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PostPosted: Sun Oct 25, 2015 10:02 pm 
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I am trying to choose between the 3 schools and would be very grateful if you could share your thoughts and observations!

There is no doubt that academically all three are very strong. One might be slightly better then the other, but there is no huge difference - all are excellent.

However, what seems more important to me is the atmosphere within the school:
- Is the school attitude exclusively target driven?
- Are students with higher marks enjoying better social status then students with slightly lower grades?
- Are teachers approachable or very strict and keeping distance from students?
- Is school trying to make sure that children are enjoying their time in school?

I recently went to the Tiffin open day and had impression that the school was highly competitive, stressful and even authoritarian! Am I right? Would Sutton and Wilson schools be any different?


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 25, 2015 10:39 pm 
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That is a worthy question. I think it is a really challenge for governance in high-achieving schools to encourage aspiration but not cripple children with a pursuit of perfection. We all desire schools that encourage pupils to have high-expectations - but if whatever the child achieves the schools demands more and more that could be very damaging for self-esteem.

So I agree this is a very important consideration - how prepared are these schools to put the child's welfare as a whole before their preeminence in league tables?


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 25, 2015 11:05 pm 
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My son's experience of Tiffin has been that yes, it's highly competitive - they are all clever boys and they are naturally very competitive with each other in all areas. But he has not found it stressful or authoritarian. I personally have found the style of the school to be laid back and the teachers to be very approachable.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 26, 2015 7:04 am 
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Agree with Peridot, but discipline is strict and so is expectation of good behaviour inside and outside of school. Lot of sports opportunity, including rowing, but less football, more rugby. :wink:


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 26, 2015 1:28 pm 
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Can I please hijack this thread off to another topic about these three schools.
I have heard from few parents that Tiffin is not as supportive as SGS or Wilson in supporting children in university applications/interviews etc. It would be helpful if any experienced parents can shed some light on this aspect about these three schools.
Thank you


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 26, 2015 1:31 pm 
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Location: Kingston
I have heard similar but only in relation to Tiffin Girls, certainly not the boys' school.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 26, 2015 10:10 pm 
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Our experience from Wilson's is as follows.
Certainly discipline is tight.It is not the place for those who mess about and disrupt.
All boys I feel seem to be equal. The top achievers don't have higher status at all.
The teachers seem warm and kind.The boys find them friendly and approachable.
Whilst they want the boys to achieve their potential I don't think league tables drive the staff.
The boys chose their three optional GCSEs and then discussed them at an interview with one of the SLT. The parents were told to leave the decisions to the boys. It wasn't based on the marks they had in the chosen subjects.
The new head ( who was previously the deputy head) is very highly rated by boys and parents alike.
Nothing negative to say really. Don't know anything about Tiffin.We are close to Wilson's but I never hear a bad word said about Sutton Grammer or Wally boys either. I would make the journey my decider. Both of mine are able to walk to the houses of school friends and will be doing so this half term.I wouldn't contemplate the journeys that some propose on this forum. Between two schools I did three events in the two weeks before half term . Would have been impossible if we were several miles away rather than 2 and 1.5.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 26, 2015 10:33 pm 
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My experience as a parent is only of Tiffin but my son has met boys socially from both Wilson's and Sutton who all seem just as happy as he us. My best advice really is, paraphrasing what Moon unit has said, go for the school that is closest to you geographically to enable your son to make the most of what the school offers.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 28, 2015 3:59 pm 
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Joined: Sun Oct 25, 2015 9:57 pm
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Thank you very much for the replies - very very useful!
We are living near Tiffin and I agree that journey should be the decider, because all these school are good.

Still reading the following quotes , I'm thinking whether I should make Wilson the first choice:

Peridot wrote:
My son's experience of Tiffin has been that yes, it's highly competitive - they are all clever boys and they are naturally very competitive with each other in all areas.


Moon unit wrote:
Our experience from Wilson's is as follows.
All boys I feel seem to be equal. The top achievers don't have higher status at all.


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