Dulwich or Whitgift?

(53 Posts)
MaMerry Fri 03-Feb-12 20:56:22

After quite upbeat interviews at both Whitgift and Dulwich, and assuming that the state offer for DS is not up to scratch, we may need to make a choice between D & W. I'm struggling to split them, TBH. They both talk about academic success, pastoral care and co-curricular activity, are set in fantastic grounds and cost an arm and a leg. Can anyone help me split them?

DS is bright, interested in most things, an enthusiastic sportsman (but not going to end up playing for England in any of them) and says he doesn't mind which of the two he goes to.

confused

magyarmum Mon 18-Feb-13 18:31:30

Any advice if the choice is between Dulwich College and the London Oratory? Our son is sporty and would prefer the former; but we are financially challenged. Is it worth the sacrifice and stress to send him to Dulwich?

Robinia190 Wed 23-Jan-13 21:59:32

Hi everyone - I have read the (now quite old) discussion about D vs W. The thing to remember is that W offers the International Bac and therefore A*/A tables are not going to reflect the achievements in the IB. The only useful measure to compare the two (and any other school) is the average points per pupil achieved at A level: in 2010, for which I have figures in front of me, W average: 1003.2, D:932. W has consistently outperformed D in recent years and scores the 2nd highest in UK for IB, after Sevenoaks.

ameliacampbell Sun 16-Dec-12 13:25:51

I trust FT's rankings the most - Latymer Upper came 25th in the independent schools table this year regarding both A level results and GCSE results. It was the top co-ed school apart from the Perse School in Cambridge - which I think is absolutely brill. Their facilities are fantastic - just as good as St Paul's etc, and in 2012 they got 50 people into Oxbridge. Latymer Upper is one to watch!!! It is now considered as being among the top-tier schools in London

EdithWeston Sat 25-Feb-12 22:20:20

Congratulations! What a nice dilemma to have!

MaMerry Sat 25-Feb-12 22:05:45

Edith We have now received scholarship offers from both Dulwich and Whitgift. But planning to revisit one of them next week, as still not sure which is preferred.

EdithWeston Thu 23-Feb-12 07:30:18

OP - it's after offers day now. Have you made a decision, and are to happy to share it?

Mummle Thu 23-Feb-12 07:25:31

Just playing 'Devil's Advocate', arniesidd - what if your child is in the top ability band? Would you prefer your child to be in a school where they cream off the top ability and, thereby, have your child being taught within a 'higher ability' stream and, in fact, ethos, or would you want your child to be catered for within an "mixed ability" cohort which is already lacking those that have been "creamed" off? In that respect, the schools which have the higher academic results may not, in fact, have the "best" teachers, but the environment for learning is competitive and expectations are much higher and, therefore, the child will, by default, have to play their best game in order to compete... I am not saying that results are the be all and end all...but, I am saying that, if you are the type of person who is very conscious of results and wants to have your child get the best academic results they possibly can, then a selective school may be the best choice, if the child is truly a high achiever. Saying all of that,a lot more than academics make up a secondary school and the broader ethos and a child's happiness are the most important factors. Academic results are only one facet of the issue - but some parents (and children) are really 'work horses' and thrive on academia...

arniesidd Thu 23-Feb-12 00:12:59

I know I'm a latecomer to this conversation, but nonetheless, what everyone seems to overlook when it comes to choosing schools is the fact that OF COURSE highly selective schools such as JAGS, Alleyns and Dulwich get such fantastic academic results - its because they cream off the very brightest children who are bound to perform well even if they were taught by a performing monkey. School academic results are NOT necessarily a reflection of the teaching, merely a reflection of the intake. If your averagely bright child goes to Emanuel or Alleyns, I simply don;t believe they will necessarily get better results at the latter; in fact they may be intimidated and demoralised by the fact that they are outstripped by their peers academically and simply give up. So judging schools by academic results and league tables is sheer folly; it's only one, very small, measure of how good a school is. i'd love to see how well Alleyns of JAGS teachers would fare with a class of 30+ kids from some of the state schools such as Eliots, which as far as I know is still in special measures.

havinganightmare Sun 05-Feb-12 20:37:33

Message deleted by Mumsnet.

NiceViper Sun 05-Feb-12 20:31:39

I think it was the criticism of inconsistent marking that would bother me most. It might not make much difference to outcome in public exam, but I think it could make quit a difference to a boy's time overall.

SoupDragon Sun 05-Feb-12 20:16:45

If you look at the last section of the report, for Whitgift it says they are outstanding in all aspects and Dulwich a mix of outstanding and good. Not quite what the other poster said - I don't think they get an overall grade.

basildonbond Sun 05-Feb-12 20:12:07

Both schools have minimum GCSE points levels for current pupils as well, nice viper - I know someone at DC who is currently being warned their place in 6th form is not assured

It's fairly standard practice

NiceViper Sun 05-Feb-12 19:58:04

I had a dekko at those when (paranoidly double checking) there was no OFSTED report. So I don't see where the previous poster's "outstanding" and "good" came from (esp when you look at the actual content of the report).

Is it the same head at Whitgift as when last ISI was done? DC have a new one, and I hear he is very highly regarded.

SoupDragon Sun 05-Feb-12 19:53:36

I would say that, academically, there probably isn't a lot to choose between them and it is more a case of gut feeling, ease of access and amount of scholarship offered smile

SoupDragon Sun 05-Feb-12 19:51:18

Dulwich Here
Whitgift here

SoupDragon Sun 05-Feb-12 19:50:09

The Independent Schools Council does the inspections rather than OFSTED.

NiceViper Sun 05-Feb-12 19:27:15

Something's amiss here. AFAIK, OFSTED have only ever done a social care inspection on DC's boarding provision.

Dulwich Music block has been closed during tours whilst it was being rebuilt, not because of lack of investment in music. Quite the contrary!

I'm another who has heard that they do not chuck out after GCSE. They have minimum GCSE result requirement fit 6th form joiners, but not for continuers. Whitgift and DC are both on the 2011 league tables, as published on BBC. But it seems Whitgift wish to repudiate their standing; fair enough, if they do not consider I accurate.

OP: I think the best you're going on get on this thread is claim and counter claim.

What did your gut, and DC's gut, say when you were at each?

SoupDragon Sun 05-Feb-12 19:12:18

"just look up the 2011 Independent GCSE & A level results - out of roughly 400 listings, Whitgift doesn't even appear! Res ipsa loquitur! End of."

LOLOL. As Ladymuck says, that's because they withdrew from them.

SoupDragon Sun 05-Feb-12 19:08:14

Here is the Trinity HMs newsletter, the first section of which explains why the league tables are misleading. I imagine this is equally relevant to Whitgift.

SoupDragon Sun 05-Feb-12 19:04:56

Chelseatina You can not rely on the league tables as there are significant omissions wrt the different exams available. Quite frankly, the league tables are a load of nonsense.

firmbeliever Sun 05-Feb-12 19:02:32

As a prospective parent whose DS did not manage to get place at KCS 10+ entrance exam I am looking at Dulwich college and Whitgift with a view for trying for 11+entry.

Chelseatina and Meditrina you both say that the intake at Dulwich College is more academic, I have compared both OFSTED reports and there is nothing to choose between them, their intake is virtually the same! ( look at 1.2 in both reports, does the 'rich but thick' apply to Dulwich then ?) However one of Dulwich Colleges recommendations for improvement in the OFSTED report is to challenge its more able. Whitgift seem to do this by and large, hence its 'outstanding' OFSTED report as opposed to Dulwich College's 'good'.

Most academic schools incuding Dulwich College weed out those who do not get the required 'points' at GCSE. So your point Meditrana about why DC does not top the league tables does not hold.

I have looked at league tables The FT one and 'TOP 100 Senior Schools A* A and B grade' and again whitgift features in this. Dulwich College it seems is not in this catergory. These league tables recognise the IB'

I too am glad that Chelseatina is not advising me re secondary schools. I am certainly going to do my homework and look for myself rather than relying on outdated conceptions as both schools appear of equal calibre by and large

Ladymuck Sun 05-Feb-12 18:57:14

And out of interest where does St Paul's come on the league table that you're looking at?

Ladymuck Sun 05-Feb-12 18:54:51

Chelseatina, as a Year 6 teacher advising on future schools you are aware that the Whitgift foundation took the decision (along with lots of independent schools) to withdraw all 3 of their schools from league tables a couple of years ago, aren't you?! They did appear in the FT league table last year (which is put together by the journalists doing their own review of information published by the schools, rather than by the schools submitting their results) and came 40th to Dulwich's 58th. But as they have an increasing number of boys doing IB whilst the majority do A levels I think that the league table comparisons are pretty difficult.

Chelseatina Sun 05-Feb-12 18:47:21

Oh, For Heaven's sake, Basildon Bond, just look up the 2011 Independent GCSE & A level results - out of roughly 400 listings, Whitgift doesn't even appear! Res ipsa loquitur! End of.

Ladymuck Sun 05-Feb-12 18:36:03

As ever one has to take the guide's words with a pinch of salt I guess, but then again the music school was closed on Open Day which I found slightly odd. Every other school had something musical on show on open day so Dulwich stood out in that regard.

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