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Highfield or Cheam as feeder fir Marlborough?

(3 Posts)
QuickestBrownFox Tue 08-Jul-14 22:04:21

Re-posted from Secondary Education (oops):

Background: DS about to start at Marlborough this September. We have been living abroad for the past five years; will be moving back to London within the next 18 months.

DD keen to follow DS to Marlborough. She has just finished equivalent of UK Year 4 so likely we will be looking for Years 7 and 8 at a suitable feeder prep.

Dilemma: After a fair amount of research and several school visits (and registrations), we've narrowed our favourites to Highfield and Cheam but finding it very hard to decide between the two. Both appealed for very different reasons. Cheam is undoubtedly the shinier of the two but Highfield seemed the homier....Both appear to have their fair share of successes at scholarship/common entrance. Both appear to be very happy, friendly schools. DD a decent all rounder. Likely a scholar. Possibly an art scholar. Socially sporty in that 9-year-old-girl-makes-the-A team-but-still-likes-the-odd-twirl-and-chat-with-the-opposition-during-crucial-phases-of-play kind of fashion!

Any experience: good, bad or ugly of either/both out there?

goinggetstough Wed 09-Jul-14 07:43:53

I see you will be living in London so I assume your DD will be a weekly boarder? According to the ISC there are only 36 boarders at Cheam and there are 90+ at Highfield. I know Highfield as my DC's prep used to play sport against them and it was always a friendly school. I would personally prefer a school with more boarders.
Have you looked at Windlesham House which has more boarders, a good bus link to London and a comparable scholarship record. It is a school which is often discussed positively on Mumsnet.

QuickestBrownFox Wed 09-Jul-14 22:38:00

Yes, DD will be weekly boarding. A very good point re the number of boarders. I had understood that the majority of year 7&8 children weekly boarded at Cheam but perhaps this is not the case? I was a little unsettled by the hot-bed set up there (flexi-boarders share use of beds in dorms, i.e., Child A has bed Mon-Weds; Child B has it Thurs & Fri). Of course weekly boarders have one allocated bed but I think that the system must make for a lot of coming and going within the dorm during the week.

Windlesham House hadn't crossed my radar but just googled and seen that it's in West Sussex. I'd much prefer to have both DD and DS in same-ish neighbourhood for drop offs, matches etc.. Thanks for the recommendation though - but for the location, looks ideal.

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