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Keswick school? or other state boarding school?

(15 Posts)
mpuddleduck Fri 03-Jan-14 15:29:32

I am looking for opinions on Keswick school or any other state boarding school please.

BirdintheWings Sun 05-Jan-14 23:16:44

My niece goes there, but doesn't board. She loves it (well, it's in the Lakes, the jammy so and so -- where else does the Year 7 trip head up a handy local mountain?), but is a bit twitchy about possible restrictions on subject choice for A-level.

She grumbles a certain amount about the tasteless uniform and rules about socks/blazers/jumpers with skirts, but none of that is likely to inform your choice, really.

mummyofteens Tue 07-Jan-14 11:32:13

Beautiful location and I would send one of the best schools in the area, children travel from across west cumbria to go there and so, I believe, can be difficult to get a place. Not sure there are many boarders there and I have heard of complaints that there is not much to do on the boarding houses in the evenings and weekends.

ErrolTheDragon Tue 07-Jan-14 11:36:00

If it's for a boy, Lancaster Royal Grammar is a good school - don't know anything about the boarding except that it's easier to get a boarding place than a day place if you don't live in its catchment.

Katiemcmanus Tue 07-Jan-14 15:45:03

Hello, I can't advise on this particular school but I work at another state boarding school and would be very happy to answer any questions you may have about state boarding in general (and my school if you are interesed - Sexey's )

MrsBright Fri 10-Jan-14 22:16:02

Keswick is good. We used to live in the area and it is without doubt one of the best schools in Cumbria. Can't comment on the boarding aspect but just as a school, excellent.

mpuddleduck Sun 12-Jan-14 22:06:57

Thank you for the replies, they seem really keen on evening/weekend activities so your comment surprises me, I,m not sure how to check this out. Katie I have sent a pm to you.

fourcorneredcircle Tue 14-Jan-14 21:35:18

Dallam School, Milnthorpe is an outstanding state boarding school just south of the lakes - could that be an option?

askeptical1 Sun 19-Jan-14 02:43:09

Keswick for boarding is possibly the best decision I ever made. My dd loves it. Shes got great friends and the teachers are really welcoming everytime im there. Academically shes doing brilliantly.
They have great weekend activities (cinema/ice skating/lazer quest/city trips) and hold regular house meetings where the house has an opportunity to raise concerns about anything that may have happened/want to happen.
Pastoral care is amazing. Both in the house and in school as they have a school nurse. The boarding house is mixed which I think adds a better social atmosphere although there are slightly more older boarders (only 4 boarders in year 7 this year) although this does vary from year to year. There are also lots of boarders from all over the country and from Europe/Saudi/Vietnam etc (about half are pretty local).
On the school side it is probably the best school in Cumbria. People from all over fight to get there dcs in with some traveling a 60+ miles round trip each day. Year 7 even just "pop up skiddaw" for the day and most of the other years do things in the natural environment. At the minute the school is being extended so a bit of disruption over the maths corridor but nothing major.
The headmaster, who came to his post 18 months ago, has taken the school forwards even further.
Academically its a great school (5 sixth formers got into Oxbridge this year). Small class sizes and a newly introduced house system.

If you are considering Keswick then I couldn't emphasise enough how good of a school it is and how much the kids there like it. Its had a huge turn around after the new head and also the new head of house and is just fantastic. cant say it enough really.

Ok, rambling on a bit there, sounding a bit obsessed, but I do think its one of the best decisions we could have made. If you really are considering Keswick then go and look around (preferably on a school day) ask lots of questions ask to see the people you want to see and don't leave without them agreeing for your DC to have a "sleep-over" to see if they like it.

goinggetstough Sun 19-Jan-14 11:13:50

We have had friends whose DCs boarded at state boarding schools and for them it was great because they lived nearby. They boarded in the week and then went home returning on Monday morning.

I am not sure how close the OP will be to the school but do check how many of their DC's year group will be in at the weekends. A PP mentioned that there were only 4 boarders in year 7 this year at Keswick. For us that would not be enough (as half of them could be boys and another one might go home most weekends) as we have always lived a great distance away from our DC's schools. Keswick has a total 54 boarders( STABIS website)and across 7 years if they were spread evenly is not very many per year group. Normally the boarding numbers tend to be higher in the sixth form which would mean less boarders lower down.

Keswick sounds wonderful from a PP's description and with good academics and extra curricular activities. But do check their boarding provision fits exactly what you as a family require. I only mention this as there are regularly posts on here stating that a DC is unhappy as their friends from their year have gone home for the weekend and they have nothing to do. So IMO it pays to ask specific questions about numbers rather than just general percentages before you sign up!

askeptical1 Wed 22-Jan-14 15:49:53

If you are considering kewsick I would advise you to read the good schools guide review. The 2014 one in now on their website here's the link;

mpuddleduck Wed 22-Jan-14 21:36:52

askeptical1, thank you, did you get my private message?

Juja Wed 19-Feb-14 20:30:02

We have looked at 4 secondary school for our daughter - 2 independent boarding schools, a local grammar school and Keswick. We liked Keswick the best and did rather a complex scoring process which ignored the differing financial costs and Keswick came out top. So let's hope she gets a place.

mpuddleduck Tue 04-Mar-14 14:14:02

Fingers crossed for you Juja, will she be a day pupil or a boarder?

Juja Thu 20-Mar-14 23:56:14

She will be a weekly boarder

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