I've posted this on the main board too, so apologies for duplication:
I've been offered places for my children at both Torriano (infants and juniors) and Hampstead Parochial School. Does anyone have any experience or gossip about either of these schools?
In relation to Torriano, I would like a mixture of backgrounds for my children to experience, but am slightly concerned that this school does not have enough middle class influence (sorry that's being honest and I don't want to be too snobby, but I want a mixture of children/intake, not just all one background). I know it has a very good ofsted and pretty good SATs results - although I'm less concerned about these.
One of my concerns about Hampstead is that it is too much like a mini prep school. I also worry that there is too much focus on SATs etc. Also worried that HPS the intake is very scattered, and wonder whether Torriano has a better community feel - with more local children.
Anyway, all advice welcome - I have seen HPS and am visiting Torriano this week but am very undecided about what to do.
Hello You've probably made your mind up now about schools but I just thought I would give you my experiences of HPS . I have had 3 children go through the school over the last 6 years . It can feel like a prep school on the cheap( that can be good or bad depending on your point of view) I don't think you need to worry about it being too academically pushy. The pressure when it comes tends to be from other parents who push and cram for 11+ .In fact being a bit bitchy I have found the other parents to be one of the major negatives about the school ;loud and ambitious without much grace or education ! In terms of a sense of community I think a lot of that comes from the church . On the plus side it is a small school with a lovely historical feel to it .Everybody knows everyone and there is never a worry of your child feeling lost or anonymous .It does some lovely annual events like the Easter bonnet parade and the Nativity which I am so pleased my children have experienced.I think the school has changed quite a bit since the new head took over its a bit more inclusive and less pushy but more religious than it was .Hope this helps .