Lingfield ND, Copthorne Prep, Reigate st Mary's, Micklefield, Hawthorns

(5 Posts)
rainbow4567 Tue 07-Mar-17 14:32:44

Hi can anyone offer any current or recent personal experiences of any of the above. We are looking at moving our children aged four and five from state to private school and we are scheduled to visit them all but would just be interested to hear any feedback. Thanks very much.

NikkiSurrey Thu 09-Mar-17 18:23:32

I only know about the last three. It depends a bit where your longer term aspirations for them lie?
Reigate St Mary's is the prep school for Reigate Grammar (RGS). Children there no longer have to go through the stress of the 11+, but instead get offered places based on their work through Years 4 & 5. Those who are thought likely to struggle at the Grammar are advised in Year 5 to explore other schools.
Micklefield is also a feeder prep for RGS, but the last I heard, didn't take up the offer to follow the same non-exam route, so I think children from there would have to take the 11+ entrance exam for RGS. Micklefield preps them for that and has a good track record of getting kids in.
Hawthorns goes up to 13 and tries to encourage families to stay until then. Good if you want your kids to 'stay young' and not be exposed to secondary school too soon! Some do leave at 11 and others stay until 13 - choosing to go onto boarding school or other 13+ schools.
RGS and Caterham are increasingly filling their places at 11 (year 7) so if you stay until 13 you may not be guaranteed a place (although some 11+ offers are made and held over)
Although people will argue for the differences, in reality they are all very good schools. RSM benefits and shares RGS facilities which are excellent. Micklefield perhaps slight bias towards music/ academics. Hawthorns great for extra-curricular and wraparound care (although further out of town).
I know people with children from all three and once they get to RGS they all do well and socialise together.

NikkiSurrey Thu 09-Mar-17 18:24:51

Just another thought - why not leave them in state school until Year 6 and tutor to get into independent from there?

rainbow4567 Sat 11-Mar-17 07:56:00

Thanks very much for your reply NikkiSurrey.

LIZS Sat 11-Mar-17 08:09:01

Do you plan to move at 11+ or 13+ and to where. Also where you live will probably determine which is more local. Nikki isn't entirely correct as now RGS are, and I believe C have just started ,offering deferred places so you apply at 11+ but start at year 9, although that only works for those in prep schools which go up to13 such as H and Copthorne. You could possibly add Hazelwood to your list. I've know people whose dc are older express positives and negatives for using same school up to 18 or switching from prep to secondary. Relatively few in a through school reappraise their options at transfer age and they are not prepared for other entrance tests. Chinthurst has also recently been added as a feeder to RGS , although small numbers at the moment it may mean they also get accepted more easily into RGS at 11 in future thus cutting places available for those elsewhere.

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