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Any opinions or experiences on these schools in Devon please ?

(63 Posts)
Ishani Sat 23-Apr-11 22:33:26

Stover school, first choice I think as co ed
St Margarets
The Maynard School


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Jux Sat 23-Apr-11 22:38:41

Don't know about Stover.

St Margaret's - a woman I know got her dd in but she was there for 3 days as all the girls seemed able to talk about was their ponies. She was a scholarship girl and didn't have a pony. No comment.

Maynard - if you can get a place grab it! Have heard nothing but good, and know a couple of girls who are very happy there.

Ishani Sat 23-Apr-11 22:45:31

And another one, Queens college ?

We don't have a pony, but DD3 would be very open to changing that situation

Is Maynard very competitive ? I haven't spent much time looking at it yet, I guess there's an entrance exam then ?
Thank you for your help

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JeffVadar Mon 25-Apr-11 16:47:14

Avoid Stover. Maynard has fantastic reputation.

Ishani Mon 25-Apr-11 17:06:42

Come back Jeff, come back, where would you live in the vicinity please ?

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thetasigmamum Tue 26-Apr-11 07:10:48

Why wouldn't you consider Exeter School? That, the Maynard and St Margarets are in a differed league in every way than Stover.

Ishani Tue 26-Apr-11 08:24:22

What is worrying me with all of these schools is the fact that they are extremely expensive boarding schools, you need a lot of money to pay boarding and we are not in that league at all.
Where the children are currently everyone pays about £7k a year for day fees and it's all pretty normal families.
I have visions of us being noticeably the poorest by a long chalk at Exeter.

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Jux Tue 26-Apr-11 09:32:02

The Maynard girls I know are not boarders. The St Margaret's girl wasn't a boarder and got some sort of bursary to help with the fees.

Ishani Tue 26-Apr-11 09:33:32

The Maynard is top of the list for sure, i'm waiting for them to return my email.

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thetasigmamum Tue 26-Apr-11 11:03:48

None of those schools are boarding schools. At least, not primarily. Exeter School offers many 100% scholarships, to children whose family income is very low. On this basis I doubt that your family would be the poorest.

I also however doubt that most people would think that a family paying 7K a year for school fees for 3 (or more) children could be described as even remotely 'pretty normal'.

Ultimately, if you send your children to any of those three schools the fact is they won't be going to the best school potentially available to them if they live in or around Exeter. Therefore it seems, to me, strange spending that sort of money without even considering the Colyton option.

Ishani Tue 26-Apr-11 11:05:23

They won't pass for Colyton I wouldn't think, from what I've been told children are flown in to take the entrance exam, my eldest didn't pass the 11+ locally so I'm not going through all that again.

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thetasigmamum Tue 26-Apr-11 11:18:02

I don't think any of DD1's classmates were flown in to take the entrance exam! Most of them live closer to the school than she does (we are in Exeter).

There might be an issue with the Maynard if that is the case, certainly people who don't get into Colyton do get in there but they might find it pressured.

The kids and teachers I know at Exeter school seem less pressured, similarly with St Margarets. You might want to consider Blundells as well? Again, less pressured. But that is a boarding school.

St Margarets is the easiest to get into of the Big 3 posh schools (unless you are a boy in which case obviously there is only the one option) but the results of all 3 schools are pretty comparable. None of the kids I know who go to those 3 schools right now own ponies.

It really is a minefield choosing a school in Exeter/Devon, there is such variation. The illusion of choice can be disorienting. But, I know kids who have been to the big 3, several of the local state schools, QE in Crediton, Colyton, Bramdean (a sort of second tier posh school in Exeter) Stover and Blundells and they have all, without exception, gone on to good universities, and then to have good careers and happy lives. The schools here are actually all pretty good for conscientious kids. The amount of choice we parents have is bewildering but I find it comforting to think that at the end of the day, the kids seem to be doing just fine even in the face of all our worries.

Yellowstone Tue 26-Apr-11 11:23:03

Ishani if you don't even know that Exeter, Maynard and St. Margaret's aren't boarding schools, how do you know that Colyton students are 'flown in'?

School websites are a good starting point really.

Ishani Tue 26-Apr-11 12:02:38

All the schools websites are lovely, I've looked at what seems like hundreds was hoping fir some local insight which I have offered to those relocating to my area in the past.

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Yellowstone Tue 26-Apr-11 12:09:05

Just a bit confused about how you could have mistaken pretty standard day schools for 'extremely expensive boarding schools'. Surely the websites of the schools you mention make their status pretty clear?

thetasigmamum Tue 26-Apr-11 12:12:38

Well, I kind of was hoping I was providing that.....

Ishani Tue 26-Apr-11 14:12:27

You were, thank you I have an appointment to look around a few, just feel time is of the essence.
I am very overwhelmed what with middle schools to consider too, the cathederal school keeps cropping up too which

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motherbrown Tue 26-Apr-11 14:36:34

Did you mean Queens College Taunton? If so I have a Year 9 daughter there since last September and have nothing but praise for the place. Would be happy to provide more info if you want.

thetasigmamum Tue 26-Apr-11 14:38:10

I would not recommend the Cathedral School at all. I know several families that have had children there, all have withdrawn them to either send them to the junior departments at the Big 3 or to the state sector (which is where my 3 children are, incidentally - one at Colyton, two at a very good primary school in Exeter, one of those will be going to St Peters in September - he point blank refused to try for Colyton and we respected that. It was the right call, for him). The Big 3 are all 7-18 schools (actually St Margarets might even go from 4) and they have a big intake at 11+.

Are you completely set against the state sector?

Ishani Tue 26-Apr-11 16:16:24

Ah right, now the same person that recommended the cathederal school is the one that told me Colyton is very competitive.
Half the trouble is the schools being closed for Easter so you can't speak to anyone and when we moved up North I managed to pick the worse private school in the area and it took 18 months for the penny to drop so I don't want a repeat of that.

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Ishani Tue 26-Apr-11 16:16:47

Can PM you both please ?

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thetasigmamum Tue 26-Apr-11 16:53:12

Sure. Colyton is competitive, that's true. It's basically the best state school in the country. But that's not the same as 'flying' kids in to do the 11+. However if you have a child who is already at secondary school and who failed an 11+ somewhere else then Colyton is unlikely to be the right school for that child.

Ishani Tue 26-Apr-11 16:55:33

I've just spoken to them, she hasn't a prayer and i'm not going to waste energy pursuing that course.
Thank you very much, it's just I don't want to give exact details on here.

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thetasigmamum Tue 26-Apr-11 17:07:26

It's always difficult online, isn't it. Not to worry. The thing is, it may be that the Big 3 are also unsuitable then. Which might mean considering options like Stover, Bramdean, Blundells, etc. And the state schools. But I would still counsel against the Cathedral school, I really would. Just because I genuinely don't know anybody who has been happy with it.

oldspot Tue 26-Apr-11 17:51:26

Don't go to Queens College they are leaving in droves same reason we left OK if your child needs LS or is Dyslexic - fantastic - academically talented children are not catered for

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