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Personal and pretty recent knowledge of Wellington College in Crowthorne?

(29 Posts)
Flum Wed 14-Oct-15 09:21:25

Hi. We are a British family living overseas at the moment. My daughter has just had an assessment for this school and liked it, there is some family history there and also it is really handy for Grandparents who live close by.

I do understand that a lot of kids go home on Saturdays for about 24 hours.

Does anyone know anyone there, or recently left? I know they have a new head just started. I met him at the assessment and he seemed really nice.

My daughter is very capable academically and to be honest a bit of a perfectionist. She is not into traditional sports ( well, never done them as at an International school... They do volleyball, crossfit and soccer).

My main concerns are that she puts a lot of pressure on herself already. I would live her to be in a thriving busy enquiring environment but not too much pressure.

I find the 'public' school system a bit confusing as I am from a computer background but my husband was in this system, he is really keen for us to do this for our kids too if we can. DD really wants to go, she is excited to leave her little tiny school!

Flum Wed 14-Oct-15 09:23:07

Love not live
Comp not computer.

Blinkin auto correct.

Flum Wed 14-Oct-15 16:01:11

I have gone through old threads and found a mixture. DD has her heart set on it. We also have her down for Marlborough and Bradfield. I also really liked the sound of Canford.

We have gone for ones that would work well logistically really.

Flum Thu 15-Oct-15 15:09:45

I guess this is then wrong forum for this. Can anyone point me in the direction of a good forum where parents and kids from private schools air their views on different schools. I can't believe one does not exist!

Stitchosaurus Thu 15-Oct-15 15:17:40

Sorry I can't be of any help, I clicked on this hoping to find out info myself! Hopefully this little bump might help it get seen by people who can help

MLP Thu 15-Oct-15 15:44:42

There may be info on the 11 plus forum

Translucently Thu 15-Oct-15 16:32:35

Flum it might be worth messaging people like halvedfees who have DCs at Wellington. Also a new thread with the other choices in the title may bring more posters. I don't have DCs at any but if you need full boarding Marlborough would be best, followed probably by Wellington.

Jeanniemacarooney Thu 15-Oct-15 16:41:25

Not sure I can be much help. My dc was in a feeder school to Wellington and having gone to see the school several times felt it wasn't the right place for our son. In fact the choices came down to Bradfield and the school we eventually chose. Wellington is very good I feel for a self motivated and confident child which our dc was not hence he has gone somewhere I think the pastoral care is very good as a weekly boarder. Bradfield was very nice but didn't seem strong enough academically for us in the subjects our ds likes to do.

Flum Fri 16-Oct-15 15:19:12

Thanks for replying all that did. I liked Bradfield a lot too. My DH and DD both very keen for Wellinton. I just worry about her going somewhere so kinda high profile. She is very much a self starter doesn not need any pushing to work hard at all.. She works too hard. but, she can get tearful and over whelmed by the pressure.... She puts on herself!

I will message Halved fees.

goinggetstough Fri 16-Oct-15 17:59:13

Marlborough has definitely the most full boarding in your list. We liked Bradfield but as overseas parents it didn't have enough full boarders. Canford was our second choice in the end as we chose an all girls school.

Translucently Fri 16-Oct-15 21:50:34

Flum don't worry about high profile but in your DD's case do focus about the pastoral care and ask the heads of prospective houses how they deal with DCs like yours who find it hard to relax. Wellington certainly talk the talk about their focus on mental wellbeing.
Have you visited Marlborough yet?

happygardening Sat 17-Oct-15 15:44:19

Bradfield definitely isnt full boarding I was told by a mun with a DC currently there she loves the school but thought before she went that it was full boarding but quickly discovered it definitely isn't her only gripe. I was there one Sunday it was like a ghost town. Canford also isn't really full boarding again I was told this by a mum with two there, they have compulsory weekend where all have to stay in but otherwise most go home. Marlborough is definitely full boarding. Wellington I understand isn't. Kings Canterbury is also full boarding as are Uppinghsm and I think Rugby. Hope this helps.

Flum Sun 18-Oct-15 21:13:15

Trouble is we are from Marlborough. I know heaps about the school ... probably a bit too much really. She kind of doesn't want to go there as it will not be new and exciting!

Second daughter desperately wants to go there so she can be a 'Wednesday girl' like she had when she was a ikkle one.

Also if we end up moving back to UK she will be boarding like 2 minutes walk from her own house. That just feels sort of weird.

I think she will go for Marlborough or Wellington if she gets offers and will just let her go with the one she fancies the most I think.

Thanks everyone for your replies. Today I would happily send her away permanently but most days I feel I would miss her desperately.

fredlin Mon 19-Oct-15 18:33:53

Co-eds def the way to go if your daughter already puts pressure on herself academically (although there are other pressures at co-ed schools). Based on the info you've provided I'd probably go for Wellington, esp if you liked the new head. Boy/girl ratio similar for both but Marlb is smaller and gets bigger influx of girls in sixth form (Middleton effect still not wearing off).

However, if you aren't living in the UK it is worth asking Wellington tough questions about boarding mix at weekends. I believe it's almost de facto weekly boarding because so many go home on Saturday (boarders must do two Saturday nights in school per term but that's not much). While I understand that your daughter may not find prospect of Marlborough exiting, it is much more of a 'proper' boarding school so weekends could be more fun.

PinkPenz Mon 19-Oct-15 19:15:37

Wellington EMPTIES at the weekends. If your DD is going to be left alone with only a few other "full" boarders in what is a weekly boarding school, will she be happy?? The weekly boarding culture extends to open days - twice we had our tours cut short because "mum's waiting for me to take me home for the weekend"....needless to say, it didn't progress onto our final list!

Marlborough is full boarding.

Translucently Mon 19-Oct-15 19:44:12

Flum I can see your DD's reasons for not going to Marlborough which is a shame as it would provide the whole package of full boarding.
I suppose she has to decide whether she would want to spend a fair amount of time at her grandparents if she went to Wellington (or Bradfield). The other alternative would be to consider full boarding co-ed further away such as Rugby or Oundle.

fredlin Mon 19-Oct-15 20:19:27

If you aren't completely opposed to girls only then Tudor Hall (near Banbury) is would be worth looking at. Not hysterical or high pressure, proper boarding, exemplary pastoral care and an excellent head.

ThunderMental Fri 23-Oct-15 22:16:44

Hi Flum

My DS is a current full boarder at Welington College (now home for the 2wk exeat). In the 6wks since the Michaelmas term began he has only had 2 'semi-quiet' weekends in College which he has thoroughly enjoyed. Go-karting, paintballing, cinema, shopping in Reading - the children who board full time are well looked after during the weekends. Apparently the food served at weekends is even nicer than the weekday delights.

There are definitely a lot less pupils about on non-closed weekends but DS says he enjoys the opportunity to catch-up on work in Art School or practice in Music School. With fewer bodies in his boarding house, he also loves having the TV room to himself for an hour or so or sharing it with just a few other boys. It's only really noticeably quiet on Saturday and Sunday nights as there's always something for them to themselves with during the day on Sunday and school finishes at about 4:30/5pm on Saturday after match tea.

There are certainly less children but your DD definitely won't be short of company either.

My DS is not at all sporty but he gets on with it. There's a huge variety of sports, activities and societies on offer. Wellington may do incredibly well nationally at shooting, rugby, hockey, golf, etc but sport definitely is not their main focus. DS's an academic scholar and fits in amazingly well. Like your DD, he can put a lot of pressure on himself but I'm so pleased with his 'whole-person' development since joining WC. The pastoral care is exceptional. Staff keep a close eye on each child and make sure that they are stretched but also that they hold back when necessary so as not to burn themselves out.

I hope this helps in some way.
Feel free to message me if you want any other info. smile

ThunderMental Fri 23-Oct-15 22:23:36

CORRECTION- It's only really noticeably quiet on Saturday nights, as school finishes at about 4:30/5pm on Saturday after match tea, and there's always something for the children to busy themselves with during the day on Sunday then those who went home have to be back by 7/8pm on Sunday.

Flum Tue 27-Oct-15 13:39:35

Wow! Mumsnet has come up trumps again. So glad I popped back to see if there were any more messages. There were and all so useful.

The type of boarding at Wellington sounds like it might be perfect for my DD. She likes a bit of quiet down time and will find being surrounded by people all the time quite mentally exhausting so quiet weekends will suit her and she can go to relatives or friends if she wants to. Perfect, will see if she gets offered a place at Wellington and let her decide whether to go for it or progress things with Marlborough and Bradfield.

She is adamant she doesn't want a girls school and from what I know of her she isn't really a 'to round in a group of girls' kind of person. I think mixed is better.

Thanks everyone.

Ahwoo Tue 27-Oct-15 14:11:50

Best wishes to your DD in her exams next month flowers

fredlin Tue 27-Oct-15 14:30:13

Yes, very good luck.

halvedfees Wed 28-Oct-15 10:05:30

Just to add to the messages that the others have put - WC is tending towards weekly boarding - about 20% remain in at the weekend. However the school put on an excellent weekend programme - and I think it can be good if there is a little "down time" !

The pastoral care is outstanding, and the atmosphere there is one where it is cool to be academically successful. My son was a scholar and was always being asked by other pupils how to succeed academically (he got 12A*s at GCSE/IGCSE). Although it is sporty, there are so many teams and so much choice that even the least sport-orientated find their niche. It is generally a fun place to be.

Any questions - please ask!

pupsi Sun 06-Dec-15 01:28:06

My ds was just offered a place into the sixth form at Kings, Canterbury and Wellington. He will be a full boarder and he is a year younger then his year (as he is finishing his igcse a year early. I can't make up my mind which one would be the better choice.

happygardening Sun 06-Dec-15 09:44:35

Kings is full boarding or day no weekly boarders (least it was when I knew it well) although upper 6th and maybe lower sixth maybe allowed home on the odd Saturday night it's worth checking. I know Canterbury well it's a nice city with a surprisingly large student population 2 universities, art college etc, it's very safe but there are things to do at weekend cinema theatre art exhibitions shops coffee shops and restaurants which IME is important for many older teenager and the sea is up the road, that would sell it for me, there are very good train links to the sea and reasonable ones to London. All we know at Kings (and I'm talking lots) bar one were very happy there.

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