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PostPosted: Mon Oct 13, 2014 12:06 pm 
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Joined: Wed Sep 18, 2013 4:20 pm
Posts: 94
Not been on the forum for a while now, and thought to come back and look around and of course I see the nervous wait for exam results which I also experienced last year.

My DS passed SG, AGSB and Ambrose and started at AGSB in September.

He has settled in amazingly well, making new friends and also having the benefit of being in a class with friends he already knew from junior school. He plays a lot of Rugby and the teacher there is absolutely spot on with the boys and I understand all of his teachers are as good as his sports teacher.

The Homework has been steady but not stupid amounts, and most of it has been re-runs of what he did in Y6, along with some very basic tasks (drawing maps of his route to school, one page on his family etc.)

I can only praise the input from the school, with new parents evenings and their communication has been fantastic.

DS has said that a few boys struggle with the work and that they are already being given extra support, so it is obviously picked up on very quickly and they are given immediate help and support.

His first few weeks he was physically and emotionally very tired so do be prepared for these changes and try to be relaxed and supportive - this has been a common theme among other parents that I have spoken to, but he is now well and truly into the sing of things.

Don't expect to be given letters from school, they tell your son and then it is up to him to relay the message (good luck, you will probably need it) :lol:

Anyway - to sum it up....

If you are making decisions soon then I couldn't speak higher of how we have found AGSB so far - My daughter is in Y9 at AGGS and this was a long and tough settling in period for her, as AGGS is certainly tougher, though now she absolutely loves it.


Any questions then please do fire me a message and good luck all!


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 15, 2014 3:35 pm 
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Thank you for the update Mr147. Sounds like your DS is flourishing :)

I do love hearing what life is like 'on the other side'.

Is Alty Girls a lot tougher than the boys then?


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 19, 2014 12:40 pm 
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Hello Mr 147 , Thank you for the info it sounds as though your DS has settled in very well. I guess like yourself we are in the enviable position of a choice of school. Ds is RC so would certainly get offered a place at St Ambrose, he has also got a score of 374 from altrincham which is most likely a certain place for OOC.i know how fortunate we are. Now my Ds wants Altrincham because it has a football team and also he says it is a better school in his opinion. I cant say i was blown away with the open evening but i think that was partly my fault for not chatting with the teachers and not really having enough time to have a really good look. On the otherhand i loved St A the headmaster is very caring and impressive, i guess it was a lovely sunny morning on the open day which made it feel very bright inside the new school. Most of the boys he knows will be going there so he would have plenty of friends from the off and can see him very happy thereMy Ds isnt keen on rugby either and St A dont have a football team in the school apart from sixth form which puts him off! So the dilemma goes on , i am inclined to side with Altrincham from an academic point of view my ds is a capable boy but i think he needs to be around a cohort of boys of similar ability to keep him on his toes, if he thinks he is at the top of the class it might make him a over confident and sit back a bit! What were your reasons for choosing Altrincham over the other schools?


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 21, 2014 1:20 pm 
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Brainfreeze wrote:
Thank you for the update Mr147. Sounds like your DS is flourishing :)

I do love hearing what life is like 'on the other side'.

Is Alty Girls a lot tougher than the boys then?


The best way to describe life at AGGS is that even perfect isn't acceptable I guess!

My DD is now in Y9 and she is doing serious amounts of homework and research. I went to last years end of year Parents evening where the constant message was that DD could always do better - a prime example is where her maths attainment was 7C and they felt if she pushed hard for the last 5 or 6 weeks that she should be able to push for a 7A (she ended with 7B). I came away from that particular report meeting thinking that my DD needed to work a little harder or at least attend Maths club at lunchtimes (the older girls do support lessons in the library).

When I received her actual end of term report online it was a traffic light system - Red was behind current expectations, Amber was on target for expectations and Green was ahead of expectations- DD was Green on every single subject, which of course I was over the moon with, but in no way reflected what we were told (odd exceptions) during the Parents evenings meetings.

I then looked up the target levels and 7a is the equivalent to a GCSE grade C with 8a being equivalent to a GCSE grade A/A* - so to sum up............... DD is 12 years old and already achieving the competence of a GCSE grade c student but could do better was the only retort :lol:

I guess it is just the way they work, a pat on the back is not to be expected there. Hope this explains AGGS and the pressures they put the girls under.

This isn't a complaint by the way - We knew what to expect and haven't been surprised at all. You cannot argue with their results, but a childs social development takes a definite back seat to educational achievements!


Mr147


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 21, 2014 1:29 pm 
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Joined: Wed Sep 18, 2013 4:20 pm
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wilmslowmum wrote:
Hello Mr 147 , Thank you for the info it sounds as though your DS has settled in very well. I guess like yourself we are in the enviable position of a choice of school. Ds is RC so would certainly get offered a place at St Ambrose, he has also got a score of 374 from altrincham which is most likely a certain place for OOC.i know how fortunate we are. Now my Ds wants Altrincham because it has a football team and also he says it is a better school in his opinion. I cant say i was blown away with the open evening but i think that was partly my fault for not chatting with the teachers and not really having enough time to have a really good look. On the otherhand i loved St A the headmaster is very caring and impressive, i guess it was a lovely sunny morning on the open day which made it feel very bright inside the new school. Most of the boys he knows will be going there so he would have plenty of friends from the off and can see him very happy thereMy Ds isnt keen on rugby either and St A dont have a football team in the school apart from sixth form which puts him off! So the dilemma goes on , i am inclined to side with Altrincham from an academic point of view my ds is a capable boy but i think he needs to be around a cohort of boys of similar ability to keep him on his toes, if he thinks he is at the top of the class it might make him a over confident and sit back a bit! What were your reasons for choosing Altrincham over the other schools?



My DS has played club Rugby before he got to AGSB and attended school 'trials' - from these trials they select around 30-35 boys for the school Rugby teams (A and B). The trials had about that amount of boys so everyone got a fair chance at representing the school.

There were easily 125 boys at the football trials and they only have 2 teams (again an A and a B) - if you don't get selected for the squads then you are not allowed to train midweek or turn up for match's at weekends. Although very encouraging - the sports heads are not backwards at shoving boys into an A or a B team so be warned that it is very competitive.

That said - I cannot speak highly enough of the coaching that I have watched during training and games, the teachers are tough but also very supportive and understanding of their different emotions at such a young age.


Academically - Trust me when I say, your DS might think he is the smart kid on the block but it will become quickly apparent that there are some seriously bright boys there. My DS says that some boys really struggle and already are attending clubs for help (good that they recognise this so early), but in general - most boys are on a very level playing field though of course some of them have different areas of strength.

The only classes where he is split from the rest of his form is for 'Tech' and Maths (where I presume they grade the boys) - although this isn't shared knowledge of what set your DS is in etc.

St A take all of their Y7 boys for summer school where they do sports and already have an A and a B rugby team selected by the time they start school - AGSB invite all abilities to trials and don't start until school term (that's how seriously St A take their Rugby).

One really positive thing we liked about AGSB is that you can name 3 boys on your application forms ho you would like to be in the same class with, and also any children that you wish to avoid (they don't do this at AGGS) - this meant that DS was instantly in a class with former friends and also a good friend from his Rugby club - this has been vital in helping them all settle in very quickly.


Hope this all helps, feel free to fire back any questions.

Mr147 8)


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 21, 2014 1:46 pm 
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Joined: Wed Sep 18, 2013 4:20 pm
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A member has kindly messaged me the following information for clarity (many thanks!) :D


A level 7 in Year 9 is a grade C but a GCSE target would be a B or higher.

A level 8 is about a grade B, but grades and levels don't match exactly. A GCSE target would be A/A*;


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 21, 2014 4:56 pm 
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Joined: Mon Sep 12, 2011 12:19 pm
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My DS is in year 8 and I would agree with Mr147's observations of AGSB. My DS has flourished since being in this school and I don't think the level of homework has been to the levels I had heard from others, it's manageable. I think they have the right balance from an academic and social perspective. My younger DS has just passed Alty boys and he can't wait to start secondary school because of all the positive things he has heard from his brother. Based on my experience, I can't fault the school.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 21, 2014 9:42 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2012 8:35 pm
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I second the thoughts of NS1 and Mr 147.

However there were few hiccups with the current Y7 cohort. 3 boys were suspended recently from y7. Reasons: fight in playground between 2 boys and isolated incident involving a boy and instagram(i think thats how u spell it). The three boys were suspended and were not allowed on the school trip.

I was feeling a bit :? when i heard this..........however, the school has dealt with problems positively. I think the form tutors addressed their forms and whole of Y7 were briefed about the issues involving anger and posting details on social media.

Hopefully things will move forward for the better........


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 21, 2014 10:04 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 11, 2012 8:13 pm
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Hello Oshosh, Oh dear, it can be difficult for schools when social networking spills over into the playground, at least the school took a strict no messing approach when dealing with it. I guess it is not uncommon for this to happen from time to time when there are a lot of boys under one roof! I should imagine it is not the only school that has had these issues. My daughter has just finished at an all girls school and believe me they can be pretty awful to each other on occasion!


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2014 8:36 pm 
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Joined: Fri Oct 24, 2014 8:28 pm
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Interesting to read this post. We don't live in Altrincham and is always good to hear inside information - of which we have little. My son has passed for AGSB sufficiently high for OOC going on previous years. However, although it looks a great school academically we are worried it could be too pushy, he won't know anyone and should we send him to school more locally instead? Is it motivational to be with ultra bright boys or is this a misconception and there is a broader range than you would think?
Most of all of course we want him to be happy! Is it friendly, is it supportive?
Thankyou!


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