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PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2015 1:05 am 
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I'm still wavering at the last minute as to which school to put as my first choice and thought there may be some knowledge out there that may help me!

I am trying to choose between Beaconsfield High and DCHS - I live in Beaconsfield however there is a bus and short journey to DCHS (which my eldest has just left for uni).

I felt somewhat uninspired when walking around Beccy High but have heard it is a very good school. It's proximity to the upper school and lack of a boys grammar to socialise with does concern me. I heard locally that someone had to pull their daughter out as there were issues with her behaviour and the school weren't dealing with it (hearsay is dreadful so I don't dwell on this however it has made me wonder if my dilemma is telling me to stick with what I know).

With DCHS my concern was the lack of cover with some of the teachers being off last year (whilst my eldest was completing her A level year) however over the years when my daughter 'misbehaved' I think they did handle it well and continued to show care and give her sanctions during the 6th form to get her to play ball. She left with straight A's. My additional concern is that there is now a change of management and you can never really know how that will go. I like that there is a boys school nearby and think this is key to social events as they get older. My daughter is now at uni with many of the boys and I do believe the connection between the kids at the two schools gives them a good social network and meant she was socialising with boys who wanted to go to uni etc.

My 10 year old is very interested in dance and drama and do want her to be able to do this whilst at school so would be keen to know if anyone knows if either are particularly strong in that field or if anyone has any more knowledge about the schools currently (particularly Beaconsfield High).


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2015 8:12 am 
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I can only speak for BHS, I have a daughter currently in Y7 , obviously we have been there only a few months . We really like it . My daughter loves it has made lots of new friends, she's enjoying all the new subjects. With regards to single sex school that was my only fear, (we don't have a mixed catchment GS) however she does mix with the opposite sex at quite a few if her extracurricular activities which I feel is really important for her social development . I have been very impressed with the school, it would appear pastorally they are very good, that's the impression I get. If your DD loves Dance and drama , it has excellent facilities. If I'm correct the dance team won the South East schools competition (may not have been called that). I think the Y10 dance troupe are in New York this half term . My daughter mentioned the HT pops into lessons all the time and chats to them, my daughter thought this was nice as she is friendly. Maybe someone with more experience of the school can give you a more informed review . Good luck with your choice. Ps would you get into DCGS? I thought catchment was quite tricky. Dollyxxx


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2015 8:27 am 
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Sparty I have boys at an Upper school who are highly intelligent, the older one is well on target to get high grades at GCSE and hopefully continue onto A'levels and Uni where he ideally would like to study to be a vet or more realistically a lawyer. Many of his friends have similar ambitions and even those that don't are a joy to spend time with.

I am sure there will be people on this site who have knowledge of the schools you are interested in, but I have to say I find your comment about wanting your DD to mix with Grammar boys rather than Upper boys old-fashioned and offensive :evil:


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2015 8:39 am 
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Forgot to ask , which one did your DD prefer ? Dollyxxx


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2015 9:45 am 
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Dolly, your reply is very helpful. It's reassuring to know your daughter has recently joined there and you are very happy with it. I like the idea of the HM popping her head into lessons - it feels very proactive. It's also very useful to hear about their dance as this is of great interest to my daughter. She liked both schools which is why I suppose I'm having this dilemma but Beaconsfield we would certainly get and DCHS is likely but obviously not guaranteed.

Tolstroy, it's a shame you felt my comments were offensive as I obviously didn't mean to come across that way! I also have a son in an Upper School who is in year 12. He is happy where he is and has lovely friends but there were some issues there last year which perhaps has made me more sensitive about my younger daughter. It is my preference to send my children to single sex grammar schools if they are suited to to them. And yes I am old fashioned. :)


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2015 10:08 am 
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It's quite a trek from DCHS to DCGS so there's not much day-to-day mixing.

From what you've said about your daughter, Becky High sounds the best fit for her.


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2015 10:22 am 
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Thank you for the apology and I know the diplomatic thing would be to now let the matter drop. However I am fed up with the snobbery against Uppers that I encounter and therefore feel it is important to stress incidents happen in Grammars not just at Uppers. You are entitled to educate your DC as you chose and as she has been deemed Grammar ability then one can assume that you will be looking for a Grammar place for DD not an Upper. Having a DS at Upper doesn't make it any the less insulting the way you portray the DSs attending them as not worthy to mix with your DD in her single sex school based on one incident. I do hope you are not sending a similar message to your DC.

However in order to level the playing field, my own limited experience of DGHS DC has given me grave concerns about whether it is the right place to send DDs. This experience is as I said limited and based on the few DD that I know who have attended it, hence I didn't mention it in my first post. You are obviously pleased with your other DDs experience there so maybe not of relevance to you but could be to other readers of this thread and forum :)


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2015 10:44 am 
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I don't have any DDs at either school but the feedback I have from numerous friends with DDs at BHS is that you have to be a particular type of girl to be happy there, so talking to people who have girls there is likely to be important in decision-making. I know people who have had DDs who have absolutely thrived there & others (more than one) who have taken their DDs out as they have been so unhappy as they didn't fit the mould - I'm sure this is the same at most schools, but it seems to be extreme at BHS with polarisation one way or the other. This may be the same at DCHS, I have no idea. I understand that the new head at BHS is thought to be very approachable so this should help matters. All of this is of course hearsay, but there are several regulars on here with DDs at BHS, so hopefully you will get first hand feedback.


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2015 2:25 pm 
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We did notice the ten foot fence with climb proof top around the upper directly opposite Becky high when we have dropped the boys there for discos. Last year my son said it reminded him of the boy in the striped pyjamas! I'm sure he was getting the wrong idea and it is genuinely to protect the upper school from being broken into or vandalised, not to keep the upper school boys from becky high girls who should be saving themselves for the grammar boys shipped in on disco day. :wink:

Has your daughter got a preference,,sometimes the choice can be down to friendship groups, or even in some cases to divide friendship groups. There has to be a fairly big pull imo to choose a school that is further away, we did and although we don't regret our choice, the extra rather mile up a hill sitting in congestion is a pain in the bum for both the boys and ourselves when we collect after clubs.


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2015 7:21 pm 
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Joined: Thu Oct 29, 2015 12:41 am
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Thank you for the replies. We have obviously bought into the grammar school system as I'm sure very many people visiting this forum have.

Tolstroy, it may be helpful to myself and others to know the kind of thing that has led you to have grave concerns about Challoner's. Obviously the comment raises alarm bells and I would certainly not rely on my eldest child's experience alone hence coming to the forum in the first place. I have no knowledge of how things are lower in the school these days.

Scary Mum, I have seen other posts on the site also referring to 'fitting a mould' - I just don't know what this mould is! It would really help to know more about that so I can see if it would fit with my daughter's personality.


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