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Queen Anne’s School Caversham(20 Posts)
My daughter has obtained a place at QA, she is a happy go lucky young girl but is shy in the school environment. We are hoping that the mix of academic and pastoral care will help her to become more confident at school and flourish as she grows older.
If anyone has any reviews or experience with the school, particularly how the girls are developed and the pastoral support provided to them please let me know.
My daughter has only just started so can't really tell you much except she says the teaching is much better than at her previous school and she seems to have developed a real interest in subjects she wasn't interested in before. It seems super well organised Too early to tell you about pastoral etc - she's only been there five weeks. I hope you get more feedback - I could find very little when we had to make the decision. We liked the fact she could come back on Fridays and there was no Saturday school.
Our daughter is registered for next September, just going through the admissions process now, but we love
what we’ve seen of the school so far.
Only doubts we have are the long days, and potentially a very long bus ride! How are your girls coping with this, and do day girls mostly live locally or are there many more that have to travel too?
My daughter boards - and despite what they say I'm not sure the two mix much. (Ditto the Chinese). So far we're happy but early days.
I guess the day / board integration issue is a common theme in most schools. Our daughter is interested in flexi-boarding, perhaps 2 days a week to alleviate the journey time if that proves to be a problem. Would hope that might help bridge that divide!
I think that works well because they still have a bed in a boarding house.
Again, early days with my daughter but fingers crossed all going okay!
DD1 went to this school. Started as a day girl - long days so she opted for weekly boarding. We came to really dislike the school and moved her. House Mistress was awful. Uncaring and only interested in the daughters with "celebrity" parents. No support for dyslexia. Teachers didn't even understand what that was. And zero interaction between day girls and boarders. DD had made friends as a day girl but lost them when she started boarding. In the boarding house the atmosphere was cliquey and unwelcoming. Some of the academic provision was good. But I'm afraid that our experience was that this was just a very average school, with no emphasis on encouraging girls to develop into decent human beings. Not a place for making friends for life. It would probably work much better as a day school.
Thanks so much for your input.
How long before you moved your daughter, and I presume she's happier elsewhere. Which house was she in? IS there a lot of movement because of dissatisfaction? I think a sign of a good school is there's little movement.
Sorry, I have been away so haven't checked in. She was there for 2 years, so I think we gave it a good go. I don't really want to reveal which house as I don't want to out myself. And I can't really comment on the level of movement - being a boarding parent there was no real contact with other parents - she didn't go there from one of the feeder preps so she knew no one there when she went, and I knew none of the parents. I think you must go with your gut instinct. It wasn't right for us, but equally, things may have changed since she left. My own instinct was that it's great for day girls but you'd have to be very resilient to survive the cliquey boarding environment. That being said, generalising from one experience is unhelpful. So much depends on the cohort, and you will have no control over that. You may be lucky and find she is among a lovely supportive group of girls. Or not. Sorry not to be more helpful!
Our daughter has received a reserved day place offer following recent assessment, so we are keen to hear any feedback there is out there before we make a decision.
I have heard quite positive feedback from the day camp so far, which is promising. There seemed to be quite a lot of girls at the assessment day, far more than we expected. I presume the initial assessment day, is their main selection point, and Common Entrance is more for setting info etc? Hope your daughter is still enjoying it findanotherpassword.
We have been looking at this school and really like it so far. We have friends who have daughters there as day girls and say they are really happy with it. It's interesting to hear other views though.
@McPeony Did your daughter leave recently? I just wondered if it was a while ago or recently as you said it might have changed?
My DD also had a very unhappy time there and we moved her-best thing we ever did.
It was a few years ago. I have seen a few of these threads and I don't like to post bashing schools.
No school will suit everyone and that's ok-you just need to look carefully at the feel of the school-not the facilities but the behind the scenes ethos.
In my experience QAS suits a very robust, confident, sporty girl.
The girls did seem to grow up very quickly.
I've actually typed and deleted most of my post. Am happy to chat re dm.
But I will say if it's wrong don't be afraid to move. Sometimes we focus so much on getting in we lose sight of what it will be like when our DC are there.
Good luck to you all for your DD's.
That’s interesting mumsie, our daughter is neither robust nor sporty, and our HT recommended the school as he felt it would be a good choice in terms of building confidence! Was your daughter a day girl too?
@Mumto2two she was.
My heart did sink as I read you post-the long bus journeys meant very long and exhausting days for her. She was getting home so late she was getting none of the benefits of family life and wasn't part of boarding life.
My experience-with my daughter as a day girl and a very good friend's daughter at the same time who was a boarder- was that the day and boarders did not mix well. My friend decided against sending her other DD there because of the environment. Agree with @McPeony that in DD experience boarders very cliquey. My other experience of my DS boarding school is that they did this integration much better-day and and boarders in the same house with a day room for day boys.
I will also agree a huge amount depends on your DD cohort. Unfortunately DD's was very sharp elbowed and every girl for herself sort of attitude. DD did not feel much support- she was a bit crushed by it.
Think I best stop here...
I will say again in fairness that no school suits everyone.
My experience, and my friend's, seems very similar to that of *@McPeony*. A lot of girls did leave but these things do seem to run in cycles. It was a couple of years ago. I want to be fair but honest.
One of my daughter's best friends goes there - I have known her since she was 4 and I have really noticed a positive change in her since she started at QAs - she seems happier and more engaging so I have been surprised by some of these posts. She came from a small private school so in some ways the environment is similar but I think she enjoys the lessons more at QAs. She catches a bus at 6.38am and gets home around 7pm - but she tells me she enjoys school and has now opted to flexiboard. She is not sporty and while I would not describe her as confident because she is not very talkative - I would describe her as robust and self sufficient so I am not sure if that is why.
Thanks for explaining that mumsie. Our biggest concern is still very much about the journey time and length of day, so the scenario you describe is exactly what we are not hoping for! Catching a bus at 6.30 would not be great I have to say. Our daughter is really not what you’d call robust at all, and the one thing she would struggle with, is lack of family time and little sleep! It’s such a shame as we love everything else we’d seen, that’s why we were looking at doing 2 days flexi board, and apparently they now have an earlier finish on Wednesdays as well as Fridays, which I think was very much welcomed by girls and parents alike. In terms of academics, we got the impression it was not too pushy which we liked, but not sure if that’s true or not!
DD was commuting over an hour a day each way. Ended up at least 12-13 hours a week because traffic everywhere surrounding very congested in the direction DD needed to travel.
It just made for very long days.
The other problem is that it also means her class mates were very spread out and socialising and meeting up at weekends was also very challenging. It depends a bit where you are coming from-but as they get older think parties etc
It just wasn't right for DD is a million little ways despite huge optimism in the beginning.
You can always try and see how it suits your DD-no one will know that but her. Like @McPeony we gave it 2 years. My only regret is not moving her sooner. So if it isn't right you aren't stuck.
I hope it works out for your DD wherever she goes.
Thanks for sharing your experience mumsie, it’s sad when that optimism gives way to something so disappointing. I hope your daughter is much happier now.
My daughter started this year as a day girl. She seems super happy so far. The days are long, but I think that has built up her resilience. She gets the bus at 7.15 and gets home at 7.10 and 5.15 depending on the day. My daughter is not sporty, but is still getting the opportunities. There seems to be so much on offer, which makes it easier for your daughter to find what she really likes.
Any more feedback on how your daughters are doing at QAS now that the Autumn term is out of the way? I am also wondering whether to send my DD there for Y7 in September as a day girl (place offered).....
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