Eton On The Cheap

(92 Posts)
peteneras Thu 31-Jan-13 11:54:25

Here's an alternative and cheaper way to access the services of the great School!

directaction Thu 31-Jan-13 14:28:10

Hmm, interesting! Act as sponsor to a free school - how very noble! However, ensure said free school is in uber expensive catchment, has boarding places that need paying for, and we have selection in the name of no selection. We'll have a school, just like its education sponsor, that produces results that look impressive, but realistically nowhere near as impressive as they should be considering their intake (just like its sponsor).

Now, place that school in Slough and I might just start to be impressed. That would be truly aspirational! Perhaps a little too brave for the political classes.

happygardening Thu 31-Jan-13 14:32:51

"as boarding places that need paying for,"
I believe all boarding places in the state sector need paying for not sure how the fees will compare with other state boarding schools.

directaction Thu 31-Jan-13 14:36:36

That's kind of the point though - it's a bit of a cop out! A day comprehensive school in Slough would be much more impressive but much less safe! It's a half hearted gesture at best.

JoanByers Thu 31-Jan-13 15:55:37

This is just another state school for the rich.

7 years, 275 day places, so that's 40 day places per year, and 32 boarding

This state boarding school (which does extremely well, results wise) takes 68 day places and 32 boarding:

www.gordons.surrey.sch.uk/

It is vastly oversubscribed and the catchment is around 1/2 a mile in a small village (not an urban area).

I don't think the boarding costs as much as £12k, but they are impossible to get unless you can prove you 'need' it.

This new school with only 40 day places will be hugely exclusive, and with the price of a boarding place comparable to a good day private school, it is clear that there will be a lot competition for those day places, while the boarders will be the same kids who would go to private school anyway.

So basically a semi-private education for the rich, funded by the state.

Whoop.

Abra1d Thu 31-Jan-13 16:00:19

So 275 children living locally--chosen on a non-selective basis--will have state-funded access to Eton's teaching and facilities? Why is this bad?

JoanByers Thu 31-Jan-13 16:18:07

It is a selective basis, the basis for selection is living within a few yards of the school.

Living in this area would be easy if you are upwardly mobile, but very hard for most people since house prices are/will be obscene.

Clearly both day and boarding places are reserved for middle class parents who could just as well pay for a private education.

I am not sure they are the best target for public money.

grovel Thu 31-Jan-13 16:24:37

From the Press Release:

. Of the 500 pupils, the plans are for a minimum of 28 boarding bursaries. The plans envisage an
additional 21 boarders will be pre-care or looked after children. The admissions policy has priority for
not less than 20% of the day pupils being subject to the pupil premium. These pupils aggregate to a
minimum of 104 such pupils who will attend Holyport College.

grovel Thu 31-Jan-13 16:37:47

Directaction, Eton already do stuff in Slough. From their website:

Closer to home, we are proud to be a member of the Eton, Slough, Windsor and Hounslow Independent and State School Partnership (ISSP) with six local state schools (two comprehensives and two academies in Slough, a comprehensive in Windsor and another in Hounslow). The ISSP aims to raise pupil achievement; improve pupil self-esteem; raise pupil aspirations; and, improve professional practice across the schools. Since it was founded in 2008, this partnership has provided numerous opportunities for academic collaboration through Saturday Schools and other academic workshops and mentoring; collaboration in the arts and sports; and opportunities for teachers’ professional development. The collaboration has contributed towards improved results in the state schools at GCSE level, in particular.

JoanByers Thu 31-Jan-13 16:44:49

How do they propose that 20% of day pupils will be subject to the pupil premium?

directaction Thu 31-Jan-13 17:03:50

Ok, so if they are so sure of their product why don't they open a free school/become an academy sponsor in Slough?

They are making the right noises about pupil premium etc, but where in Holyport are they going to find children who fit that category? Or will they be providing free transport? Sorry, but saying all the right things is one thing, but actually doing something aspirational is another!

grovel Thu 31-Jan-13 17:26:29

I imagine they'll get children from Greater Bracknell as well as Maidenhead.

I don't want to be an Eton apologist on this subject but will be interested in a debate (based on fact). Eton are only education sponsors for this project - I imagine they feel they can also help with the boarding aspects.

I know that Wellington have financially sponsored an academy but learnt yesterday that they could only do so because a parent stumped up the cash. I'd be interested to know whether charitable-status indies are restricted in the use of their own funds?

IndridCold Thu 31-Jan-13 17:57:38

If you click on the link 'Free school wins borough approval' it explains why the Holyport site was chosen, rather than one in Slough.

meditrina Thu 31-Jan-13 18:02:11

If it's boarding, then they'll be looking to attract Forces families (who attract pupil premium). There is a definite move to encourage Forces families to use State boarding, as that's cheaper on the public purse than private.

HanneHolm Thu 31-Jan-13 18:02:44

christ dont go ANYWHERE near the state school sponsored by Wellington college.

meditrina Thu 31-Jan-13 18:03:27

(and it's permitted in Admissions Code to prioritise children from Forces and certain OGD families for boarding, though not day, places).

happygardening Thu 31-Jan-13 18:14:50

Without a doubt schools like Eton have a lot to offer to the state sector but what they cant do and also I suspect wouldn't want to do it create a free Eton. I'm unsure as to how much influence they have have just looked at Wellington Academy Wiltshire's website the hand of Seldon is so obviously all over it but is this as far as it goes? Or does it extend into everything?

happygardening Thu 31-Jan-13 18:34:43

"I know that Wellington have financially sponsored an academy but learnt yesterday that they could only do so because a parent stumped up the cash. I'd be interested to know whether charitable-status indies are restricted in the use of their own funds?"
According the Wiltshire academy website
"We have designed a unique 21st century school, part of a £32million campus serving as a learning hub for the whole community. Outstanding features include a 300 seat theatre and twin boarding houses for 100 students."
Don't know who came up with all that money but I'm sure the Wellington College parents wouldn't want all to have come from the school!!

grovel Thu 31-Jan-13 18:43:29

The Wellington parent came up with £2 million - the basic contribution, I believe.

grovel Thu 31-Jan-13 19:44:56

HG, by that (the "basic contribution") I mean the ability to name the school and influence its policies.

No, Eton won't ever create a free Eton as a separate entity (it has duties to itself/parents etc). The word is that it wants to become "income-blind", in is own right, like American universities.

happygardening Thu 31-Jan-13 19:58:13

The thought of Seldons influencing the policies of any school my DC's attended would bring me out in a cold sweat!
Eton St Paul's Winchester and others I'm sure are all trying to become income blind and very commendable it is too but ultimately they obviously can't make every place income blind especially the boarding schools.

Copthallresident Thu 31-Jan-13 20:37:19

My DDs school also is part of a local partnership that encourages swapping of teaching expertise, shared activities, mentoring, shared revision classes with local schools etc. It is hugely beneficial to the pupils, especially of the indie, opening their eyes to how the other half live and get educated.

However for all that dd's school has a lot to offer the local state schools (which were Ofsted failing, now making good improvement) I wouldn't let them near having any governance, or influence over teaching and pastoral strategy of the local state school . Teaching super bright girls from affluent families is entirely different to teaching mixed ability classes, and especially catering for the needs of lower sets/ low attainers, especially with any proportion of pupils from backgrounds of social deprivation (not that some of the girls in dds' school don't have behavioural problems, but I suspect that dds' school could learn a lot from the state schools in the sensitive and effective handling of behavioural problems). Of course it will be Gove's wet dream, a state school that will embody his strategy of enabling the academic and discarding the rest.

difficultpickle Thu 31-Jan-13 21:51:15

Eton already lets other schools use its facilities. I'm not sure what Holyport will have that will make it special compared to other schools. There are quite a few boarding preps in the area so I wonder if it will appeal to those who don't want to pay full senior boarding fees.

Holyport is not an overly wealthy area when compared to the areas surrounding it.

directaction Thu 31-Jan-13 23:02:27

Holyport is wealthy, as is its surrounding area.
Slough is not.

That's the point.

As for the incredibly convenient article about the council wanting users for the site and oh so generous Eton just happening to come along and offer its generous facilities and educational knowledge and conveniently provide secondary places that may be needed sometime in the future, well how lovely! Come on, we all know that these decisions are far more complex and involved than that. I haven't researched yet, but I'm sure there must be schools not too far away in need of sponsors to turn around failing standards, but perhaps Eton doesn't really have the courage for that?

Opening a partial boarding school in an affluent area is hardly aspirational.

They talk about Eton staff teaching at this new school - will part of their pay packet then come from the tax payers pocket? How shocking!

difficultpickle Thu 31-Jan-13 23:31:49

Slough does not border Holyport, unless it has moved since I did the school run today!

As others have already said on this thread, Eton does lots with other schools too. I am sure a lot of the publicity generated about this is from Simon Dudley who doesn't seem to think about the massive conflict of interests he has here.

JoanByers Thu 31-Jan-13 23:41:42

Is it proposed that Holyport will pay Eton for the use of its facilities?

BadgerB Fri 01-Feb-13 06:39:39

"They talk about Eton staff teaching at this new school - will part of their pay packet then come from the tax payers pocket? How shocking! "

Private school parents pay taxes too, you know - some of them a LOT of tax

directaction Fri 01-Feb-13 08:18:46

No, Holyport doesn't border Slough, but a quick look at google maps will show you that Eton itself is marginally closer to Slough than to Holyport.

As for tax payers, of course private school parents pay tax, they also pay often extortionate fees for a mediocre product, so sorry, I don't have a lot of sympathy there.

adeucalione Fri 01-Feb-13 08:52:07

The Times was reporting yesterday that 100 of the 500 places will be reserved for children in care - a good thing, surely, and I hope it puts pressure on other leading independent schools who have been reluctant to foster serious relationships with the state sector.

Abra1d Fri 01-Feb-13 09:08:10

'The Times was reporting yesterday that 100 of the 500 places will be reserved for children in care'

Those wicked, evil Eton people. They're probably going to force-feed them Latin conjugations and hockey.

IndridCold Fri 01-Feb-13 09:29:56

Press release on Eton's website here.

'Eton's sponsorship will be undertaken through provision of staff time and expertise, and sharing educational experience and facilities'.

This implies that Eton will donate staff time and not be paid for it.

Eton work with pupils in Slough schools, there is a peer mentoring scheme for GCSE students, and they share training for debating competitions. They are also co sponsors of the London Academy of Excellencei in Newham.

directaction Fri 01-Feb-13 09:50:25

Oh dear, not sure how much good the debating competitions and mentoring will do in reality, but I suppose it ticks the helping the underpriveleged box.

I wonder what the admissions criteria are for the academy of excellence? Not to mention that they have chosen a 'naicer', more regenerated area of Newham to position it. Running schools in real areas of social deprivation is an enormous and unique challenge, it requires skills that Eton just doesn't possess. Having the arrogance to pretend that it does, whilst ensuring that its 'doing it's bit' in nice mc areas, really is below par!

Come on, Eton, where is your ambition? Do you really doubt your product that much?

IndridCold Fri 01-Feb-13 10:20:48

Oh, I dunno. Your posts would have benefitted from a bit of training in debating.
You are simply coming across as an Eton hater which doesn't make for a very interesting thread

Copthallresident Fri 01-Feb-13 11:09:37

directaction Both dd and the girl she was mentoring, in GCSE Maths benefited greatly from the experience. Afterwards she texted dd to say that she was able to answer quite a few questions that she would't have been able to if she had not learnt the concepts from dd. She complained that disruptive boys often meant it was hard to concentrate in lessons. She wanted to get on to hairdressing course and needed the Maths to do so. Dd also benefited from the experience, their school is quite pressured and it was good for her to realise that in the real world B is not for bad and Oxbridge / RG not the only worthwhile future.

directaction Fri 01-Feb-13 12:17:02

Glad to hear of the positive mentoring experience - I don't mean to diminish these opportunities in their own right, they clearly have some positive effect, but they are a mere drop in the ocean to what these 'great institutions' could achieve with a bit of aspiration and the courage to take a risk.

IndridCold - don't patronise me. If you understood debating, you'd see exactly what I've been trying to do on this thread, with a more than reasonable level of success.

However, I do apologise for any apparent 'public school bashing'. I just get intensely frustrated when these well meaning institutions make some attempt at helping out those less fortunate than themselves. What works at Eton will not work in the majority of the state sector. If you think it will, then prove it - but in the thick of it, not just on the nice edges. And please will someone tell Mr Gove that what works in these public schools with affluent parents who are obviously keen to buy their children the 'best' education, will not work in areas where parental engagement is minimal and wealth doesn't exist - something different is needed here.

adeucalione Fri 01-Feb-13 12:45:10

You are right that they could do so much more, but think this is a move in the right direction, and one that you would really have to work hard to feel negative about imo.

grovel Fri 01-Feb-13 13:20:10

I wonder how much more Eton could realistically do? On top of £5 million of bursaries/scholarships pa :

They sponsor an academy and now a free school.

They manage the Slough, Eton, Windsor and Hounslow Independent/State School Partnership. Saturday Schools, Mentoring etc.

They share their pitches with Langley Academy.

They host two Summer schools for State school children.

The local primary school uses Eton's music department.

Etc

directaction Fri 01-Feb-13 13:33:20

They could open a free school in an area of social deprivation.

difficultpickle Fri 01-Feb-13 13:34:05

I'm not sure I understand your point directaction. Eton haven't said they are supporting Holyport College as an underprivileged venture.

Eton already does work with schools in Slough, Eton, Windsor and Maidenhead (the ones I know of personally, of course they may do more than those). Plus schools from all over the country have access to its summer schools.

It will be an option for ds if he doesn't get a sufficiently high scholarship/bursary to his senior school of choice and five minutes closer to home than Eton!

difficultpickle Fri 01-Feb-13 13:35:25

They aren't opening a free school anywhere. This school is being driven by Simon Dudley who is a Maidenhead councillor and sits on various council committees that makes the whole process a lot easier than for anyone else.

Lostonthemoors Fri 01-Feb-13 13:38:52

It's good news for pupils of the new school.

Not that exciting though when you consider what % of uk pupils live in areas where there is no school that is offering a good education.

IndridCold Fri 01-Feb-13 14:28:32

directaction 'I just get intensely frustrated when these well meaning institutions make some attempt at helping out those less fortunate than themselves.'

That's just the point, that is all they are trying to do, they are not claiming that they are single-handedly going to revolutionise state education. Eton is unashamedly selective. It offers a very good education for a particular type of student, which it chooses carefully. I absolutely agree with you that their approach would not work in the majority of the state sector, and I never claimed that it would.

For what it's worth, I do know a reasonable amount about debating. I am a strong supporter of the Institute of Ideas and their 'Debating Matters' schools competition set up by the wonderful Claire Fox. By your own admission you are 'intensely frustrated'; getting too emotional is bad for your debating ability.

directaction Fri 01-Feb-13 15:00:48

Actually, the skilled use of emotional language is a key part of debating ability.

Be assured, I'm not weeping into my computer keyboard. In all honesty, I wish schools like Eton would keep thier nose out of state education. It's just a shame that some who were educated there, and at other prominent public schools, think that their priveleged education gives them the answers to the problems in the state sector. It doesn't. That much is blatantly obvious.

At this point I bow out - I have a very busy weekend. Perhaps I'll pop back if the thread is still burbling away on Monday.

difficultpickle Fri 01-Feb-13 20:32:48

I wish schools like Eton would keep thier nose out of state education.

Why? It has amazing facilities that no local state school can match. Even ds's school (which is private) uses Eton's facilities some of the time. Why not encourage it? There is no reason why Eton should be tasked with sorting out state education but if it can enrich some local state schools then why not? As well as this new initiative it also has a partnership with a failing comprehensive. I have a few years yet before I have to decide where ds goes next so it will be interesting to watch how things develop. At the moment there isn't a local free non-selective that I would want to send ds to.

Tasmania Fri 01-Feb-13 23:56:31

What works at Eton will not work in the majority of the state sector.

It would work for kids from families that might not be as deprived as you want them to be, directaction, but couldn't afford Eton. It does NOT all have to be about the poorest of poorest all the time. The squeezed middle deserves something to.

I do think the whole focus some have on the "poorest" is political correctness gone mad. And as for offering such schools in areas where parental engagement is minimal... to be honest, such people shouldn't be parents. They shouldn't pro-create. Period. Yet, society seems to be saying that all money in the country should go to their children. Why?

I know, the children are innocent in this matter. But it seems to erase the responsibility of their 'parents' - and everyone else (including those who actually care for their children) has to fork up in their place. And in a world where that's the case... why should these 'parents' ever care?

Whenever I see these debates, my respect for 'wild animal mums' grows more and more. Most of them care for their young ferociously. An attitude almost completely lost in those areas with minimal parental engagement.

Anti-evolution going on in the human world...

Copthallresident Sat 02-Feb-13 09:23:31

Tasmania So that is the world is it? feral mums or tiger mums? What about the schools like the ones a few hundred yards from DDs' indie that were rated by Ofsted to be failing though they serve a very similar leafy suburb to the outstanding comps elsewhere in the borough. Or the school my disl' s family attend that serves a large working class estate in which only a very few family's are feral. Those schools are failing for one reason only, mismanagement and demotivated teachers.

However what they need is to have effective leadership that manages processes that deliver the right sort of education to both ends of the ability spectrum, to top sets, where our indies may well have something to offer, and to bottom sets, where they have no expertise. Some children are just not bright enough to be embarking on the life of middle class dreams, but we do, you know, need plumbers and hairdressers and people who will sit in call centres all day. So yes we should be directing money to bring the worst schools up to the level of the rest. It has been shown in London that it is possible to bring even the worst sink schools up to the level of the best, and yet still schools that are failing are twice as likely to be in areas of social deprivation. Maybe, just maybe, for some of these children you will break the cycle and give them the skills and qualifications to go on to better things.

Tasmania Sat 02-Feb-13 13:25:46

Copthallresident Re call centres - it depends on the company. The one I work for effectively has a "call centre", and they only recruit graduates... often from RG unis. It's being used as "the trenches", i.e. if you're good, you'll eventually move be up to our (more posh) department and beyond.

peteneras Fri 08-Feb-13 06:48:13
directaction Fri 08-Feb-13 08:33:26

Oh goody! Etonians to teach the riff-raff about coping with lifes setbacks! Well, jolly good! I'm sure it must be terribly difficult to understand how to deal with life when you have privelege, they'll be such a help to children coping with gang culture, deprivation, lack of parental engagement etc!

peteneras Fri 08-Feb-13 09:45:37

Well, seven of the eight officers that represent your “children coping with gang culture, deprivation, lack of parental engagement etc!” certainly think so by involving themselves in this parliamentary social mobility group as stated in this penultimate paragraph of the related article. The eighth member happens to be a Labour MP who went to independent school!

directaction Fri 08-Feb-13 10:32:12

Meanwhile, back in the real world .......................................................

rabbitstew Fri 08-Feb-13 13:54:53

Back in the real world, it seems to me that Eton probably is doing as much as could be expected of a school which only caters for a minute minority of children - it hasn't been foolish enough to assume it has any understanding whatsoever of feral families living on sink estates and has therefore avoided getting involved with them in any meaningful way. It does, however, understand people who fancy the idea of boarding school and Latin and who would love the opportunity of using its playing fields without deliberately vandalising everything in sight. It's a bit like the role of private medicine in the NHS - cherry pick what you can make a difference to fairly easily and ignore the rest.

happygardening Fri 08-Feb-13 16:37:16

Surely anyone view and experience of managing children from what ever background can make a useful contribution. My worry and having spent 29 years working in the public sector in my experience is that whenever government becomes involved in this kind of thing i.e. ideas that work well in the private/voluntary sector they take them and then water them down and they become a half baked but bureaucratic nightmare.

directaction Fri 08-Feb-13 17:07:57

'feral families living on sink estates' - ooh, that isn't at all offensive, now, is it? Such ignorance!

grovel Fri 08-Feb-13 17:18:54

Eton boys do "feral" pretty well if given the chance.

1280 teenage boys.

IndridCold Fri 08-Feb-13 17:27:03

I think that this article gives a rather better overview of the planned summit, and Eton's (actually quite modest) contribution to it.

rabbitstew Fri 08-Feb-13 19:19:04

directaction - it is only offensive if you imply that all estates are sink estates and all families living on estates are feral. Otherwise, it is using terms that fairly accurately describe a tiny minority of people living in pretty unpleasant surroundings... Unless you are no longer allowed to admit to the fact that some families are actually a problem to those of us who are domesticated, whether that be their fault or the fault of their appalling upbringings, enivronment and lack of interest from society... Being feral, after all, is not your "fault," or even offensive, it's just a way of being that the domesticated don't find comfortable to live with. YOU are the one who chooses to find those terms offensive, which frankly shows your massive bias towards refusing to admit that there are extremes in society which society does not deal well with, which is frankly a bit silly.

rabbitstew Fri 08-Feb-13 20:43:29

Oh, and pretty damn ignorant, too...

directaction Fri 08-Feb-13 20:57:05

There are extremes in society. Fact. Society does not deal well with these. Fact. Not sure how you make the assumption that I don't see this? Eton does not have the answer to the problems in the state sector. Fact. It lacks the aspiration and the wisdom.

rabbitstew Fri 08-Feb-13 22:05:23

directation - I make the assumption that you don't see this on the basis that you are rude enough to describe me as ignorant. How can you not see that?...
Fact: Eton does not claim to have the answer to the problems in the state sector. Fact: it doesn't give a toss and why should it - it isn't the state.

directaction Fri 08-Feb-13 22:46:46

At last! Honesty! You are right, it doesn't give a toss, it just needs to tick the 'charity' box and the 'benevolent' box - job done!

You are ignorant because you use descriptions such as 'feral families on sink estates' - if you even had an ounce of understanding of social deprivation you would not use this language.

Over and out.

grovel Fri 08-Feb-13 22:55:21

The headmaster of Eton went there, as a boy, as a "full fees" scholar. I don't think he had a typically privileged background. I don't suppose he was profoundly deprived as a child (somebody had the nous to get him to sit the Eton Scholarship) but he does care about education across all of society.

rabbitstew Fri 08-Feb-13 23:05:48

Directaction - politically correct terminology is a waste of time and does not demonstrate someone's understanding or otherwise of social deprivation. You have not an ounce of understanding of my background or knowledge, so don't be so pretentious, it just makes you sound like a Guardian reader.

rabbitstew Fri 08-Feb-13 23:08:25

ps don't be so rude about Slough....

rabbitstew Fri 08-Feb-13 23:14:10

pps directaction - where does your experience and wisdom come from, which Eton is lacking? What are you doing to answer the problems of the state sector?

rabbitstew Fri 08-Feb-13 23:18:14

ppps I'm very confused that you both want Eton to open a free school in an area of intense deprivation and claim that they couldn't do it because they don't have the expertise or understanding. It makes you sound deranged.

rabbitstew Fri 08-Feb-13 23:20:04

In life, I find it is best to stick with doing what you know you do well and not to interfere in areas you know b*gger all about. Eton is doing just that. So for once in its existence, I don't disapprove of its failure to stick its nose into something it doesn't understand. To want it to would just be to have a childish urge to say, "I told you so" to the wrong people - it isn't Eton which is claiming to have the answers to poverty and deprivation.

ipadquietly Fri 08-Feb-13 23:47:05

Bisjo: I wish schools like Eton would keep thier nose out of state education.

Why? It has amazing facilities that no local state school can match. Even ds's school (which is private) uses Eton's facilities some of the time. Why not encourage it? '

Great. The only thing is that you have to PAY to use Eton's facilities.

peteneras Sat 09-Feb-13 01:36:04

”The headmaster of Eton went there, as a boy, as a "full fees" scholar. I don't think he had a typically privileged background. I don't suppose he was profoundly deprived as a child”

I’m constantly amazed by critics and opponents of the School about how privileged the Etonians are - both boys and Masters.

Fact: Tony Little, the Head Master did NOT have a privileged background. His father was only doing security work at Heathrow for British Airways and Tony himself was the first male in his family to be educated past 14 years old as you can see here in the paragraph immediately below his picture.

So, instead of whinging and complaining constantly how life has dealt you a bad hand and habitually stretching out that big hand for freebies, go do something about it yourself like Tony did and lo and behold you might find yourself The Provost of Eton one fine day!

Eton have bent over backwards to offer what it can on the cheap and even for nothing at all so don’t look a gift horse in the mouth!

happygardening Sat 09-Feb-13 09:37:40

Why assume that Eton and Tony Little knows nothing about managing those on the edges of our society? He also works daily with over 1200 teenage boys the assumption that they are all well behaved angels because they're parents pay is completely ridiculous. He knows how to engage boys at what is often a difficult age and therefore must be able to bring some knowledge to the table. I've never met the man but assuming he's not an arrogant arse he would I'm sure make suggestions and discuss his experiences (I doubt he's holding himself up as an expert on social deprivation and teenagers) some of his ideas maybe unworkable or inappropriate but even if he only bring one good idea then that's better than nothing because currently we not doing very well engaging these youngsters. Only someone who is truely ignorant and of course prejudiced would dismiss his suggestions before he even opens his mouth and has a chance to speak.

rabbitstew Sat 09-Feb-13 10:12:11

Sorry, happygardening, but that's just a load of tripe. I don't think he has ever made any suggestions on dealing with those on the outermost margins of society (who probably rarely enter a school building). Where he has made suggestions, as an intelligent man with a lot of experience of education and adolescent boys, he should be listened to, but you appear to be attempting to suggest he should spread his wisdom far further than he has chosen to spread it. I certainly don't approve of the current government's push for free schools, etc, but if things are going that way regardless of the effect on society, I would rather places like Eton were involved in them than organisations which don't actually have any proper background in education.

happygardening Sat 09-Feb-13 10:26:13

Rabbit having reread the article this is what he's being asked to do; "Tony Little, the head master of the leading public school, is to address a “character and resilience summit” which aims to find ways to encourage children to develop determination, ambition and make the most of their opportunities."
What is the problem with that? As I've just said some of his ideas might be unworkable outside of Eton et al but some of his ideas might engage those on the edges of our society.
I spent many years owning horses and most horse owners think they know everything about everything and are usually not shy to come forward with their thoughts. Many talked a load of crap IME but often in amongst the crap the most unlikely person would come up with an exceedingly good idea/thought often unwittingly. So I discovered thats its always worth listening to even the most unlikely of people and then developing the skills of sorting the useful from the useless.

rabbitstew Sat 09-Feb-13 10:33:02

I don't recall saying I have a problem with anything Tony Little is saying, happygardening????....
In terms of experience, however, he doesn't appear to have much experience of dealing with children with low IQs, if Eton's academic selectivity is real and not pretend, nor with children whose home backgrounds have resulted in severe emotional and behavioural problems, because those at the severe end will just never have been given a place at the school - as you perfectly well know.

rabbitstew Sat 09-Feb-13 10:39:04

Perhaps Tony Little should be asked to give advice to Special Schools, both private and state. The most unlikely people can come up with exceedingly good ideas, after all...

happygardening Sat 09-Feb-13 10:49:22

Is Tony Little less qualified to speak his experiences than many others keen to jump on the band wagon and air their views? Maybe he's blessed with a high % of common sense, after all he didn't leave school go to university and go straight to Eton or maybe Rabbit you're right he knows nothing at all. In my effort to encourage my DC's to "make the most of their opportunities" I encourage them to try something and listen to everyones point of view before making up their mind otherwise they are in danger of missing something.

rabbitstew Sat 09-Feb-13 10:52:45

Where on earth, happygardening, do you get the opinion that I think Tony Little knows nothing at all??!!!!!!!! That's just a bizarre comment.

slipshodsibyl Sat 09-Feb-13 10:53:42

Tony Little has specifically stated in newspaper interviews that he would not presume to offer advice to schools on educating children living in areas of social deprivation and with attendant problems. He said it would be insulting and to those educators who do have that expertise and wrong as it is not what he and his staff can do well.

A child I know well who lives nowhere near Windsor contacted a staff member for advice on an area not covered in her school. She received help and support freely from an individual staff member and contact has continued two years later. I doubt Mr Little is even aware of this kindness. It is hard to talk of 'Eton's opinion' when it is a large community of staff, governors and students with a wide variety of opinons and attitudes among them isn't it?

slipshodsibyl Sat 09-Feb-13 10:54:59

insulting to those educator,s not insulting and to

moutier Sun 10-Mar-13 18:19:07

go look at Rookwood in Andover.Main line to Woking and the boarding is very good

difficultpickle Sun 10-Mar-13 20:52:59

Their planning application was roundly rejected by the local parish council, much to the founder's chagrin. Very funny ranty twitter posts from Simon Dudley, who is also the deputy leader of the town council and sits on the town planning committee.

peteneras Fri 21-Jun-13 17:56:56

Fear not!

Holyport College is alive and well and heading fast towards September 2014 opening:

?Headteacher appointed, construction starts and DfE funding secured?.

Good luck to all concerned. It's a positive step towards the right direction for the underprivileged.

MrsSalvoMontalbano Fri 21-Jun-13 18:00:14

Well done! Watching with interest

bico Fri 21-Jun-13 23:06:44

I doubt that there are many underprivileged children living in the catchment area of this school!

peteneras Sat 22-Jun-13 10:59:36

Yes, I know what you’re implying but Holyport College is also a boarding school. Therefore, proximity to the school is not a major criterion for admission purposes. Listen to what the school has to say officially:

“Along with all schools in the borough, we would expect to have a number of students who are eligible for the Pupil Premium. However, unlike other schools we have set a priority criterion in our admissions arrangements which states that up to 20% of day places will be allocated to children who are eligible. The final number may rise above this percentage if pupils eligible for the PP gain places through the other priority criteria”.

It is quite evident and very much stated in the school’s Admissions Policy that the underprivileged are especially catered for. [Page 2 - Ss 1, 2 and 5]

bico Sat 22-Jun-13 14:44:13

Only the underprivileged who want to go to boarding school and can afford it or are able to get one of three funded places.

As for the 20% on pupil premium there is no mention on how they are going to actually get to the school. There isn't any bus stop within walking distance.

peteneras Sat 22-Jun-13 15:31:52

So what do you want - to provide for each and every underprivileged child in the country to come to the school on a taxi with a guaranteed return fare and/or giving them free boarding if they want to board, just because life’s dealt them or their families a bad hand?

Next, you’ll be asking for the same free services and guarantee of a place at Oxbridge or a Russell Group university followed by a top job in government or in industry.

bico Sat 22-Jun-13 15:58:14

peteneras you were the one that highlighted the admissions section in response to my pointing out that the school is not situated in an underprivileged area so I'm not sure what point you're making.

If you are saying that it is pretty unrealistic to expect underprivileged pupils to be able to access this new school then I am in complete agreement with you.

peteneras Sat 22-Jun-13 18:06:10

The point I’m making is it is unrealistic to expect the school to cater for all situations. Remember this is a thread about (going to) Eton on the cheap -or almost as close to that as possible - that one would otherwise have to pay £33,000 basic annual fee for the real thing. At Holyport it is possible to get it all for nothing no matter where you live and the underprivileged have special priorities. That’s all I’m saying.

bico Sat 22-Jun-13 18:11:50

Then we are almost saying the same thing. Holyport College is not located in an underprivileged area so those children will either have to board or find their way to school. It is not walking distance of anywhere that has low cost housing and there are very few footpaths even if it were. Whilst the school maybe keen to offer access on paper it will be interesting to see how they facilitate it in practice.

The only people I know who are talking about sending their dcs their are those who live very close to the school and whose children attend preps. They see it as a free alternative to the private non-selective day schools in the area like LVS and CC.

peteneras Sat 22-Jun-13 18:23:06

But it is still better to have a school like Holyport no matter, and in spite of, where it is located than to have no (such) school at all. The 20% priority for the underprivileged no matter where they come from, is a good case in point.

bico Sat 22-Jun-13 18:38:10

I would put good money on the fact that they won't fill those spaces.

askeptical1 Sun 19-Jan-14 01:49:02

Why can they build it in my area?
All of our schools have been rated "unsatisfactory" by OFSTED in a blitz last month

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