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PostPosted: Thu Nov 27, 2008 12:28 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2008 1:34 pm
Posts: 51
I would love to hear about the experiences of parents with DC in GS classes of 30 plus.

To our surprise our DS has just passed the eleven plus with a top score. His favourite GS is a big boys school. He is currently at a small private school and from some teachers (not all by any means) we get the feedback that he is a bit gobby in class - not rude, but shouting out answers, not listening quietly to less able kids etc.

I am in a massive dilemmma - will he do better in a large class at GS with bright boys or will he be better off at a less academic independent secondary school with smaller classes?

Don't get me wrong, he's neither a genius nor a trouble-maker - he's just a bright. opinionated, easily bored, sometimes lazy 11 year old boy and I'm trying to decide if the 'sink or swim' environment of a large boys GS school will make or break him.

Huge thanks for your stories


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 Post subject: Mel x
PostPosted: Thu Nov 27, 2008 1:19 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 14, 2006 7:32 pm
Posts: 410
Hello Bucks Mum

Why were you so surprised he passed? I only ask because from what you say he sounds like he is a clever enthusiastic kid who wants to show everyone he is. Sounds like he has a big personality(nothing wrong with that) and his current teachers have allowed ho to get away with shouting out in class tahst down to them.

If he was expected to fail was that because his teachers indicated that to you as if so why?

As he has passed I think you should give him the GS opportuntiy. He will learn immediately that there are some very clever children around so he may not be the one shouting first anymore and doubt he would get away with that in secondary school anyway. He will also be more challenged so perhaps will be less bored and he will soon quieten down. Don't try to supress him for the sake of some his teachers comments. He sounds like quite a normal lovely 11 boy to me. Well done him on passing you should be very proud.

Melx


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 27, 2008 1:28 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 06, 2008 1:41 pm
Posts: 686
Location: South Wilts
Hi Bucks Mum, Your son sounds like a carbon copy of my daughter!

As a former GS pupil myself, from my experience he sounds like GS would be ideal for him.

Wise words, MelX! :)


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 27, 2008 1:32 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2008 1:34 pm
Posts: 51
Thanks for this Mel X and sycamore - it was just what I needed to hear!

I wasn't surprised that he passed but just that he got such a good score because he was so stubborn and slapdash in the practice papers we did but I think that might be a boy thing! I tutored him myself....school is a prep school so to be honest they aren't that interested in 11plus so they didn't say he wouldn't qualify, they just didn't express an opinion as they concentrate on common entrance.

If we get the GS he wants on allocation my gut instinct is to go for it.

Thanks again ...you cheered me up


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 27, 2008 5:43 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 12, 2007 1:21 pm
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I don't know many schools with classes over 30 in Bucks ...


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 27, 2008 5:50 pm 
I think your independent school is wrong for him so you either need to send him to the GS or send him to a very academic independent where he'll no longer be a big fish in a small pond, but will still have small class sizes. You're in a nice position! :wink:


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 27, 2008 6:10 pm 
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Have you thought about a mixed GS? He sounds to me as if an all boy environment might not be ideal.


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 30, 2008 9:09 pm 
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my dd is at a highly achieving indie - we were surprised and not initially delighted that class sizes in the first three years were c 27 in many core subjects (not science, languages or maths) - but the girls are all able and basically well behaved - and I don't think it's made any noticeable difference. The classes are smaller now in year 10 - but even so by no means down to 15. She would certainly argue you need a good core of people to have enough opinion and debate. At a GS you are going to have a great calibre of students and commitment - I wouldn't worry.


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 30, 2008 10:43 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 23, 2008 9:26 pm
Posts: 553
My 3 boys all went from independent prep school to grammar. This involved a step up in class sizes, which hasn't been an issue at all. They have all appreciated being in an environment with very able boys and I have to say I feel the quality of teaching is, on the whole, better (although as usual in life there are exceptions to this). They vary widely in their personality and aptitudes and the size of and variety in their classes has meant they have all found their niche and made friends. One of them only commented the other day that he preferred having 30 in the class.

We were strongly encouraged to keep them on till 13 at their prep school and had no support for 11+. I have had no regrets at all about our decision.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 01, 2008 3:51 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 02, 2006 3:07 pm
Posts: 1149
Location: Finchley - Barnet
Definetely the GS. Unless he has an IQ to the skies he will very soon find out that they are other boys as clever as him and even more clever than him! He will never be bored again (or at least not by as much as now) judging by the experience of my kid. The fact that the pool is 30 further intensfies the competition. An altogether fantastic challenge, which in my DS's school is further enhanced by the possibility of a "demotion" to a lower set in any topics where the performance is not at par with the others (typically two people move up to a higher set and two down to a lower set in each topic, unless there are no obvious outliers). Of course given the intake the differences in the sets are only marginal by the school's admission, but it works as it keeps the boys academic rivalry on.

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