The Trinity-Whitgift thread of 2013 continued

(858 Posts)
Somelikeithott Sat 16-Feb-13 16:46:17

Hi all as I posted on previous thread, I realised we had hit the 1000 mark, do felt obliged to open a new one. Hope everyone finds this thread easily

Seeline Mon 25-Feb-13 10:55:51

I can only agree with everything GetmeOut has said, also having a J-Bug at T. He too has settled well - although it did take time and effort on all sides. The thought of continuing the extra work to have to sit 11+ exams after we had accepted the Y6 place would have finished us all I think. Let alone having to sit a whole raft of exams just as he was starting to find his feet at a new school. I really do not think DS would want to start all over again somewhere next year - it would be very unfair on him.

suz742 Mon 25-Feb-13 10:58:56

After being nearly a week behind everyone else with my paperwork due to admin error I have spent this a.m getting everything in order. Sent off a "No thanks" to W, wrote letter to current HM, thank you cards to DS teacher and Deputy Head who are so supportive of him and box of biscuits for staff room. Hand delivered a big "Yes" to T and feel so blessed to be here. After having the experience of knowing I would have to turn down the places I fully appreciate the opportunity available to my DS.
Any T parents able to share what happens next, a parent/child morning in summer term? Do the boys then go on a bonding trip in early yr 6?

Seeline Mon 25-Feb-13 11:08:53

Welcome suz grin
Ds started in Y6 last September. From memory there was a new boys and parents morning at the end of June when the boys were taken off and put into their classes, shown round the school again, met their form tutors and had a general chat, whilst the parents listened to talks from HM, and other senior staff. We then went off to meet the form tutors with the boys for a quick chat. We could then go off to try some of the music department facilities, visit the school outfitters display etc. THere was a second hand uniform sale as well.
The boys term started the day before the main school, being in for the afternoon to get their access cards and a 'treasure hunt' round the school. Timetable etc was the next full day.
They went on a 3 day activity break to Norfolk at the end of September. I was more apprehensive the Ds I think - not really knowing any of the boys he was going with or the staff! He had a great time though and it really helped him to make some friends.
Your Ds will have a fantastic time - feel free to ask any other questions - someone here will know the answers!

Somelikeithott Mon 25-Feb-13 11:16:18

Seeline, you are getting me all excited now ( doesn't take much really). Your post makes it all so real. Definitely can't put DS ( or the whole family for that matter), through all this again next year. It hasn't been horrendous or anything near, but it does take it's toll. DH & I are now making conscious efforts in spending solo time with other DC.

Seeline Mon 25-Feb-13 11:33:04

I know what you mean somelikeithot I think DD definitely suffered through the process. Nevermind I've got it all with her 1 or 2 years time sad
Tell you something though - the rest of the school year will drag terribly in some respects, but in others it will fly by. At that point your terribly-grown-up 10 year old DS will suddenly seem incredibly young grin

suz742 Mon 25-Feb-13 11:56:38

Thanks Seeline, sounds fabulous and I'm definitely more excited than him. Funny when the decision comes at half term as he's not mixed with his friends so he's not had a chance to share the news apart from with family. I'm sure the whole school will know by the end of today!
Feels a bit odd that he will miss yr6 but I've promised him some sort of party to say goodbye to his friends and mark the beginning of a new adventure.

kimalima Mon 25-Feb-13 12:19:59

Just about to post my acceptance to T.
Verbally accepted via telephone last week but only just back from half-term break so catching up with the admin part.
My DS is the 11+ cohort so guess will be joining some of your DS's already at T.

So very happy to have made the decision. T is definitely the right school for DS.

AspiMum Mon 25-Feb-13 13:16:04

Hi All,
I am a newbie here. First of all thanks a lot to mumsnet for such a wonderful wealth of info.
My DS has secured a place in Whitgift but unfortunately on Full fees. When I called Admission, they told me that he has performed excellently in the exams but he missed some during interview. I was expecting some scholarship aid and bit shocked to see that he couldn't get any. So I am in confusion whether to stretch my budget towards fees or appear for Year 9. But my DS is so upset that he couldnt get any scholarship and worrying that we may not put him in the school.
I just wanted to know approximately what percentage of pupil get in WG on scholarship. Any one please guide me as I need to talk to my other half and take decision soon.
Many a thanks

hardboiled Mon 25-Feb-13 14:00:32

Hi all, congrats to those who have decided and are happy about it! I thought the exam period would be the toughest thing and boy was I unprepared for the choosing! It has been such AGONY. I was in tears writing rejection letters this morning. Yes, I know, that's just mad. What can I say. I think it's some kind of postpartum big adrenaline drop.

I absolutely love T and would have loved to see DS there but we have decided to go for a closer school, which is a fantastic school DS loves too, so it's all good and the sensible choice. Good luck to everyone and I wish your DC the best as of September.

burntoutdad Mon 25-Feb-13 14:20:03

AspiMum - not sure of numbers gaining scholarship but do know that this year the 'pot' has been slashed dramatically so scholarships are not as high as previous years. Would guess a lot of them have been 5 - 10% (say in sport/music) 15 - 20% (all rounder) some slightly more. Only exceptional DS's (academic/sport/music etc) will have got the 30 - 50% and I expect there are not many of those this year. Some would be topped up with bursaries too of course. We are unlucky in that we chose this year to apply!

AspiMum Mon 25-Feb-13 15:00:43

@burntoutdad - Thanks a lot for the info. Too many contributions by you to this thread. So again thanks. With full fee, can any one get a place in these schools or still the schools consider the academic (both entrance and school report) performance? In some blog i read that the ratio is 1:2 (ie., scholar : non-scholar :: 33:66). Is it true? Just trying to get my head around these figures. My other half didnt show interest in applying for bursaries as he thought it should go to the right people. But I read here that if the income is below 70K and dont own a house, it will be easy to get bursaries. I called the school 10 days back but they told it is too late to apply for bursaries now. Also one parent has told if DS enters as non-scholar, he can't change to scholarship group for first two years. So real test on the depth of pockets.

Also can any one tell other than the fees how much extra that we need to spare for other things like trips etc per annum?

@hardboiled - sad to hear the decision but a lot of families do take the same decision I guess unless they are well prepared already to face the financial issue. For sure your DS will shine in the other school without doubt. So please don't worry.

Seeline Mon 25-Feb-13 15:26:34

Aspimum - both T and W are selective schools, picking pupils on the basis of their performance at entrance exams and then interviews. For scholarships in sport, music etc further assessments are made before any scholarship offered.
AFAIK if the student is not offered a scholarship on entry to the school, there is no opportunity to reapply later (although entry to the 6th form may be another opportunity - I don't know).

burntoutdad Mon 25-Feb-13 16:02:26

AspiMum - yes lots of posts! Found solace here during late nights working and stressing about the entrance exams smile.
Afraid it is too late to apply for bursary this year but next year you may be able to if you explain that circumstances have changed. Bursaries have to be means tested every year, scholarships are fixed. They have a sliding scale for bursaries so up to 75k I think may still qualify for a little help (if you have no equity etc.)
As seeline explained the entrance exams and interview select the boys, so being a lottery winner still wouldn't get you in (unless you offered to build a new science block) wink
With regards to extras we are wondering the same, I think the trip for year 6 to Italy is free, but some of the amazing trips they do would cost a fair bit. Not sure if compulsory though.
On top the uniform + PE+ bits & bobs must be around the £300 mark, plus extra shirts etc.
School meals are compulsory in lower school - i don't know but maybe little change out of £4 - 5/day including 'tuck shop' money. And of course the school bus isn't free and does add up although it can be very convenient depending on where you live. If not using school bus account for transport costs.

Ladymuck Mon 25-Feb-13 16:29:14

Certainly the numbers aren't 1:2 for academic scholars. It used to be the case that there was a scholarship pot of up to 10 full fee spaces per year with 50% being the maximum (and usually only one or two per foundation school per year, with a 10% being more normal), but it sounds as if the pot has been cut. Once in the school there is no differential between the scholars & full fee payers, so there is no scholarship group as such. And hundreds of boys have not got a place this year - it is definitely an academically selective entry. I git the impression that they were looking at 40 potential academic scholarship candidates this year, and I think that they assume up to a third or half will reject.

In terms of kit I would suggest that you make full use of the second hand shop - the amount of lost kit is stunning. A full shop kit out will be over £500 excluding footwear.

PopcornPizza Mon 25-Feb-13 20:51:24

Decision made, T it is. DS is very happy, and is already looking forward to the new adventure ahead. Hardboiled, sorry our DS's won't be at school together but indebted to you for starting this thread and for the support and solace it has provided through the admissions process. Thank you to all who have shared their experiences, it's been so helpful to travel though this journey together.... thanks
Good luck to everyone's DC as they approach secondary school, I hope each and every one will find themselves in the right school for them where they will flourish and blossom.

EyesWideClosed Mon 25-Feb-13 21:05:53

croydonmumtods-you are right, we do have a preference for T; it's just that we allowed ourselves to be swayed by a scholarship to W. Looking at the figures though, there's hardly anything in it, and we will go for T. burntoutdad-your ramblings provided food for thought. Our situation is that ds' current school is a failing school and we think a new and exciting change will be great for him. We hadn't expected to get this far. Like others, we only did the 10+ to test the waters, as it were, and ended up with a place. We love the school but the financial cost is a huge consideration. If ds were to get into a grammar (and we almost certainly will try), we will be faced with a painful decision. It's a really tricky one but it's a year's amazing experience that I don't want ds to miss out on, now that he has the opportunity. I do take your point about other parents who are looking at the place as an 8 year one for their ds, and have missed out this year, but it would be for us too if the financial cost weren't such a big elephant in the room.

racegirl87 Mon 25-Feb-13 21:13:15

I think the news is finally sinking in with us all. My ds keeps hugging me and saying 'I'm going to Trinity' with a huge grin on his face. He told his friends at school today and his teacher and they were all so happy. His teacher was shocked as she didn't know he had applied but then really supportive of his decision. He wants to start now though and the next 6 months are going to go very slowly I think.
Rather than a low, it's been gradual high as we never really thought it would happen. We didn't know much about anything really when we sent ds off to the exam day except we loved the ethos and feel of the school and it would suit our ds perfectly.
Getting the interview was a shock and then being accepted and getting a bursary still seems unreal so I think it will take a while to really realise what ds has achieved.
I'm sending our acceptance tomorrow and can't wait to receive all the info. Also nervous about costs of trips, uniform etc.. But don't have a choice. Can't turn down this opportunity.
So glad there are other people to share excitement - strange to think that some of us will meet and not know we've shared all this on here!!
Hope this thread continues so we can keep each other sane during the coming months.

EyesWideClosed Mon 25-Feb-13 21:20:46

racegirl87- Is your ds 10+? It is very exciting, and my ds wants to start now too. We loved the caring environment of the school and all the boys seemed so lovely. There seems to be so much to do and from what I've read of the curriculum (you can read it in detail on the website), the learning seems so much more interesting compared to my lessons!

burntoutdad Mon 25-Feb-13 22:18:53

eyeswideclosed - Now you've made your decision you can relax for a while. Although i suppose now you will be working towards the grammar tests. Dont know if i could take anymore (until ds2!). Good luck to you and your DS.

racegirl87 Mon 25-Feb-13 22:23:45

ewc yes 10+ for us. Read through all the clubs and activities and he wants to do them all (except football and rugby!!). Was intrigued by Whiff Whaff club which after research turns out to be ping pong!!! Very hard sums is top of the list followed by debate and choir (there seems to be a lot of choirs!!).
Hoping the varied curriculum will bring the non-existent latent sportsman out in him but not holding my breath!!
Do you know how many children will be in junior year?

Croydonmumtods Mon 25-Feb-13 22:24:51

eyeswideclosed so pleased you have made a decision you feel completely happy with. Sometimes putting it all in writing helps.
burntoutdad hope you had a good holiday - you have certainly set this thread alight again since your return. We,like you, are hoping to finalise decision in the next few days with W our preference despite the cost. I console myself with the thought that it's the best investment I can ever make.
hardboiled so sorry things didn't go quite to plan but I have no doubt your ds will be fine and pleased that your local school is a good one.

All the very best to everyone else we should agree a strange handshake or password for when we meet at new parents evening although that could lead to all sorts of different problems which would need a whole new thread!

I don't think I'm quite ready to go cold turkey from this thread just yet as it has kept me sane and provided much entertainment so thanks to you all.

EyesWideClosed Mon 25-Feb-13 23:04:24

racegirl87 I think that it's between 40-45 for the 10+ entry over two forms. Can anyone confirm this?

AspiMum Mon 25-Feb-13 23:40:14

Seeline & Ladymuck - Thanks a lot for the quick inputs.
@burntoutdad & cheammum - Have you decided to go with W?
As a few others said here I am also not convinced with the school's communication. We called today to know more about the costs that wont be included in the fees (as the site says very comprehensively) and wanted to know about the sports facility, especially about swimming and badminton as my DS is keen on both. 4 times I tried and every time my call was sent to sports center though I specifically requested them to put me through one of the Sports Directors. I gave up after 45 minutes of try. From Sports center manager, I heard that to use the facilities outside school hours we need to take family membership (if parent take membership, DS's membership will be complementary). But he didnt know whether school will give any special coaching for the kid if he shows good interest and progress. Any one has got clue on this? If so please do share.
Also when inquired the Admin team, we were told DS can get internal scholarship which will be monitored continuously and awarded at the beginning of every year. When we told that we read from one internet site that the internal scholarship will be awarded only when the boy completes 2 years, the admin member said that's true but still they may consider in exceptional cases - quite confusing again - what are they trying to say???? Seeline told this is highly unlikely though not sure. So any one here to share any info on this please?
One of my friend has told the Asst Head is quite responsive. Other than that I didnt hear any good stuff about the school members.
Do Any one already accepted W offer? Here I have seen many have accepted T over W. So would like to know any one who is happy to go with W.

cheammum Tue 26-Feb-13 00:45:09

AspiMum....accepted 11+ W offer on full fees basis since last week...and very happy with decision made...no academic or sports scholarship offered...but wasn't expecting it ...although would have made the decision making process a lot easier as to whether to accept offer. Ds attended 2 day sports course last week and was adamant that even though he didn't enjoy as much some of the sports on the first day eg. hockey and rugby ( complained that it was too muddy) by the 2nd day he was sure that W was the school that he wanted to attend... Had a great time and loved to my surprise learning how to play golf, table tennis for example...Revisiting the school helped me make sure that I was doing the right thing...W seems the right environment to bring out the best in my Ds....he is bright but needs to be around other boys that are competitive and have worked hard to get a school place ...We have other good state school backups but we know our son best and know that he will not work to the the best of his ability if not pushed...What I love about W apart from the lovely grounds is that aspirations are set high and there is a good ethic social mix...so regardless of wether you are a great at sports, music or performing our Ds if he works hard has the opportunity to maybe one day go to Cambridge or Oxford ...it is not just a pipe dream...

The boys were friendly, the staff helpful and facilities great and Mr Becks is very approachable so if you have any concerns maybe try and contact him ...So yes ... It may be a bit of a financial struggle...but we think W is a great investment for our Ds based on where we live (T just that bit too far for us) ... and so think it is worth every penny. Hope you come to decision shortly ... You'll do what's best for your family in the end!

cheammum Tue 26-Feb-13 07:18:05

AspiMum ... forgot to mention that Ds loved the swimming although not the greatest swimmer and found badminton really fun...I think that Ds will be so busy with new clubs, making new friends, learning new activities and learning in a challenging environment that he won't be bored and therefore look forward to getting up in the morning for school....this is not happening currently while in Yr6 in state school because they are mainly concentrating on everyone achieving SATs at Level 4 standard, so Ds is becoming increasingly frustrated. W is the right school for our Ds and will bring out the best in him and hopefully he will make the most of all the new and exciting opportunities that it has to offer...In the end although this 11+ process has been the most stressful thing that I have ever done I am now so relieved that it is over and can now move onto the next chapter of secondary school highs and lows...so I say roll on September 2013...can't wait!

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