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Headington School Oxford Feedback please!

(27 Posts)
MuminBerkshire Sat 17-May-14 06:05:13

I posted a few days ago asking for some feedback on this school but nobody has replied! Please can anyone tell me more about what it's supposed to be like - academic? Friendly girls? Headmistress reputation etc?

Onebananatwobanana Sat 17-May-14 10:24:39

bumping for you as I'm interested too!

What age is your DD? What age will she enter the school? Will she be a day girl or board?

Hopefully someone will come along and give you some inside scoop!

sinningsaint Sat 17-May-14 18:43:23

I don't have much info so not sure I will be of much help but my niece attended for 3 years and in that time I think the school on the whole were great my niece just 'slipped through the net'. She ended up leaving mid-way through Y9 due to bullying and her bastard fee paying father refusing to pay any more despite the problems being solved but I think this is a problem all schools will face. I cannot comment on how the school really dealt with the problems as my niece kept them very much to herself, but once they found out if I remember correctly they were quite helpful. From an education point of view they are good, however DN moved to a comp and got all A's, so it could be that she was going to thrive in any school! Sorry if this hasn't been much use but hey ho! Oh also traffic is terrible around the school with countless numbers of kids getting knocked over, however there is a brilliant hospital just round the corner and the nurses catch the bus from opposite the school so they are always in good hands (don't let this worry you blush).

MuminBerkshire Sat 17-May-14 19:54:53

Hi Onebananatwobanana,

My DD is 11 years old and currently in Y7. She will enter Headington into Y9 and will be a day girl. Do you have a daughter that will be joining too?

Thanks Sinningsaint - any info. is useful. Just hope someone will come on and give me some more useful details.

upyourninja Sat 17-May-14 20:05:32

I am not involved with the school, but I know several teenagers who go there (or went there).

My impression is that the education is great - standards are high and the girls tend to be driven and focussed, and able to talk to just about anyone, so good transferable skills.

I do also know that there have been some serious rating disorder problems in recent years but the school was addressing it.

It's not the fee paying school I'd choose for my DD but I think it's highly regarded.

MuminBerkshire Sun 18-May-14 06:45:02

Hi Upyourninja,
Thanks for the info. Just interested which fee paying school you would choose for your daughter.

upyourninja Sun 18-May-14 16:30:32

Well she's not school age, so I wouldn't take my word for it grin

However I've known some fab, talented kids from both Cokethorpe and Oxford High, plus I know some lovely teachers from both of those. And the High has exceptional results I believe.

MuminBerkshire Sun 18-May-14 16:54:30

I know that Oxford High has some excellent results but had heard that it was quite pressurised there and less of an all round school than Headington.

upyourninja Sun 18-May-14 18:37:26

I can only go by the girls I know, who are quite a self-selecting crowd anyway (sports team). They are all very confident and well rounded.

MuminBerkshire Mon 19-May-14 12:09:52

Ok - thanks

ChipsAndEgg Tue 20-May-14 13:36:08

Our daughter goes to Headington and is very happy there. I've not heard of any eating disorders nor bullying but it's a school of 800 girls, so it may go on. Teaching is good, facilities are excellent, Headmistress is having a positive effect. Cokethorpe isn't in the same league IMO. Oxford High's a good school, but they are far more selective.

MuminBerkshire Tue 20-May-14 18:27:13

Thanks ChipsandEgg,
Great to hear from someone who has DD there at the moment. Does your DD ever feel that the school is too big? Is it cliquey amongst the girls or do most of them seem to get on pretty well with each other? Although OHS is more selective, Headington seems to do just as well but with less pressure. Any more info. on these and other relevant areas would be great.

ChipsAndEgg Wed 21-May-14 13:31:36

I've never heard her mention that it is too big. Whenever we go into school (and when we visited initially) it seems deserted. I get the impression there are certain cliques (IT/studious/sporty) but never hear much about them to be honest. Everyone seems very friendly, girls are facebook friends with many many girls from older years. Teachers regularly call on senior girls to help younger girls at lunch time with subjects (mainly French in our case). It's a very friendly, easy-going school. The headmistress has stated a number of times that she is less concerned about league tables and more interested in 'value-added' - something the school does well.

They are currently building a large £5m dance and fitness studio and are boosting the sports side of their staff in order to provide much more sport opportunities and expert coaching.

MuminBerkshire Thu 22-May-14 14:56:50

Thanks ChipsandEgg,

Sounds like a lovely environment. I'm going to go back to see the school on their open day at the end of June. The more I find out about the school, the better it seems. Lucky DD got a place. Only problem now is to move into the area, with the view of DS possibly going to Abingdon. Can you suggest any nice areas which are easy distance to both schools?

ChipsAndEgg Sat 24-May-14 00:17:10

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ChipsAndEgg Sat 24-May-14 00:26:21

Headington and Magdalen is a very popular schools combination amongst parents at Headington. I think Abngdon have school buses running from various parts of Oxford so location may be fairly flexible, but Headington traffic (hospitals, Brookes etc) can be very bad.

MuminBerkshire Sat 24-May-14 20:33:38

Ok - Thanks. Am booked onto Magdalen open day in July, so will say what it's like then.

celestialsquirrels Mon 26-May-14 21:15:50

Hi I have a daughter at Headington and a son at Abingdon.
Delighted with headington (she has been there umm 5 years). It's a great school. Excellent staff, nice generally sensible kids, girls come out with a well developed sense of self without arrogance and with a strong sense of socialresponsibility. Mrs Jordan is an excellent head. Very approachable, knows the girls, really sensible, clear vision. My daughter has been fantastically supported - she's dyslexic - with 2 hours of learning support a week and various really targeted courses on learning techniques - and no extra bill for any of it. It's all in the fees.
They take a much wider range of ability than oxford high and get very similar results - and arguably better from a value added point of view. Really happy with it.

Also very pleased with Abingdon. Lots of families with boys at Abingdon send their girls to St Helen and St Katherine in Abingdon which also has an excellent reputation. Oxford high is, I suggest, only for the very bright very robust type. It can be a bit brutally pressured, academically and socially. That's where the vast majority of eating disorders in the oxfordshire girls' independent schools seem to be found, not Headington...

Portlypenguin Tue 27-May-14 18:22:57

We live in headington and have lots of contact with friends/ colleagues at all local schools. DS is only preschool age so no first hand experience yet. As an added piece of info, i work in a childrens health setting locally.

headington girls: great school - good results and facilities. Not known anyone unhappy with it. Good mix of local girls and boarders from all sorts of backgrounds. Rounded girls emerge and go to a range of good universities. Occasionally bullying and stress related issues but not above what you would expect epidemiologically from a large girls school.

Oxford high girls: very selective and very highly pressured. Lots of stress related illness and especially high rate of anorexia. However, really bright robust girls do fantastically and achieve exceptional academic standards.

Rye st anthony - unfortunately seems to take kids who. Don't get into the other two schools. I rarely come across people with kids there. Visited earlier this year as they take boys in the pre prep. It seemed fine but nothing stood out to me.

St helen and st kats in abingdon: Great school with good facilities and high standard of results. Pressure wise in the middle of headington and oxford high.

Magdalen - takes girls in 6th form. Highly highly selective and pressurised. again only for super bright very robust kids. But if your child fits this bill they will probably get to oxbridge from MCS.

I personally would choose headington if / when i have a DD.

for the record we plan to go with new college for DS ....if he gets a place.

Hope that is useful.

MuminBerkshire Fri 30-May-14 09:34:40


I wonder if anyone can give me some insight about whether Headington School Oxford is a supportive school and offers sufficient help and guidance if a girl is struggling with a certain subject. Also wondered how pressurised an environment it is in Headington. These questions have come to mind after I posted on another thread and read about OHS. I wonder if ChipsandEgg may be able to answer these questions or anyone else please.

ChipsAndEgg Fri 30-May-14 10:33:36

In my experience, Headington is very supportive and will go out of their way to help struggling girls. All teaching staff are made aware of any issue that may affect a girl's school life and we are free to contact any member of staff (Form tutor, head of year, head of lower school, Deputy Head pastoral etc) with concerns. Each form has a form rep that meets termly with the Headmistress where anonymous non-academic issues may be raised.

Headington has a very wide ability intake so providing support and help to any struggling girls is something they're well used to. Contrast this with the attitude from another school we visited, where, when raising concerns about class sizes and pressure, the response was: "Our girls can handle it".

Sending our DD to Headington was one of the best decisions we made. We also had a place at OHS, but preferred Headington. Academic results aren't everything.

MuminBerkshire Fri 30-May-14 20:46:26

Thanks ChipsandEgg,

I just needed to make sure that there really is no highly pressured approach to achieve in Headington and that the girls are given help and support to improve where they can rather than just be made to feel bad, as is the case in some other schools. I would like to PM you if any other questions come up but am not sure how to so this because I haven't been using mumsnet that regularly. Can anyone tell me how to do this please?

ChipsAndEgg Fri 30-May-14 23:54:52

There should be a 'Message Poster' option to the right of each username, though strangely it doesn't display on my mobile, just on the desktop version of the site. You may also do it via your Inbox at the top of the page.

NkMomExpat Thu 16-Feb-17 05:56:23

Hi all... my daughter has just been accepted to Headington School Oxford. She will be going for weekly boarding as her dad lives in London. I wanted to ask what positive experiences and what challenges have sixth formers encountered with Headington. As I live in Mumbai, I am quite concerned as I will not be there on a daily basis for her. Thank you

Ladymom Thu 26-Oct-17 00:55:32

Hi can anyone share what is the Sixth Form entry requirement? Thanks!

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