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St Micheals,Saint Peirre,Alleyn Court,Thorpe Hall or Crowstone School in Leigh on sea

(22 Posts)
Americanmoninengland Mon 08-Feb-16 16:47:35

We are moving to the Leigh on sea and would love to hear comments on these independent schoosl.We have two children who have so far been educated in international schools and are achieving well.Thank you in advance.

gallicgirl Mon 08-Feb-16 16:56:23

Out of interest, why are you looking at independent schools? There are very good primary schools in the area but I admit it's probably easier to get into the independent schools!

I know a child who went to Crowstone. I wouldn't say it benefited him especially. He didn't even sit the 11+ if that's a consideration for you.

Americanmoninengland Mon 08-Feb-16 17:02:28

Yes I doubt my children will both get a place in our school which will be West leigh.Definitely want an academically strong school whether.Not sitting the 11+ is not a good sign.

Americanmoninengland Mon 08-Feb-16 18:08:43

St Micheals looks like a very vibrant school,from their website and would also be close to our new home.??

Pm123 Mon 08-Feb-16 23:18:58

Hi, I have three children at Crowstone and can't recommend it highly enough - it has an excellent academic record and like any good independent school, gets the right kids into grammar. West Leigh is a great school - large but very good. St Michaels also good - on the larger side and has waiting lists but definitively worth a look. Thorpe Hall and Alleyn Court are about a 20 min drive away but have great facilities so also worth a look. You really need to book appointments, take your children and get a feel for which environment suits them best. You are in a win win situation though as all the independent schools and your catchment state school are good. Best of luck.

gallicgirl Mon 08-Feb-16 23:21:28

I don't know St Michaels at all, sorry.
I take it you have a home lined up and will be making in-year applications?

In fairness, the child may not have been very bright and no amount of tutoring would help so please don't dismiss the school on one anecdote.

Are you familiar with the area? It's always a good idea to visit a new school.

Americanmoninengland Tue 09-Feb-16 09:15:02

Thank you both.I had a look at the isi reports and all very impressive,except Crowstone,I would all so worry about the viability of a school with so few pupils.Also no SATS information on their website.My soon to be next door neighbour said it should. definitely be St Miicheals or Allyen Court.She said that they will stretch an academically able child and also have the enough children so mine would be sure to make friends.

Americanmoninengland Tue 09-Feb-16 11:28:07

gallicgir.It seems by reading the ISI report and subsequent Ofsted report for Crowstone which was done in November 2015 your girlfriends son may well have been let down by the school.West leigh will not have places for both my children so I will see St Micheals and Alleyn Court.Unfortunately Alleyn Court will be have a new headmaster,the school he is off to take charge of has a wonderful reputation.Hopefully they have chosen this wisely again
Many Thanks.

Stillspringwater Wed 10-Feb-16 12:52:51

My children went to Alleyn Court all four flew in to the grammar school of their choice.Great for drama and sport too.St Michaels is also a super school closer to you if that's a consideration.You are right to discard Crowstone they very few pupils,most bright pupils leave,so hardly any pass the 11+.Good luck with your move.

myworkisneverdone Thu 11-Feb-16 00:23:50

Hi. I went to Crowstone when I was younger and now have two kids at the school, both doing very well. Of course I would highly recommend it! But I'm biased! So my advice would be to go and see for yourself which school suits you and your child best, ask as many questions as you can directly and bring up any concerns, rather than listening to hearsay and then make up your own mind.
I've learnt to treat government approved inspectorate results (like Ofsted and ISI) as one of many factors when weighing up the decision of which nursery/preschool/school to send my children to. Much of it is just box ticking but the environment your children spend most of their time isn't a box ticking thing to me. They are little people so your gut feeling when you walk round a school counts for a lot.

It is only fair to address Stillspringwater's sweeping statement of 'most bright pupils leave'. This is just not true. One child accepted a scholarship to the feeder school for Eton and Harrow, another has their pick of the three top Drama schools in the country and 66% of their pupils gained entry into the grammar schools.

Good luck with your move and this very personal decision. x

Takeonestepatatime Thu 11-Feb-16 06:53:22

When did Crowstone last get 66% of year six into grammar school?How many are going this year?As from commenting on individual children how much of that is down to Crowstone?They don't even have a drama teacher anymore.ISI and Ofsted reports do matter, the OP thinks they do and she is right.The last one( Ofsted) mentioned bullying for goodness sake!.Alleyn Court and St Michaels are thriving schools but I think that the OP has figured that one out herself.Many children leave before year 6 including members of my extended family now doing well at one of the other schools mentionedThis year a large number left in year 3,4and 5 to attend other local schools.Nothing in the reports surprised our family.

Leigh on sea/Westciff is a very small area especially when to comes to schools so I think it's was very inappropriate to comment on individual children unless their parents choose to.As you have however.I had the pleasure of meeting the little boy(who was just about to go off to boarding school) at the Southend Musicial Festival.
My children were competing and they had the same drama teacher ( not at school) He was outstanding and was a winner that evening competing against much older children.He is certainly a loss to one of our grammar schools.Children like this boy (not that I've met many)would stand out a mile at any local school especially Crowstone.Best of luck with your move OP and PM me is you have any questions as I know all the schools well

Takeonestepatatime Thu 11-Feb-16 07:37:05

Just to add Westleigh is a great school so always worth putting your children's names down as places do sometimes do come up due to families moving home etc.Very supportive parents and always lots off to grammar school.

Thiswillbetheday Thu 11-Feb-16 09:28:04

My children also attended Alleyn Court and both went on grammar school.Alleyn Court and St Michaels are both very transparent when it comes to leavers destinations.Crowstone are not,high numbers go every year from these schools.Crowstone send two last year.That's usually about the number so they shouldn't be saying 66 %.What did parents say when they received a copy of these reports,I wonder??Also an earlier post said Alleyn Court have a super drama teacher.You will see it all for yourself when you visit,so glad Alleyn Court is on you list.Good Luck x

Friedgreentomato Sat 13-Feb-16 13:27:42

My daughter is at WCHSG and I have a son at KEGS in both doing well.They went to St Michaels and were both stretched by the school.My daughter loves drama and they have a super drama teacher.The children love her so much they go to classes outside school as well.They have just had an outstanding report too.I know people who have removed their children from Crowstone at the end of last school year,3 girls left at the end of year 5 alone.Many more have left since across the year groups and this was from a school with very small numbers to start with.I hadn't read the reports until now and I am not surprised parents have chosen to do this.How the previous poster could say these reports are just box ticking,I don't know.Has she read them?As for 66% going to grammar,2 passes last year and 2 this year.St Michaels and Alleyn Court has leavers destinations on their websites.

Alleyn Court is also very popular and the new head has had great success at previous schools.Westleigh is also a great school lots of families pay to live in the catchment area based on the schools reputation alone.

Stillspringwater Sun 14-Feb-16 12:10:18

The real shame is that parents in a failing independent school are being sold short.Our children deserve the best.Many parents do vote with their feet and leave but others stay no matter what.Maybe they are being told your child needs a tiny class etc.Anybody who knows anything about education knows that a class of 5,6,7 is no good for a child.No school would have these numbers by choice.Children will never realize their full potential. Luckily we have some outstanding independent schools,they do often have waiting lists.Otherwise send your children to one of the outstanding or good state schools in the area. School inspectors reports are easy to find online.Information on a schools website should be true but as mums who want the very best for our children we usually find out very quickly if it not.

Ontherightsideoftheroad Mon 15-Feb-16 11:50:17

I bet mywork wishes she hadn't posted about her school on here now!My child was at Crowstone briefly.I never realized how on the ball Ofsted are.Who is telling her that her children are doing well,not the same person who says 66% passed the 11+ I hope.Perhaps it was the person who told her reports are just box ticking.Even if you never wanted your child to do the 11+,let's face it most parents who pay for private education in this area hope they will be in with a good shot,this school will fail them.The child who is on his way to Public school stood out a mile as the previous poster said and he was not even at the school long.My child was in awe of him.His parents got him there and good luck to him and them.Very little work is done there and children are being let down.This undoubtedly leads to the bad behaviour as they get older.Selling it as a family school who on earth would want that for the children?The thing that amazed me is the children is how few children start in nursery/reception and are still there at the end of year 6.Don't other people find this strange!

As for bullying my child saw it and as Ofsted was nothing was ever done or recorded about it.The child that my child saw being punched by older children is now longer at the school either so I guess that's problem solved then,surely not even mywork is that naive.The sad thing is to see mothers saying happy family school so as long as it's not their child this time.I didn't want my child in an unsafe environment apart from the lack of work being done.I teach my child that this behaviour is completely unacceptable but yet he saw it happening at Crowstone where it was.I am pleased to say my child being well brought up so would never join in.

On a positive not my child will sit the 11+ and will stand a very good chance of success.We have done lots of work with the help of his very supportive current school.

Lovelivingbythesea Tue 23-Feb-16 17:29:29

This is a real eye opener to a local mum who is yet to decide on where to send my children when are old enough start school.I've heard really good things about Alleyn Court from friends who send their children there so we are leaning towards it at the moment.I live near Crowstone School and see so few children going in is a puzzle to see how it survives.After reading this thread I read the ISI and Ofsted reports now I'm even more puzzled.No state school in the area never mind a private would have a report this appalling.I actually feel sad more than anything,the thought of the kind of bullying as mentioned in the post above is heartbreaking.But then giving false exams results on your website says it all!

shannonriver Wed 09-Mar-16 14:24:41

K. has attended Crowstone for over a year. It’s like being taught in a large family where each child matters. He enjoys learning, has made great progress in the 3 Rs and takes a full part in the many cultural and sporting activities provided. K’s achievements are due in no short measure to the dedication, knowledge and understanding of the teaching staff as well as the ethos of the school.
Given our experience as a family, we would like to address some of the issues that have been raised in the discussion so far. Many of them seem to be based on anecdote rather than facts.
11 +: We understand that parents make the decision on whether their child should sit based on advice from the school. Grammar schools aren’t suitable for all. One member of our family didn’t take it. He went along the apprentice route and is now a high earning electrician.
To make a statement, based on rumour, that the gifted child was not supported by the school is dis ingenuous to say the least .Surely the fact that his parents chose Crowstone says something positive about the school .
Drama, music and sport are very evident. The children’s’ performances are a joy to watch in all these subjects. Furthermore, because the numbers are small, each child gets very involved they all feel they have a vital part to play.
Ofsted ISI Reports: we agree they are very important .Reports on all schools cite areas that require improvement. We think that this is positive not negative aspect of inspection of all schools. We would be concerned if the school did not respond to the issues raised.
Bullying etc. Once again this anecdote appears to be based on hearsay. All schools have to deal with bullying. Just because bullying occurs doesn’t mean it’s a bad school. Factors that need to be taken into account are the details and what the school, parents and other agencies did to deal with and rectify it.
We did our homework and visited many schools before making our decision to send K to Crowstone. During our visit, it was very moving to see confident children who were focussed on their school work and were happy to share their achievements with us. In our opinion it is imperative that parents visit schools in order to establish what is best for their child. Purely relying on other parents’ anecdotes is risky to say the least.

Citygirl1234 Wed 09-Mar-16 15:30:03

I think the posts were due to the fact a current parent said 66% of year 6 go to a grammar school,also it does say that on the website but it's just not true.As a parent you must be aware of the number of children leaving in the last few terms.What did the school do about the bullying nothing according to Ofsted despite the fact it was physical so should be easily seen by the staff.As the previous mum said her child and the child who was bullied have left the school,they clearly didn't matter to the school.No school has these numbers by choice and whilst I have no personal experience of Crowstone our school like many other gets to hear about the lack of teachers,lack of work being done and bad behaviour from ex Crowstone parents who are now at our school.2 children passes the 11+ last year and 2 this year if that's 66% it must have very small numbers indeed.As for commenting on an individual gifted child who didn't finish his primary education at the school makes me wonder if he and the child who was physically beaten were the same child.I would be outraged if I were his parents.

Citygirl1234 Wed 09-Mar-16 16:10:10

Just to add I am sure his parents were as just as outraged as I would be.I hope the child is now at a school with great pastoral care and will be able to move on from this.After all we all know that the bullies are the ones who have low self-esteem issues,with support he will flourish and they will be left just as they are.Most schools do not tolerate physical bullying so they will face hugh problems unpon entering senior schools who will not be so desperate for the fees.

Citygirl1234 Thu 10-Mar-16 15:52:14

Still nobody coming back to say why the school put false 11 + exam results on their website ?? Transparency is so improtant when it comes to who we should trust with our children.

Sohappywithnewschool Sat 12-Mar-16 12:04:51

I have had to change my name for this post but feel it very important to comment on this school from a parents point of view.My two children were at the school and it is not a safe environment for children.The reports were spot on but even they did not give the complete picture.Very few qualified staff,long periods of free time in year 5 and 6.Two very short parents evenings where no example of work is shown to parents to be no longer than 5 minutes(it states in the letter).66% do not pass the 11+ and the few that do are not down to the school.Physical bullying yes,that little boy was beaten and ignored.Every child in the playground was well aware of it.No records kept,I'm not surprised. The three bullys parents must be aware by now,how is allowing their sons behave like this preparing them for senior school?.My daughters friend was told to mind her own business by a member of staff when she tried to comfort him after a particularly bad beating when he was clearly upset.Long parts of the day taken up by P.E.,in a school with no teams.Lessons taken by an unqualified man and elderly woman,who is most unkind and unprofessional(especially to the girls).No drama teacher which is highly unusual for any school.Children often wander out unaccompanied in the evening.No changing facilities for girls or boys.Old fashioned family values thank goodness these values are not longer in fashion.If you dare to bring up any issues with the school sarcastic remarks will be made about your child.My current state school which has a mix of children is miles ahead.No child would be beaten in the playground and bad behaviour would never be ignored.Teachers are qualified and bend over backwards so children can succeed.The day is busy and children don't get bored.I remember overhearing the way in which an adult spoke to another child one morning and it was the straw that broke the camel's back for me.Children's self esteem is too important for happiness in their future life to allow them to be treated like this.

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