I have one boy at each!
Rgs is a great school, very pushy and quite a lot of the parents you encounter are pushy too, particularly on the rugby field.
Boys will do well there as that is the focus, but life is not all about results and I do feel it is a little harsh sometimes. The opportunities to join in extra curriculum sport are very limited unless you are at the top of your game. The rugby teams are split into A,B,C the reason for this is so the school can compete with other big rugby schools, who always have three teams, however there is no support st all for the c team, and less for the b team, whilst the a team is heavily supported and trained.
I have a very sporty boy, who is successful so feels ok about the scenario, but the drop out from teams by year 9 is very high. They have one hockey team too.
The the vle is very good, the teachers are up to speed with using technology for ipads.
The rules are very strict,so there is a focus on good behaviour and learning in class, some teachers are brilliant some not so, like in any school. It's easy to get to, no big hill to climb out of town, just a medium sized hill.
John hampden is incredibly friendly, most importantly they encourage all the boys to be friendly throughout the years, with mixed year clubs and sports groups after school and events that involve all boys. As well as a summer activity week prior to starting at the school and a residential trip a month after to team build year 7.
So far my year seven boy has had similar amounts of homework to rgs and had similar weekly subject assessments, but it's early days yet. He absolutely loves the sport, he fell in love with jh because of all the sports opportunities. He plays a different sport every day of the week, be it in lessons or after school clubs or in matches. Matches are local, they play against friends and club team members, it's friendly and fun, but they obviously still want to win. He also enjoys art hugely, the jh are very proud of their artwork, he is also part of a creative writing lunchtime group. The typical subjects are taught very similarly to rgs as far as I can see, some of his teachers seem a bit clumsy with computer based learning yet, but he won't get his iPad there until spring. The fun he is having keeps everything else flowing along nicely imo.
My third son is making his choice this week, we are pushing him towards jh as we like its atmosphere so much, there is a tour on Thursday morning he will come along with me to have a good look round, can you make that? He has done the rgs tour already last year with his bruv.
Both schools get very high academic results, rgs send more to red bricks if that is your priority.