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JAGS anyone have a daughter there??

(37 Posts)
Condemned Sun 28-Sep-14 20:41:42

Went to the open day and was surprised at the class sizes (28) the facilities were great and outstanding results but it felt a little snobby. I know it's very difficult to get a feel on one visit with probably a thousand others looking around, any inside knowledge would be greatly appreciated- thanks

OP’s posts: |
elltee Sun 28-Sep-14 22:15:46

My cousin was expelled some years ago, and effectively banned from every independent school inside the M25 after her parents challenged the expulsion on the grounds that she hadn't actually been caught doing what she was accused of

Neighbours' DDs went there much more recently. One did well academically but disliked the rather heavy handed disciplinary approach. The other developed an eating disorder and according to her mother the school's pastoral care was non-existent.

MaudantWit Sun 28-Sep-14 22:21:10

Friend of mine has two daughters. First went to JAGS and found it very pressurised (no point playing tennis unless you're county champion, etc). She looked elsewhere for sixth form for that daughter and sent her other daughter to another school entirely.

Seriouslyffs Sun 28-Sep-14 22:29:35

My daughter left 2 years ago. It's a good school, not a perfect fit for her but no complaints. What's your daughter like?

Condemned Sun 28-Sep-14 22:33:14

Thanks for your responses. My daughter is bright but at a state primary so not used to being under a or of pressure and a competitive environment. At the open day they said that year 7 do 1 hour 40 mins homework a night which seems a hell of a lot!

OP’s posts: |
scaevola Sun 28-Sep-14 22:39:43

All girls schools seem to have massive amounts of homework.

bigTillyMint Mon 29-Sep-14 09:28:57

Condemned, my DD was doing that much at her local comp at the start of Y7 (possibly because she spent so long on it!)

chick01 Mon 29-Sep-14 15:26:11

My dd is currently at JAGS (yr9) - loves it and is doing extremely well. There is a fair amount of homework and they do have a number of tests in the year - more so than the other local independent schools. The homework can be a bit of a shock at first but it does settle down, although it does increase each year as you go up the school. But, if your dd is bright, academic, fairly organised and motivated it is the school for her. The teachers are fantastic, they seem to know the girls well and the facilities are great. In our year approx 45 came up from JAPS (they are virtually guaranteed a place) and about 60 from outside - though i dont think many came from state primaries. My dd entered from a local prep school and she chose JAGS from a very strong field of offers. My dd is in a form of 24. They are put into year sets for many subjects so the size of the sets may vary. Re sport - There are a number of girls who compete in sport at a very high (including national) level. But, you will find that they all belong to outside clubs so which ever school they chose to attend they would be at that level anyway - no doubt they were attracted to the school by its amazing sport facilities. But, there are plenty who are not sporty and they also have a great time. It is the exactly same story with music and drama, with some very highly talented musians (usually not so sporty!!) - of course there's the building of the new music centre. But you dont need to worry - there are many clubs and groups to cater for all levels. I havent come across any snobbyness but it is the land of iphones. There are some very well off parents but not all - most are professionals however. I would chose JAGS again without any hesitation. I hope this helps.

MrsWobble3 Tue 30-Sep-14 13:13:08

my dd plays them at hockey and it could have been a possible school for her so I asked her if she would rather have gone there - it is considered academically better than her school. she told me she would not have fitted in there as she "is not thin enough"

bigTillyMint Tue 30-Sep-14 13:15:58

MrsWobble, I think she has hit the nail on the head - there seems to be a lot of pressure on girls there to look "right"

Marni23 Tue 30-Sep-14 15:49:53

she told me she would not have fitted in there as she "is not thin enough"

MrsWobble, I think she has hit the nail on the head - there seems to be a lot of pressure on girls there to look "right"

Sorry but this is rubbish. My DD is in Y12 and has been at JAGS since Y7. There will undoubtedly be girls there who are worried about looking 'right' just as there will be in any school anywhere in the country.

In my experience (and that of DD) it is not an attitude that is prevalent at JAGS and she has certainly not felt any pressure to conform. If you visited the school you would see girls of all shapes and sizes.

chick01 Tue 30-Sep-14 16:01:26

Really,????!!!!!! I honestly can't identify with the comments about thinness and looking nice. Those particular comments are much more associated with the school across the road!!!!! I had heard all the so called stories about JAGS re pressure etc prior to my dd going and I was concerned but I can honestly say that we haven't encountered that. There are also loads of girls from all sorts of backgrounds/personalities, all sorts of shapes, sizes and colours. However, it is academic. Even if you excelled at your primary school you will meet girls coming to JAGS in Yr7 who will be as clever or even better than you at least at something. Go to the Saturday Open Day, (you will meet some of the older girls as only yr7 and yr8 take round on the weekday) see for yourself and really quiz the girls you meet. Don't just admire the Chemistry explosions!!!!

chick01 Tue 30-Sep-14 17:52:29

I totally agree with marnie23.

bigTillyMint Tue 30-Sep-14 19:35:55

Really? Well, I stand corrected must be only the thin ones you see at the bus-stop, from either school smile

medtem Tue 30-Sep-14 20:03:28

DDs know many girls at JAGS. Some are snobby, most of them arenot, some are sporty, some are musical, some are very academic and they definitely come in all shapes and sizes. They do seem to get more homework even for academic girls' schools and it suits girls who thrive under pressure and don't find the work too overwhelming. I think those you just scrape in at 11+ do struggle

Condemned Tue 30-Sep-14 21:40:46

Thanks all for the input. This has overall reassured me, the homework is a but of a worry but I think it's more that she's not been used to that much at primary rather than she won't be able to cope. I do think girls need some some social life and time off however. I'm now curious what the school over the road is : )

OP’s posts: |
MortaIWombat Tue 30-Sep-14 21:44:39

Alleyn's. Co-ed. saner grin

Marni23 Tue 30-Sep-14 21:48:57

Alleyn's. Co-ed. Thinner and blonder grin

Johnogroats Tue 30-Sep-14 22:06:50

We are going to the Alleyns open day on Sat. Any comments on what it might be like for a boy 10 now, to start in 2 years time? He is sporty, but loves cycling and not so good at team sports ( still enthusiastic). Great reader, loves history, doing very well academically and very happy at his current state primary.

Farahilda Tue 30-Sep-14 22:11:42

Alleyns, under new head, requires pupils to be "self starters" which translates as 'sink or swim'. Neither the pastoral care nor the learning support is what is was 5 years ago.

MortaIWombat Tue 30-Sep-14 22:12:33

I expect he'd like it very much. There are sporty boys, and not so sporty boys!
Does he enjoy discussing ideas with girls as well as boys?
Can he cope with 60-90 minutes of homework a night?
Is he willing to join at least a couple of clubs in his lunchtimes/after-school?

MortaIWombat Tue 30-Sep-14 22:16:47

Ouch.
I'd beg to differ.
Any examples, Farahilda?

The new sessions on learning/resilience etc in the lower school seem to be bedding in well.
There are, of course, school nurses, chaplain and councillors, tutors and later housemasters who get to know the pupils very well, I think.

In terms of learning support, I can't really say. What would the ideal be?

chick01 Wed 01-Oct-14 11:59:06

My DD was offered a place at Alleyns in Yr7 which we declined after a lot of discussion between ourselves and others. I quite liked the more relaxed approach at the time. Now she is a teenager I am glad we chose elsewhere.

It has an interesting admissions policy: 50% exam and 50% interview. Open to much interpretation. Also, kids from junior school automatically go up; strong sibling policy (never known one not to get in) and strong preference given to those who have any kind of connection with the school now or in the past. They also keep the school 50/50. A couple very interesting questions are also asked for on the application form regarding the parents. The above is borne out by the offers and helps explain some of the mystery why some and not others get in. Given that it is one of the few co ed independent schools and that it has this so called trendy image there are a large numbers of applicants. I feel it is easier for a boy with no connection with the school to get in than a girl as many boys prefer DC. I heard that the new head is trying to attract more clever girls and that together with the comment made re the new sink or swim attitude may explain why my dd got in on the first batch rather than a waiting list place, as we had no previous connection with the school (Nor are we media type, well known or monied, although professional) The admission system leads to more mixed ability school and this is reflected in their GCSES results (although still good) with more non academic subjects offered. It is very 'blond' although this is more to with personal preference of single sex schools by black and Asian families than anything else.

However, how you look there and act is quite important with lots of make up, long hair and eye watering skirt lengths, even in the lower years. A friend whose dd has just done her GCSEs at Aleyns did say that their dd had definitely been distracted by the social aspect of the school. Their A level results seem to be boosted by attracting in clever kids into their 6th from from elsewhere who want to experience co ed prior to uni.Also, there is something in the recent inspection report re some aspect of its teaching. I'm not sure what was meant but for them to actually mention it is rather odd.

My dd says she doesn't like the way the yr7 and yr 8 are physically separated from the rest of the school; the dirtiness of the changing rooms and the way some of the kids behave. all interesting comments coming from her.

On balance it is a very good school, it definately attracts some very monied parents ( I can imagine it can be very cliquey) many rave about it and if you want co ed it is the best in the area. i am not sure that Alleyns is best known for its sport, especially for boys. Parents with boys who looked at the school in the past have actually commented on its lack of boy specific sport. They tend to favour DC or Whiftgift.

chick01 Wed 01-Oct-14 14:05:10

There are definately a few girls at JAGS who find it difficult - the JAPS girls are offered places at the senior school by only having to obtain a 'pass' on the entrance exam.

Mummytrois Fri 21-Sep-18 11:48:06

Can anyone give a more recent account of their DDs experience at JAGS?

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