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St Paul's Cathedral School - views please?

(21 Posts)
mummy2N1 Fri 27-Nov-15 08:57:18

Hi all, our DD1 has been offered a place at SPCS for 4+ September 2016. We're over the moon as it will avoid the Hampstead shlek for us, and we love the music/drama on offer and the general feel of the school. We are now wondering: 1) how do the girls tend to do at SPCS given it is boy heavy in later years (with choristers coming in at 7 and given it is mostly boys in Yrs 7 and Yrs 8)? 2) what are the usual exit schools for the girls and do they get the support needed for the 11+? We also have the choice of a lovely non-selective all-girls school, but slightly further away from us. I'd appreciate any help! Thank you!!

avacat Fri 27-Nov-15 10:45:43

Bump. We would love to hear views on the school too. Our DS has just been offered a place. Thanks!

BoboChic Fri 27-Nov-15 10:47:11

My cousin's DD goes there (currently Y4) and they love it. Think City Girls is on the cards for secondary.

mummy2N1 Fri 27-Nov-15 11:12:54

Thank you for replying BoboChic, that's helpful! Anyone else? Avacat, our children may be friends :-)

BoboChic Fri 27-Nov-15 11:16:00

I'm trying to recall what my cousin has said about it. I remember something about "high standards and low pressure" which she liked a lot.

BoboChic Fri 27-Nov-15 11:17:43

I should probably also quantify my post with the info that my cousin is über high achieving and full of intellectual and musical ambition for her DC. Not a laid back sort, as befits a city lawyer married to a city lawyer.

avacat Fri 27-Nov-15 12:04:46

Bobochic that is very useful indeed. Thanks a million! Bit worried about the über high achieving part. Both DH and I did very well-we had to-due to our not so privileged backgrounds and were immigrants, but DS is laidback and refuses to be pushed and I tend to let him be.

Do you know what your cousin does for after-school childcare, as the clubs seem to be limited (and there are none at reception as far as I know). Both DH and I work and we might have to employ an after-school nanny if DS does go to SPCS. Sorry for the questions!

mummy2N1, yes smile

BoboChic Fri 27-Nov-15 13:31:18

Yes, after-school nanny and then a bit of PT work. I think probably an after-school nanny is the realistic option.

Methren Fri 27-Nov-15 14:52:12

I have DCs at SPCS. It's a great school and I can recommend it unreservedly.

Until Year 7, the boy-girl mix is pretty even, and I don't think girls are at any disadvantage. More and more London boys' schools are moving to 11+ entry, so quite a few of the boys leave at the end of Year 6. And there is lots of support and preparation for the 11+. However this is as low key as possible as the head is very hot on minimising entrance exam stress for the kids. The ones that stay on tend to be heading for boarding schools at 13+.

The music is amazing (for all the kids not just the choristers). Most children play an instrument and there are lots of opportunities for them to perform in concerts or at assemblies. The school choir (non-choristers) is very impressive for a primary-aged choir.

The school is academic without being a hot-house. Both my DCs are stretched academically, and one has received support in an area they struggled with. All this was just arranged by the school, without fuss and without us as parents even requesting it. The school really treats children as individuals. It has a lovely ethos and atmosphere.

The vast majority of parents are friendly and down-to-earth. Some parents are clearly wealthy enoug for fees to be a non-issue, some (like us) make big sacrifices to afford it. Definitely worth it though!

mummy2N1 Fri 27-Nov-15 15:17:29

Thank you so much for taking the time to reply Methren! I realise we're in a lucky position to have a choice of schools. You've confirmed what I thought/hoped... From talking to other parents, length of commute etc does matter, so as SPCS is our closest one, my hunch is that this is the one to go for. Maybe I'll bump into you sometime! Thanks again.

avacat Fri 27-Nov-15 16:24:54

Thanks very much for the response Methren, very helpful and reassuring.

pebble1978 Thu 21-Jan-16 12:28:27

Hi mummy2N1 and avacat, we are in the same position as you mummy2N1 - looking at SPCS for our daughter and Cavendish in Camden. Our daughter has been offered a place for this year in reception at St Paul's and we are finding it tough to decide what is best! Thanks for starting this thread!

mummy2N1 Thu 21-Jan-16 13:19:14

Glad it has been helpful pebble1978! I spent the Christmas hols chatting to parents/analysing exit results - rather obsessively. Methren has been very helpful. It's such a huge (and expensive!) decision. Now I've made my mind up, I feel a lot more zen. Good luck with your decision!

CruCru Thu 21-Jan-16 20:43:25

Hi all

Our son has a place here, to start Reception in September 2016. I'm really pleased - although I hope that they get a really great new headmaster now that the current one is leaving.

CruCru Thu 21-Jan-16 20:48:26

Methren Thu 21-Jan-16 21:40:56

Congratulations to all DC with places!

Just wanted to say that the current head is moving on for reasons which have nothing to do with the quality/health/happiness of SPCS, in case anyone is worried that his departure might signal difficulties at the school. He will be missed, but the governors have said they are committed to finding a new head who will maintain the current ethos of the school - and the parents will certainly have something to say about it if they don't! Most parents I have spoken to have had a similar reaction to mine - mildly unsettled by the prospect of a change of leadership, but definitely not seriously concerned about the future of the school.

Anyone pease feel free to PM me if I can help by answering questions.

CruCru, I have been aware of your posts (in a sane, non-stalkers way!) since your first impressively comprehensive list of prospective schools - very pleased to hear your DC has a place at SPCS. Excuse me being nosy, but are you planning to take it or are you waiting on results from Hampstead schools/WT admissions?

CruCru Thu 21-Jan-16 23:06:14

Hi Methren!

Sorry, I wasn't trying to stir up trouble - I figured that it is now public knowledge (in fact we got a letter about it around Christmastime).

Yes, we are planning to take up the place. It is a good choice for us and we are excited about it.

At some point, I'll update my original thread.

Methren Thu 21-Jan-16 23:30:37

No, it's OK, Cru, no suggestion of trouble-making intended, just wanted to offer some general

Sounds like there will be quite an MN contingent in Reception come September!

CruCru Thu 21-Jan-16 23:40:37

Yes, we'll be trying to guess who is who when we meet each other!

mummy2N1 Fri 22-Jan-16 10:58:14

Congratulations on your son getting the place CruCru! Your posts on schools have been very helpful to me whilst trying to navigate the north london school schenanigans, so thank you. See you in September!

nlondondad Sat 23-Jan-16 15:59:23

For boys City School, which is really close to St Pauls, in fact the walking route from St Pauls tube station to City goes past it, still has a post 13 intakes as well as the year 7.

And obviously City Girls is only a shor distance away also, so both must be options for future destinations. Music at City School is also very good, and actually it functions as the Choir School for Temple Church and the Chapel Royal.

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