Thanks!

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Postby PNGMK » Mon, 19 May 2014 8:27 pm

sunnydebruyn wrote:Older posts (from 2009 to 2011) talk about Avondale and Chatsworth having poor facilities, and Chatsworth being really run down. Can anyone update me on this? Have facilities improved or been updated? Thanks!


To my knowledge; neither have had much done (at least externally). As they are both for profit schools the owners will be reluctant to spend profits in R&M.

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Postby sunnydebruyn » Mon, 26 May 2014 6:28 pm

Quick question - we want to live on the east coast ideally, but Avondale is our first choice of school. How long is the commute on a school bus? Our kids are only 4 and 6 so anything more than half an hour would be a bit too much I think?

Oh, and we looked into Chatsworth East, but they're full and have a waiting list. Other schools we're looking at on the east coast are OWIS and Eton House. CIS a bit too pricey. AIS way too pricey!

So at this point we were thinking OWIS or Eton House if we live on the east coast, and perhaps Holland area if we chose our other preferences - Nexus and Avondale. Can anyone share their thoughts on these schools and areas? A friend said she thinks Holland Village is a bit run down and too far out. What do you think???

Any help appreciated...

TryingTBBMom
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avondale

Postby TryingTBBMom » Sat, 31 May 2014 6:09 pm

Avondale continues to make improvements to their facilities. The PA contributes directly to bettering the experience for their kids. The school has much to offer so take a look for yourself before posting incorrect info.

The busing would be about 45 minutes… I live closer and my son still gets home in 45 as traffic within city is more. East Coast may even be less time…check with Admin.

TryingTBBMom
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avondale

Postby TryingTBBMom » Sat, 31 May 2014 6:11 pm

Avondale continues to make improvements to their facilities. The PA contributes directly to bettering the experience for their kids. The school has much to offer so take a look for yourself before posting incorrect info.

The busing would be about 45 minutes… I live closer and my son still gets home in 45 as traffic within city is more. East Coast may even be less time…check with Admin.

sunnydebruyn
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Re: avondale

Postby sunnydebruyn » Sat, 31 May 2014 6:32 pm

TryingTBBMom wrote:Avondale continues to make improvements to their facilities. The PA contributes directly to bettering the experience for their kids. The school has much to offer so take a look for yourself before posting incorrect info.

The busing would be about 45 minutes… I live closer and my son still gets home in 45 as traffic within city is more. East Coast may even be less time…check with Admin.


Thanks TryingTBBMom. Have booked school tour for Avondale (and others) for when we arrive. So looking forward to seeing it!


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