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 Post subject: Wallington/Wilsons/SGS
PostPosted: Sat Oct 10, 2015 9:00 am 
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I was wondering whether anyone could give me a brief summary of their impressions of the three schools and differences between them?

Unfortunately, I only managed to visit Wilson's (which I liked - though I was a bit uncertain about the emphasis on cadets), but we're likely to list all three on the CAF. My son wanted to sit SGS second stage, even though we'd never visited and knew nothing about it. He seemed to like what he saw on the test day. However, it's likely to be our 4th choice due to distance.

There's not much to pick between Wilson's and Wallington in journey times so I'd be very interested to hear people's thoughts on the differences between them, especially regarding:

- music (Wilson's seemed good on this). My son plays the clarinet and would like to go to a school with a choice of groups and orchestras
- art and DT
- a curriculum that genuinely stretches pupils, isn't overly focused on exam results, and values knowledge and learning for its own sake
- somewhere friendly and inclusive with a real sense of community

Thanks so much in advance


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 10, 2015 8:24 pm 
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My ds is now three years in at Wilson's.
The music is just fantastic. Loads to join at different levels and the emphasis is very much on having fun. I understand the head of music joined about five years ago and has made significant changes for the better. It had improved before my ds started.
Can't really comment on art. DT seemed good but both have been dropped by my son.
I don't feel it's academically pressured. When it came to choosing GCSEs we were told at the parents meeting it was our son's lives and it should be their choices not ours. I liked that approach.
Don't worry about the CCF. Some do it but most don't. Again left totally up to the boys.
The discipline is very tight right from the beginning of year seven. Suits most but not all.
Only have one son so can't comment on Wallington other than to say I never hear a bad word said about it. We live very locally so have quite a few friends with son's there.All seem very happy.Don't know people with son's at SGS.


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 10, 2015 9:50 pm 
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I have a DS in Wilson, would second what moonunit said.

Know a few people that have DS in Wallington , again nothing bad to say about the school. Less emphasis on Sport and Music than Wilson, but DS have lots to do other than class work ! Acedemic results comparabel to Wilson.
Has a very big sports field and gym like Wilson.

SGS has a very good pastoral. Has a outdoor swinming pool which the other two donot. School is a little cramped in terms of space (this is only my openion based on open evening viewing). Lots of clubs etc for the boys. The sports field is off site. Think they also have CCF like Wilson.


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 10, 2015 9:53 pm 
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thanks so much Moon Unit and newdud -- that's really helpful. If I don't hear anything else, and he passes the second stage, I think we'll do Wilson's, Wallington and then SGS.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 11, 2015 11:12 am 
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My DS is in year8 at Wallington and he/we love the school. The pastoral care is great, the school is small and has a lovely community feel. My DS is sporty and is very involved in the sport there. I can't comment on the music as such as he's not musical so not involved in extra music activities. I think Wilsons give free tuition for the first year for boys to learn an instrument? I imagine academically the boys offer the same, obviously can only comment on Wallington- boys get a lot of homework and are assessed continually. Both Wallington and Wilsons have a lot of green outdoor space which i like. SGS is a bit concrete for my liking. Just a personal preference mind. When we looked round i could see my DS at Wallington over the others and I'm so glad he's there but i would have been very very happy with any of them! Good luck!


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 11, 2015 1:26 pm 
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DS in year 7 at SGS and absolutely loves it. He was very reluctant to do any sport in Primary school but to our amazement, is even enjoying football at SGS. The school has expansive playing field/facilities at Northey Avenue; their swimming pool and fantastic sports hall is at the main school.
The older boys have the benefit of being able to go into Sutton shopping centre at lunch time (I think it's from yr 10) and the travel links to the school because it is so central, are excellent.
The school has many clubs which are also very well run, before school, lunchtimes and after school - we are so pleased he fitted in from the very first day.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 11, 2015 1:59 pm 
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Meant to say the 'schools' prob offer the same academically, not the 'boys'. Good job I'm not doing the 11+!


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 11, 2015 6:59 pm 
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They all sound great to be honest - though I'm a little worried about lots of homework. I'd definitely prefer a school that's laid back in that respect, so children have more time for other activities (or just relaxing with friends and family). But maybe all secondary schools are like that nowadays! The biggest thing in favour of SGS is the pool as he's a keen swimmer, but I think ease of journey and music provision will probably trump that. Thanks so much for your thoughts.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 11, 2015 9:16 pm 
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Quote:
They all sound great to be honest - though I'm a little worried about lots of homework.


These are super selectivity Grammar Schools, as such they get some of the most Academically able boys who are supposed to be able to rise to the challenge.

I do not think they get more home work than any other comprehensive schools, it is just that they expect the quality of the work to be higher.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 12, 2015 7:12 am 
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I'd have hoped the cleverer you are, the less time you'd need to spend on homework! I'd imagine teachers can get a lot more covered in lessons when they have a class of bright, well motivated students.


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