Sixth Forms (Private or state)

(53 Posts)
lottie4576 Mon 19-Aug-13 09:58:30

I'm looking to move my DD at sixth form, but I'm in a bit of a dilemma as to what ones to look around as there are so many out there. We would like to have good Music and Sport (hockey especially) but we also want it to be academic (eg. in the top 100 schools in exam results). One of the key reasons for moving is we feel she is seen as a statistic and is not getting the notice she deserves for the amount she does for the school.

If anyone has any ideas of schools that might suit her please comment as we are nearing the Open day period, thanks

lottie4576 Mon 19-Aug-13 12:10:44

Sorry, forgot to add! If we went down the state route we would like the school to solely be a sixth form, we understand that we would probably not get the music or the sport there but it would be a possibility to do it outside of school. I think we would prefer to go private though as we would (with the right school) get the music and the sport along with the high academic standards.

basildonbond Mon 19-Aug-13 13:23:41

Where do you live as your local schools would surely be your first option - or is boarding a possibility

nothingtoseeheremoveon Mon 19-Aug-13 15:08:08

Why do you feel she needs to be noticed for what she does for the school? Surely that's an important lesson in life to learn, that the hard work that we do often goes unnoticed. Harsh but true.

IamFluffy Mon 19-Aug-13 15:18:28

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

lottie4576 Mon 19-Aug-13 15:35:53

My DD is at school every saturday and most sundays! She is a Music scholar and ano all-rounder scholar so she has to do a lot of things for the school. The thing that gets me is there are students who done nearly do as much as her and they seem to win prizes for that! Boarding is an option smile

complexnumber Mon 19-Aug-13 16:13:14

(I have replied a couple of times to your IB vs A'level thread)

Have you considered any of the international schools in the UK?

I am thinking of the American Community Schools (ACS) there are 3 of them: Hillingdon, Cobham and Egham (all easily googled). They all follow the IB and the experience of working within an international environment could be of immense benefit for her.

She would also be recognised for her extra curricular activities ( a requirement for the IB)They are certainly not only for Americans. I know the principal for one of them personally and he is an exceptional leader.

lottie4576 Mon 19-Aug-13 18:32:48

Thanks complexnumber I will look into some it! Thanks for your reply smile

lottie4576 Mon 19-Aug-13 18:46:39

I am also looking at sending her to another private school (preferably 13+ rather than 11+) has anyone got some ideas for this! This route would be my preferred route to take!

basildonbond Mon 19-Aug-13 18:52:00

I don't think anyone can give you any sensible advice unless you narrow your criteria a bit

Eg geographical location (even of boarding you wouldn't want her to be too far away as that would make it tricky for you to get to matches, concerts etc)

Single sex or co-ed, sporty, musical - what does SHE want her school to offer - and goes she actually want to move or are you just taking umbrage on her behalf - there's no guarantee she'd get noticed any more at a new school ...

LIZS Mon 19-Aug-13 18:57:12

How old is she now ? Agree you need to be more specific as to what you hope for - sporty (which ?), academic, musical , geographical, Sat school , 11+ vs 13+ entry ..... Will she sit CE where she is at present and what does the school advise ?

lottie4576 Mon 19-Aug-13 19:02:25

Im looking at schools for sixth form currently about to go into year11. She's very academic predicted almost all a*s at GCSE. Grade 7 and 8 in two musical instruments and got to regionals in hockey, we are looking around the sussex area up to about berkshire. Price could be a factor that could hold us back though! And it must be co-ed as I'm dead against single sex schools.

Inclusionist Mon 19-Aug-13 19:09:21

Wellington maybe? You will get everything laid on to a high standard there and she may well get a scholarship as it is not that academic although they would have you believe that they are .

Helpyourself Mon 19-Aug-13 19:12:24

Be very careful. Lower VI is very full on now. I'd avoid moving her as it can be too much to cope with a new setting socially and academically- there's no gentle lower sixth now with AS exams.

LIZS Mon 19-Aug-13 19:13:56

ah ok so you are looking for Sept 2014. not all schools play hockey so that should eliminate a fair few. Could you start with those she plays against already. The A level tables will be published very soon which will give you an idea of relative academics. Sevenoaks might be worth a look , Epsom, Cranleigh, City of London Freemans ...

lottie4576 Mon 19-Aug-13 19:15:45

Yes I have heard that the wellington head is PR obsessed! And that it isnt that academic although it did get good results this year I'm still sceptical about its academic standards! Its also very expensive and offers very little in the way of scholarships is there anymore insight anyone has on wellington? Still want to know some more about other schools!

lottie4576 Mon 19-Aug-13 19:18:49

Thanks LIZS I will look into the schools she plays, Epsom would be out of the question as I've heard that it is very poor academically but I'm definitely going to look into the city of london freemans

LIZS Mon 19-Aug-13 19:21:54

There may be a range of ability at Epsom but don't think "very poor" is a true description tbh, or maybe we just know the more successful ones !

lottie4576 Mon 19-Aug-13 19:24:11

Yes, I'm only going by what I've heard (not always the best thing to go by) but other mothers have said that academically it's not brilliant. But then again it is what the student makes of it

Inclusionist Mon 19-Aug-13 19:30:15

The education at Wellington is good. DH used to work there- there is a range of ability (from average up) but they do go to the ends of the earth to get the best out of every child. If I didn't dislike Seldon I would very happily send my DS there.

Heard good things about Brighton College. Seldon was there before Wellington so now it's like Wellington but with out him apparently .

lottie4576 Mon 19-Aug-13 19:31:03

Anyone else got any ideas for schools that will possibly suit her I need as much help as I can get!

lottie4576 Wed 21-Aug-13 08:06:21

Inclusionist, whats the pastoral care like as I know that a number of years ago there were lots of drug problems etc. I also understand that Wellington is eye wateringly expensive so do you know whether they had out scholarships of a fair amount and whether they would, if my DD was at the level needed, give her a scholarship even though she would be joining for the sixth form?!

Inclusionist Wed 21-Aug-13 17:53:40

I've just asked my DH about how many bursaries were around (he left 6 years ago) and he sucked his teeth a bit, but Wellington are keen to boost their academic standards so with your DDs predicted grades he thinks she would probably be offered a means tested bursary. You would have to ring and speak to the Bursar.

The pastoral care is good. In each house the Housemaster and Undertutor both live in (DH was an Undertutor) and there is at least one other member of staff in the House every evening. There are also Matrons in House all day everyday and a good San with a councillor. There will be misdemenours in any boarding school but I would say Wellington have a hard line policy on drink and drugs which minimises the problem effectively. During our time there there was an anonymous report made that a boy had drugs in his room. The police were requested to bring sniffer dogs immediately, the drugs were found and the boy went home that night and did not return. This is a FAR more robust response than we have seen at some other schools we have lived in!!

Inclusionist Wed 21-Aug-13 17:58:53

PS My DH says SWPS! ;-)

lottie4576 Thu 22-Aug-13 09:20:38

Inclusionist, the pastoral care sounds pretty good! Sorry I think I am now being a bit thick but what does SWPS mean?!

Waferthinmint Thu 22-Aug-13 09:31:26

Independent sixthform college. Very musical, creative and gets good results too. Very expensive though!

Inclusionist Thu 22-Aug-13 09:36:58

Sir William Perkins' School. I have to say this is NOT his unbiased opinion!! ;-) Also I see you are against single sex so it wouldn't suit anyway.

curlew Thu 22-Aug-13 09:41:59

I honestly wouldn't move for 6th form unless you really have to/she really wants to (you haven't said how she feels about it).

It's full on from the start in the 6th theses days, and finding your feet with a whole lot of people already established in a school can be very difficult. Moving to a college is different-everyone's new at the same time.

What sort of recognition were you expecting for her?

Helpyourself Thu 22-Aug-13 10:46:09

^^ what Curlew said.
She'll be entering a new environment socially at the same time as having to hit the ground running academically. And if she's boarding you won't be able to support her. You'd have to have a really good reason to move her.

lottie4576 Thu 22-Aug-13 17:33:21

Our DD says that she would quite like a change for sixth form. That doesn't mean that we are definitely going to move her and it doesn't mean that she definitely wants to move but we are looking around as the situation could change over the next year! If anyone has any ideas post them because we would rather have loads of schools to look into rather than just a few as we do want the best for her! Thanks a lot smile

curlew Thu 22-Aug-13 17:57:59

I do think- sorry- that once they get to 6th form it shouldn't be a case of you moving her- it should actually be entirely her decision.

mummytime Thu 22-Aug-13 18:07:22

Really good sixth form colleges offer good sport and music eg. Peter Symond's or Godalming or Alton.

lottie4576 Mon 26-Aug-13 13:28:31

Thanks all for your posts! We are refining our search to know more than 1 hour and a half from the heart of sussex as otherwise logistically it will be a nightmare getting her back if she chooses to board at weekends! Although she wants to move we are still quite sceptical of the fact that she would have to find new friends but we are willing to look around for her sake! smile

derektheladyhamster Mon 26-Aug-13 17:36:54

Not to everyones taste I know, but have you considered Christ's Hospital in Horsham? It has the music and sport as well as generous burseries. Quite a large intake at 6th form.

ShipwreckedAndComatose Mon 26-Aug-13 17:44:42

Brighton College? Christ's Hospital?

lottie4576 Mon 26-Aug-13 20:27:55

We went round christs hospital and she plays a lot of hockey there but wasn't really what we wanted! Im worried that BC might be just trying to get results out of kids now a days even though it has got the sport and music (possibly not the hockey though!) is there any school similar to BC that anyone knows of that gets excellent results but is less of a hothouse, pressure is fine but I dont agree with pilling it on pupils!) but also has better hockey? Im not really sire whether this exists tbh!!!

MABS Sat 31-Aug-13 11:02:21

Hurst is great smile

DalmationDots Sat 31-Aug-13 13:28:42

Westminster if she is super academic
Wellington, I know you've mentioned it but if you could get a bursary then it would be a great option
Brighton College
Hurstpeirpoint, DD is friends at uni with a boy from there who seems very well rounded and academic too
Charterhouse, wouldn't actually reccommend it due to personal preference and reports of girls being badly treated at first- she needs to be feisty! But it could be right for your DD. Offer big scholarships.

lottie4576 Sat 31-Aug-13 16:14:19

DalmationDots thanks for your post really helpful! Westminster probably isnt for her due to the lack of sport. We are going to look at Hurst so any views/info on it would be great! I forgot about charterhouse having a coed sixth form so I will look at that to! If anyone has any views on the schools above or has any other suggestions I would be really interested thanks!!! grin

Clavinova Sat 31-Aug-13 16:38:07

Reigate Grammar School? Not quite as exclusive as some of the other schools mentioned but they are very hot on academics, music and hockey! It's an independent day school starting at age 11 with a coach service from Crawley and Horsham.

MABS Sat 31-Aug-13 16:55:44

what do you want to know about Hurst? dd just finished there after 8 years, off to uni. ds in year 7 .

lottie4576 Sat 31-Aug-13 22:25:31

MABS is it a good school academically? As I've heard mixed views on this. I have also heard that the quite few pupils are very sociable wink

MABS Sun 01-Sep-13 11:22:50

great school academically, but not as selective at Brighton College I have to say, lots of friends kids there too. Hurst is more 'rounded' in my opinion. yep there are lots of parties coz they all hit 18 in sixth form, but no more than Brighton college, Lancing and Ardingly, really the kids from these schools are mix together constantly I have found, very close friendships so all in same social group for parties.

DD loved the sixth form, and boarded most of upper sixth as most of them do. Housemistress is totally amazing , just brilliant.

lottie4576 Mon 02-Sep-13 16:56:39

MABS thanks, just out of interest why do you think Hurst is more rounded?

lottie4576 Mon 02-Sep-13 16:57:25

I would be interested to know of some schools in Surrey that are bery good

beachyhead Mon 02-Sep-13 17:10:33

Godalming College has already been mentioned, as well as Peter Symonds. Both state, but academic, mixed and pretty good catchment from high achieving private schools. Easily manageable from mid Sussex and if the reports of universities preferring state school candidates, a point to be considered.

BlackMogul Tue 03-Sep-13 00:34:11

Shame you want a mixed school because Queenswood at Potters Bar, Hertfrdshire would suit you. They have a range of very bright to averagely academic girls but are a top school at hockey. Lots of county players down the years and very hot for tennis too. Bursaries are given but means tested. Scholarships worth nothing, even academic ones. If you don't get a bursary, fees will set you back about £30,000 a year but then every decent boarding school charges that. They also do mosly weekly boarding now unless you are overseas so you need to look for something similar nearer to home. We looked at Wellington for DD2 and were not happy with the spin at open day and pressure to do IB at prospective 6 th form student evening. I do understand what your DD feels about recognition. Schools have favourite children and these are not necessarily the ones who put themselves out for the school, they are often the ones who have little to say and just agree with leadership all the time. It is very annoying and DCs see this as very unfair. It is not a lesson to be learnt when it is teachers being unfair who should know better. Some schools will always pick the obedient non- opinionated ones for leadership positions so the teachers dont have to discuss anything with articulate young people who disagree with them. A leading Headmistress (I forget who) has just said girls should be encouraged to debate and stand up for themselves or they will never be able to cope with alpha males at work! She has a point.

BlackMogul Tue 03-Sep-13 00:37:07

Forgot to mention Hurtwood House, Surrey. You will need deep pockets though. All 6th form. Take a look at their web site. Fees were breathtaking last time I looked!

beachyhead Tue 03-Sep-13 08:04:10

I should also add that godalming and PS sixth form close their books quite early in the autumn term...

MABS Tue 03-Sep-13 08:34:51

dd was offered Brighton and Hurst. she is quite an all rounder, and although she was academic enough to get into Brighton (not easy!), she much preferred all the different activities at Hurst and really it came down to the great 'vibe' in the school, a real buzz. Also very much liked the Head.

Needmoresleep Tue 03-Sep-13 09:21:16

What is the problem with Westminster sport? Two full afternoons during the week, a full set of fixtures most Saturday afternoons and a brilliant new sports hall open until quite late most evenings. Plus a culture which expects students to do more than simple focus on exam results.

If you are looking for a sixth form which is both academic and rounded it has to be worth a look.

lottie4576 Sat 07-Sep-13 13:27:48

Needmoresleep i know that Westminster is very hard to get into and it is too much of an Academic environment so I wouldnt want her going there! I also know that the sport isnt great even though they do it

lottie4576 Sat 07-Sep-13 13:28:37

Any more ideas, I dont know of many schools so if you just post a list of schools that would be just as good! Thanks all grin

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