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Which school to move to in Surrey? state or private?

(14 Posts)
koala23 Fri 03-Jan-14 18:34:37

My Dd currently attends tormead but is quite unhappy there. she has good friends but not good relationships with the teachers and I think this makes it harder for her to learn as well as she could. I also do not think the teaching as as good as it should be for the money I am paying. She got an Acedemic scholarship there so she is quite bright. We have been looking at other schools for her to potentially move to but we are not sure. There are some that I think would be good to go to because of results etc. but she refuses some of them. We are quite stuck. My DD is into drama and music as well but not so sporty. Does anyone have any schools which may be good for my DD? or just an insight to schools in Surrey really?

inthename Fri 03-Jan-14 20:07:21

Really depends where you are located if you are looking for a state school as that will determine your catchment area and will then depend on which ones have spaces.

What year is she in and without wishing to be rude can you afford full fees without the scholarship as it might not be that easy to transfer it. After that, do you want to stay single ed or coed?

The obvious alternatives would be

Guildford High
St Catherines, Bramley
Priors Field
Frensham Heights
St Georges, Weybridge
St Teresas

Not neccessarily in any order as I have a ds who isn't senior school age yet, so only know of these through friends with dc at these schools.

Unexpected Fri 03-Jan-14 23:08:15

Presumably you looked at other schools before choosing Tormead? What about revisiting some of those schools? What year is your daughter currently in as you may find it difficult to move if she has already made GCSE choices? Is there any possibility of exploring her unhappiness with her current school?

HomerPigeon Sat 04-Jan-14 07:18:12

My DD started at GHS junior school this year at a non-standard entry point (i.e. not year 3 or reception) and is loving it. A few difficulties breaking into established friendship groups but nothing beyond what I expected. The teaching is very good. However, I will say that the standards seem extremely high. DD gets 90%+ in most of her tests but her end of term report - while the narrative parts were all very fulsome - only marked her as "G" (good) or "VG" (very good). There were no "E"s (excellent). I imagine this could be a bit demoralising depending on the temperament of your child. Mine is quite resilient. Not sure how GHS would be for a more delicate type, but I'm sure someone else will be along shortly to comment.

The DD of a friend has recently left GHS to go to St Teresa's, which I understand is a very nurturing school and achieves good results.

Don't know much about the other girls' schools in the area.

chickydoo Sat 04-Jan-14 07:37:55

Where in surrey are you looking?
Kgs (Co-Ed ) amazing results, small classes and a fabulous drama department, their theatre is amazing.

koala23 Sat 04-Jan-14 10:06:03

We're located in Elmbridge but the two schools that I would want my DD at are not in the catchment area. I could however try to get her in but I know there is a long waiting list.
She is currently in her third year, just about to start her second term. if she did move, she would be moving for the summer term of a new school and would've already have had to make choices.

Unexpected Sat 04-Jan-14 11:18:38

If you are talking about private schools, surely there isn't a catchment area as such? Or are you considering state as well? It's a difficult time to move though. If she must move, the start of the following year (4th year) might be better, although you need to be very careful that she can continue with her chosen subject combinations at a new school. At least it's the beginning of the school year, the summer term will be full of already-arranged events and very established friendships. Depending on your daughter's issues, it may make her feel worse than she does currently. I'm going to ask again, have you tried to repair the relationships at her current school? If she has issues with all her teachers, moving school isn't necessarily going to be a quick fix. The issues may just move with her.

inthename Sat 04-Jan-14 13:02:55

It sounds like it would be a difficult time to move. As unexpected says, is it possible to meet with teachers and find out what is going wrong. Is it just this term that she has been really unhappy?
If you aren't in catchment for the state ones then the waiting list would be really long as others moving in would always have priority.
Catchment wouldn't apply to private, though some schools are very reluctant to take a new student effectively straight into year 10. If its the teachers shes struggling with then it needs further looking into as otherwise the problem potentially follows her.

springrain Sat 04-Jan-14 16:29:18

I know someone who has made a similar move, I have sent you a pm with some suggestions.

Londinium Sat 04-Jan-14 18:16:14

Hi OP. Has she been there since Yr 7 or is there a Junior Section? Either way does your Head know of your concerns, as any potential Head may get on the phone to talk to the current one. Just a thought - current Head and indeed others elsewhere will surely all be going through all the annual 11 plus with 100s of children to 'process' so maybe best to talk to current Head of Year 9 (or Head of House if your school organises it that way). If you are looking at SWPS what about Wimbledon High? They may have a place

DalmationDots Tue 07-Jan-14 23:04:12

As others have said GHS would be suitable if she is an academic scholar at Tormead. Depends if they have space though. My DD went through GHS and loved it. Homer notes the academic nature of it, my DD is now uni age and it seems the juniors is a bit pushier/exceptionally high standards compared to when my DD was there (or perhaps we didn't notice it- they didn't used to give grades, just comments). The seniors was fantastic though and DD never noticed any pushiness or pressure, as I always say, IMO the pressure comes from the fact it is year groups of 100 very bright girls all wanting to work and do well. DD had incredibly good friends there who she is still close to and found the majority of the teachers excellent.

Other options- St Cats, Priors Field (but to be honest PF is much much less academic and suits girls who are lower academic levels -will only work if your DD is very self-motivated), Wimbledon High, Putney High, Kingston Grammar (co-ed), Surbiton High, Sir William Perkins, Wellington College (co-ed). Other option is commuting to London (almost same distance as to Guildford for you by train) to City of London girls or St Pauls. I know two families who commute from Surbiton to London every day for Westminster School and it works just fine and the DC are thriving.
What does your DD feel? Is she wanting to move?
Can you address the issues with the school? I have heard a lot of dissatisfaction with Tormead recently, and with the building works, it is putting a lot of people off.

Kitty01 Thu 09-Jan-14 16:01:23

My DD moved from Tormead to St Cats at the end of prep. She was offered music scholarships at both schools, but we moved her as the music department at St Cats is simply outstanding. The facilities generally are top notch and, although initially it was difficult leaving her friends, she is really happy and finds it a caring supportive environment in which all the girls do very well. Please PM me if you'd like more specifics.

CherryEmma Fri 10-Jan-14 12:13:23

Hello, have you tried also posting this on the Local Surrey Talk Board?

Good luck with your decision making smile

Local Editor

Longsuffering2 Wed 05-Feb-14 20:56:06

Hi there - my girl is at GHS Yr 8, but for all their strengths - and there are many, I wouldn't say GHS is brilliant for drama. LAMDA is held really early in the morning which is a total pain with consequent low uptake. I would personally go and look at St Johns and also Notre Dame for your girl. St. John's is quite a traditional school and is now coed. Drama is a specialisation there i believe and there are scholarships to be had. Notre Dame senior school has an amazing state of the art theatre akin to The Globe called Lestonnac theatre.... They also have very very good drama teachers over there. Hope this helps & best of luck!

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