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 Post subject: WGSG or HBS
PostPosted: Sun Feb 19, 2012 1:36 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 04, 2011 4:29 pm
Posts: 7
Which has a better realistic chances of getting in to????


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 Post subject: Re: WGSG or HBS
PostPosted: Sun Feb 19, 2012 1:54 pm 
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Joined: Wed Apr 13, 2011 10:25 pm
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I would say as the Watford Grammar school has a catchment area + sibling policy this restricts the number of applicants and so it may be easier to get a place than HBS- which has 1000+ applicants each year.


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 Post subject: Re: WGSG or HBS
PostPosted: Sun Feb 19, 2012 4:35 pm 
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Yes indeed.....but would that make HBS a better all round school???? Demand and supply reasoning would say so... :roll:


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 Post subject: Re: WGSG or HBS
PostPosted: Sun Feb 19, 2012 5:34 pm 
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There has been some concern expressed that where there is no catchment students tend not to participate in extra-curricular activities as much. I don't know if this is a problem for HBS, but it's probably less of a problem for WGSG.


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 Post subject: Re: WGSG or HBS
PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 2:11 am 
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Joined: Thu Apr 24, 2008 9:51 pm
Posts: 394
If only it were so simple to define "better"

I would say that there's a bit of "sink or swim" at HBS that might not suit all personality types.

I'm also a fairly strong believer in the theory that most decent schools (and the 2 in question here would qualify) get about the same results viewed in a technical sense.

An irrelevant point to this thread here, but Indies can do it in more comfort, though (like paying for first class on a train/plane) and can add the extra "je ne sais quoi" factor that is hard to quantify (but has been shown in analysis of university application success)


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 Post subject: Re: WGSG or HBS
PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 8:00 pm 
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Joined: Tue Nov 24, 2009 10:23 pm
Posts: 332
We had to choose between them, as we needed to move house to make either school a realistic possibility as we were outside the catchment for one and too far from the other, so applying for both was not possible - we chose WGGS.

WGGS is definitely easier to get in, as it has distance places, so places are guaranted for those living close enough. Plus it has sibling places so once your eldest is in, any siblings are too - a big plus for us as I wouldn't wish to go through the stress of 11+ again unless I needed to! Even on exam, as the catchment for HBS is unlimied whereas that for WGGS is geographically limited, I would guess HBS is harder to get in. That said, WGGS has no English paper, so a girl who excelled at English might do better in the HBS exam.

I've been reading recent posts about HBS with interest, and feeling we made the right decision - WGGS is very nurturing and can-do, which some HBS parents on here have suggested is not the case there. I like the fact that WGGS has more of a mix of abilities - it has fantastic teaching, so a bright child can do very well there, but it also has a range of abilities so overall the results are not as high as HBS which I actually prefer, as it puts all the girls under less pressure to perform.

Both good schools though so either choice will not be 'wrong'.


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 Post subject: Re: WGSG or HBS
PostPosted: Sun Feb 26, 2012 11:39 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 04, 2011 4:29 pm
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Thanks Thingsbehindthesun,KS10,BarnetDad and Herty for your wise words on this topic...

My main concerns about HBS is the distance from Watford in comparison to WGSG..Considering both schools have both their strength and weaknesses, its paramount with added importance to always put the distance into perspective however brilliant the schools are. I know some here who have mentioned Journey times in excess of over an hour to get to fab school, Extra Curriculae activities also play a key part in developing an all round child, we would probably settle to application for a distance or academic place at WGSG instead.

Then again these places at WGSG are equally fierce to get!!!!! 800 candidates applying for 180 places including siblings and distance who in theory could take 70% of the allocated places. :shock: !!! Any better alternatives??? Any views or thoughts on St Magaret's School as a backup, Habs is equally hard to get into as well. BarnetDad i like the extra factor of independent schools as well, but.......Are they all better than the likes of WGSG or HBS???

Your inputs are always appreciated...


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 Post subject: Re: WGSG or HBS
PostPosted: Mon Feb 27, 2012 12:12 am 
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Joined: Tue Nov 24, 2009 10:23 pm
Posts: 332
If you are already living in Watford I wouldn't even consider HBS - the commute is too far and one of the best bits for my dd at WG is having local friends to go to school with and hang out with; a big part of the overall experience.


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 Post subject: Re: WGSG or HBS
PostPosted: Mon Feb 27, 2012 8:16 am 
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Joined: Wed Mar 04, 2009 2:01 pm
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Location: Herts
Totally agree. I have totally changed my opinion on this after 18 months of secondary school and seeing all those weary faces at the bus stop. You are so right to factor in the journey as part of the choice. If HBS had been in a location like DAO and well served by school coaches,rail and bus we would have had a much harder decision. My girls train to represent the school in sport and music every night of the week so their actual end of school time is 5pm. So then you have the journey on top of that. Getting there and back is part of the school day. Travelling alone for two hours a day is horrible. We met one family at St Pauls where the mother went on the tube with her 16 stops and then travelled home and then back 16 stops to meet her each day. Can any school be worth that? Go for your great local school. I can't see what HBS could give you that would be worth giving up travelling with friends to your local school. I would say the same about QE, Lattmer, DAO and all the indys if you are not close to them. DG


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 Post subject: Re: WGSG or HBS
PostPosted: Mon Feb 27, 2012 11:09 am 
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Joined: Tue Nov 24, 2009 10:23 pm
Posts: 332
So true. Even if you're not sporty, by the time you've added in an hour or more commute each way you have one very tired child.

I went to HBS and have to say the facilities for sport/music etc at WGGS are far superior. The teaching in academic subjects is also excellent at WGGS. Far better than I received at HBS (though I cannot speak for now, obviously). The only reason HBS gets better results is because it is fully selective - given WGGS takes in girls acros the ability spectrum it gets unbelievably good results. If your dd is bright there is nothing that HBS can give her that WGGS can't or won't - as I said, we had to make the same choice and I chose WGGS even though my dd would have been the third generation of my family to go to HBS. And I'm very happy with our choice. :)


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