Your opinions on secondary schools in south london - much appreciated!(13 Posts)
I was hoping I could get some feedback on secondary schools in south london since my dd is in year 5 and we're having to make scary choices about what to go for. The schools we might get into (with a bright but not G&T girl who we are prepared to tutor but not prepared/able to go private for) are...
City of London
Burtwood Girls Grammar
Stockwell Park (our local)
Any info or thoughts (or other school suggestions) much appreciated...
might be a good idea to post again in the secondary section instaaed of primary ?
City of London is private. I have a friend with a dd in Y7 at Graveney, but my understanding is that unless you live v. close, the competition for the selective places is truly ferocious. Greycoats is nice -- we liked it for dd1, but she got her first choice so it was not an issue. The church criteria are pretty stringent though, unless you live in Westminster or attend one of the feeder primaries.
ADT and Elliott are in my area (my children are a lot younger and currently private, so I'm not hugely reliable).
Eliott is not a "destination of choice" round here - ADT is seen as the better bet locally. I don't think ADT is the right school though if you want Latin GCSE-type education - it was certainly founded as a technology school. Easy to get to - easy walk from either East Putney tube or Putney BR.
Graveney is very good, I think but I have heard it is difficult to get into.
My SIL went to Greycoats, but that was about 35 years ago!
Good point about secondary fedupwasherwoman -I ummed and ahed and went with primary. Can I change or post in both? I new to the site. You're absolutely right Frogs. City of London indeed private. you can see I'm at the early stages of research! Greycoats do do a percentage of non-religious intake, according to their website, so worth a look.
Greycoats do have non-church places, but you have to live quite close, or attend one of a set of specified primary schools. Or get in on the language ticket, but that's not really something you can bank on.
My lot will sit the selection test for graveney (but not for a few years). We are a bit outside the catchement but you never know your luck. One thing I did hear is that it's vital to get a tutor who knows the Wandsworth test for the selective Graveney places, which is v different from say an 11 plus tutor. I know a boy who was at Thomas' (v academic private) and was offered places at lots of top boys schools but failed the Wandsworth test (and I don't mean just wasn't offered a place at Graveney, he simply didn't pass) - the format is v different from what he had been prepped for.
Graveney has a good reputation
ADT is one of the better foundation schools. As the governing body is the Admissions Authority (not the Local Authority), you can apply to this school as well as the total the LA let you apply to (6 in Merton).
Burntwood Girls Grammar is good but HUGE - 10 form entry. This means that have great facilities, but it can de daunting if you are a bit shy.
There is also St Cecilia's, which I would have recommended until a month ago. The daughter of a friend of a friend was sexually assaulted by a gang of boys in a classroom. I'm sure that could happen at almost any school, but it has changed by views on that particular school.
Dunraven is also highly sought after and I believe operates a fiece catchment area as a result
This is off my patch of S London though!
My strategy is to get poor dd1 to sit as many as possible so we aren't left stranded with nothing. She is the calm collected type or I wouldn't put her through it. Someone across the road sat about 10! Reasonably long shots will be included. We looked at moving but realised it would cost less to go private. What a state of affairs... Many in year 5 seem to be in the same boat. Thanks for your input - more comments very welcome!
If Stockwell Park is your local school, you probably don't have much chance of getting your daughter in to Dunraven - I know people who have failed to get in from within a mile of the school. Doing stunningly well in the test really doesn't help, as the circle for Band B can actually be larger than that for Band A.
I've heard some very negative reports of Burntwood over discipline. Graveney is huge - 9 form entry. (I really didn't like the school when I looked at it, but many of my concerns were to do with having boys not girls, so may not apply to you). Getting in from outside the immediate area would depend on doing very well at the verbal and nonverbal reasoning test, but I do know children who got in but don't appear stunningly brilliant.
We live close to Burntwood School and see the girls getting on and off the bus to school. I have boys so wouldn't really have considered putting them there anyway, but even if we had girls TBH I'd have given it a wide berth since we have seen several fights breaking out (one this week involved several girls screaming, punching and hair pulling, and the police - while I was standing at the bus stop with my ASD four year old). Maybe all secondary schools are like this now (I so sound like my Mum!), but this is the only one I've had recent experience of and personally it would put me off!
My dd2 is in year 11 at Burntwood - has had a very happy time - more so than dd1 who had a miserable pressurised time at one of the Sutton grammars. dd2 is predicted pretty much straight As and A*s (already sat some early), and has never had any problems. Fantastic new buildings and facilities, friendly teachers - Yes, you meet all walks of life there, but it teaches the kids to get along with all sorts of others. I wouldn't hesitate to send my kids there.
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