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Pre prep/prep schools around Epsom, help!

(13 Posts)
ajs696 Sat 01-Feb-14 14:11:19

Hi, we've recently moved to Epsom and are looking for a prep school for or DS. We've looked at Kingswood House, St Christopher's, Priory, Aberdour and Downsend and we're struggling to decide between them. Does anyone have any experience of these schools? Any feedback on the schools, positive or negative would be very helpful. Thank you!

NuzzleandScratch Sat 01-Feb-14 14:14:59

My daughter was at the pre prep for Downsend in Leatherhead, and it was fantastic. So sad she had to leave when we moved out of the area.

homebythesea Mon 03-Feb-14 15:25:37

Another vote for Downsend - it really does pride itself on getting kids into senior schools of choice which of course is the whole point of a PREParatory school! Of all those you mention I think Downsend is the most academic but it is in no way pushy, and it has the better facilities. It's a big school but doesn't feel like it for the kids, big on sport and music, not so much drama IME. Great Holiday care provision as well if that is important to you

Umblubblub Mon 03-Feb-14 15:55:18

Thanks Homebythesea, that's helpful. DH is concerned Downsend is too 'corporate' , did you ever get that impression? He's worried Cognita will be more interested in their shareholders dividends than DS's education! I think that's the main thing holding us back from choosing it at the moment, as it does seem to have the best facilities by far.

neeti1 Mon 03-Feb-14 21:25:50

Hi, did you check St. Christopher's?

Umblubblub Mon 03-Feb-14 21:36:56

Yes, we thought it was a lovely school. We've visited them all but we're having trouble deciding which one to go for as they've all got pros and cons. Do you have any thoughts about St Christopher's Neeti1 ?

Frikadellen Tue 04-Feb-14 00:38:13

Dd2 and ds went to Kingswood House we loved it I cannot recommend it highly enoug.
coped with dd2s dyslexia and with ds being g&t the opposite end of spectrum s really but both children did wonderful at the school.

Their ethos seems to be every child is important and I for surr felt mine were

Frikadellen Tue 04-Feb-14 00:39:40

Have tou looked at Ewell castle?
I have friends who were very happy with it

Umblubblub Tue 04-Feb-14 07:00:44

We tried to go to one of the open days at Ewell Castle but the parking was chaos and after 20 mins we gave up, plus I'd have to battle through Epsom town centre traffic or do a long detour to get there. A friend of mine in Ewell village has 2 girls there who are both really happy. She thinks the school run from where I'm based would be horrific and based on our open day experience I'd tend to agree!

Kaekae Tue 04-Feb-14 10:51:03

My next door neighbours child went to Downsend and she always spoke very highly of the school.

homebythesea Tue 04-Feb-14 11:25:17

Re Cognita - I can honestly say that unless you knew the school was run by a company you wouldn't know IYSWIM

It really has NO effect on the children. As for parents it is honestly a blessing not to be asked to put hands in pockets for numerous fund raising drives as we experienced in a previous conventional charity school. The buildings are well kept, the equipment top notch etc etc. If some shareholders happen to be getting a few quid off the back of that well good luck to them I say. And the fees are market rate - you don't feel like you are lining the pockets of the Fat Cats smile

Umblubblub Wed 05-Feb-14 13:42:28

That's good to know, thank you!

Frikadellen Wed 05-Feb-14 14:13:21

If you do a search this has been discussed a few times on this forum.

I always sing KWH praises as to me it is the ultimate in schools. I wish we had not needed to move ds from there.. (but a 11/2 hour school run each day felt a bit much) Every school I have dealings with is compared to the benchmark of KWH..

The Head teacher is lovely the teachers were dedicated and interested in the children and my children (plus3 friends who also moved to this school ) thrived there..

we lived close to Downsend lodge in Epsom when we lived there and due to the way they treated us as neighbours we would not consider it as a school. I know this is perhaps not a direct reflection on how the school is with their students but for me the fact they could be so outright unplesant to their neighbours meant I was unwilling to give them my money.

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