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 Post subject: Oxfordshire schools
PostPosted: Tue May 13, 2008 9:03 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jan 12, 2008 6:14 pm
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We are thinking of applying to Magdalen College School and Abingdon School for my son and St Helen and St Katharine's School in Abingdon for my daughters. Does anyone have any experience of either of these two schools and how competitive the entry processes are?
Many thanks C M


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PostPosted: Tue May 13, 2008 9:52 pm 
I think its probably easier to get into Abingdon than Magdalen. I know Magdalens results are fantastic but I have noticed that Abingdon is climbing up the tables and its status in The Good Schools Guide has improved dramatically. As far as day schools go I think Abingdon offers greater flexibility, especially as there is boarding should you need to use the facility on occassion. I have been to see Magdalen but that was with the old head, and I'm not sure how this new one fairs -it is excellent value for money however. The other thing to consider is location, and drivng into the centre of Oxford each day will be a nightmare whereas Abingdon will be much easier. As far as social make-up I know Magdalen is more socially diverse with a wide varitey of parents and incomes and also a high number of Oxford Don children there. Abingdon is more affluent with families mainly coming from banking, law, medicine etc, so it depends what group you would feel most comfortable and akin to.
I think on the whole Abingdon is a more rounded environment, academically and sporting wise, however if you have a real boffin then Magdalen would be the school where he would feel most comfortable. As far as the girls schol goes, I know they are excellent but I do not have daughtes so cannot comment.


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PostPosted: Wed May 14, 2008 10:32 pm 
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I would go for Oxford High for your daughter and no, I don't teach there! It's a fab school!


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PostPosted: Tue May 20, 2008 8:42 pm 
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My son was offered places at Magdalen and Abingdon for entry in 2007 but also got a place at our preferred grammar school which we accepted. I was incredibly impressed by MCS. We spent a lot of time at an open day talking to different members of staff, all of whom seemed approachable, committed and enthusiastic - we loved the whole atmosphere of the school. We went to two open days and also had a look round on the day of their fete, can't remember when that was though ...

I would agree that MCS is probably quite a lot harder to get into than Abingdon. Personally I was not as keen on Abingdon, and the longer school day would not have suited us. By the end of the selection procedure we had decided that we wouldn't accept a place there if we were offered one but of course it all depends on what your choices are and why you are considering an independent education. My son has a good friend who is very happy at Abingdon. I think it would be fair to say that the range of academic ability is far wider at Abingdon than at MCS.


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PostPosted: Tue May 20, 2008 9:18 pm 
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Thank you all for your replies which are very helpful. Sorry for the delay in replying but it was my littlest one's birthday and party this week so just recovering now. I am due to go and see Abingdon very soon and will make an appointment to see Magdalen. My son is very academic but is incredibly happy in his non selective prep school where most of his friends are not of the academic variety. I can't help thinking that whilst his ability may be more in keeping with Magdalen school, Abingdon may well be closer to what he is in now and enjoying so much. He has a long school day now and just loves all of it. Well we'll see! Any advice about St Helen and St Katharine's entry would be appreciated. Many thanks
CM


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 7:57 am 
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Location: Chelmsford and pleased
What about Headington?


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 20, 2008 8:35 pm 
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Only knowledge through sister. Her daughter just achieved 11 A * at GCSE(St Helen & St Kath). And loved the whole time there, I think from Yr 6. Fantastic value for money as is Magdalen. Wish I lived closer.


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 Post subject: Oxfordshire schooos
PostPosted: Wed Sep 24, 2008 11:37 am 
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Joined: Sat Jan 12, 2008 6:14 pm
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Thank you for that, I am going to visit both again soon on open days. I haven't looked at Headington although a couple of girl's from my son's prep have gone there this year. I will go and have a look.

Best wishes

CM


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