Dollar, Glenalmond, Lathallan, Lomond, Loretto, and Strathallan(15 Posts)
Unable to view these schools as am currently out of the UK, but am considering applying to a couple as back-up for my child. I'd like to hear what the parents here have to say about these schools.
So, views anyone?
Also, specifically, has anyone has any experience of scholarships or bursaries to any of these schools?
We have recent experience of Glenalmond, for scholarship and bursary. pm me if you want more information. We didn't choose Glenalmond in the end but it is a lovely school
Is it for a boy or girl? If a boy, then have you considered Merchiston Castle? We have been delighted with it and they offer a good bursary / scholarship programme. PM me if you want more info. www.merchiston.co.uk
It's for a boy. I like Merchiston, and its sister school, but my husband is insistent that the school not be in the city and I can't get him to change his mind on it.
Hi there, don't write off Merchiston without visiting; it is set in many acres of lovely parkground within walking distance of the Pentland hills on the outskirts of Edinburgh. We live nearby and the area is very green and the school has a big outdoor activities programme making the most of the local area for Duke of Edinburgh, climbing, hillwalking etc.. It certainly doesn't feel like a "city" school.
Whilst I agree Merchiston is a good school, set in nice grounds in the city, if you need a bursary my experience is that they do not have a very deep pot. Although on paper it looks like they have a decent bursary programme, the reality does not bear that out. Also depends what kind of boy you have, again my personal experience of Merchiston is it is very much a rugby school and heavily into army Cadets (although I stand to be corrected). If your boy is looking for an academic scholarship I would be aiming for Glenalmond, Loretto or (yes, I know it is in the city) Fettes. However, if it is a sports scholarship, you could do a lot worse than Merchiston or again Loretto. Both these schools have great sports programmes.
I was hoping for a bursary, and/or a scholarship. He's sportyish, swimming, rowing, football, but he doesn't play rugby at all. Likes cadets, and shooting (we live next to a gun club, it wore off on him), and archery. He's more academic than sporty though, when it comes right down to it.
Is he coming from a state school or a prep? I ask only because the expectation the schools have for awarding a scholarship is different depending on whether it is state or private you are coming from. The state school entry is normally at age 11/12 whereas the prep scholarship and entry is at 13+ . Obviously I know nothing about your son's ability academically but he will have to be exceptionally academic for an academic scholarship, however, if he is good at the sport too an all rounder scholarship is normally available. You also mentioned in your OP that this is a back-up, my experience is that schools will want to know if they are not your first choice and they will ask about this on the scholarship application form. It is a mine field!
It would be for 13+, he's currently at a British Prep in Uganda, but we're moving to Scotland in a couple of years, and I know how complex the UK education system is, and am looking at my options now.
We can't afford a prep in the UK, so either we can home educate him for a couple of years, not a problem for us, or he could go to a state school. Our other option is that our current prep in Uganda said they could work with him via correspondence, Skype etc. for a fraction of the fees, which I think would be great.
Yes, the schools in this thread are back-up for a very academic English school, which he may not get into, or may not want to go to in the end, and again only if they grant us a bursary. That's our first option and it would be fantastic if it happens but our chances, though existent, aren't huge.
I also have a daughter, pre-primary, so looking around for her too.
Are any of the schools particularly generous with bursaries?
If you really don't want city, you have to cross off Loretto. It is 6 miles from the centre of Edinburgh, and has all the trappings of a city school. Don't be put off by the Musselburgh address. It's more urban than Merchiston, despite the lack of Edinburgh address.
Shame - it's a great school and ticks lots of boxes. They have a lovely self-contained campus, with easy access to 'the street' (Musselburgh High Street), and pretty easy access to 'the toun' (Edinburgh). What they get to do will be restricted in Year 7 (and in the Nippers) and will become more liberal as they get older (a lot like being any ordinary teenager in Musselburgh). It's a good place to board but also have a relatively normal childhood/adolescence.
A reasonably large minority will be day students or weekly boarders, so there will be lots of opportunities to go to real families for tea/Sunday lunch/exeats, and not to be so institutionalised.
Being close to Edinburgh, they will have lots of opportunities for matches and socialising without spending endless hours in coaches and minibuses.
If he is sportyish he is better placed in a school in/near a city like Edinburgh so that inter school sports are easier. Same goes goes for the academic side of things, model UN etc
Thanks every one for you thoughts. I showed my husband the replies, and he's grudgingly decided we can look at the Edinburgh schools mentioned. Though he totally kicked out Fettes (mentions of candy canes passed his lips), pity, as it seemed like a decent school.
Diverging a little here, for the DD, what are state primary schools like, in general, in Scotland? Gaelic Medium looks really awesome, are they hard to get into?
? Dundee High or do you want boarding particularly. They have a good academic reputation and cadets. Not such fancy grounds as Glenalmond but more down to earth and cheaper.
Most Scots use state primary schools, gaelic medium is fine if you want 5 children in a class and your child to be thought of as a bit odd. We don't speak gaelic in the central belt.
I would highly recommend gaelic medium - my kids have flourished in it. There are many advantages to bilingual education (Look up research by Antonella Sorace at edinburgh university). Anyway, I wouldn't have chosen anything else for my 3 - they love it.
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