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A School Like Winchester or Westminster But Co-Ed?

(49 Posts)
PowerPantsRule Wed 08-Nov-17 13:42:56

Am sure I am asking the impossible but here goes. I have a very bright but utterly un-coordinated and non-sporty DS10. Loves gaming and Greek, Latin and philosophy. You get the picture. He gets on very well with girls and due to bad experiences in our childhoods we want him to go to a co-ed school. We live in the South and would like to be near London and are open to London itself. Any suggestions gratefully accepted. Oh, and he would be a day pupil, he is not a boarder. Thank you.

KaliforniaDreamz Wed 08-Nov-17 13:43:41

Try Kingston Grammar school.

WhyOhWine Wed 08-Nov-17 13:47:22

Alleyns in Dulwich and Latimer Upper in West London worth a look.

PowerPantsRule Wed 08-Nov-17 13:52:07

We like the look of Bradfield College and also Canford but wonder if they are academic enough?

PowerPantsRule Wed 08-Nov-17 13:52:46

Oh always assumed Kingston Grammar was a grammar school! Will look at both those too thanks Why.

BeachysFlipFlops Wed 08-Nov-17 13:53:35

If he’s a day boy, your home location is going to be key, really.

Sunnyshores Wed 08-Nov-17 13:55:18

Canford is lovely, but not nearly as academic as WInchester

PowerPantsRule Wed 08-Nov-17 14:02:47

Beachys - we would move house for him, but would want to be within reach of our current home which is in the south.

Sunnyshores - I know. This is the problem, I don't want to sell him short, academically.

CountessDracula Wed 08-Nov-17 14:10:41

Agree Kingston Grammar, Latymer Upper both very good (I don't know Alleyns) they are both ex grammar schools and as such have that trad feel to them, though they are both very modern schools in their own ways.

CruCru Wed 08-Nov-17 14:11:04

Brighton College, Forest, Highgate?

semideponent Wed 08-Nov-17 15:51:30

MCS in Oxford is co-ed in sixth form. It's at least as selective as the schools you mentioned and gets great academic results.

Needmoresleep Wed 08-Nov-17 16:12:26

Co-ed prep to 13 followed by Westminster? If he gets through the pre-test at 10plus good London preps will open their doors. They all like Westminster as a destination school. You then have three years of single sex, before the co-ed sixth form. It is not that big a school and the presence of girls has an influence. Lots of "quirky" boys who like Greek and gaming. For the right child, it is a very special school.

PowerPantsRule Wed 08-Nov-17 17:42:25

Love these ideas thanks guys! Unfortunately both dh and ds dead set on co-ed even though the idea about Westminster is spot on. Thanks you anyway, it makes sense to me.

cakeisalwaystheanswer Wed 08-Nov-17 19:15:40

There isn't a co-ed equivalent but nearest academically I can think of would be The Perse School Cambridge, Brighton College or Wellington. For co-ed London day schools the most academic you'll get is Alleyns, Highgate and Latymer.

You have named two schools that are pretty unique amongst boys schools and although the schools I have listed are very strong academically they are very different to W&W. I don't think many people sit mulling over whether to choose Wellington or Westminster.

What particularly attracts you to those two schools?

cakeisalwaystheanswer Wed 08-Nov-17 19:26:27

I don't think many people realise the gap between schools like this and other top performing Indys. Westminster regularly sends more than 90 to Oxbridge, the other schools I have named are probably 30 tops - check their websites. Kingston Grammar named up the thread sent less than 5 last year. W&W are different.

mumsiedarlingrevolta Wed 08-Nov-17 19:29:52

Bradford not known for academia.
From the little you have just said I would say not for your DS...

Austentatious Wed 08-Nov-17 19:33:05


PowerPantsRule Wed 08-Nov-17 19:41:50

Is Wellington academic? And does anyone know the boarding/day split?

ARGH if only W and W took girls! What attracts me is their Oxbridge results and also their suitability for a slightly 'different' boy. He's not your normal, footbally type...

mumsiedarlingrevolta Wed 08-Nov-17 19:55:19

I would like to gently suggest that your experience will not be his.
Look at W&W. If he likes one of them you can expect there will be other boys just like him there-
he will find his tribe.
It is a very different landscape/world than when you and DH went to school... don't limit his choices by your experiences.
Let him look and choose.
It actually sounds to me like they would suit him...
Is Abington in Oxford too far?

cakeisalwaystheanswer Wed 08-Nov-17 19:57:52

I understand exactly what you mean and what you are looking for, but the co-ed equivalent doesn't exist. Wellington does very well academically but it's a completely different environment to what you are looking for.

I am going to second needsmoresleep's suggestion, its only three years. Two and a half if you take into account all the study leave and early finish GCSE year. W boys are a type, don't fight it.

Crumbs1 Wed 08-Nov-17 20:00:42

Wellington is almost entirely boarding but has good integration of day pupils in houses. Some choose to board in sixth form.
It’s excellent academically- many with 45 points at IB - A levels are not as popular. Suits wide variety of personalities.
Oxbridge isn’t the only goal and these are all highly selective schools taking a cohort with proven academic potential. I know Wellington send some to Ivy leagues too.

cakeisalwaystheanswer Wed 08-Nov-17 20:12:36

Wellington is about 50/50 for IB/A levels as in last year 96 sat IB 92 sat A levels. Four pupils scored 45 points at IB last year. It is a fantastic school, amazing for sport and produces an amazing rounded education/experience. I love it and it is on my shortlist if DD wants to move for 6th form. But it is nothing like Westminster and it wouldn't want to be.

happygardening Wed 08-Nov-17 20:19:26

"Is Abington in Oxford too far?"
I'm not knocking Abingdon its a very good school but it has about as much in common with Winchester as I have with Theresa May!

Needmoresleep Wed 08-Nov-17 20:19:54

Power, what your DH is not factoring in is that girls and boys develop at different times. Which is why some schools like Berkhampsted operate a diamond structure, separating boys and girls for the key GCSE years. The gentle friendships that may have existed during primary years change a lot in Yr 7 & 8 when girls can seem so much older than the boys. Some boys keep pace but others want to hide with their gaming friends. The problem with co-ed is that there are only ever half as many boys as in single sex so fewer of your tribe.

I am a fan of Co-ed and DD managed co-ed all the way through, including Westminster sixth form. The boys prevent the girls from being too competitive and the girls discourage the boys from being too silly, and they seem to get along fine. But I am still convinced it did DS no harm to be away from girls in those key 13-16 years, and able instead to hang out with his (relatively) geeky friends without pressure. Sixth form then has a very different feel. The school cleverly limits the intake of girls to a third of the year group. Otherwise they might take over!

DD loved it. Nothing wrong with the academic London co-ed she had been at before, and indeed her peer who stayed on got terrific results, but her time at Westminster was very special.

happygardening Wed 08-Nov-17 20:30:23

I was ambivalent about SS before DS2 went to Winchester. We choose it because like you OP we liked its ethos and it happened to be SS.
Now I feel differently what makes Winchester what it is is because its SS. The camaraderie between the boys and the boys and the staff at Winchester is really special (I know I've worked in coed boarding schools). The boys aren't generally "silly" they are a very close knit community, I believe the positive palpable atmosphere that I just cant find the right words to describe is there because its SS, for me most importantly the boys feel free to be themselves.
My DS went to a coed prep, he probably would have said he would prefer coed if everything else had been equal when at his prep but I don't think he would say that now he's been through Winchester.

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