Marlborough House and Dulwich Prep

(33 Posts)
Trufflette Tue 19-Mar-13 00:27:26

We are new to the area and thinking of sending our DS and DD to one of these schools. We have seen them both and like them both. However, we don't know anyone yet who has kids at either school to get a better idea of what each school is like. We are quite down to earth folk and we want to ensure that wherever they go that they fill their potential academically are happy and are also very grounded. Any comments from people in the know would be most helpful.

Trufflette Mon 24-Mar-14 18:52:54

WARNING - LONG POST ALERT!!! I am very glad actually I didn't see this thread before we did make our decision. I saw some of the posts regarding DCPS which have now been removed and was quite frankly very shocked - had I not already seen it with my own eyes, I would have thought what an awful terrible school it was which would have been a real shame because it's not.

We sent ours to DCPS in the end. We loved MHS and I am sure we would have been very happy there and it certainly felt more "us" and understated than DCPS - although a little smug it has to be said and for all it's cosiness - it is still definitely a business first! But for various reasons, DCPS is where they are.

I have one in Little Stream and one in Upper School and certainly the experience is very different. Little Stream feels very cuddly and friendly and my child absolutely loves it and is very happy. Not the most sporty person in the world- there have been matches every week home and away and my child is included in teams and given as much opportunity as everyone else. It is not too pushy in terms of academics and achievement, but they are gently encouraged and well motivated. They are well taught but they are not heavy handed with the academics at this stage.

My other child is in Upper School. Quite different from Little Stream. Again my child is very happy and doing well. There is plenty of homework that is challenging but not so challenging that they are put off. The progress appears to be good for the level that my child is, which is probably average for the school. I do hear criticisms of progress at the ends of the academic spectrum - but for us it has not been a problem so far. Sports wise, again my child is not particularly sporty and certainly in Upper School it does seem that they concentrate predominantly on the A & B teams and my child has not had the match opportunities or away games that my other child in Little Stream has, which has been a bit disappointing. I think this is largely because DCPS is a big school and is often playing smaller schools. However, despite that, we have been very pleased with how things have gone and the opportunites provided. The teaching seems to be sound and whilst there are definitely some teachers I prefer to others, there are some really excellent enthusiastic teachers.

As a parent I have found it a very friendly school. It is quite big and therefore it is not as easy to infiltrate groups and I might have found it easier at a smaller school - but there are plenty of opporutnities to get involved. Having had first hand experience now, it has not been that expressed in the earlier, now deleted posts, which I find unrecognisable. It's a really good school and I would have no reason not to recommend someone sending their children here. I think all 3 of the schools round here are great and suit different personalities of children. If you pick one and can't in, you're still going to end up with a great school whichever one you go to.

Quite simply, I don't have especially outgoing, talented, very clever children who excel in various areas. However, they are happy, they are getting attention and given opportunities that they may not have had elsewhere. I've not been paid, bribed or anything to write this - I just felt that given the earlier posts, I should probably a give a more balanced and objective view based on my experiences so far and whilst I'm young enough in my experience not to be jaded through longevity!

WIth regard to the other two schools when scouting around for opinions, I only heard one negative comment regarding MHS - all others have been very positive as have all the comments about St Ronan's. However they are much smaller schools and as such have less people to please. The problem with a bigger school is that inevitably there will be a more diverse range of opinion.

The school does present itself as quite slick and on the surface and can appear a bit flash - but once you're there it's not like that at all. I feel quite comfortable there and I don't drive a 4 x 4 or wear Boden or come from TW! There is a HUGE mix of people from all sorts of backgrounds and it amuses me that people categorise mums and the "type" of people they are according to what school their children go to. Some people end up at one school because the other doesn't have spaces, some because it suits their child better - some because of location - some because one partner prefers the other - others because of fees. And what of those that send their children to different schools. I know of those that have them at MHS and Dulwich, Dulwich and St Ronans and MHS and St Ronans - what camp are they in? Having now met mums from all 3 of those schools - there is very little to choose between any of them. You find your niche. I think I've said enough now!!

mumtonwg Wed 12-Mar-14 14:11:46

Hello Trufflette which school did you choose in the end? And are you happy with your decision? We are deliberating right now.

abear Fri 31-Jan-14 08:37:00

Should say have been at MHS 9 years

abear Fri 31-Jan-14 08:13:37

I have two DS at MHS, we have been at the school and whilst no school will ever be perfect MHS is probably the perfect fit for us. Both DS love it and they are very different characters. The oldest gets lots of help preparing for his next school, is not a natural athlete but gets selected and loves team sports and just thrives in the supporting environment. MHS also has a new head who seems to be doing a great job.

PixMum Fri 24-Jan-14 19:39:24

Mmm, seems you can't give an honest and informed comment about DPS if it happens to be negative.

jemmamum Thu 16-Jan-14 19:57:05

Why not cull 13 of the 14 Chattyman repeat messages rather than views of parents, who, I agree, may or may not be right?

jemmamum Thu 16-Jan-14 19:51:35

Hello? The comment I commented on has been removed....and so was an earlier one after more than 6 months. Yet the comment from DPS remains now in splendid isolation! Is there a conspiracy going on? No freedom of speech anymore? Just joined and now wondering whether it was a wise move. Are you there, Big Brother?

Kent80mum Mon 13-Jan-14 11:32:43

I think the head of DCPS Kent is doing a great job. He has turned the school around from been run by bully parents. Now every child gets equal chances. It is great to see different children been given a chance to shine. Our eldest left a few years ago a happy, confident child and this is thanks to Mr David sorting out the bully in his year. I think you will find the Sports Dept do the teams and not the head. My youngest is going for Cranbrook and has full support and help from the fantastic, positive teachers at the school. People should only write about personnel experience and not Chinese whispers. I am not a member of staff, just a happy parent. I know lots of people who have good things to say about the head.

jemmamum Sun 12-Jan-14 16:58:08

wow! certainly not the same at my TW school where numbers have soared, new head arrived at the same time as DCPS head, and parents and pupils seem genuinely happy.

kentwife Fri 10-Jan-14 15:14:53

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

Chattymam Mon 25-Nov-13 07:07:02

Well I'm not sure what happened there,I'm not usually quite this chatty!!!

Chattymam Mon 25-Nov-13 06:46:15

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Chattymam Sun 24-Nov-13 22:51:09

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Chattymam Sun 24-Nov-13 22:50:22

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Chattymam Sun 24-Nov-13 22:49:10

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Chattymam Sun 24-Nov-13 22:48:38

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Chattymam Sun 24-Nov-13 22:47:51

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Chattymam Sun 24-Nov-13 22:47:50

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Chattymam Sun 24-Nov-13 22:46:51

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Chattymam Sun 24-Nov-13 22:44:49

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Chattymam Sun 24-Nov-13 22:43:58

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Chattymam Sun 24-Nov-13 22:43:04

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Chattymam Sun 24-Nov-13 22:40:40

My son has been at Dulwich Cranbrook now for 2 and a half years and I can honestly say the school really has exceeded our expectations. Our family has been made to feel so welcome, there is a real sense of community and most importantly our son is truly flourishing. We are not a very wealthy family and are totally down to earth, as are the vast majority of parents there! I would highly recommend DCPS to any parent considering a prep school.

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