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Endas or Salerno? Some opinions?

  • 10-02-2010 1:02am
    Registered Users Posts: 192 ✭✭ Galwaymother

    My daughter is registered in both schools for next September and I find it hard to choose, as we don't know many pupils/parents of these. She (and I) would much prefer a co-ed, but everybody I talk to seems to recommend Salerno for its academic record. Our daughter is an ambitious student, so it is important she does well. Any opinions/ experiences?
    Thanks in advance



  • Registered Users Posts: 5,149 ✭✭✭ pg633

    Girls do better academically in all girls schools.

    They do worse in mixed schools.

    For boys there is no difference in academic performance between single sex and mixed schools.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,675 ✭✭✭ ronnie3585

    pg633 wrote: »
    Girls do better academically in all girls schools.

    They do worse in mixed schools.

    For boys there is no difference in academic performance between single sex and mixed schools.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,355 ✭✭✭ inisboffin

    I'd love to hear any decent scientific data myself.... oddly enough this came up at a dinner with friends in the last couple of nights! We had a great old discussion on the subject in fact, and I can fill you in on what was said.
    2 of the people directly involved in education, another 2 indirectly.
    Bits of differing opinion on overall pros/cons but the general consensus was as follows;


    Mixed gender primary = better all round than separated

    Mixed gender secondary, not as good as as separated.

    Mixed secondary did detrimentally effect academic achievement for *both* genders, but it seemed to have a slightly worse effect for girls (one argument was put forth, that this was to do with existing social hierarchy, sometimes with girls feeling pressure to 'dumb down' to fit in).

    Exceptions were some of the different educational models like Steiner schools etc.

    Where we did differ in the conversation a bit, was the overall social, versus academic impact of separation.

    The compromise seemed to be a semi-separate structure, with social integration for part of the curriculum. That or a restructuring of education and society!

    Sorry, 'twas fresh in my mind!:p

    Bear in mind that I'm not quoting any statistics (some were quoted, but it was late!), but am quoting real experiences people had both as kids themselves and professionally.

  • Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators, Regional North Mods, Regional West Moderators Posts: 81,470 Mod ✭✭✭✭ biko

    Girls at single-sex, non-selective state schools outperform girls of the same intelligence at mixed comprehensives, according to the first research to confirm the benefits of an all-female state education. A single sex school is better as boys will distract girls from learning.

    Bumping to Parenting as a general interest topic.

  • Registered Users Posts: 192 ✭✭ Galwaymother

    Thanks for the interesting replies. Yes, I do know some of the academic research etc. since I am a qualified Sec. teacher myself (and have taught in both types of school) but what I was really asking was for some more specific opinions about those two schools.
    In a way I disagree fundamentally with separating the sexes, since it does not reflect real life or society and does not prepare a teenager for healthy relationships. It is anathema to me to grow up without this normal (working) gender interaction (maybe the fact that I am French has something to do with it!).
    My daughter has no brother (only a younger sister) or near male cousin, and her best friend is a boy. She finds it difficult to cope with the "bit......ness" of girls dynamics (just as I did and still do).
    She is a v. good student, I just wanted to know if she can reach her full potential at Endas or if there is no way that school suits an academic kid...

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  • Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators, Regional North Mods, Regional West Moderators Posts: 81,470 Mod ✭✭✭✭ biko

    She is a v. good student, I just wanted to know if she can reach her full potential at Endas or if there is no way that school suits an academic kid...
    Any way you can visit and talk to teachers at Enda?
    Survey results points to single sex Salerno.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,272 ✭✭✭ deisemum

    Having always felt that mixed schools were better for pupils and having sent my children to one of the very few mixed primary schools in my city, most are single sexed schools which I found strange if I were doing it again I'd send them to a single sex school. Now that my older boy is in a single sex secondary school he's thriving both academically and socially.

    Also schools are not the only place that children mix so I wouldn't let that stop me from sending them to a single sex school.

    I don't know too much about Enda's but without fail any ex-Salerno pupils that I've met were snotty madams.

  • Registered Users Posts: 192 ✭✭ Galwaymother

    I suppose what I really need are some accounts of experiences of girls in Endas....;)

  • Registered Users Posts: 192 ✭✭ Galwaymother

    Of course I went to Enda's open evening, but you don't get to talk to teachers much, and they would (did) talk up their own school, wouldn't they?
    About Salerno's snobbishness, yes I heard of that from teenagers myself, and it seriously puts me off. I think it might be a little upper-class enclave in Galway, which is not the real world at all.
    As for opportunities to mix outside school, if you don't spend your evenings hanging out in the street (which my daughter will not be doing), there are few. She does basketball, but it mightn't last, and tap (no boy) and piano (alone). I suppose I'm thinking of my own group of friends in my adolescence, and most of them were boys!
    Why do you regret sending your children to mixed (primary) school?

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,272 ✭✭✭ deisemum

    My eldest son is in 2nd year in the largest single sexed school in the country and he's thriving. He's a lot happier that he doesn't have to put up with bitchy girls day in day out. From our experience of a mixed school we have found that a lot of the teachers mostly female will sooner believe what the bitchy girls say and dismiss the boys, a bit like girls = good, boys = bold. We know we're not the only ones who've experienced this. I've read about it on other sites as well.

    DS1's best year in primary was in 6th class when on their first day his teacher who is a rock of sense told the girls straight out that she would not tolerate them coming running telling tales unless it was serious nor would she tolerate them making up stories just to get the boys in trouble which was a common enough thing until then. I found that girls had no problem hitting or sinking their nails into the boys where as the boys were brought up not to hit girls. DS1 had to get a tetanus injection after one of the bitches sunk her nails into him, fortunately a lovely teacher witnessed it. It took months for the scars to heal.

    Also in primary the last things most boys will do is tell tales, that's a really common female thing. 99% of the moans from my younger lad who's in 6th class is to do with girls and their bad behaviour.

    I've got a sister teaching in another secondary school in Galway city so I'll ask what her view is on the 2 schools mentioned.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 616 ✭✭✭ LucyBliss

    I wouldn't recommend Enda's, to be honest. A friend of mine has her daughter going there and she's very unimpressed with the teachers. There's been a few problems with extra-curricular activities that the school has organised, but then nobody on staff seems willing to take on responsibility for it and that leaves the pupils floundering.
    I've also heard that it's impossible to get in contact with anyone on staff there. They don't seem pushed about replying to messages left for them. My friend has said if it wasn't for the fact that her daughter has only a year left until leaving cert, she'd have her out of there in a jiffy.

  • Registered Users Posts: 192 ✭✭ Galwaymother

    Thanks Lucybliss et al. I had nearly made up my mind for Enda's, and now with your feedback I'm undecided again! :(

  • Registered Users Posts: 192 ✭✭ Galwaymother

    Still undecided, still looking for opinions...:o

  • Registered Users Posts: 23,461 ✭✭✭✭ Sleepy

    Going back to my own time in school in Galway (Bish boy here), Salerno was always regarded as being higher achieving than Endas. Endas used to be quite rough then though, don't know if that's still true.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,235 ✭✭✭ LeoB

    Personally I am not familiar with either school but was out with some people from Galway last night and one of them reckons Endas is an excellent school.

    If your child is a good student she will thrive and do well where ever she goes so why would'nt She will do well in Enda's. From my experience most teachers are good at their jobs and by this they will see your child is a good student and this helps the teacher perform, job satisfaction! Good luck to your daughter.

    Where do you really think she will be happier?

    Education is a two way street.

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,239 KittyeeTrix

    Personally I would opt for Salernos over Endas any day:)

  • Registered Users Posts: 192 ✭✭ Galwaymother

    She would much prefer Enda's, as she is really not into 'girly' interests or dynamics...I think a girls-only school environment is un-natural to her (and me)!
    Thanks, LeoB, by the way. As her father keeps saying: 'you make your own luck'...;)

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 148 ✭✭ trish23

    Magnus wrote: »
    A single sex school is better as boys will distract girls from learning.

    Bumping to Parenting as a general interest topic.

    Thank you for the link as I know this to be true but couldn't confirm it. However, to state that boys distract girls is a huge jump! From experience, teachers treat girls in a mixed school as slightly inferior when it comes to maths, physics, sciences. They are not expected to outperform the lads & so will not get the same intensity of coaching. However, I do think that, overall, children get a much more rounded education from attending a mixed school. Life skills can't be taught, they need to be learned. Just my opinion:)

  • Registered Users Posts: 349 ✭✭ ellee

    Hey look, seems to me you think your daughter would prefer enda's cause it's mixed and she's not that awfully comfortable in an all girl environment.

    Look at it this way, which school do you think would suit her better? She will probably do best in the school she is happiest in. Where is her friend going?

    Salerno's is traditionally THE school for girls in Galway. Both of my cousins went there and they seemed to do great.

    As another poster said, enda's used to be the more down at heel school but I don't think that is true any more. Local information is probably best, why don't you try and chat to other mums in your area? Are you in touch with anyone?

    The focus though, should be on what suits YOUR daughter, not what public perception of what the "best" school is.

    Finally, you could give the principals of both schools a call and go see them, perhaps bringing your daughter with you, then you could decide together which you preferred.

    hth :D

  • Registered Users Posts: 192 ✭✭ Galwaymother

    Thanks for the good advice, though it's a bit difficult going up to the Principals telling them I'm comparing and contrasting their schools!
    There is also the matter of subject choice. It is much better for my daughter in Enda's. Also wondering about flexibility regarding Religious Education, which we are opposed to! Some schools facilitate abstaining, some don't...
    See how fussy we are :rolleyes:

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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,274 ✭✭✭ Cheshire Cat

    Hi there,

    not sure if I can help U as I have sons ;)

    Anyway, my older son is attending Enda's (1st year) and we are very happy with the school.

    We did a thorough research of Galway's Secondary Schools and talked to quite a few principals. Like you we are neither from Galway nor from Ireland, so were slightly bewildered by the Irish system.

    We decided we wanted Enda's as we liked the ethos and the holistic approach best. Fortunately we got a place as demand for places outstrips supply.

    Like your daughter, my son is bright and ambitious and so far is doing very, very well in Enda's. I have found the teachers very involved and approachable and would recommend the school.

    It seems that Enda's used to have a bad reputation years ago, but that has changed, a lot of parents are now very keen to get their children into Enda's.

    I would suggest to make an appointment with Ms Quinn, the principal, and discuss your concerns with her. She is lovely and very understanding and genuinely seeks to achieve the best for her school and her students. I wouldn't say that you are comparing school, just that you want to discuss your concerns regarding co-ed and religious education. Maybe she can put your mind at ease. Also I think it helps that the pricipal of a co-ed school is female.

    Best of luck with your decision!

    Feel free to contact me, if you have more question.


  • Registered Users Posts: 349 ✭✭ ellee

    Yeah I'd second cheshire cat, you're perfectly entitled to take seriously your choice of school for your daughter and if a principal doesn't see or appreciate that need we say more! Decision made!!

    Give the principals a call and make an appointment :D nothing like your own first hand impressions in the end.

  • Registered Users Posts: 192 ✭✭ Galwaymother

    Thanks again for the good advice! (How do you thank a poster?)
    I might meet them later when they bring the pupils in for further info. If not, I'll ring them before the end of April in any case, so my daughter's place in the school she won't be going to can be given to somebody on the waiting-list. Weird system, that! Cheshire Cat kindly gave me further details about Enda's, I must say it sounds ok!

  • Registered Users Posts: 192 ✭✭ Galwaymother

    It's Enda's! We were impressed by the atmosphere in the school and the facilities, and they are flexible regarding R.E! Also the future First Years look like a nice bunch (I know first impressions can be false!). I got very good internal feedback from parents and teachers also. Thank goodness for!
    We still went to the info. evening in Salerno, and were not impressed to say the least...Won't give negative review here, or I'll get killed by Salerno girls, of which I know a good few nice ones!
    Might keep you posted on progress of daughter in this lad-dominated den of iniquity :D....

  • Registered Users Posts: 192 ✭✭ Galwaymother

    Thanks particularly to Cheshire Cat and Calil11 for their enlightening info. How do you do that little "Thanks" at the bottom of a post?

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,071 gaeilgegrinds1

    I know you have made up your mind but I am going do PM you with details of both schools. You made the right decision hands down, all the mixed schools are getting huge numbers at the moment, seems the way the tide is turning and with good reason, so here's a big thumbs up to Endas, The Jes, Coláiste na C and G.C.C. Good to see in my opinion, I find students in mixed schools much more relaxed and happier, that's from a teaching perspective. Also, the cream will always rise to the top!

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,235 ✭✭✭ LeoB

    Might keep you posted on progress of daughter in this lad-dominated den of iniquity :D....

    Someone needs to bring a bit of sense to this topic;)
    Good luck to your daughter, hope she enjoys secondary school.

    Do ya see the little thumb on the right hand side of the post. Click that and you get thanks

  • Registered Users Posts: 227 ✭✭ amz5

    I'd go with Enda's. I went to Salerno, and it only has that academic record because everyone gets grinds (in fairness, most people who go there can afford to get as many grinds as they need/want). The teachers are a mixed bunch, some are fabulous but some aren't great at all to put it mildly. My brother went to Endas. He had fantastic dedicated teachers. Very few of his friends got grinds.

    There was a show of hands in our Leaving Cert class about grinds and everyone in the class was getting grinds in something, and a disturbingly large number got grinds in 5 subjects. The highest result in our year (2002) was 575 so it didn't do anyone much good I'd say. There were a number of 600 points results from Endas the same year.

    Salerno is small, so it can carry off an "elite" attitude. This doesn't mean that it's a great school.

  • Registered Users Posts: 192 ✭✭ Galwaymother

    Yes I heard from many sources that Salerno girls are grind-happy, whatever the reason. I am happy with my decision to go for Enda's, I got mostly positive accounts of the school, and a good feeling on open events. On the other hand, I might be disappointed!
    Thanks again for all your interesting replies. is a great way to exchange opinions!

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  • Registered Users Posts: 723 ✭✭✭ muckety

    Can I just add something - with apologies to the OP as it is not to do with the specific schools originally enquired about - the studies that are often touted as 'facts' showing that girls do better in single sex schools are based on the UK which has a different school system to Ireland, and where most single sex schools are private and get better results for many reasons. A lot of the mixed schools are state schools and again, the underperformances has less to do with the gender mix than under resourcing etc.

    Just wanted to add that to the discussion!