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 Post subject: KEGS
PostPosted: Thu Jan 21, 2021 6:29 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jan 17, 2021 10:02 pm
Posts: 2
Hello all
First of all many thanks to all the contributors on the forum - up until now I've been a non-member but found it really useful.

We're relocating this Summer to be within commuting distance of London.

We put KEGS on our CAF and my DS scored sufficiently high that he should be OK as an out of area boy.

I just wondered what parents with boys at KEGS thought of it - we've learn a lot from the website and virtual open day but I thought it would be good to get first hand views.
Many thanks


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 Post subject: Re: KEGS
PostPosted: Thu Mar 04, 2021 12:19 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 15, 2019 8:52 am
Posts: 20
My son is currently in Year 7 at KEGS.
He loves it there and has settled in really well. We are from out of catchment and only two other kids from his primary school are at the school (different classes). He gets a coach to and from school and he is coping well with the journey and slightly earlier start.
They do work them hard though - they have a LOT of homework - average 3 pieces per day , sometimes 4 or 5.
The expected standard of work is high and you sense that from the very beginning. The also expect the children to be very independent and communicate more directly with the boys. For instance, there is nowhere for parents to see what homework they have been assigned - they communicate directly with the boys and expect them to record and monitor it. Parents are only notified if the get 'referrals' for not handing in their homework when due!
Due to the pandemic, they have missed out on all the extra curricular and practical elements of education. KEGS also seem to have taken an extremely risk averse approach and they haven't done anything like cooking or workshop time for DT.
Let me know any questions you might have and I will try my best to answer.


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 Post subject: Re: KEGS
PostPosted: Thu Apr 08, 2021 10:28 pm 
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Posts: 3
My son is coming up for his 11+ this year and I have been reading some troubling stories which have been relayed to me through other parents. I also have a daughter entering CCHS this year and it has certainly opened my eyes to some issues I hadn’t even considered. However, as things stand I would be loathe to send my son to this school without some reassurances, but I would certainly be interested in hearing from any current KEGS parents about how the school are communicating these issues, and how they will potentially go about protecting the students.
For anyone that is interested and perhaps in a similar situation, these issues are being openly discussed online.

https://kegssurvivors.com/blog/


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 Post subject: Re: KEGS
PostPosted: Fri Apr 09, 2021 5:53 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 27, 2014 5:04 pm
Posts: 1991
I have read through some of these today and they are beyond horrifying. Unfortunately from my own experiences at a (different) school, I can well imagine a school culture spreading to include staff and students. (In my case it was nothing like this but teachers were complicit in maintaining a Queen Bee hierarchy so that the worst bullies became head girl etc).
This is not normal behaviour for most schools, even most boys schools.
I'm not surprised you're wondering whether to send your child here. It sounds awful.


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 Post subject: Re: KEGS
PostPosted: Sat Apr 10, 2021 5:28 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 13, 2015 5:58 pm
Posts: 71
The KEGS story made the BBC:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-essex-56655007

There is a similar set of stories for CRGS in Colchester.

https://www.scarlettmansfield.com/blog (no direct link because it contains a word I suspect would get this post flagged/deleted).
https://crgs-comments.blogspot.com/p/cr ... ments.html

My daughter has two female friends at CRGS who have contributed to the comment thread and corroborate the stories.


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 Post subject: Re: KEGS
PostPosted: Mon Apr 12, 2021 6:54 pm 
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I followed the link to the KEGS survivors page and I was quite shocked to read the posts. A number were very troubling.

Can parents you have boys at KEGS perhaps comment on whether these are isolated incidents or is there a systemic issue?

A lot of the comments seemed to relate to the 6th form when girls are admitted to the school.

What are the experiences of parents who have children in the younger years of the school?


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 Post subject: Re: KEGS
PostPosted: Tue Apr 13, 2021 7:07 pm 
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Joined: Tue Feb 16, 2016 4:08 pm
Posts: 27
The school is dealing with this and we have had many emails from Mr. Carter since they have been made aware of the blog. I'm just as shocked and horrified at reading through the testimonials but equally I'm hurt that all Kegs students have been tarnished by this. The kids that I know are some of the most hardworking and respectful children and I'm so proud of the young men that Kegs has helped to shape. After two lockdowns, I have got to know how these boys interact with each other and there's a lot of raucous laughter, silly squabbles and endless gaming but equally kindness and care for the mental well-being of their own group.

Edit : The boys mentioned above are still a few years away from the 6th form and other than contact with CCHS girls on the coach/train, don't usually come across the 6th formers during a normal school day, especially now they are contained within year group bubbles.


Last edited by Applejack on Wed Apr 14, 2021 2:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: KEGS
PostPosted: Tue Apr 13, 2021 9:11 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 27, 2014 5:04 pm
Posts: 1991
I don't think anyone is saying it's all the boys - in fact many of the posts state that it's not.
But just as #notallmen is absolutely the wrong response to #metoo, I don't think that saying that some boys don't get involved in what would appear to be a very prevalent and very distressing (and hopefully unusual) school culture is the best response.
A few years ago I would have denied having a racist bone in my body - since BLM and educating myself and reading books I realised it's not enough and I need to stand up against racism every time I see it or hear it. Similarly, unless the boys that aren't involved are actively working against it (and I totally get how hard that would be if the entire culture of the school is saying something different) then there is a complicity there that might be uncomfortable to consider but still needs to be considered.


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 Post subject: Re: KEGS
PostPosted: Wed Apr 14, 2021 10:02 am 
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Joined: Fri Dec 04, 2020 1:55 pm
Posts: 24
Applejack wrote:
I'm just as shocked and horrified at reading through the testimonials but equally I'm hurt that all Kegs students have been tarnished by this. The kids that I know are some of the most hardworking and respectful children and I'm so proud of the young men that Kegs has helped to shape. After two lockdowns, I have got to know how these boys interact with each other and there's a lot of raucous laughter, silly squabbles and endless gaming but equally kindness and care for the mental well-being of their own group.


The hurt isn't really equal though, is it?

I've read through about a third of the testimonies so far and it really is horrific. A lot of them do say there are some good 'uns there, so it's not all boys being tarnished. But with something that appears to be so prevalent, even systemic, it will be the majority.

My best wishes go out to all those who have recounted their experiences and others who have suffered.


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 Post subject: Re: KEGS
PostPosted: Wed Apr 14, 2021 1:35 pm 
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Posts: 232
I have felt compelled to read hundreds of these testimonials (across several schools) as my DD is soon to join one of these schools at sixth form (but not this one). I feel like I’m throwing her into a lions’ den.

I am grateful that she’s going in after these testimonials have been brought to light and there is a will to make changes but too often these efforts seem undercut by those who benefit from the status quo.

Looking for common threads in the stories the following often appear:
Po******phy - readily accessible, frequently viewed and discussed.
A lack of timely sex/relationship education that discusses healthy relationships and what is real and what’s not.

Girls are ranked and ´collected’ like playing cards. There is little awareness or interest in how they would feel about this objectification. It is all a game.

Consequences - a telling off for bad behaviour is water off a duck's back. The complainant will suffer more harassment and ostracism. The teacher will never hear of this again simply because the victim will never dare complain again. ‘Stars’ can get away with anything as long as they stay ´stars’.

Parties are where bad things happen. Alcohol is easily used to manufacture consent/lack of effective resistance. It is dangerous to be separated from allies.

The status gained by scoring or even simply claiming to have scored outweighs any apparent consequences. A girl’s status drops as a boy’s goes up (in environments where conquest is applauded).

Empathy - very little around. A lot of harm is done to fellow students simply by lying, or gossiping about them, and there is too much willingness to act on the gossip.

There are signs of staff pushing back against this negative culture but some accounts report teachers who indulge the sexist/racist banter,(or are victims themselves) and prioritise the boys’ achievements over the girls’.

Often the girls are simply outnumbered. Boys and girls coming into these environments are trying to fit in, make friends and often accept that what they experience is just the way it is.

Statements like ´bullying is not tolerated’ are meaningless without specifics (and consequences that affect the perpetrator more than the victim).

Solidarity amongst the students seems to make a big difference and a willingness to call out bad behaviour whenever. Lone voices will likely be too crushed to be effective so students need to support each other in this.

Clearly there needs to be a stronger emphasis on empathy, respect and honesty and not just towards immediate peers. There needs to be a better understanding of what is completely unacceptable.

I will be holding my breath when DD goes to school in September. In the meantime I am glad she is making friends now with other newcomers to the school. I am trying to teach her situational awareness and discuss ‘what ifs’. Any other ideas?

Edited to add common theme of ranking.
Perhaps moderators would prefer further discussion of this in pastoral care?


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