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Thread: Newbie - Need information on areas and schools pleaseeeeeeee

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    15

    Default Newbie - Need information on areas and schools pleaseeeeeeee

    Hi to everyone... I have been reading your forums with interest and goodness they are so helpful... We are currently living in Gloucestershire in not so sunny England and have friends who have recently moved to spain who live in La Mata... I just wanted to check a few things with you guys and would appreciate your input as I cant find the answers to my questions anywhere but you probably have been asked loads of times...
    The most important thing for us is our children aged 6 and 10... I believe there is an International school in Elche and wondered if anyone knew anything about it... Both my children are very sporty and if we have to pay for their education this is not a problem but just want the best for them so wondered if you know from experienced the best schools in the area as this would define where we would live... Also the best areas to live, our friends really rate La Mata area and we would ideally love to be in the countryside but dont want to be too isolated and would ideally like the best of both worlds... So please your advice would be so appreciated, we really want somewhere safe to live - is crime a problem over there or just in certain areas like everywhere else in the world - is it the spanish or others who cause the problems and where do they live...

    I know with the schools they say to put them in local schools but just in case things dont work out I really dont want them a year behind with their education as my little lad struggles enough as he is the youngest in his class and if we had to come back it would be very hard for him... Unless of course you can recommend an excellant school - thank you guys in advance...

    Also is there any english churches, baptist or church of england or similar..

    I am sure I have lots more questions (know I have ) but just these for now........ thank you again...xxxxxxxxxx

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
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    15

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    I have spent hours trying to find information about international schools in the area... Would really appreciate reports you have heard whether schools have a good name or not ... We are going over in a couple of weeks to look round and keep finding a very mixed review on certain schools but they are quite dated...I have looked on other forums too... So confused, I have a headache... Sorry would really appreciate any information good or bad about international schools in the area or neighbouring areas thank you..

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    15

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    Thank you for this... I have these and have looked them all up but wondered if anyone had any experience or knowledge of these schools.... any information welcomed.. thank you..

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    59

    Default

    hi,

    My son was 10 when we came to spain and I did put him straight into spanish school for about 4 months.
    He did really struggle.

    I then sought an international school which taught spanish so as to give him a basic understanding...my thoughts were to improve his spanish and I am lucky that he mixed with spanish children also outside of school so after 12months naturally his spanish had improved so that he was not so intimidated.
    This September I put him back into the spanish system and quite frankly its the worse thing I did. The spanish school are very strict and my son was constantly put out side the classroom for speaking when he wasnt...even his english friends have told me he hadnt done anything....he was being bullied and the school thought that him not having the right equipment was more important than a bullying issue. He took German as well as French and Spanish...which he is enjoying however no German teacher turned up for the first 3 months!My opinion....if the teachers cannot be bothered what do they expect the kids will think. They simply do not care for your child and on one occassion I sat for over 2 hours to speak with his form tutor who didnt turn up and when I did finally get him to speak with, he had no idea who my son was!!

    I personally do not rate the spanish schools care for your children, and their answer to it is quite simple....we have too many children of too many languages and we cannot cope???The tutor said although he took german, no german teacher was available so my son just sat and did nothing, not even attended to during these lessons.

    My son attended the International school Mar Azul and I would not have a bad word said against them. Their care of the children is second to non and the teachers care for your child like their own. They concern themselves with every step of your childs education and not just the money. All the teachers are approachable and Mar Azul have great plans to improve the facilities available for the children. The fees are more reasonable than the other schools and your child(ren), certainly my son, felt it was home from home and could not wait to attend each morning.

    Hope it helps.

    Sarah

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    15

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    Thank you Sarah I really appreciate your reply so much.... Funny enough I really liked the look of that school and have emailed them for more details... I was wondering when they finish their building work as their web site has not been updated for sometime... You have actually said exactly what I wanted to hear and thought after trawling forums... We live in the Cotswold in England and they go to a lovely village school and thats why I was drawn to this school... What are their sports factilities etc like my daughter who is 10 and my son are mad about running, tennis and swimming????

    What areas would you suggest to live, I really do not want to live in a busy town but obviously want to live within travelling distance of this school... What are the good areas and what are the bad...

    Thank you again... much appreciated.. Gillyxxx

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Posts
    26

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    Whilst I dont agree with all that has been said about Spanish Schools I do agree 100% about Mar Azul.

  7. #7
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    Jan 2007
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    15

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    excellant.. thank you so much... any more information would be appreciated.... is this schools buidling work finished

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    59

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    Hi again.

    The school as I am sure you are aware is currently located at Mar Azul and there new school has been approved in one of the Torettas(behind an area called Ba˝os De Europa). The new site has been a mine field for both the children and a very hard working staff.
    I think it is fair to say that thie current facilities are very poor until they go to the new site. The children use the current "playground" for sport however for specific lessons, for example tennis you would have to mention this to the head and she/he will ask other parents if they are interested in arranging this. As long as enough parents are interested then extra curriculum activities would be arranged. I know of Golf lessons for example that have been arranged for the children.

    Once they are at the new school the school has stated that they will arrange transport for the children from central spots, where the majority of the children are.(I imagine this will be at extra cost, the same as the spanish school)You may be aware that a lot of children do go to school on organised school buses unlike in the UK.

    If you are considering the Torrevieja area then the sports stadium at either Torrevieja or Pilar offer great sports facilities. Swimming lessons and swimming teams can be located at both. Pilar has a football team and athletics.Torrevieja(Los Balcones) has a tennis club. However this area of sport is still growing here. I think you will find that the sport will more than likely be outside of school. The kids only have so much time and my son only seemed to have one sports lesson each week(I could be wrong)
    Dont forget that they have to focus more on Spanish and add this daily to the current curriculum so time is taken up improving this for your child.

    With regards areas to live. Difficult really as wherever I suggest on here it will be wrong. Im sure everyone is happy with their choice. I do agree when people say come out here and rent before you buy. You will find that when you buy initally there is always a great area you prefer after(this is what ive heard alot) and with the current static market place for properties and also the tax that you pay on the property....once you have bought you have to remain there for a while so as not to lose money. So my main advice would be make sure you are happy before you buy. I will say that I like Quesada,Los montisinos,san miguel,Rojales. All of these are within easy travelling distance into Torrevieja and great bus routes. Whilst you have young children??do not place yourself too far away from the town as a lot of the fiestas and concerts etc happen in the town...if your children are anything like mine he really enjoys this and even at 12 years of age he prefers to socialise with other children.Had I bought a finca he would have been bored stiff. As a mom you know this is the way they improve, especially with the language.

    Regardless of where you choose to live, I myself live towards La Mata from Torrevieja, my car is always needed. I seriously would not be without my car however I have timed that to Mar Azul from my home takes 7 minutes in the car down the N332...fantastic really. Plenty of mothers car share still, just like in the UK.

    Hope this helps. Please feel free to ask anything else before you make the decision.
    Sarah

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    15

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    Hi Sarah... Thank you so much again for your advice.. Its all kind of a mind field and must admit such a big move in the darkness of the night I think I must be mad as we have a good life here but its something we have always wanted to do and if it does not work then we will come back...

    We are quite lucky with the fact my husbands friend is living with spanish girl near torrevieja and funny enough moving out to La Mata as they really like there so we are due to come over in a few weeks for our first look around without the children for a couple of intense days so I need to narrow down where to look etc... Thats why your help is so valuable as they do not have kids so will not really understand all our needs...

    I have contacted the school but as yet they have not come back to me.. As I would like to meet them and have a look round.. Do you know roughly when they are hoping to finish the building work??

    Where we live at the moment is very rural and with my children growing up, I appreciate what you are saying about being near stuff that is going on as we are starting to feel it now especially with my daughter who is 10.. Ideally I would love to live somewhere that has a country feel but has restraurants you can walk to and stuff for the kids to get involved in and nearer enough they can have friends back to tea, I would not want to live in a busy town but its still nice to be within a short drive to one so dont know if that narrows down the different places to live.. I love animals and would love to get somewhere with land eventually... But we will without doubt rent for at least a year before we commit to buy..

    The other school I have seen mentioned on site is El Limonar in Villamartin, do you think I should visit this school too??

    Thank you again Sarah for your help..

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Playa Flamenca
    Posts
    242

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    You might consider putting the younger kid in a state school. I did that with mine who came over at a similar age,. He learned Spanish much more quickly as a result. The international schools have a far worse standard of Spanish as the kids are only doing something like an hour and a half of it a day. In my experience the state schools are good educationally though not good at dealing with bullying. We had to have karate lessons on the side to take care of that! Bullying seems to be a problem in the schools with many English kids. It┤s virtually unheard of at break time now my son is in an all Spanish school (apart from him) in Cartagena. The kids prefer football to bullying as their break time sport.
    As your kids are sporty I would consider enrolling them for one of the excellent cheap programmes at the sports centre in Torrevieja as soon as they know a bit of Spanish. These are really good value. We did chess that way and it was about 45 Euros a year for 2 lessons a week plus a free t-shirt. Similar schemes for judo, gymnastics and many other sports, I believe.

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