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  1. It was stand alone her own policy. Quoted for 15 years old (price last year June). They have adjusted the policy I.e removed what she will not need and added packages that she will. They are very flexible. Cover was identical to the one offered by vocational ballet school when I read it.
  2. I have checked my email and AXA quote said £33.90 per month (386.46 annual) My contact was Laura, i have explained whait we need (i.e. vocational ballet school requirements etc.) Laura Ralph Sales Executive Individual Sales Centre AXA PPP healthcare Ground Floor Eynsham House Crescent Road Tunbridge Wells TN1 2PL Tel: 0800 33 55 55 Ext.7344 laura.ralph@axa-ppp.co.uk axappphealthcare.co.uk
  3. I have researched my own and full cover incl physio etc was available via AXA. It was a fraction of the cost (monthly instalments) than what the school was asking us to pay. When I looked at the conditions of cover they have been identical. If we would stay to study in UK, I would have my own cover for my DD.
  4. Yes she is. I would not imagine to do this all if I have one more and very likely the things would have different outcome.
  5. I even rolled the spiky ball over her feet hahahaha (and washed my hands thoroughly after that) 😂
  6. What also helped I was putting aside some money towards application fees year ahead. Even if it was only £10 a month in a jar. It helped.
  7. We declined two offers as it was impossible for me to pay deposits already required to be paid by February (so soon into auditions) and one I paid and lost. It was tough decision as money are tight but didn't want to leave her with no options.
  8. I will write you from my (parent) experience and how we managed to cope. We felt the worse pressure in Year 11. From what I heard of other mums and families it was all about early planning and I knew it would have to be a team work in my house. We have sat down at the table and wrote it all down during summer before Year 11 started. She has made final list of ballet schools she would approach and I made application process research on each of them. I brought home from my office wall planner and we wrote it all in day by day (her auditions, classes, various deadlines, revisions). Her normal school was very pushy and added compulsory classes before and after school. I have been receiving number of letters and calls from the head teacher informing me of detentions and various threats if the kids do not attend. As my DD lead double life and normal school didn’t know about her ballet commitments, she had to attend all without excuses. She was getting up at 5am so she could attend her 7am school GCSE booster classes as they called it, then at 3.30 she had one more booster class and then taking train directly to her ballet class that started at 6.30 until 8.30/9pm I used to wait for her with the car so she no needed to take tiring public transport home. I often did her assignments myself i.e. sewing textiles projects etc. that I felt are just time consuming and “not important” I had to step in as towards her GCSE’s week the school added weekend booster classes and I have refused to take my DD in. I have been called to the head teachers office (!) and she has laughed when I told her that my DD cannot attend as during weekends she is doing ballet. She laughed into my face and called me irresponsible parent that I am prioritising “tippy toeing” and not her education. You would not want to hear what I said and how I left the office. She was already A star student so how much more they want from her?? But I was absorbing all of this and did my best so my DD was not aware of this. I have to say despite all the pressure she was facing from her school teachers, most of the studies and revisions they did at school. At home she was just revising her flash cards. During the GCSE exams I pulled her out of ballet all together and she was just conditioning herself at home. As for ballet and for me not to go insane, I had large spreadsheet with all the ballet schools written in, their audition deadlines, forms, payments – the lot. I have printed all the forms at work and made a summary what is required the summer she was about to start Year 11. I had a list what I needed to complete and provide. Medicals, audition photos, videos, references etc. Videos were the most difficult part. All had to be done during private lesson after normal class, so she would finish sometimes after 9pm. We worked out with steps etc. so they can be universally used for UK and international schools and formatted it to 15 minutes. It was elaborate work as I do not have a clue about ballet and we managed to finish it day before the ballet school deadline. But my OCD and colour coordinated spreadsheets helped me a lot. This way I took the pressure of her from the applications and she could only concentrate on her exams and leave the paperwork etc. to myself. She was aiming only for 1 school in UK and 3 overseas but she has auditioned for all what UK has to offer and she used the auditions as a practice run. She has done all her UK schools by March which helped a lot. The stress continued for us as despite offers received from UK, our International auditions were taking part during July and the last one was in 1st September week! I struggled with acceptance deadlines the schools gave us here and we were playing a gamble. Do we accept, do we decline and wait the outcome of summer auditions and what if we decline and no other offers are received from international schools and we are left with nothing at all? I spared again my DD with this details but in the background I had to really work hard. My advice would be to plan ahead and if you can, help with school assignments that sometimes are just teachers’ inventions and do not have weight on GCSE’s. I used to cook her favourite meals even, large breakfast and massaged her feet end of the day 😉 Good luck x
  9. Drew Tommons, Amber Hunt is my favourite (Photography by ASH), and my close friend Deborah Jaffe (Deborah Jaffe) - mention my name and she can give you a good deal.
  10. My DD was using same when she did gymnastics. I used to buy them from Grishko and know them as demi slipper. What i know they lasted long - made from durable canvas.
  11. First of all congratulations to your DC on offers! We went through the gruelling audition process last year, so I know exactly how you feel. I think these feelings are completely normal and I would say they are “last minute stress/ doubts”. I went through it myself as I knew that our life is about to change 360 degrees. It all came around so fast. We too had various options to choose from ballet schools including two A level normal colleges (just in case). We have spent various nights burning the midnight oil weighting financials, looking at graduate lists that the school have published, pros and cons of each school, she even talked to her friends that are now in their final year gathering feedbacks. Many sleepless nights looking into the ceiling (mainly for me) BUT I always told her to live and pursue her dream. So why to stop now when opportunity came? I want for my DD to travel, to see opportunities that dance will bring and then when body no longer can support it, she will have time to retrain and pursue other passions or 9-5 job. She was always very vocal that she wants to pursue forensics after her ballet life. She will have roof over her head, food to eat so why not. You can retrain at any stage of your life. I am 38 and retrained now twice. One of my latest degrees was financed by my employer. There are opportunities and possibilities. And imagine I still don’t know what I want to be when I grow up 😁 What I don’t want is to have daughter living in regrets and telling me why she didn’t follow her passion when she could and had the opportunity. But then it will be too late to dance. Regarding London and housing there are many other options. For example hosting family. I know many would choose to stay with their peers and friends but for some finances would not allow it. I used that option when my DD travelled for her summer programs and I offer the same for international and national students while she is at her school away from home. I would not worry at all about your DC to "join an established year group". She might surprise you how easy she will fit in and find new friends. My DD is 4,000 miles away on her own doing everything on her own (away from boarding) and coping very well. Making friends was my least worry. Good luck, be proud of her achievements xxx
  12. I used to sew them myself for my DD and made my own pattern copying warms ups she already had. (Deconstructing them and adding lenght as she grew) It's all about fabric patterns. She preferred odd stripes. I used various fabrics from fleece for winter months and knitted fabric, acrylic polyester with lycra and various jersey fabrics. All about pattern.
  13. Never heard of this event, unless it is F1 race. Shame it is not publicised more.
  14. I believe it is all about correct excercises and knowing how to use muscles, i never bought anything for my DD. Tennis ball to massage her legs, skipping rope, yoga mat and thera bands. She runs for stamina, uses house stairs for her ankle raises and therabands for her toes, she skips on her rope. Rest she is doing on her mat; series of excercises like squats, abdominals (twist abdominals), planks, deadbug, combination of push ups, V sit crunch. She also uses ankle weights (including when running). What nature or house gives really..... (and she used to carry all my shopping upstairs from the car 😄 )
  15. My DD is one of them...never been to vocational full time school and we never considered it. She loved her “normal life” at local college where she was also very academic and enjoyed that no one even knew she did ballet (including teachers). She loved the "double life". She was even in school athelitcs club (as she is fast runner) and she refused to have ballet limiting her normal student life. She juggled ballet training of approx 25hrs per week with her studies (it was exhausting especially the Year 11, but we live in central London so it was manageable). It is quality rather quantity of the training I would say. She had amazing set of GCSE results last year and 3 offers to UK upper schools and 2 from overseas. She decided to take offer from overseas.
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