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Is Bristol Grammar School, Bristol any good for girls?

(22 Posts)
GenedlGymreig Thu 17-May-18 09:50:01

We are trying to choose a secondary school for DD in Bristol. Having asked around lots of people have children at Bristol Grammar School but they all seem to be sons. The small number of people we found who did have daughters there have since moved them to other schools in Bristol.

What is BGS like for girls and is there any reason people are moving their girls out from the school?

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Sunnyshores Thu 17-May-18 15:20:22

Mmm, all the people I know at BGS also have boys. Not heard anything negative about it for girls, they just seem to have chosen elsewhere (even siblings)

GenedlGymreig Thu 17-May-18 15:33:55

Something rings alarm bells about that to me. I don't understand how they claim 40% of the pupils are girls.

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Sunnyshores Thu 17-May-18 15:49:41

Is that for all BGS or specially seniors?

Theresahairbrushinthefridge Thu 17-May-18 15:54:00

I think part of the issue is that there are some extremely good girls schools available. So even those who might not have considered single sex education feel that what is being offered for their daughters in other schools is better than what is on offer at BGS.

There are a few boys schools in Bristol that have taken on girls. Not all very successfully.

Sunnyshores Thu 17-May-18 15:58:22

Actually yes, the girls I know have gone to Badminton or Red Maids, girls only. I don't think they're considered 'better' as such, but perhaps their parents preferred single sex.

GenedlGymreig Thu 17-May-18 17:38:27

Sunnyshores Great question and I don't know.

We would like DD to go to a co-ed school if we can find one that has a good reputation.On which note, does anyone happen to know the answer to my other question at www.mumsnet.com/Talk/local/3251689-What-has-changed-at-Cotham-School ?

I am also still hoping someone here will have a daughter at BGS and can report back.

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GenedlGymreig Thu 17-May-18 18:44:00

Theresahairbrushinthefridge Can you say more about what hasn't worked out when the boys schools have accepted girls?

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BishopstonFaffing Thu 17-May-18 18:45:46

So you are considering state and private?

QueenofWhatever Thu 17-May-18 19:14:56

My DD is at BGS senior school with a whole gaggle of teen girls. She’s happy and I like it because of the academic, sports and creative mix with good pastoral care.

Rudi44 Thu 17-May-18 19:32:40

We looked at it and also Redmaids but decided on Badminton, not for you though if you want mixed but we are thrilled with it and it’s a lovely small school. My daughter is very happy there.
Oddly I only know parents of boys at BGS

Muuuuuuuum Fri 18-May-18 08:20:28

Have you visited BGS? I was at a recent open morning and saw lots of girls - didn't do a headcount but wouldn't be surprised if it was 40%.

Students show you around on open morning so if you go to one of those, you can ask the girls how life at BGS is for them and hear it firsthand.

It's by far my favourite of the Bristol schools I've visited and I only have daughters - that said I am strongly in favour of co-ed so the single sex schools would have to be amazing to overcome that "disadvantage" for me.

GenedlGymreig Fri 18-May-18 09:18:57

Yes *BishopstonFaffing*. To be more accurate, our finances are on the border of the two options smile

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GenedlGymreig Fri 18-May-18 09:22:12

Thanks QueenofWhatever. It's a relief to hear from someone with a DD at BGS at last!

I have Muuuuuuuum and I did see plenty of girls although it's hard to count based on one visit. It's just hard to marry that with the fact that the people I know only seem to have sent their sons there (and even some people here said the same thing). It's great to hear it's your favourite school so far.

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GenedlGymreig Fri 18-May-18 09:57:19

Thank you Rudi44. I have been to Badminton a couple of times and one thing that worried me a bit was the physical security. Is it really right that anyone can drive into the school/car park and wonder about?

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catslife Fri 18-May-18 14:20:20

There are girls in the senior school but they may not be the same ones who attend the primary section. I know several who have moved to the seniors from other schools (both independent and state).
I think there are many parents who have the philosophy that girls perform better in all girls schools at secondary but co-ed is better at primary. The girls schools tend to support this myth, but personally I don't think it is true for all girls.
There is only one all boys independent school in Bristol which is QEH. I think that this school may now take girls in the sixth form but this has only happened fairly recently.

GenedlGymreig Fri 18-May-18 15:26:05

There are definitely girls in the QEH sixth form now (see www.qehbristol.co.uk/) . But I am intrigued by Theresahairbrushinthefridge comment that this hasn't always worked out well.

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exexpat Fri 18-May-18 17:44:01

I was at BGS in the sixth form when they had only recently started taking girls (a long, long time ago) and we were outnumbered more than 10 to one. Things have moved on a lot since then, and numbers seem to have evened out a lot more since they opened up the infants school, so I think the gender balance is much closer to 50/50 lower down the school.

However, they will probably always have more boys than girls since there are two private all-girls schools, and one all-girls state school in Bristol, but only one private all-boys school (up to 16, anyway), plus Clifton High which was all girls, now takes boys but is still girl-heavy, as far as I know. The closure of Redland High (well, merger with Redmaids but closure of the site) may also have sent a few more girls in the direction of BGS if they lived in that area.

BGS is very strong on trying to get girls into STEM subjects (BGS has a long history of links with engineering), but are also trying to expand their arts offering, e.g. with the new performing arts centre.

There is a new headmaster arriving this autumn, so it will be interesting to see if he introduces any changes.

Rudi44 Fri 18-May-18 20:03:20

To answer the question re Badminton security, yes you can drive into the car park but you cannot access the class rooms and areas where the children are, the doors have keypad security and the main building is locked entry via a intercom system . In my experience of visiting a number of schools including Redmaids etc none of them are gated.

There have never been issues as far as I am aware around security.

Sidney Mon 28-May-18 19:03:25

Just seen this, relatively late. My daughter has just finished there and loved it. She has a lovely mixed group of friends from there, who all interact easily with each other and adults, and who are a delight to be with. I would say the school has made huge strides in recent years with improving the balance and the offer for both sexes e.g cricket for girls, performing arts for boys as well as driving forward STEM options for girls. Hope that helps - good luck with your decision!

Walkingdeadfangirl Mon 28-May-18 19:15:28

Before you send your DC their you might want to consider the cocaine and behavioural problems the school has. You couldn't pay me to send my children there, just not worth the risk.

Sidney Thu 31-May-18 21:21:59

Have you based your opinion on anything other than what you have read in the papers and online, Walkingdeadfangirl? I also have a son there and consider that the school has dealt with the behaviour of a few rotten apples in an entirely appropriate and dignified way.

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