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PostPosted: Fri Oct 20, 2017 2:21 pm 
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Joined: Sat Oct 01, 2016 4:30 pm
Posts: 11
My DS is in year 4 at our local primary school and is doing really well in class, but struggles socially with the more 'boystrous' boy groups and the more 'alpha' characters. At home he is charming, funny and happy; at school he is more serious, quiet, enjoys learning and is calm and focused in class, doesn't mess around, and usually plays with one or two of his close friends, avoiding the big boy groups. He loves sport, and is competitive in team games. I guess you could say he is the slightly more 'sensitive' type.

So I am beginning to think about schools for him. DD has just started at Newstead (and loving it, for those doing their CAF), and we will do the 11 plus with DS (obviously he has to pass!). However, for some reason I am more wary of all-boys schools, than I am of all-girls schools (probably lack of knowledge and experience). Does anyone have any experience of the Bexley, Bromley, north Kent all boys grammars v the co-eds? Is there even a co-ed grammar in North Kent? Would love to get some thoughts on the schools and their 'character'. I guess I am worried that the boys schools are all masculine bravado, and fall down on nurture - she says wildly stereotyping!!

Does my DS sound familiar - what school did you choose for your DS? Obviously we will need to go and see the schools, to get a feel for the right fit of school, and schools can change a lot in 3 years, but it would be good to get some thoughts from those who have been through the process. (BTW I know of Olaves and have been following the news closely; I am also aware that it is very tricky to get into, should you wish to try.)

We actually live in south Southwark, where there are some great schools, but getting into them from our street is really, really tricky, and I am not happy with the guaranteed option for him. With DD at Newstead we might consider moving for the right school, so am not too hung up about catchments at the moment.

thanks in advance

[I don't want to spark any debate about the relative merits of single-sex v co-ed education, I'm more interested in perspectives on the characters of the various schools - the boys schools are a gap in my knowledge! :D ]


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 20, 2017 6:35 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jul 02, 2016 3:44 pm
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Location: London Borough of Bexley
No real experience but my DS is in Year 5 and he is very similar to your son in personality. We looked around Beths last week as a "this is where daddy went to school and why you are doing all those workbooks" type of thing. I saw many Beths pupils who seemed a similar personality to my DS, including the year 10 who showed us around. I caught a scary (in a positive way) vision of the future and I think he would thrive there. DP on the other hand went there himself, and seems to think the co-ed would be better. But that was 30 years and he didn't go to the open day so I'm taking that as a pinch of salt for now! :lol: DS is unlikely to get into a co-ed unless he is top 180 so it's not something I'm really worried about.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 22, 2017 7:30 am 
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Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2017 2:55 pm
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I have two boys, so I was slightly nervous about a single-sex school just because they'll be all boys at home and school.

BUT having looked round every school in the local area (!) I now think single-sex schools allow them to flourish away from gender stereotypes. I think they can explore their interests without worrying whether they are doing something 'girly' or vice versa. My younger son is very into dancing and drama for example, and it seems the take-up of those extra-curricular activities is much higher among boys in all-boys schools than in mixed. Similarly, I know girls do better in STEM subjects in all-girls schools.

So I can see on the surface you might worry about 'masculine bravado' but personally I think you're more likely to find that in a co-ed school.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 22, 2017 7:32 am 
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Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2017 2:55 pm
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Just wanted to add that both of mine have hobbies where they have lots of friends who are girls - swimming and performing arts - and I'll definitely encourage that if they go to single-sex schools.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 22, 2017 8:44 am 
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See I'm the opposite - as a girl I went to a single sex school and hated it - without boys around, "alpha girls" tend to become worse and the b**ch element can become massive - but for both my boys their preference by a country mile was for single sex and they are both thriving. As someone said above, whilst there are undoubtably some alpha males, they are in the minority, and the boys tend to spread their wings a bit more - loads of drama/music - where the boys gleefully play the female parts!


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 2:29 pm 
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Joined: Sat Sep 21, 2013 2:56 pm
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Initially we wanted our DS to go to a mixed school (C&S), both myself and DH went there and have such fond memories but he was always adamant that he wanted an all boys school. I have to say seeing him there it does seem to work for him and they do tailor their curriculum towards boys. Ds2 also wants the same school however when it comes round to our daughter, I will strongly be encouraging her to co-ed ... grammar or non grammar. Not sure why we feel this way, we just do ...


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 2:40 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 12:41 pm
Posts: 10560
Location: Essex
amfnc wrote:
Initially we wanted our DS to go to a mixed school (C&S), both myself and DH went there and have such fond memories but he was always adamant that he wanted an all boys school. I have to say seeing him there it does seem to work for him and they do tailor their curriculum towards boys. Ds2 also wants the same school however when it comes round to our daughter, I will strongly be encouraging her to co-ed ... grammar or non grammar. Not sure why we feel this way, we just do ...



Ah yes, the boys' school curriculum 'tailored towards boys'...

Apart from both being very good swimmers, neither of our DSs is particularly sporty. Not a problem I could recall from DS1's earlier days at the same school, but DS2 was most unimpressed to find that a piece of work set early in year 7 English appeared to require an in-depth knowledge of football :roll: .

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