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SW London private schools - looking for opinions?

(55 Posts)
TheBlonde Wed 10-Oct-07 07:50:39

I have the good schools guide and have been to look at them but wondered if anyone had experience of the following schools

Broomwood Hall
Finton House
Hornsby House
Thomas' Clapham

TheBlonde Wed 10-Oct-07 10:26:38

bump

SmartArseCoveredinCobwebs Wed 10-Oct-07 10:42:26

I have visited them all, albeit almost 10 years ago, so things may well have changed. I do know people with children at all of them, though.

Broomwood: friend has 4 children there, nice children in fact, but she is a terrible snob and I can't be doing with snobbishness! When I got to the end of my guided tour, the secretary tried to make an appointment for the head to visit us at our home to "assess our suitability to the school", which I later found out, check out where we lived, what car we drove, how much we earned, etc. etc. Needless to say that wasn't the school for us although I suspect we wouldn't have passed financial muster anyway!

Finton House: Very cosy, nice children, nice atmosphere as I recall. Close friend has DS there. He's 6, a total PITA and has no idea how to behave in company, but that might just be his age - perhaps he's a perfect angel at school! Friend loves it, although is looking for him to move next September as she feels he isn't being sufficiently challenged. He is her PFB, though!

Hornsby House: I loved Hornsby House and was desperate for DD to go there, although in the end we moved and the journey wouldn't have been convenient. I loved the "family" feeling of it and the fact that it felt very inclusive and it wouldn't matter who or what you were.

Thomas's: Friend has 2 DDs there. Clever children and when I visited it felt quite "serious" somehow. I felt there was too much emphasis on doing well academically and I'm still not convinced that you can tell a child's true potential at age 4.

Hope that helps!

TheBlonde Wed 10-Oct-07 10:57:00

Thanks for that

I am finding myself increasing irritated by Broomwood who keep altering the entrance procedure - they now want 100 quid before we can have a personal showaround of the school

TheBlonde Wed 10-Oct-07 17:02:29

bump

SmartArseCoveredinCobwebs Thu 11-Oct-07 11:17:36

Cheeky beggars. I still maintain they're a bit too much up their own arses. I don't think we would have fitted in there as a family at all, but each to his own and I'm sure the children are happy and well-taught.

frogs Thu 11-Oct-07 11:27:16

Not private, but Honeywell and Belleville consistently popular. I know children who have got into eg. Tiffins and Nonsuch from there, so standards must be reasonable.

bossykate Thu 11-Oct-07 11:29:53

i suspect there is a very high incidence of tutoring at both those schools, though, frogs. their results are nowhere near as good as the school ds goes to in a much less salubrious part of s. london <<preens wink>>

bossykate Thu 11-Oct-07 11:30:20

i'm sure socially they pass muster wink

frogs Thu 11-Oct-07 13:10:05

Oh yes, bk, clearly. All the people I knew with kids there were rather intensely obsessed with their children's education. They all claimed not to be tutoring, but were clearly lying through their teeth.

I was just musing that if you have a particular secondary school in mind, then there are other options. The calculation of eight years school fees @ £3K a term vs. two years of tutoring @ £25 for an hour a week is a fairly straightforward one, given that they could have a perfectly nice time at H or B. And no schmanzy uniforms, which can only be a bonus.

Sorry to hijack, just a thought. smile

bossykate Thu 11-Oct-07 13:27:47

cost wise that is obviously right frogs, but imho, you also need to consider the extra curricular stuff. i always rather laughed up my sleeve at parents who wanted - i dunno - archery and bridge club etc etc - but there are so few things at ds's school it's rather peeing me off. not a problem for many/most families as there is a very high incidence of sah and very flexi working parents. anyhow, another digression.

frogs Thu 11-Oct-07 13:30:12

Archery... God ds would love that so.

Actually, at his very very non-posh after-school club they do fencing, which is very sweet. The infants do it with little foam foils. That is quite swanky, non?

frogs Thu 11-Oct-07 13:31:24

Oh yes, and he adamantly refuses to join the after-school Latin club offered at his (non-posh) north London primary school, the little brat. grin

TheBlonde Thu 11-Oct-07 13:55:35

Alas we are too far from Honeywell or Belleville to have a chance of getting in

janinlondon Thu 11-Oct-07 16:08:09

The people I know at H who are tutoring their children are starting at year 4 (so three years of it) and its considerably more than an hour a week.....!

SmartArseCoveredinCobwebs Fri 12-Oct-07 10:24:29

I cycled past Bertrum House this morning, TheBlonde, and remembered looking at that one years ago too. Is that of any interest?

TheBlonde Fri 12-Oct-07 11:44:44

I had missed them for some reason, thanks

mwamwa Fri 12-Oct-07 11:53:05

Broomwood - you can't wear jeans to collect your child from school (it lowers the tone apparently). Plenty of rah rah rah. Parents get interviewed.

Finton - sweet. Boys tend to move on at 8. Scarey admissions secretary.

Hornsby - have to take packed lunches, no catering facilities. Local state school hurls abuse and rubbish over the fence. New head everyone seems to like.

Thomas's - children and bright and confident. Not for the wallflowers.

Bertrum House - pupils and teachers making exits from the place fast. Always surprises me that it is still going.


Just bits and pieces of perhaps fairly useless information that I have got from the street.

Wilbur Fri 12-Oct-07 12:02:16

Hi blonde - how are you?

Just to say we thought HH was lovely when we went round, great facilities and lovely head and lower school teachers.

Finton would have been our first choice except for the fact, as Mwa says that the boys tend to leave at 8 and go to posh prep across the common. V lovely for girls though, and I really like their policy of special needs integration.

Broomwood - seem very trad, I see the girls coming out of church in the mornings when I drop ds2 at nursery and they are a bit boater-wearing and "come on gels" for my taste. Having said that, I think they are v good and hot on discipline. And do they still have flower arranging on the curriculum, or is that a vicious SW London rumour? Anyway, I never went round as we were looking for co-ed all the way.

Thomas - only saw the one in Battersea which is v posh and a bit scary. Don't know about clapham one - a friend has her dd and ds there and they are v happy. Slightly better for girls than boys, I have heard, but that is from someone who had a bad experience with her son there.

HTH

TheBlonde Fri 12-Oct-07 13:14:05

mwamwa - interesting to hear that about Bertrum, I have a mate with a child there so I must ask her about it

Wilbur - hiya, doing well thanks.

I used to see the Broomwood kids getting picked up when I collected DS from his old nursery. I am sure I must have seen someone in jeans but maybe not! wink

SmartArseCoveredinCobwebs Fri 12-Oct-07 15:13:05

A few years ago, another friend with a DD at Broomwood, reported that, after Sports Day, the head sent a letter to the parents saying how disappointed she was that so few mothers had chosen to wear hats and gloves ... so the jeans thing sounds quite likely. Again, that was some time ago now - about 10 years ago, I think!

TheBlonde Tue 11-Mar-08 13:41:37

giving this a bump...

wilbur Tue 11-Mar-08 13:46:15

Hi blonde - are you bumping for further thoughts? I guess you are still debating schools, did you have a look round Henry Cavendish? You don't fancy sending your dcs to Newton Prep do you? Then we could do a school run grin!

Page62 Tue 11-Mar-08 14:06:02

Hi

My DD goes to Newton prep and we are very happy there (granted only nursery so far) will be going to Reception there etc

Very happy with our choice. never got interviewed ourselves (i dislike schools that want to talk to parents rather than the children)

the parents there are lovely -- all a good mixed - working, not working, part time working and all seem to get on well - lots of playdates for children, occasional meeting up at parties on weekends - and not one snide remark from anyone about me working FT, which is shocking (good) in itself.

Page62 Tue 11-Mar-08 14:07:04

Hi Wilbur,
a fellow newton prep mum! (waves hello)

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