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Anyone know anything about St Leonards School in St Andrews?!

(24 Posts)
jillmother Fri 19-Nov-10 11:17:40

Just wondering if anyone knew anything about St Leonards in St Andrews? I'm looking for a school for my son (primary/year 6) and daughter (year 9) for when we move to the area. I've heard this school is meant to be quite good but wanted to check!

Lusi Sat 20-Nov-10 10:26:29

I know 3 children who go/have been there (not boarders) ....supposed to be good...parents are pleased - learning Latin in P5...biscuit
Only thing I would say - if you are on a budget - be careful because there seem to be quite a few 'extras' and it seems very easy to pay a lot more than you think you are going to...
(for example - one child started (from state primary) in P2 and the parents were advised to pay for speech therapy and extra lessons to improve her reading hmm- this child's parents were both foreign and child could speak/read 3 languages... I wouldn't have been worried about a child being a little behind in English in those circumstances...later (P4/5/6) would be a different story)
I don't know why you want to go down the private school route...(personally I wouldn't...but then that's me!) but Dundee High has a good reputation and is considered to be less snotty...wink

eviscerateyourmemory Sat 20-Nov-10 10:32:05

Madras is meant to be good too, if you were considering state schools.

fluffles Sat 20-Nov-10 10:34:34

very very 'posh' i'd say - they wear green capes ffs!!!

i went to st andrews uni and knew one girl who came from st leonards. it's a very traditional 'girls' school so lots of hockey, cross country on saturdays, weird uniform as i said (green dresses and capes). a bit like mallory towers i'd imagine grin

there are some very good state schools in the area (madras is full of uni lecturers children) and as somebody said there are some less 'extreme' private schools in dundee.

Waswondering Sat 20-Nov-10 10:39:26

I think (iirc) that Malory Towers was modelled on St Leonards.

A lot from St Andrews considering the private route go through to Dundee to the High School (only 12 miles).

nickijc Sat 20-Nov-10 13:20:18

Some of these comments are so so so out of date!! St Leonards has been co-ed for more than 10 years. There are slightly more boys than girls there. There are rugby posts and everything! The uniform is lovely - blue and blazers! Absolutely no green and no capes. The school and St Andrews University share lots of resources. The sixth form is the only all IB sixth form in Scotland. I recommend you look round. Talk to the girls and boys. Am sure you will be dead impressed. Not snooty at all. It's a great school in my opinion. My children are really happy there.

darleneconnor Sat 20-Nov-10 23:26:34

I know a girl whose parents took her out of there and put her in Dundee High School instead. This was in the 90s though.

mumonthebeach Sun 21-Nov-10 01:15:08

Hopefully, no-one takes any notice of judgements based on hearsay that is 10 to 20 years out of date! ... I know several families now - this year - who have taken their children out of Dundee High to put them into St Leonards. Presumably there'll be one or two who do vice versa. In fact, there's no real comparison between the two schools. Both are co-ed - and that's where the similarities end. Dundee High is a huge, inner-city school that takes no boarders and it follows the Scottish curriculum. St Leonards is a smaller school that also takes a good number of boarders in the senior school and it's in the heart of beautiful St Andrews. It follows the English curriculum to GCSE and the International Baccalaureate post-16. The schools are distinctively different. The best way to judge is to look round them nowadays - not listen to tittle-tattle from 10/15/20 years ago!

mumonthebeach Sun 21-Nov-10 01:40:03

Don't want to over-egg the pudding - but just wanted to say that our children really love being at St Leonards. It's in a stunning location between the beach, cathedral and town centre. The GCSE and IB results are excellent; It's in historic buildings: the school library is in the house where Mary Queen of Scots used to stay; children can learn to play golf with St Andrews Links pros; Duke of Edinburgh expeditions are in the Highlands, an hour and a half's drive away; school plays are staged at the town's theatre, the Byre; there are loads of links with St Andrews uni and the children of many university professors are at the school; there are drama trips to New York Broadway; we've just attended an amazing musical concert in the school's auditorium. Above all, I'd describe it as a happy school - academic, but not a hot-house. Hope that helps.

darleneconnor Sun 21-Nov-10 09:46:00

ooh mumonthebeach- can you reveal why those Dcs you know left the high school?

mumonthebeach Sun 21-Nov-10 10:33:04

Horses for courses ...

darleneconnor Sun 21-Nov-10 11:50:11

??

Lusi Sun 21-Nov-10 21:13:51

Ok
My DD plays with a girl who goes to St. Leonards and a girl that goes to Dundee High.
Both sets of parents are very happy with their child(ren)'s progress...
University professor's children (!!!) - also go to state schools...I know a very, very senior member of Dundee Uni sent his children to a state primary school (same as my DD) and then Madras...
One of the children I know who goes to St. Leonards originally started out in Primary school in Dundee frequented by lots of university people's children ...she moved because she wasn't making good progress - she had been in the same class as my former boss's son who they discovered when they moved down to a state primary in England was miles behind his peer group...the professions of the parents of the children are not necessarily a good indication of the quality of the education they are getting...

mumonthebeach Sun 21-Nov-10 22:42:30

Agree entirely, Lusi. I guess I choose a school for its values and for how it suits each of my children. St Leonards suits my values and my children very well

Waswondering Mon 22-Nov-10 08:00:15

(This is slightly OT but when changing schools at 10 I really, really wanted to go to St L's as it played lacrosse then - maybe it still does. I had terribly romantic images of lacrosse from Enid Blyton. Instead, my folks sent me to the High School, where they played hockey!)

jillmother Mon 22-Nov-10 10:59:03

Wow! Thanks for all the feedback!
It's definitely not an all girls school as I enquired about both my son and daughter. Judging by their website I don't think they wear capes now!
Waswondering - I know that they are proud of their lacrosse heritage and that they still play. Their literature is keen to emphasise though that they also play hockey, rugby and football amongst others. Seems to be quite forward looking all round!
As I say, I've only heard good things (espec. about the IB) but I really appreciate all the comments. They are very useful in helping us build up a picture so thanks very much. Please keep them coming!

Waswondering Mon 22-Nov-10 12:44:16

If you're coming from the English education system, it may be a very straightforward transition for your dc in that they keep to the English Year X system.

I don't know much anything about the IB but what I've heard of it would make me seriously consider it as the IB is so highly rated and gives a broad curriculum .... the Scottish exam system is changing at the moment with the current S1 intake looking to sit National examinations (instead of Standard Grades), the content of which hasn't been published yet.

Tashagundersen Sat 28-Oct-17 14:13:54

Hi,
We are planning to relocate from an expat position in Oman to Fife. Very interested in St Leonards School, Fife but would love to get some more information, are there any St Leonard parents out there? I have two boys who would be going into Year 9 and Year 7.
Thanks so much

impartialme Sat 28-Oct-17 20:13:34

All ours have been through St L. Each child different from the other. Each loved it. Each have made friends for life and have gone on to universities suited to them. And being in St Andrews is very special.

Tashagundersen Sun 29-Oct-17 04:44:45

Thanks Impartialme for your message. I'd love to know more about the academic side of the school, how it fares compared to other independent schools in Edinburgh, Dollar Academy. I can't seem to find much about the academic focus on their website or much information about the staff. Unfortunately I'm not able to visit the school till next Easter so am desperate to find out as much as I can. I was concerned about the sciences, they only offer triple science on demand, i was hoping this would be available to all students. Any other feedback on the academic side would be much appreciated.
Also, interested to find out if many of the kids live locally.
Not sure if I'm able to get in touch personally to ask all my questions?
Many thanks
Natasha

impartialme Sun 29-Oct-17 08:57:43

Honestly best to contact the school and ask direct. They have the facts and the current and accurate academic/science stats. For our DC the best thing we ever did was move there! Good luck smile

BertrandRussell Sun 29-Oct-17 08:59:12

I still use a green canvas book bag from St Leonard's. It must be ove 30 years old now.

blueskyinmarch Sun 29-Oct-17 09:05:57

Both my DDs went to St Leonard’s. DD1 just did 6th form. DD2 did from year 6. They both loved it. It is not very posh at all. It’s more country, rural people who send their DC there, especially in the junior school. Once they get further up there are more foreign students who come and board. My niece has been there since year 1 and she adores it. I like the small class sizes and the way they really encourage the children. It’s a really lovely school. Any questions I will be happy to try an answer them but both my DDs have left now.

TeenTimesTwo Sun 29-Oct-17 09:38:08

We used to pray for them every week: "Wycombe Abbey, St Leonards, Godstowe and Benenden". That is the sum total of my knowledge. <unhelpful>

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