My son has been through Beths (up until year 11 -he left in 2014) and he did really well there. Whilst he was there they all did DT every week, of some description, on a rotation (e.g. product design for 10ish weeks, then Food Tech, then electronics, then graphics etc) This was one of the reasons we chose it over Dartford Boys, where the rotation included art and something else (can't remember what) whereas at Beths they did art every week and DT every week. When my son was in Year 9 they all had to choose a DT GCSE to take at the end of year 10 - from a range of choices.DS chose Product Design (electronic products) which he loved. Bear in mind that with the new head and the changes to GCSE this may change though.
Homework wise there was quite a bit in year 7 (history mainly!) but not to the extent that DS had to give up any of his out of school activities. Friends with children at Chis and Sid said they were staying up really late trying to finish homework, but my son is a quick worker so it's difficulty to compare. After year 7 it did seem to calm down a bit although that is partly because they get better at doing it. DS also got into the habit of spending some lunch times in the library finishing bits off. It built up a bit for GCSEs, but by then DS was putting in time of his own accord anyway - but he still continued all his out of school activities up until his GCSEs.
He did a range of sports in lessons - as well as rugby, football, basketball he did dance, volleyball, badminton, tennis, cricket, american football etc. Not sure about what after school sports activities there were, DS did do volleyball for a while.
We felt that they understood boys well, and allowed them to be boys, understanding that sometimes they can make silly decisions and be a bit 'lively'. They helped them develop and learn how to control this, rather than coming down on them like a ton of bricks for every minor offence. For us that is a good approach.
DS did very well and came out with 12A*, and an A and only moved for sixth form because he won a scholarship to a private school with better music facilities (although they do put a lot of effort into music at Beths if that is something you are interested in).
Hope that is helpful DS was recommending Beths to another friend recently, and a friend who stayed into the sixth form did really well in his AS levels (all As).
I hope this is helpful. Hopefully someone with more uptodate experience may also be able to give you some ideas.