Go to navigation
It is currently Thu Dec 08, 2016 6:10 pm

All times are UTC




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 14 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: Chelmsford vs Woodford
PostPosted: Fri Oct 16, 2015 3:02 pm 
Offline

Joined: Mon Oct 12, 2015 10:12 pm
Posts: 24
I understand that this is an oft-beaten topic, which crops up every year. This time around I am in situation where I need to decide between CCHS & Woodford. My daughter's 122.59 score may just help her sneak into CCHS as OOC candidate.

Woodford is 6 miles away from Ilford (where we live) and Chelmsford 30 miles. By bus (or train), Woodford commute would be 40 mins, while Chelmsford would be 1 hour.

I attended open day for both CCHS & WCHS and was more impressed with the former. I usually tend to look at science (and art) labs at schools to evaluate the quality. Although ICT labs at both schools appeared to be equally well equipped, science labs at Woodford were not up to the mark. I was slightly put off by the Woodford HT's address de-emphasizing academics, while CCHS HT managed to convey that academics were as important as all-round development. All in all, I am more inclined towards Chelmsford; however, my other half is adamant that the longer commute will be detrimental to my daughter. Hence the dilemma.

My questions to forum members:

1. How would you compare CCHS & WCHS? Academically (quality of teaching & results)? All-round development (range of activities etc.)?

2. I think I heard the Woodford HT mentioning in her open day address that the school would be moving to be modern, purpose-built building soon. Can anybody confirm this (since I may have been day dreaming during the address)? Currently WCHS is based in a period manor house (which might appeal to traditionalists). I found it very stuffy and possibly this could explain less than impressive labs & infrastructure. New, purpose-built building (if I heard the HT correctly) would definitely enhance Woodford's image and education quality. Can someone confirm when is the new building going to be operational?

3. What is the shortest way to get to Chelmsford from Ilford? Are yellow buses reliable and on-time? Is train (Ilford-Shenfield-Chelmsford) a better option?

4. Do you know of any 2016 girl in similar situation, looking to travel from Ilford/Redbridge/Romford into Chelmsford? Or may be someone from senior 2014/2015 entry?

5. One point raised by CCHS HT was that those who commute from far into the school would most likely miss on several after-school activities (especially, if the school buses are used). I am mindful of this. In your experience how big a drawback would this be? I presume several other activities might be taking place during lunch hours too. How easily do OOC students cope with commute?

Many thanks to all in advance for any input.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Oct 16, 2015 3:15 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Oct 13, 2015 8:09 am
Posts: 112
As an ex cchs pupil myself I'm biased and would say to go there. I'd also say utilise the trains rather than buses if you have a direct route because, as the head pointed out, it'll give your daughter more choice of after school clubs.

Saying that from my year girls came from Basildon/Billericay and also Maldon/Heybridge on school buses and that never stopped them, they just used local buses to go home.

The train station is an easy walk to school that many boys and girls do together


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Oct 16, 2015 3:43 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sat Apr 02, 2011 12:44 pm
Posts: 43
I have a DD in year 10 at CCHS and I have been very happy with the school. I would say if you decide on CCHS, it would be easier and would also give your DD more flexibility if she uses the trains instead of the coaches as you will find out that sometimes they have to stay late at school not only for extra curricular activities but also helping out with open days/evenings etc and also she may need to get to school earlier or return later if they have school trips which in most cases the school coaches would not be able to transport her. Having said that if the school closes early because of for eg preparation for open evenings or events etc they do keep the girls supervised whilst they wait for the coaches to pick them up at the usual time. My DD travels from Chadwell Heath and that is the highlight of her day as she has travel buddies on the train. There was an occasion when DH attended her prizegiving day at school and she refused to travel home with him in the car as she wanted to travel by train with her friends. My point being how much she enjoys the train journey and this is just to reassure you that they do enjoy the journey and so far it has not had any impact on my DD.
Unfortunately we were not in catchment for Woodford at the time of the tests so that was never an option for us and I don't know much about the school. Hopefully someone will be able to give you more information about it. Its a nice situation to be in so its best to draw up the pros and cons of each school and take it from there. Good luck with your decision.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Oct 16, 2015 5:45 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sat Sep 28, 2013 2:20 pm
Posts: 371
First of all 122.xx as an out of catchment will easily get your daughter into CCHS.

My daughter is in year 7 at CCHS and loves it. I don't have any experience of Woodford but I would always go with the school that is closest to you.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Oct 16, 2015 6:40 pm 
Offline

Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 11:41 am
Posts: 4600
Location: Essex
Are Ilford and Woodford within the tfl free bus travel area? You can get discounted rail travel to CCHS, I think, but free would be one up on that, possibly?

_________________
Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read.Groucho Marx


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Oct 17, 2015 6:06 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Mar 04, 2008 2:28 pm
Posts: 2361
It sounds like a very long time to cover 6 miles so presumably its not a straightforward journey in which case the different commuting times don't seem significant.

Another consideration is where the new friends she makes in year 7 will be living. If she/ you are happy to travel at the weekends for social activities then itbisnt necessarily a problem.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Oct 17, 2015 11:41 pm 
Offline

Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 11:41 am
Posts: 4600
Location: Essex
Woodford girls will come from a smaller, more local area of necessity, as they have to live within a defined area to take the exam. CCHS girls might also come from Ilford, because up to 20% of places are open to those living more than 12.5 miles from the school but equally likely the OOC girls live between Chelmsford and Colchester, or on the Dengie - or even in Southend. Even of the IC girls, many will live up to 25 miles away from the nearest point of the catchment area.

Your DD may be quite happy not to be able to socialise much with her new schoolmates, though, in which case this would be less of a consideration.

_________________
Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read.Groucho Marx


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Oct 22, 2015 12:08 pm 
Offline

Joined: Mon Oct 12, 2015 10:12 pm
Posts: 24
Many thanks for all your inputs.

Q #1:
How often (in a year) do the parents get called for parent-teacher meeting (or to attend any school event)? The reason I ask is that only way I can make to such a meeting is to take the entire day off from work (since I work in the city).

It may sound bit selfish that I am considering sending my daughter that far for schooling but less keen to travel myself.

Q #2:
Elsewhere I read about CCHS moving to IB (International Baccalaureate) away from A-levels. Does CCHS not support A-level at all? What are the pros and cons for university admission? Is it a non-issue to be bothered about at this point?
Does CCHS' external admissions for year 12 (sixth form) have catchment area restrictions?

many thanks


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Oct 22, 2015 12:17 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sat Sep 28, 2013 2:20 pm
Posts: 371
The head of CCHS will tell you that if you're not willing to do the journey yourself then you shouldn't be considering her school.

CCHS announced a couple of weeks ago that they will no longer be doing IB.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Oct 22, 2015 1:36 pm 
Offline

Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2010 2:58 pm
Posts: 496
In Year 7, I attended about 5 evening events to support my DD. These were new parents' evening, Christmas concerts, Dance Show, DT celebration evening and parents' evening. You also get invited to prize giving in July which is an afternoon event if your DD has been awarded a subject or year prize.

You could be attending more events depending on you DD interests such as Sports Award Evening, History/Georgraphy lectures, PTA events, School Trips information evenings etc.

As Pinkrabbit said, the Head puts a great emphasis on parents making the effort to attend these events and being part of the school community.


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 14 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

All times are UTC


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 5 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
CALL 020 8204 5060
   
Privacy Policy | Refund Policy | Disclaimer | Copyright © 2004 – 2016