St. James boys school ashford(13 Posts)
I'm going to see this school, as an option for my son who is very sporty and academically average but keen. Can anyone tell me about this school? I hear mixed views
I know there was an enquiry into historic abuse at the school which you might want to look into. Also check out its connections with the School of Economic Science.
I think the key word here is "historic" - sadly St James are not exactly alone in this. We looked at the school for our DS, who is now going to a school nearer to us. I work in education, and I was impressed by the school and the boys. Coincidentally, we now know two families with sons there who are very happy and settled. St James and St James girls schools both seem a good choice for children who are not hugely academic, but will thrive with a little less pressure. It is vegetarian, and they do mediation. But then so did I 30 years ago at my state Grammar - only it was called "clear you mind" time then! Go and make up your own mind. It's definitely worth a look.
My friend's son is there. She & he are very happy with the school, he is in the cadets which he really enjoys, plays rugby, has been in the plays etc. They offer a BTEC in business in the 6th form which gives less academic boys a way of getting to a good university. Boys travel from a wide area, there is a coach from Hammersmith & Chiswick iirc, boys also live in Putney, Richmond & Kew.
It always makes me smile when anyone asks about St James and one of the first things people say is about historic abuse - a long long long time ago apparently and nothing at all to do with the school now. Go see the school, talk to people who have boys at the school etc. My son is now in Year 9 there and he loves it. He is very sporty too and is in lots of the school teams, he was academically average too but St James has been the making of him - he is doing extremely well there. The kids are all lovely as are the teachers, the facilities there are fantastic too and money being spent to make it even better. My boy is happy and confident when friends of his elsewhere aren't so happy and a big part of that has to be the school. In fact, the only thing he doesn't like about the school is the lunch....but I hear that across all schools to be honest. Good luck with your search.
Thank you everyone for your comments. V helpful and reassuring. I read somewhere that majority of staff are SES ...does this matter? I really loved it but can't quite commit and I'm not sure why.. I think Ill go again with DH this time.
The meditating is simply standing behind their chairs at the start of every lesson for a few moments to reflect on what is to come. It's fairly healthy. The students can choose their own thoughts, and some may include Christian prayer. Nothing is imposed apart from the actual silence.
I would endorse what Matilde has said. My DS is in yr 10 and has thrived there. It's a lovely nurturing environment. He loves the sport, cadets and the school trips. His friends who are not so sporty enjoy the drama activities. He's not keen on the lunches but its not that much of an issue.
I have heard negative things about pastoral care when DC don't settle in well.
Many thanks for the info on the St James Senior boys School thread, I have found the feedback most useful. I am considering the school for my son who is currently in year 5 but wanted to find out more about mumsnet's experience of the pastoral care as my son is dyspraxic (fighting hard against his challenges though) He needs a nurturing environment although he is actually very academic and competitive. I read one comment but would be interested to find out a bit more.
I felt that St James had such and environment when I visited the school but I am still on the fence after a recent experience. Would love to hear from anyone who has similar challenges. Thanks
I have a friend whose ds (who had a few pastoral issues) has been very happy there, in spite of struggling academically. He's a much more confident person than he used to be, lovely lad.
That said, we looked at St James girls' for my dd (Y5) and in spite of lots of positives, I had a sort of uncomfortable feeling about it. Not on hearsay, or gossip, just my own instincts. I don't think it would be right for my dd, so we've taken it off the list.
Elibean.. This is how I felt, DS offered a place... I declined on a gut feel.
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