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Newland House(10 Posts)
We are looking to relocate from central london to Twickenham/Strawberry Hill area. Please can I know your thoughts on Newland House school? My colleague went there 20 years ago and remembers it as quite "militant" which is funny because the current head has a military background and I noticed the kids all jumped up our of their seats like little soliders when we visited the classes. The children didn't look particularly happy in the upper school and the head is a bit odd and cold. However it is the only school we have a place in, academically it looks ok (though none to the top schools such as St Pauls - is that because of distance or they just can't pass?) and I like the music programme.
Any thoughts welcome. This is a huge decision for us.
Not personal experience but a good friend sent two of her children there when they returned to the area. They were delighted with it, though I got the impression the children were worked rather hard with high exam expectations and lots of tests. Those children have gone on to St Georges and I think that was a popular destination.
It's ok. I've tutored lots of boys from Newland for Hampton. Some struggled a lot. If your child is very able and likes to be pushed, I'd go for the Mall or, for a girl, LEH juniors is really good. Think they are all hung up on daft report styles and weird tests these days. Some of the Newland House homework seems a bit dull, but all solid traditional stuff. St Catherine's has a very good prep, mixed ability, less academic than LEH but still good and a caring pastoral system. Hope this helps.
Should add that the usual destinations at secondary reveal a fair bit about the primary school. Hampton is more selective than St Georges, which has just lost its long serving head Jo Peake....and has a worryingly large number of young senior managers getting appointed. Hampton has also gone through changes recently, also has relatively new head, but more academic and sporty. If your child is very able, aim for LEH and Hampton, if they are an able girl but a bit quiet, St Cat's is good. LEH or St Cats juniors and the Mall do very well.
Sorry.. also Rokeby School and Holy Cross over in Kingston are good. Staines Prep is really up and coming and got six into Hampton last year. Girls do very well too. NH is good, but your are right about the homework snowballing. They aren't so good at varied learning styles and I've heard concerns from some parents too...basically, work hard and try on all tasks, sometimes set with little structuring or modelling.
Thank you for the info. Anyone else have any knowledge?
If the only aim is to get your children into a private secondary I would just say that my daughter's state primary school also "got" 6 boys into Hampton. My next door neighbour's son also got into there from a state primary this year. Obviously they were all reasonably bright boys some of whose parents paid for a bit of tutoring although not all. I think Hampton and the other local private secondaries are perfectly accessible from the state system and are able to pick out children who are the right level of ability and will be happy there. I don't know of any children from this area who go to St Pauls' and I don't think many parents choose it in preference to more local options.
Not sure where you live, LProsser, but when I lived in Twickenham and Richmond as a child there were lots of children who went to both St Paul's schools. Agree that you don't need a private primary to access private secondary unless your children may need extra help.
Newland House is where lots of my friends from secondary school went before I met them. It did not seem like a very nurturing environment but things may have changed.
I live near Newland House. I suspect more go to St Pauls from the Richmond side of the Borough now as Hampton and LEH are considered as equivalent and much easier to get to.
I also agree that going to a state primary will not preclude you from getting places at the selective secondaries. They are looking at ability and potential over cramming (though few tutors or private preps would want to highlight that, and in some cases I am not sure if they even understand the distinction. I certainly know of incidences where Prep Schools were surprised by who did and who didn't get in to the selective senior schools because doing well in their repetitive testing regime does not necessarily equate to being able to show all the dimensions of ability and personality that the school seek evidence on in the admissions process). Though not perfect they do tend to spot ability even if the pupil has not attended a private prep / years of tutoring, though it helps if they have had some preparation for working in test conditions and with the parts of the curriculum state schools will not have yet covered. All of these schools have a significant number of pupils coming from state schools, especially Hampton because its main entry is 11 and most Prep Schools are geared to 14 + entrance and resist their pupils applying at 11. LEH have around 30% coming from state primaries even with all girls applying at 11. Even, I understand St Pauls Girls', who used to have a pretty miserable record, is also making a determined effort to make its admissions process one that enables those from the state primaries
and not just Bute House to be successful.
So if you are choosing a Primary/Prep chose it for whether you think your child given their personality /confidence/maturity / learning styles will be happy there and achieve their potential, not based on what schools they get into at 11. Not all, even the most able pupils respond well to being pushed, whilst there is an issue in the selective 7+ preps with pupils being heavily tutored to get in and then struggling and losing confidence. For example each year there are a couple at LEH Juniors who are advised that the senior school is not for them. The 7+ system is becoming less popular with parents and I know some who have chosen Newlands over that. As well as facilities, extra curricular etc. I would rate it being a local school as especially important. It makes friendships easier and you less grumpy as a result of south west London traffic. And for boys do you want them to be in that school to 14 if that is their policy. I have seen some tall, nearly bearded young men, look distinctly embarrassed by that red taped blazer which looks so cute on a 4 year old! Of course getting a place at a local state primary can actually be harder than getting a place in a Prep!
There is a huge range of private selective, and not so selective, secondaries available to anyone living in Teddington. Children from this area go to, in addition to the ones mentioned, KGS, KCS, St Pauls and St Pauls'Girls, Godolphin and Latymer, Latymer, Putney High, Surbiton High, Reeds, Claremont Fan. Slightly harder if it is a boy but still you will have many options from which to chose the school that will suit your child best at 11.
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