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Has anyone had any luck getting their child into 6th form boarding very late?

(44 Posts)
AsTheWorldTurns Fri 01-Feb-19 13:32:38

My son is at a top day school and it seems he may not make the GCSE threshold to stay there.

He would like to board, but I spoke with an educational consultant today and she said 2019-20 boarding is essentially closed.

Would love some advice.


OP’s posts: |
mateysmum Fri 01-Feb-19 13:40:46

Depends what area and what type of school you are looking for. I'm sure there will be places, perhaps not in the most desirable schools but there are loads of good schools out there.
Perhaps give us some more info and maybe someone can help.
I have to say I don't think the consultant sounds very interested in your business!

Zodlebud Fri 01-Feb-19 13:51:27

I would imagine boarding at “top” schools is closed for admissions for this September but there are plenty of less prestigious schools who so long as you meet their minimum entrance requirements would offer a place if they have space available. They are, after all, businesses and bums on seats are important.

Schools like Aldenham are known for being less academic but still get really good results considering their reasonably broad intake.

AsTheWorldTurns Fri 01-Feb-19 13:57:59

thanks mateys

I'm probably not relaying the conversation well, she said she wanted to warn me that she's been in touch w several BS as of late and they're closed because their numbers are less elastic than day schools, given they have to house them.

I had originally thought of Marlborough but she says this is a 'highly academic' school, which surprised me!

I really don't want to say his current school but it's amongst the most academic in the country and he's predicted 2 A*s and 8As. He has a spiky profile i.e. over 140s in verbal but is dyspraxic and struggles with maths.

So, I guess something like Marlborough but less selective? I don't really know any boarding schools outside of the top handful.

Geography is not a huge issue, I prefer the SE but not essential.

He's a bit quirky, plays the guitar, sociable, articulate, would fit in well in most places, not particularly sporty but plays fives and tennis.

OP’s posts: |
LIZS Fri 01-Feb-19 14:12:37

I doubt they have all closed applications, there is movement even after results day. Try state boarding schools , one of Round Square group like Box Hill or likes of Ardingly which are less academically selective.

Lara53 Fri 01-Feb-19 14:32:23

Hurstpierpoint, Ardingly, Worth, Lancing or Christ’s Hospital Schools near me and all well regarded. Clayesmore in Dorset we’ll regarded for Dylexia and associated LD, ditto Millfield in Somerset if he’s sporty. Bryanston, Dorset. Ellesmere College, Shropshire is an amazing School. My friends DSs are thriving there. There are loads of potential options.

LIZS Fri 01-Feb-19 14:58:24

I doubt a child with A*/A s would be turned down by many, except the most selective, schools. Does it have to be boarding btw?

winterishereithink Fri 01-Feb-19 15:10:43

Is he at a day school in London? I am genuinely shocked that if he gets all A stars and As at GCSE he won't be allowed to stay on? That is truly ridiculous!

Zodlebud Fri 01-Feb-19 15:12:07

Don’t forget that boarding schools will also lose children between GCSEs and A-levels if they don’t meet their own criteria for moving to sixth form. Also, some will just want to move to other schools, particularly more London centric pupils.

None of these parents will be giving notice until the end of this term so schools will not have true visibility of number of leavers at this point.

With your son’s predicted grades I cannot see there being many issues if they have spaces. E.g. Rugby admissions have officially closed but they will still consider you via a waitlist application.

I would concentrate on schools you think are best fit and then speak to the schools directly.

EdwinaMarlow Fri 01-Feb-19 15:21:32

Jeez, what is the GCSE threshold to stay at your son's school then? Sounds OTT to me

Peridot1 Fri 01-Feb-19 15:25:54

Taunton School in Somerset? Non selective. Pastoral care very good. Sporty but not pushy. Music is good as far as I know.

Evidencebased Fri 01-Feb-19 15:32:55

Gresham's, in Norfolk can often squeeze in a late entrant.
They'd be v welcoming of those grades, and high flyers there can do well, but there'll be a broader range , shall we say, than your son is used to.
But he could do IB, and if he opts for the most demanding path through IB, that's arguably more demanding than A levels, and a better preparation for university.
Don't worry about having to do some maths: there are easier options for any one area that's difficult.

mateysmum Fri 01-Feb-19 16:16:03

Probably worth spending some time with The Good Schools Guide. It will give you a chance to browse a whole range of schools and perhaps make a short list. Any consultant worth their salt should also be able to suggest a wider range of schools

mateysmum Fri 01-Feb-19 16:19:37

Hi @Peridot1

Wonder where you got that idea from! smile

AsTheWorldTurns Fri 01-Feb-19 16:24:48

Jeez, what is the GCSE threshold to stay at your son's school then? Sounds OTT to me

4 x A*
4 x A

I thought it might be harder for him to get into another London day school, and he definitely wants to head out to the countryside.

I will almost certainly work with a consultant, I spoke with my first today, just thought I'd get the ball rolling here. My husband is reluctant to spend the money (which I think is thousands) because he has faith in his ability to make the mark. I feel slightly more cautious.

OP’s posts: |
AsTheWorldTurns Fri 01-Feb-19 16:26:59

Thanks everyone for the suggestions, I'm just googling all the names here.

Would he have any luck at Charterhouse? He knows a few kids there.

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Somethingsmellsnice Fri 01-Feb-19 16:27:58

What is the threshold? Even DS school which gets 88% a* or a at a level aaks for the equivalent of 7 As (7s) and a B (6) at gcses so for every 8/9 they can get a extra 6.

I would have thought 2 x A* and 7 x A wouldn't preclude him unless he wants to do maths and sciences and they insist on A*s to continue those subjects.

justforareply Fri 01-Feb-19 16:28:13

Cheltenham College I believe also does entrance exam in Feb as far as I recall. They were still open for sixth form entrance for boarding when I last looked in November when others had closed (as I was concerned my DD hadn't got into either 2 she sat exams at) so maybe look there?

Tweennightmare Fri 01-Feb-19 16:47:00

Cheltenham college have an open morning tomorrow if you are interested. Have a friend whose Dd is there and started sixth form in September (applied about this time last year) . They are really pleased with it

AsTheWorldTurns Fri 01-Feb-19 16:50:19

Aw, thanks guys - I really appreciate all the help - there's no way we could make the open morning tomorrow, poor boy in question has school for starters, but I'm looking at it now.

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4point2fleet Fri 01-Feb-19 16:59:55

I think you need to change consultant TBH. It is ridiculous to suggest a) a child wouldn't get into Malborough with all A/A*s and b) there will be no boarding places left now for September.

She is literally talking out of her arse.

Decide which schools you like the look of- lots of good suggestions here and I would add Bradfield. Then phone the Registrars yourself and book appointments to tour and discuss.

Talksunderwater Fri 01-Feb-19 17:07:05

I am fairly sure I recognise the school and suggest you speak to the head. I have been told by others with older children there that in prior years he has been very helpful both with suggestions for other schools and also for helping the transfers actually to happen.

justforareply Fri 01-Feb-19 17:29:31

Totally agree with 4point - sounds ridiculous not knowing which schools may have later entry
All the admissions people I've spoken to been v nice and helpful - you'd use your time better ringing schools than with your consultant IMO

Prufrockspeach Fri 01-Feb-19 17:35:06

I would try Epsom College - they are on the "up" academically and would offer enough "stretch" without the insane pressure of a London day school.

Charterhouse would also be a good option as there is movement after GCSEs.

OR you could try St Johns in Leatherhead who offer flexiboarding and weekly boarding. They would offer a more rounded education without falling off the academic precipice.

Box Hill and Bradfield would probably not be right - his predicted grades are far too high and you don't want to sell him short just because he hasn't thrived in an academic hothouse full of genius'!

4point2fleet Fri 01-Feb-19 18:18:47

Well, last year Epsom got 87% A*-B, Malborough 82% and Bradfield 76% so I don't think Bradfield is in a completely different league.

Box Hill 40% A*-B, so could be regarded as next tier down.

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