Early March saw state school offer letters falling on the doormats of Bucks homes. As a result, many parents are weighing up independent and state school options for September. Bucks parents have access to some of the best state secondary schools in the country, as well as some exciting new Free Schools set to open this Autumn, so parents are more than ever asking themselves the question, which school is the right one and do I need to pay private school fees?

There is no one answer fits all. Considering your child’s personality, interests, strengths and weaknesses is key to this decision.

Parents usually opt for independent schools if they feel additional support for a particular talent such as maths, sport, music or art is required, or if they need smaller class sizes and access to specialist one-to-one support for dyslexia or other learning difficulty. If both parents work full-time, more common-place in the current financial climate, they may struggle to cope with a shorter teaching day and fewer after school extra-curricular opportunities. Some parents feel their local state school offers the wrong type of environment for their child to have the confidence to make friends and thrive, perhaps due to size, culture, or competition for opportunities to shine.

Whatever school parents choose, it should be the one which will nurture and challenge their child’s areas of strength, support and build confidence in weaker areas, present opportunities to build life and employability skills and provides an environment and culture where they will feel comfortable as part of the community and hence attain their true academic potential.