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PostPosted: Sun Feb 08, 2015 5:14 pm 
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Hullo everybody,

We're waiting to find out on March 2nd what we're offered.

We put Queens 1st preference and Ricky 2nd preference - although DS scored higher than the Ricky cut off in previous years. We live roughly half way between them - though the congestion on the Rickmansworth road makes Ricky feel the harder trip.

We basically went with gut feeling in October - but maybe that was to do with us being rushed on the Ricky tour (only saw half the school) - and spending hours at Queens.

I'm now wondering if we've been foolish - because so many people since have described Ricky as their 'dream' school. I know we could have a second go via CI list if we change our mind - but that we'd have to decide fast.

What did we miss that makes people value Ricky so highly? Or that puts people off Queens?


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 08, 2015 8:29 pm 
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Some parents of secondary school applicants are put off by the size of Queens. However, this doesn't seem to be a problem for the children once they are there.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 08, 2015 10:38 pm 
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I think gut feeling is important. You know your child and you know the environment that will suit your child. October is so long ago - so you just have to trust that you made the right decision when all your visits were fresh in your mind. Don't worry about what other parents think about the schools they have chosen - they will have had different reasons for their decision.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2015 7:48 am 
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I saw the bigness as an advantage. The house system is very strong - if I recall the eat in their house, take assembly in their 'house' and keep a personal tutor in their house - as well as representing their house in sports & other competitions.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2015 8:00 am 
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My guides promoted this as encouraging mentoring within the house between older and younger students - and giving +++++ opportunities for everyone to join an active sports team - or to represent their house as musicians/scientists/arts etc.

Tutor group / year group structures that I saw in other school seemed more intimidating & monolithic by contrast; .

Ricky also streamed early - which I wasn't keen on. I could see that it would reassure the rather-be-at-Parmiters crowd - but I can't see that streaming is the advantage of the student - who might have different abilities in different subjects.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2015 8:04 am 
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Both Queens and Ricky are excellent schools so it should just go on which you and your child felt happier, more comfortable with. What does your dc want?

From what I have heard from friends Ricky do have one stream for all subjects in year 7 but I think that in year 8 or maybe 9 they do stream separately for some subjects.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2015 10:24 am 
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DS preferred Queens - but he had much more time to look around there (we went straight after school - whereas the Ricky open day was an evening affair - and by the time we'd collected his Dad from the station it was 8pm & heaving).

Some of it was also a knee-jerk response to it being a Sports Specialist School - he loves sport. But I presume Ricky also do a good amount of sport?


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 11, 2015 10:53 am 
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Go back and check web sites. Specialism is old thing, not get moeny for as did when first came out. Ricky does plenty of sport, and money in new facilities. See websites re subject mix. Ricky strong on science. Queens may do pe gcse compolsory. But then westfield has just started that too linked to new watford fc link, and astro upgrade.
Queens had good languages a levels but didnt shout about. Both good musically.
Think ricky less good special needs. If need be ask to visit during day.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 11, 2015 12:59 pm 
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Another way to look at it is on results and value added. Overall Ricky does better there. But that is only part of the picture. Have you had a look at the DFE website at the performance tables?


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 11, 2015 1:34 pm 
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I think the specialisms matter in that, when there was funding, it would have been invested in sports fields/labs/drama studios (whatever is relevant for the specialism). Plus, of course, a culture supportive of that area of attainment.

Hera - I'll go and geek out at those tables - thanks.


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