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Cheltenham Ladies College

(71 Posts)
onebananatwobanana Thu 30-Jan-14 13:37:16

Can anyone with a DD at this school give me an up to date view? Would love to hear about going at 11 vs 13, academic pressure and quality of teaching, sport and extra curricular, how integrated the non UK based students are - and are there more non uk based students in the 6th form as there is an additional intake then, how is the pastoral care, how's the new head getting on? How does it compare to Wycombe Abbey, Downe House etc etc

Thank you.

user1474652148 Wed 16-Nov-16 08:20:18

My dd is taking the entrance exam for CLC in Jan - can anyone suggest where to find past papers for her to practice? Or any other advice?
Any advice about the 'assessment' day would be appreciated - thank you smile

ABCAlice Thu 26-Feb-15 08:36:54

My girl also got an offer for LC3 and she will be a boarding student. Any comments on how to choose the right boarding house? She is friendly, but not really out-spoken.

Facts2015 Wed 18-Feb-15 17:44:25

My aunt's dd got offers in both school- St Catherines Bramley and Cheltenham Ladies College. Any recent info. please about both school.

Facts2015 Wed 18-Feb-15 17:39:40

St Catherines Bramley Vs Cheltenham Ladies

maggie52 Thu 03-Apr-14 12:01:58

onebananatwobanana My DD is at CLC and she said that there is no way of choosing houses. You used to be able to give a preference but they found that whole friendship groups from previous schools would all go together which was not the point given they were in a whole new school with new girls. Now, they try to mix them up, you would still have a couple of friends if you were from a school who were sending lots of girls to the school. You can write on a form anything you like in terms of concerns etc. but that does not guarantee you a place in that house. They do of course try to make everyone happy. If your DD finds she is not happy in the house she was put in, she is allowed to change as soon after as she likes. I know this was the case for 1 girl this year. They all have their strengths so it is not too competitive when it comes to competitions.
I think the best thing to do is tour a few of the houses and go from there.

My daughter is really enjoying the school and feels they try to get the best out of all the girls. The pastoral care is excellent, but they don't mother-cuddle them which is good as they need to learn how to look after themselves.

She is musical and fairly academic. She has a busy schedule so there are people watching her making sure everything is ok. She came from a day school that was probably a bit more academic but she is thriving a lot more at CLC, we'll never look back on our choice to come here. Im sending DD no.2 here in September 2014. She is an academic scholar and I'm sure will thrive just as much as number 1.

My only concern is how big the year groups are (80 in year 7, 90 in year 8, 140 in year 9) My DD has found she hasn't been able to properly speak to everyone in the year group. She did start in September but given she is 2 terms in, I find this should not be the case.

In my DDs year she thinks about 30% are Asian so it is not too bad. the majority are actually British.

Hope this helps!

onebananatwobanana Mon 03-Feb-14 11:34:43

Hi everyone. Thanks again for all the contributions. Beetle and Heliconia - I agree that the place feels very down to earth - we were impressed when we looked round, lots of happy, smiling faces, teachers who came to explain what they were doing, pupils who were desperate to tell us what they were doing. Has a very "purposeful" atmosphere. Was very impressed with new Head, in fact I prefer her to Vicky Tuck, who was excellent but more "business like and distant".

Does anyone have any views on how to navigate the choice of house?

summerends Sat 01-Feb-14 21:13:14

Well onebanana I think you have now got a fair amount of information in favour of CLC and less so in favour of WA.

Heliconia Sat 01-Feb-14 20:09:20

WA not QA.

Heliconia Sat 01-Feb-14 20:08:40

Summerends, the choice is not simply selective or non selective. If you think clc is not selective I guess you have little experience of the full ability spectrum.

Qa has a sixth form of about 80. Clc is 135 ish. The top 80 at clc is likely to bear comparison academically to those at wa. (Mine were accepted at both and I like both schools)

Clc is large enough and has the right staff and resources to teach those it accepts appropriately and to their potential. The slightly broader spread allows the inclusion of whatbthe head calls 'interesting people'

beetle22 Sat 01-Feb-14 19:36:00

I currently have a DD at CLC and she is loving it. We chose CLC because it was the most down to earth and happy school we came across whilst still academic enough for a bright child AND because compared to some other boarding schools felt "normal". DH and I are both from working class backgrounds and we both worked very hard to climb the greasy pole of corporate life to be able to afford to choose how to education our children. The boarding school bashing on this website is quite frankly silly. If you actually go and tour CLC NOW ( not 20 years ago) you will see that it is full of parents like us - i.e parents who have worked hard to earn their money and who have decided to education their children in this way. There is of course the odd family of "old money" but the vast majority I have met are unaffected and normal lovely people. I have great friends in London who choose to attend the grammar school but buy a brand new car every two years. We don't but send out DD to CLC. Why? well actually because for us the alternative is the super pressure of the central London schools and in our opinion education is about more than just passing exams and we don't want our DD spending every Saturday shopping in Westfield.
And... despite what people believe we are not rolling in money and we are not jolly hockey sticks types. Yes we have done well enough to send our DD to CLC but hey why should I feel guilty about that - I have worked hard to earn every penny I have and choose to spend it that way and have paid lots of tax along the way and by sending DD private I free up a place for another child at a non fee paying school.
Why did we choose CLC - well as I said down to earth, everyone happy and we believed it was academic enough to push DD who is bright. We turned down Wycombe as in our view the whole place was miserable and looked like they wanted to escape!
To date we are happy as DD is taking every opportunity to try things she has never done before, is making excellent progress academically and is the happiest we have ever seen her.

summerends Sat 01-Feb-14 18:31:14

Those examples of academic achievement are certainly impressive and I know my perception is also anecdotal although in my defence it has been based on those who had and have been labelled academic high flyers by the school in a certain area. CLC certainly has some staunch supporters on this thread. You are making it sound like a non selective school though and therefore should n't be compared to WA as an equivalent academic girls' school even for sixth form entrants.

Wandastartup Sat 01-Feb-14 17:29:24

My experience is now out of date but I do not think we were spoon fed. The lessons taught well beyond curriculum and our course work was done independently rather than with help from parents.
My non expat sisters both have Oxbridge firsts and I have a PhD and a medical degree.
I do think 11+ entry where possible helps integration( I arrived at 12 and sometimes felt left out) I know there are more 13+ candidates than in my day.

Shootingatpigeons Sat 01-Feb-14 17:09:06

Yes, amongst the girls I supported is one who is now a medic, who just completed her elective working in a hospital in Cambodia and an engineer specialising in design who works for Arup (and I am guessing that you don't walk through that door without a lot of independent thoughts!)

Heliconia Sat 01-Feb-14 16:57:51

Summer ends, they can only work with the girls they get and as has been said it is not the most selective. My own ex clc daughters are at Oxbridge as are a number of their friends of varying nationalities.

summerends Sat 01-Feb-14 16:50:33

Shooting and Heliconia I would agree from what I have heard that CLC is a sound school with lots of opportunity from extracurricular activities and the girls I have met from there often are well balanced. However I am not convinced that the school produces the best independent thinkers compared to pupils from other schools I have come across.
With regards the percentage of Asians, I suspect that they contribute in a major way to the good results of the school and entry into top universities. That is easily ascertained by looking at the list of higher education destinations against names. That's not unique to CLC

TheXxed Sat 01-Feb-14 16:44:59

For what it's worth, the kindest, most intelligent and loving soul I have ever met went to CLC.

She has 1 first class undergraduate degree degree from an RG uni and in the middle of getting a second.

yegodsandlittlefishes Sat 01-Feb-14 16:37:42

Hehe, that should say upcoming, but is a rather apt typo. smile

yegodsandlittlefishes Sat 01-Feb-14 16:37:04

I wonder if CLC will feature at all in the upvoming Cheltonians (TOWIE based in Cheltenham)? <shudder>

soul2000 Sat 01-Feb-14 14:41:32

shooting. Thank You for those kind words in wishing me success on my "Long Journey from Academic Incompetence with the Open University"

you are quite right though about stereotypes and perceptions. The portrayal in all media, be that written or visual is of either one of two . It is also likely my views have been swayed by my own meetings with certain types of "Public school Boys" like the ones from Millfield who pushed me into a swimming pool at a fancy house party when I was 17. ot I have met public School girl who laughed at the schools I attended.

. I have though friends who attended minor Public schools St Annes/ Howells both are now (Defunct) .
and also one from the god awful Queen Ethels who was kicked out of her Grammar 20 yrs ago for Wagging and using other worldly substances (It was at the time you did not need Level 5 to go to Grammar) Ethels was the only place that would take her.

However when you visit any schools , and its pupils you should always take them on face value , not on some preconceived prejudices based on previous encounters with different people.

Shootingatpigeons Sat 01-Feb-14 14:11:39

I wasn't meaning it was cut like Celebrity Big Brother!! Just there didn't seem to be much involvement by the adults / house mistress, wasn't one of them excluded? I got the impression they set out to make a film that did what you say. In fact the House mistresses I dealt with tended to keep an eagle eye out for that sort of thing and to proactively have lots in their toolbox to tackle it. I was always quite jealous as my younger daughter had a bad time with some difficult characters and her day school teachers never really understood the true extent and nature of it or could intervene effectively in the same way.

TheOriginalSteamingNit Sat 01-Feb-14 13:45:05

Yes.. I don't remember anything about it being especially torrid, just quite a nicely done film about eleven year olds and their friendships!

Shootingatpigeons Sat 01-Feb-14 13:42:26

Yes I watched it, it didn't quite chime with the experience my Friend's DDs were having, obviously these things get cut to an agenda / for entertainment value. I have no idea what became of them. They were Year 7s weren't they? So if it was 2008, sounds about right, they will be sixth formers?

TheOriginalSteamingNit Sat 01-Feb-14 13:25:40

Does anyone remember a documentary a few years ago about new first years at CLC? It was 2008 I think, and I was interested as dd was the same age.

Two of them were very sweet: I wonder how it all went? All you people who know the school might have been aware of the programme at the time?

Shootingatpigeons Sat 01-Feb-14 13:25:04

I probably have some sympathy for your viewpoint by the way, it is just I think we should focus on giving everyone the chances a girl at CLC would get. I don't actually think they are that different to the chances an outstanding comp would give, in terms of academic achievement, we just need to make sure all our state schools can achieve that aim.

However putting a school like CLC up as a straw man to be knocked down is utterly irrelevant to that vision. As long as parents have a choice they will decide on schools like CLC and I think we help OP by giving her accurate feedback not peddling our prejudices .

Shootingatpigeons Sat 01-Feb-14 13:14:50

I wish you all the best with your studies which hopefully will help you appreciate that stereotypes, especially when peddled by the media, are very dangerous and very often not rooted in reality. First priority in the learning experience at my university is to dump stereotypes at the door and to encourage the students to see issues from different perspectives. It is also to spot any sort of "ism" which is why I will not read beyond wholesome's offensive language. I strongly suspect wholesome is a man anyway, from the rhetoric.

I'll quite happily admit that I had the obvious preconceptions about Boarding Schools and CLC in particular when I toured them with expat and overseas parents looking for a school for their DDs who were not happy in the schools overseas and for whom Boarding School was the only option short of coming back to an uncertain future in the UK. They were all first time buyers and also, like me, wouldn't have hesitated to send their children to an outstanding state comprehensive given the chance. These schools are expensive, we couldn't afford to send our DDs there, so of course all the parents are affluent and amongst them are some who seem to come from another planet, and doubtless they will raise their DDs to be the same. However at CLC I was surprised at how down to earth it was, how much it reminded me of my own state grammar school, or my DDs indie. It is simply a good school, and I would be confidant it would teach my daughters to think for themselves, have curiosity and reasoning skills and equip them to succeed in the wider world and in whatever career they choose. My friends down to earth DDs have not in any way struggled to fit in or find like minded friends, nor have they in any way struggled to adapt at uni or in the wider world. They can wash up as well!!!!

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