It's that time. . . . I appear to have quite a bit of choice. . . if I suddenly find god and have been attending church for the last few years without remembering. So yeah, there are a few of those bullshit academy things, they seem OK, but seem to operate in a fairly straight manner just to tick the ofsted boxes. Art, music, cookery, drama etc are all pushed to the side of deleted. . . . and after two years you have to choose. Art or Drama or music, can't do two or all three. Same with humanities. Geography or History or Religious philosophy (WTF?). There is an old performing arts school that I did really like. It's not actually a performing arts school anymore but they are hanging on and it seems to offer more choice. Kids get to learn a little bit of everything and then can choose to specialise. The school bases its lesson plans (blocks) around what the children that year chose, so there is a lot more choice. More art more more science, photography, video editing. . . all sorts of stuff. It's also in a nice location and an easy bus ride away. So yeah, I love this school, but all the schools are over subscribed and my daughters year was a BIG one, so there are more kids. We seem to be just on the edge of the catchment area (well kids that currently attend the school), and the teachers seemed to suggest to a friend that lives closer than me, that he was too far away. There is a closer school, but we are even less in the grip of it's catchment area. Then there is a horrible school in the shit part of Croydon that as the crow flies is even closer, but despite being close we are not in the catchment area at all. If what the schools are saying is correct, we don't appear to be in anyones catchment area.