The Royal School, Haslemere(12 Posts)
Any opinions on both the Junior and Senior schools for my DDs (4 and 11)
We are relocating and now may be living in haslemere rather then guildford as we previsouly expected.
There feels something odd about the school to me, but i am yet to look around. I heard the school is struggling and hence moved to 'diamond structure' with boys being introduced but taught seperately. I also am concerned about its location which looks quite in the middle of nowehre off a bypass. Maybe this is because other schools i have looked at have been very much in towns or country but 'one site' locations. Is the split sites an issue?
What are the opinions on Royal Vs St Ives or Guildford High (DDs have places but Royal said have room should we wish to take a late place)
The Royal school is a good school, and its new Diamond approach is one I've some across before and thought made a lot of sense. However, it is not in the same league as GHS, if your daughter's have got into GHS, I would still send at least the older one (train? or is there a coach?). If possible.
Or maybe look at schools down the A3, eg. Churchers.
I think it depends on your daughter's temperaments. I have 3 nieces, one is at GHS and the other at The Royal (other is still at prep). They are different characters, with different abilities/outlooks on school life. Niece at GHS very academic, doesn't mind/crumble at idea of hard work . Other niece not so academic but enjoys school in general. Both very happy at their different schools.Is worth visiting them - and getting a feel for them both.
GHS is very academic and takes no prisoners. Agree with mummytime that the Royal is aiming at a very different type of girl. I don't think they are interchangeable, but only you know which your daughters would be better suited to. I know GHS very, very well; it's excellent academically, has better pastoral care than it is often given credit for, but is not great at supporting any sort of special need, even if minor, and definitely pursues excellence rather than inclusiveness with regards to sports teams and music. It's pretty tolerant of mavericks, and there are some excellent teachers there, but I wouldn't send a girl there unless she was bright AND prepared to work AND pretty switched on generally. From the little I know of the Royal, I think it's much, much gentler. You could also think about St Catherine's (Bramley, GHS competition), or Priors Field (Godalming, more like the Royal, but secondary only)
thank you for the responses. I had previsous worries GHS wouldnt be good for my DD who has had a dififcult past, shes very determined and deals with things well, but i know she may need supporting int he future as she matures and is likely to have to really accept what shes been through. I talked to a few parents and they are certain GHS is very supportive and has fab pastoral care... So in terms of GHS we are sure it is great of our daughters. I didn't realise it is not comparable with Royal.
We looked at St Cats but DD wasn't sure, and neither was I, of the very affluent image it gave. Possibly because it is a boarding school. I was impressed by thte new facilities but still felt my DD would not fit in.
Priors field was our other choice. We loved it but DD is very academic and I feel would thrive in an academic environment where she would be challenged and I can see she will suceed under the GHS ethos. I think we will go with that one for my 11 yo.
For my 4 year old, i'm now having doubts!! Ahh. I thought GHS was right for her, but shes very shy and easily overwhelmed, although bright. I want to look at some more nurturing smaller schools, in many ways to reassure myself GHS is right..or if I see it is not, to see what else is out there. Although GHS is only 18 max in reception.. so definately not huge! Ah confusion!
There's a lot of social overlap between GHS and St Cats, but I think you are right that there are even more even wealthier people at the latter. If you are worried about excessive affluence and your older DD is very academic, I would definitely go for GHS for her.
I don't know as much about GHS juniors, but there are entry points to GHS at 7 and 11, as you will know, and a lot of the girls are very fed up with it by 16 if they have been there from 4, so if you do decide to send the little one elsewhere at first and then transfer her to GHS, I don't think she'll lose out by doing that - and will gain a wider circle of friends than by being at the same school all the way through.
St Ives feeds both the Royal and GHS so mybe worth looking at for your younger dd
<I know GHS very, very well; it's excellent academically, has better pastoral care than it is often given credit for, but is not great at supporting any sort of special need, even if minor, and definitely pursues excellence rather than inclusiveness with regards to sports teams and music.>
I very much agree with this assessment of GHS. When I was there the pastoral care was, erm, leaving a great deal to be desired, but I've heard from numerous sources that it is very much improved.
I think it's wise that you're thinking ahead to the support your DD might need in the future. If it's not too sensitive an issue, could you raise it with GHS now, and try and ascertain to what extent they could help or where they might suggest you look for outside support?
Just seen this thread as I've been googling The Royal myself! I don't know GHS well but I do know the Royal. From what I understand about the senior school (my DD in the juniors) it is one of the best schools for dealing with wide ranging abilities - the league tables last week put it higher than GHS for A level scores and top 5 girls' school in Surrey for GCSE. However if you are looking for a more competitive 'winner takes all' environment then it is definitely not for you! I feel that children need to be relaxed, not pressured, to achieve and The Royal certainly seem to get results from all types of girls - in fact its strength seems to be that it doesn't take just one type and the senior girls that I have met seem to benefit from that.
My DD used to go to GHS but we moved her from there to the royal. She is dyslexic and found GH only focused on the outstanding achievers and she didn't get the help she needed. Also it is well known for anorexic behaviour in the later years. The royal is a fenominal school it is supportive and encouraging and i think that anyone would be stupid to send there child elsewhere as they helped my DD achieve all her goals and it was a freindly and supportive environment it is by far the best school in this area!
The location is in fact quite useful, as it's so easy to get to now that the tunnel has been opened. I work nearby and the tunnel has made a tremendous difference to travel times in the area, it's only about 5-10min from Haslemere (depending on where you are in Haslemere!). The school benefitted hugely from the redesign of the A3 because they had to give up some of their land and were paid well for that, which is why they have been able to reduce the fees recently.
I'm not convinced though about the diamond model though - either you want a single sex school or you don't - the senior boys will be sharing a site with the junior girls - if you're OK with this then fine, but seems weird to me (but then I work in a co-ed school!).
Is it only girls only schools that you are considering? There are also co-ed schools in the Haslemere area (either just Preps or all throughs)? Why not take a look at those before making your mind up finally? Details of the Hindhead/Grayshott schools on the Grayshott webpage... http://www.grayshott.com/wordpress/directory/children-education/
I was educated in both single sex and co-ed schools and have taught in both and have come to the conclusion that single sex schools do not do a great job of socially preparing you for the real world and having the opposite sex around.
All of my children go to the royal and I believe it is a fantastic school. Both my girls are very clever and get pushed to achieve what they can best which is great. My son isn't as mature and struggles with the core academic subjects. The one to one learning is great and helps him improve. The royal pride themselves in improving children. They take kids of all academic ability but teach to a good standard and achieve average GCSE s of the same good standard as schools like ghs who take only the best kids. The community within the school is great and all students get on well in a vibrant community and the teachers have the students best interests with them the whole time. Anyone considering the Royal shouldn't think twice.
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