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Cathedral School vs Howell's

(8 Posts)
daddymatti Tue 09-May-17 17:56:25

Hello folks

Does anyone have any experience with either of these two schools?We're moving back to Cardiff in a month or so and looking for our 4 yr old daughter. Thanks!

anansiboy Wed 10-May-17 12:15:22

Hi. I have two daughters in The Cathedral School and am very happy with it. I have no personal experience of Howells, but friends whose daughters go there are also happy.

Is there anything specific you want to know?

daddymatti Wed 10-May-17 13:28:11

Cheers for the response. Academically there seems to be little to separate them but just wondered if there had been any recent changes to either that Estyn reports won't have shown yet?

anansiboy Wed 10-May-17 14:01:46

I can only speak for CSL, but we now have a new head (the first female head ever yay!) and she has brought a very different, more caring ethos with her. This last academic year has seen many positive changes and I'm very excited for the future!

When my first daughter joined 8 years ago, the school felt very much like a boys' school with a few girls thrown in. Girls' activities seemed to always play second fiddle.
But that has all changed now. The atmosphere is more balanced and egalitarian, with equal opportunities. The new head of primary (starting Sep) is also female and has many innovative ideas.

The school's also very balanced between academics, sports and music. One of my girls is sporty and the other is musical, and the wealth of opportunities available to both of them is really good. The teachers are mostly all excellent.

You will really only be interested in the early years at the moment, I suppose. I'm past those years, but can say the Junior department is stellar right now.

daddymatti Wed 10-May-17 14:19:37

Refreshing and pleasing to hear! Thank you for the info, it's been a big help. Matt

daddymatti Wed 10-May-17 18:46:34

One more question if you don't mind, although I appreciate it may be personal. I understand that CSL fosters a Christian ethos, which I am happy with having gone to a C/W school myself. Would you describe the school as overly religious or is it simply more a case of developing values and morals around a more traditional style of schooling? Religious 'lite' if you will.

anansiboy Wed 10-May-17 21:00:25

It's definitely a case of developing a strong sense of values. The children are, of course, taught about the story of Christ, but they are also taught the basics of several other religions. The school has a very strong relationship with Llandaff Cathedral, so the pupils attend one service every week Y3 upwards. The school choirs (both girls and boys) sing for the Cathedral's services, and it is a joy to listen to them. But overall, it is about fostering an ethos of tolerance, hard work, and compassion. Very old-school, but with new-school kindness grin

In Infants, they have traditional nativities at Christmas with a baby Jesus etc (which I really like, personally) but it becomes less religious the higher they go up the school.

I should mention that the current school priest is a gem, and his main focus is to provide pastoral care to all the students, irrespective of which faith they come from. I attended his Christingle service last year and he made it very accessible (I am not from the Christian faith)

It depends on where your line of comfort is though. I have personally never found the school overbearing on the religion front! To be honest, I am fairly confident Howells is the same in this respect. I have never heard any parent grumble about this over the years.

daddymatti Thu 11-May-17 14:30:38

Thank you so much for a great detailed response. You've been a huge help, I really appreciate it.

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