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Bute House or NLCS at 4+(17 Posts)
HI mums, please would you share your thoughts on Bute House vs NLCS for a 4+ entry? My DD has an offer from Bute house and NLCS come out tomorrow but I have a feeling she is in. We will relocate next to the chosen school so that isn't a consideration (unless of course you say why live in Edgeware when you can live centrally in Hammersmith but...). I would really appreciate your thoughts / advice on this. Prep vs an all through? I am so torn I keep changing my mind every hour. Thanks so much in advance.
NLCS goes all the way to 18 so you have the security of an education at the same school ( subject to satisfactory performance ) until 18 . Bute house feeds into SPGS but again subject to performance . I’m out of date now as mines in year 13 but presume the school websites can give you a ballpark figure of progression from Bute to SPGS . That said majority of good London private day schools are easily commutable . Mine chose her school from her offers at that time .
Thank you, bengalcat! Which school does your DD go to?
Over the last three years, Bute House girls have received an average of 19 places a year at SPGS, out of 59 girls. 32% is the highest percentage of any school I'm aware of, but far from a sure thing.
Have you seen this thread? You may find it interesting; there's a little discussion of the prep vs all-through differences.
Bute House really is quite magical. All the friends with DC there are so happy with it. The only thing to think about is it is NOT guaranteeing a place at SPGS. Your DD will have to go through sitting the 11+ at 4 or 5 schools. Yes statistically, she is more likely to get into SPGS than from other preps but there is still often over 2/3 of the year group which don't go to SPGS. The 11+ process is tough and stressful - but depends on your DD and your family life. Are you OK with going through it?
NLCS is a brilliant school so skipping 11+ AND having a place at a top London school is a huge bonus.
I don't know much about NLCS junior school so can't compare prep school experiences. I guess the question is did you love Bute more and enough to justify putting her through 11+ four years after moving schools?
It really depends on what you are looking for and what your child is like. Especially in the early years, Bute is more progressive, playful and fun. Support for those who need it. Children inspired and challenged but are not pushed at all. Changes a bit in year 5 of course as 11+’prep kicks in.
NLCS is more serious and attracts a lot of very serious families. Will feel more competitive and pressured. Children are pushed and parents put under pressure to take their child’s homework seriously. NLCS will fit the truly innately very advanced child whose parents just want to make sure she is not bored in the early years. I don’t think it fits the children who are pushed in at all costs and then put under pressure to keep up with the many truly brainy girls there.
If you are a pushy tiger parent or your child is seriously advanced, I would consider NLCS. For most children, I imagine Bute is more fun.
Thank you everyone for the input - we are leaning towards Bute house. I really appreciate the balanced view points you shared!
sanam - what experience do you have of Bute House and NLCS? You are making some very specific comments and comparisons. I'm curious where you got your information.
expat96, I don't think they are overly specific, anyone who went to an open day, spoke to staff and Heads and a selection of parents with children at the schools could make the same observations. I do have many friends and acquaintances with children at each school, so am fairly confident about these observations, but I think they are fairly obvious when you visit the schools and meet the children.
Thank you all for your messages! We actually did not get NLCS (despite my positive feeling )) so my DD will be going to Bute House!! Thanks again for sharing your thoughts!!
sanam - I think they are fairly obvious when you visit the schools and meet the children.
You must be more perceptive than I am. It's been a while since I visited the schools but:
Bute is more progressive, playful and fun. ... Children inspired and challenged but are not pushed at all.
I have to admit I could not draw those conclusions from seeing the girls at Bute House.
[NLCS] Will feel more competitive and pressured. Children are pushed and parents put under pressure to take their child’s homework seriously. NLCS will fit the truly innately very advanced child whose parents just want to make sure she is not bored in the early years.
Nope, I didn't get these either from seeing the Year 6 girls at the NLCS open day.
To be clear, I met at both schools very confident, well spoken girls. I listened (admittedly with a cynical ear) to the praises the head teachers sang about their schools. I simply was not able to determine the differences you specified from those meetings and presentations.
Ella78, please could you share your experience at Bute House so far? We potentially will get an offer for dd to start September 2020, so keen to hear from current parents...thanks
Children are not pushed at Bute!!??? I agree results are over other prep if you are aiming at spgs although last year was not great, but when you select the 3/4 top girls in every other prep school like FH glendower ken prep and pen ridge at 7+ can it be otherwise? These girls would have gone to top school anyway...
Would love to see results from girls that started at 4 and see destinations to see if that is that better than other prep school..