Girls or Mixed Boarding Schools for Sixth Form

(84 Posts)
SRGR Thu 09-Aug-12 09:59:07

My d is not very academically inclined but very interested in music, drama and sports. Any suggestions for a good boarding school for girls or a coed with a balance of this

SRGR Sat 11-Aug-12 12:39:04

Getting some great views on St Edwards. Will give it a serious thought. Yes, being lonely on weekends can be a challenge. So that's a good point you've made.

grovel Sat 11-Aug-12 13:37:20

Anywhere but Wellington.

kerrygrey Sat 11-Aug-12 17:48:34

I'd second (third?) Oakham too. It's the one we chose over Charterhouse, Oundle and Rugby for 6th form girl

SRGR Sun 12-Aug-12 04:51:39

Kerrygrey is ur DD still at Oakham? Did u consider Malvern or St Edwards at all?

kerrygrey Sun 12-Aug-12 06:36:28

SRGR - No, she's left now and will be going into her final year at Uni in September - so not so long ago. She loved Oakham, made friends quickly, and is still in contact with them though they're widely scattered. She was/is a laid back (lazy?) sort of girl but still did reasonable well and got into an RG university by the skin of her teeth. Have to say she seems to have found a work ethic since going to uni. She tried lots of new things at Oakham and discovered a talent for rifle-shooting and fives!

kerrygrey Sun 12-Aug-12 06:37:20

SRGR - no, we didn't look at Malvern or St Edwards

GettingAMedalSoon Sun 12-Aug-12 07:52:11

Take a look at Frensham Heights in Surrey - music and drama are their strengths. Mixed boarding, liberal attitude, happy kids. Won't suit everyone but may be for you.

outtolunchagain Sun 12-Aug-12 08:49:47

I was also going to suggest Oakham , we know some great children there , very unaffected positive all rounders , good sport , good music and good drama plus IB and A levels

SRGR Sun 12-Aug-12 11:43:33

Grovel - why anywhere but Wellington? Could u throw some more light please?

conorsrockers Sun 12-Aug-12 14:11:20

Don't know if it's too far - but Bethany also a very good school.
I'd second state boarding schools. I have first hand experience, and unless it's your only option and you are only considering weekly I wouldn't personally go down that route. There is a huge difference.

Dustylaw Tue 14-Aug-12 08:51:04

I suggest The Leys. Outstanding facilities, loads of activities, excellent pastoral care and excellent academic attention for a range of ability up to the highest. Also, a number of the day children leave after GCSEs (to go to the local excellent 6th form colleges) and there is a regular intake of new pupils to the sixth form. Dedicated sixth form boarding houses cater for the new ones so they don't feel they are on their own. A short walk into the heart of Cambridge which is great for the pupils.

happygardening Tue 14-Aug-12 09:55:47

Bethanys I know has hardly any full boarders the OP is abroad lots of flexi boarders as well and I think no school on Saturday. We learnt the hard way my DS started in yr 3 at a mainly "full boarding" school but we were full weekly boarding at the time but by the time he got to yr 6 we needed full boarding but by then everyone but a tiny handful weekly boarded and being in with only a handful and skeleton staff was miserable. If you want/need full boarding find school where the over whelming majority full board.
I personally wouldn't touch Wellington with a barge pole because I cant stand the head but we've friends there and they like him (someone has too I suppose!) and they love the school.

grovel Tue 14-Aug-12 10:15:19

Wellington? More money than manners. A PR triumph.

gwenniebee Tue 14-Aug-12 10:18:25

Clifton College better than Badminton if you want more "all-round" education - Badminton is more academic though both good schools. Malvern College (the one that used to be boys only) also very good "all round" and I think they still offer IB or A-levels.

happygardening Tue 14-Aug-12 10:42:36

I thought the words Anthony Seldon and PR were synonymous!

SRGR Tue 14-Aug-12 15:50:09

Thanks for all valuable opinions. Even the website of Clifton seemed to speak a lot of the school. Malvern also looked impressive. Yes, now the rounds of entrance tests. Any tips??

happygardening Tue 14-Aug-12 16:33:39

Most schools will state on their websites the minimum requirements for entry into the 6 th form but in the case of the very selective with jaw dropping results minimum is the operative word! At the very selective your likely to be competing with the super able Chinese. Also schools that are less selective at 13 are more selective at 6 th form they want bright children to improve their overall results and or position in the league tables. The best thing is to ring the admissions dept of a few schools you like the look of before even visiting and get an idea of what they're looking for, how many places, how competitive etc I believe most places are offered out (obviously dependant on GCSE results) by just before/ after Xmas so you need to get move on as I suspect many are over subscribed at 6 th form.

Needmoresleep Tue 14-Aug-12 20:59:08

I am not sure it is just the schools importing "super able Chinese". British Universities have always taken a large number of overseas students, and increasingly moving to Britain for sixth form is seen as a good way to earn a coveted place at a prestigious University, possibly in the States rather than Britain. There are also advantages for many in having at least part of your education in English.

Two nephews who were brought up and educated in Hong Kong and Italy respectively are now at sixth form in Britain.

One way of gauging likely competition is to look at relevant threads on The Student Room website. The Westminster threads are scary, but there are other mixed sixth forms (Sevenoaks, Rugby etc) which also seem to come up as schools that very bright international students will try for.

That said most schools will be aiming to retain some sort of balance. Its not all about results...is it?

goinggetstough Wed 15-Aug-12 02:38:52

needmoresleep I think HG's point about the number of very able overseas students who arrive at sixth form is very valid. The numbers of new sixth formers in most boarding schools is minimal and therefore they choose the best performing. Whereas at age 13 the school can take a risk with a child and help them develop, at 16 they need to hit the ground running. This was certainly the case at my DD's selective all girls school.
The OP stated that her DD was not academically inclined so it is even more important to see the standard/type of student that has been recruited to the sixth form previously. It was often said that Gordonstoun gave amazing scholarships to local students for 6th form as this improved their A level results. I am not sure this is true today.
If you were in charge of a school and had 6 places for new sixth formers how would you decide on allocating them. I have to admit that I would probably choose the super-able to fulfil those places.

BeckAndCall Wed 15-Aug-12 07:26:25

oP did you look at the website for Frensham Heights mentioned above? (by me, name change)

They are full boarding, lots of OS students, weekend activities....

happygardening Wed 15-Aug-12 07:30:41

"That said most schools will be aiming to retain some sort of balance. Its not all about results...is it?"
I think the jury is still out on that one.

wordfactory Wed 15-Aug-12 09:23:29

Rugby? Uppingham?

SRGR Thu 16-Aug-12 08:58:44

Thanks for mentioning that to me. Overseas one only hears of selective names. This gives me a wider spectrum for my DD and am sure one visit to these schools might be a good idea so DD can state her preference too.

SRGR Thu 16-Aug-12 09:05:29

Uppingham boasts of a good music faculty. So yes this one is under consideration.

BobbiFleckman Thu 16-Aug-12 09:08:56

what about Bradfield or Marlborough? both an easy run from London, not overly academic but in lovely settings & with great facilities

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