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PostPosted: Tue Jul 05, 2011 10:41 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2011 9:10 pm
Posts: 30
Hi

Just wondered if anyone went to the open day and to ask what everyone thought.

I liked the school, however the arrangements for the Head's Talk was very badly organised.

Firstly, it was by ticket only. We arrived at 6pm and all the tickets for every session had gone. However we walked past the hall and could see that the current talk was only 2/3 full. I asked a student what we should do and was pointed in the direction of someone who would let us fill the next seats.

To cut a long story short, we lined up with ticket holders as advised. However, we were spoken to quite rudely by a member of staff, who treated us like we didn't deserve to be there if we didn't have a ticket. We pointed out that the family next to us in the queue without tickets had just walked in. She all but called us liars, and said everyone had tickets.

After the tickets holders were led in, we were taken upstairs and sat in the balcony. I was dismayed to see yet again though that the hall was only about 2/3 full and these seats were never filled. Its a shame as so many people would have gone home disappointed without getting to hear the Head at all.

It was a shame that this was so badly organised and some of the staff were rude. I also visited Wilsons and Wallington Boys and both were much better organised than this. You just lined up to go in and filled the seats for the session you wanted. No idea why they did things this way.


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 06, 2011 8:06 am 
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Joined: Thu Jul 30, 2009 9:53 pm
Posts: 170
Location: south west london
When we visited all the girls grammars two years ago they all insisted we had tickets for the head's talk. This included Nonsuch and Tiffin Girls. Tickets were issued on arrival. I think it was also the same last year when we visited Tiffin Boys. Pros and cons to both systems really I think. We arrived at 6.15 for the 6.45 talk at Wilsons only to be told that the head had started his supposed 6.45 talk as the hall was full - in that case a ticketing system would have worked much better in my opinion. I know people who had to leave Wilsons without hearing the head speak - very disappointing (although I do think that hearing the head speak is probably the least important part on the school visit as in most cases it's a total PR stunt and sales pitch - doesn't beat speaking to the pupils themselves)


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 06, 2011 11:45 am 
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Joined: Fri Feb 20, 2009 2:05 pm
Posts: 103
Hi
Must say not impressed with the Wallington Girls Open day yesterday - Head's speech not inspiring at all and we did feel a bit lost - ( may be down to the number of people there ) - But we know nothing more about the school than we did before ( web page and league tables ) - Is this how all open days are ? There is Nonsuch and Tiffins next week - hopefully they are better.Yes, there was something about the tickets there yesterday - but they had run out of it - so we were allowed to just enter the hall ! Also quiet amused at the way the head teacher kept saying " if your daughter is lucky enough to get in....... "( agreed given the competition,the head must have felt it okay to say so ) but personally for me,her repeating it a few times did not go down very well....but agree its only a personal opinion.

Queenma


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 07, 2011 11:35 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2011 9:10 pm
Posts: 30
I felt that giving out tickets was fine, although this could have been much better organised. 6pm was very early to run out, But the hall was only 2/3 full and they didn't fill the remaining seats. It was just the rudeness of a couple of members of staff who spoke badly to those of us waiting just because we didn't have a ticket. We were made to feel we were in the way, even though we had been told to wait in line with everyone else. Then we were led up to the balcony, even though there were free seats in the hall itself. Hardly surprising that they had run out.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 07, 2011 4:09 pm 
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Joined: Mon Mar 28, 2011 12:16 pm
Posts: 197
Also went, also arrived at about 6pm and also didn't get to see the head's speech. Wasn't impressed at all by the lack of organisation. The map and directions they handed out are pretty much guaranteed to ensure you get lost! I've spoken to a few people since and we all managed to get lost about 1/3 of the way through the instructions. With a school full of bright girls you would think that it would be a fairly good exercise to get the girls to come up with some better directions and an altogether better system.

Lots of gaggles of girls chatting and larking about. Some were very helpful but I was somewhat shocked when I asked a group of 3 girls where the science department was and their initial reaction was to look confused and say they didn't know! Eventually they worked it out, from our map, and decided to take us there, but then 2 peeled off to chat with their friends. I got the feeling it was a bit of a school social and the visitors were an an irritation. That's not to say tht all were like that, but there were a good many.

In the event that we are 'lucky enough to get a place' I'll be very undecided as on the basis of what I saw there is no way I would make a decision that might commit the next 7 years of her life to that school.

I did the open day last year as well, as a preliminary without DD. Totally hated it that time but I hear good things about it and am determined to give it the benefit of the doubt. Nonsuch was much more organised last year and I greatly preferred it, but I know from doing the same rounds with my son a couple of years ago that I need to see a school several times before I'm really clear about it, and that jam packed open days are just about the worst way to see the schools. We're not at that stage yet, but I wonder what they do once the test results are in and the whole thing becomes much clearer for them and us.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 07, 2011 6:19 pm 
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Joined: Tue Apr 21, 2009 2:21 pm
Posts: 316
I always think it is such a shame that most schools won't let you look around during normal school hours - it would be a much better way of getting a real feel of a school. I appreciate that it would be disruptive, but I'm sure at the end of the summer term they're not doing that much "proper" work and a week of visits might be a welcome distraction :twisted:

I think schools are a bit like houses - somehow you just know! It can be the tiniest thing that makes the difference (assuming all the boring things like exam results etc are fine!) For example, DD2 chose the school she wanted to go to based on the fact that one of the girls running the music room at the open evening said " I really hope you get in" to her as the demonstration finished. That remark stayed with her for the rest of the tour and painted everything else in a rosy glow :D


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