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 Post subject: Grammar Dilemma
PostPosted: Sun Jun 21, 2009 4:14 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 19, 2009 9:30 pm
Posts: 16
Location: Dartford
Should my daughter pass 11+ which is best of Grammar schools for girls? Dartford or Wilmington? Any views? Also should she fail anyone got any opinions on Dartford Technology college? Thanks to all?


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 21, 2009 7:38 pm 
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Joined: Sun Feb 08, 2009 11:09 am
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I think you should visit both schools and choose the one that you and your daughter like best.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 22, 2009 7:46 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 27, 2007 2:58 pm
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I agree - there is no 'best'. Don't be governed by league tables - they almost always reflect the raw material on entry to the school - higher scores, etc, and I'm sure the teaching will be good in both. You will get a feeling as to which one you like best by simply having a look around and how your daughter reacts to each environment.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 23, 2009 10:12 am 
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Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2007 9:28 am
Posts: 1123
Location: Bexley
Hi Potato,

My dd is taking the Kent test in Sept and due to her nature I have no idea how she will do, she will either do brilliantly or dive!

Last yr we looked at possible schools for her. With my eldest I did the usual traipsing around in yr6 and it's ridiculous, packed and stressful. For my youngest I needed to show her what's out there if she was willing to put in the effort - basically she wanted to attend her sister's grammar without lifting a finger to get there. Hence the need to look at the schools a year early. :roll:

Living on the borders of Bexley and Dartford means we can consider both boroughs for schooling so she will be doing the Kent test as a back-up to the Bexley Test.

Ok, back to your questions.

Firstly Dartford Tech, we did not visit this school but I do know somebody who worked there. The feedback I have is that it is disappointing, there are low standards in discipline and uniform, and the grades are lowish but then the school is sandwiched between the grammars. But is better than our local sink schools - well it has to be! I will be visiting it this year.

Dartford Grammar - very impressive building although slightly claustrophobic and we got the impression that the girls are there to work, work, work. Not that there's anything wrong with that but I'm concerned about the level of pushiness. I'm all for encouragement but I got the distinct impression that it's A* all down the line. Well what about the girls who just pass the 11+ - would it be too much for them? The art is magnificent. The swimming pool is a bonus but how often would they use it considering the kids nowadays don't want so much as a raindrop to touch their poker straightened hair! :lol:

Wilmington Grammar - I drove past this school 3 years ago when I was looking for my eldest. I didn't like the look of it. Well how stupid of me! :oops: This is a smaller school but seems to offer everythig it needs to. It's got a more rural feel - well it would have - it's in the country - d'oh! :roll:
The school has a family feel, you get the imression that everyone would know eveyone else. The facilities are excellent, very good with computers and maths. The donwside is the English dept which is across the road in a tudor looking building. When we visited the classrooms were not inspiring at all, in fact, dull. There were bare floorboards, it wasn't a new trendy look! The displays were years old - I'm not just saying this as the work was dated. It reminded me of the inside of the school house in Little House on the Prairie! :cry: How can you get the best out of kids with an environment like that? Having said that the rest of the school was very good and they migh have plans for the English department.

On balance, I would say all schools that you are possibly interested in must be visited twice.

The other thing to consider is what is on offer at 6th form level. Dartford Grammar has the edge here. There is also the 'snob' value. There's no other way to say it but Dartford Grammar IS impressive but is it right for my child? I 'm not sure. Maybe Wilmington is more for her if we can just get the Eng dept sorted.

Hope this info helps, it would be nice to hear from parents with their girls at one of these three schools.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 23, 2009 10:13 am 
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Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2007 9:28 am
Posts: 1123
Location: Bexley
Just to reassure everyone, the word that has been blanked out is not offensive.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jun 24, 2009 3:22 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jul 23, 2008 1:33 pm
Posts: 13
Hi Potato

My DD is off to Wilmington in September. She chose this school over Dartford as she felt more comfortable there and the girls who took us round (we went twice) were very nice girls. They were honest and came across as very natural whereas the Dartford girls, although very polite, were quite sullen and gave "all the right" answers. Dartford definitely gave the impression they are very pushy, and if your DD can cope with this then that's fine.

I know girls who have been to both schools and have not come across one yet that did not enjoy their whole experience at Wilmington, but girls at Dartford seem to be mixed, some liked it, whereas others really hated it and couldn't wait to leave.

As for the state of the buildings, neither are particularly modern but both have good facilities, probably with Dartford having the edge, although it feel a bit like St. Trinian's! Going back to what Tracy said about the English dept, I actually really liked it. Yes, it's certainly old but had a cosy feel to it; from memory there was also a DT room in that building.

Anyway, you need to go and have a good look around both and see which one you get a feel for and which you think your DD will settle well in. Do go in the evening and in the day to see different aspects of the school and ask your guide lots of questions.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 26, 2009 2:22 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2007 9:28 am
Posts: 1123
Location: Bexley
Thanks for that giddy. I can understand why your dd opted for Wilmington.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 16, 2009 8:29 pm 
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Joined: Fri Oct 16, 2009 8:19 pm
Posts: 16
I live in Bexleyheath but a 3 mile crows fly from DGSG...if my daughter passes with good score what are the chances of her getting a place? does anyone know?Im pulling my hair out!!!lol


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 16, 2009 9:12 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2007 9:28 am
Posts: 1123
Location: Bexley
Excellent with a high score eg 140 x3. The lower the score the lesser the chances.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Oct 17, 2009 12:31 pm 
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Joined: Fri Oct 16, 2009 8:19 pm
Posts: 16
Thanks Tracey...I will let u know on Monday!!!!... this is great for the diet!!!! x


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