Honeywell School or local private prep?

57 posts
Scientist
Posts: 34
Joined: Oct 2013
Options:
Share this post on:

Re: Honeywell School or local private prep?

Postby Scientist » Mon Apr 23, 2018 6:09 am

K1999 - the reason Honeywell hasn't had an inspection report for years is that the school was judged by Ofsted to be 'Outstanding' in an earlier report, I think around 10 years ago. There was then a follow up inspection in about 2010, which simply confirmed the previous rating. Since that report was published, Ofsted rules changed to the effect that any school judged Outstanding would no longer be subject to routine testing. The exception to this would be in the case that independent concerns were raised about the school, in which case Ofsted would respond accordingly.

However there is a recent inspection report on the School's Out Club at Honeywell, which was far from flattering.

I agree with you based on our experience, Honeywell is great if your children are bright, self reliant and quite academic. The top pupils are given extra support. The middle ground are pretty much left to get on with it and be average; the challenged do not receive quite enough support. Also agree that mixing classes around would benefit everyone - parents included ! It does get pretty cliquey and as you say, if neither child nor parent likes/fits in with the clique, it can be a bit miserable at times. Believe me, there are plenty of social climbing parents at Honeywell - not to mention a band of smug parents who relish the fact that they are saving on private school fees. I think the nadir for this was when the school featured in Tatler's list of top state schools - something which the 'egalitarian' headmaster advertised on the school website immediately.

It is what it is, not bad for a state school but as mentioned before, much due to its catchment area.
Post Reply
miga
Posts: 2
Joined: Apr 2018
Options:
Share this post on:

Re: Honeywell School or local private prep?

Postby miga » Mon Apr 30, 2018 9:45 am

I have read this conversation with great interest since we are in a similar situation.

We have a child at one of the BTC state school. He is an adorable little boy, not particularly academic or exceptionally gifted. Obviously we started being concerned regarding the secondary school admission process and we wonder if we should move him to a prep school to facilitate the 11+ process. He is not at the top of his class, and he will surely be one of those left-behind children not pushed to achieve.

The question for us is if it is worth moving him from the school he truly loves, that we take 2 minutes to reach and go for one of the prep schools (the closest being at least 20mins far away). Is it worth spending £20K per year and having to deal with the extra 4 weeks of holidays that private school have (being both full time working parents). Is it truly worthy? My heart says that this is all insane and there is no good reason I should take him away from a school where he is exceptionally happy and settled. But my brain says we are underestimating the situation and, if my child will not be admitted to a good school, we will regret our choice in few years time.

We are truly torn.
Post Reply
Goldhawk
Posts: 1028
Joined: Jul 2010
Options:
Share this post on:

Re: Honeywell School or local private prep?

Postby Goldhawk » Mon Apr 30, 2018 11:26 am

miga - it depends what schools you are aiming at for secondary

If Bolingbroke then you need to be at a feeder school

If private then you need to be tutoring from year 5 at the latest - either DIY or pay someone

The majority of kids at the prep schools are being tutored too
Post Reply
miga
Posts: 2
Joined: Apr 2018
Options:
Share this post on:

Re: Honeywell School or local private prep?

Postby miga » Mon Apr 30, 2018 11:43 am

Hello&Thanks,

we are surely thinking about going private for secondary.

We know that the tutoring is a must, but we are wondering if attending a prep school would make such a massive difference purely in terms of broad education (let's put aside sport or all the extra after-school activities).
Post Reply
K1999
Posts: 48
Joined: Sep 2017
Options:
Share this post on:

Re: Honeywell School or local private prep?

Postby K1999 » Mon Apr 30, 2018 2:00 pm

Firstly I should point out that not all kids from Prep School are tutored. It may depend on what senior school you are looking at. Prep schools are pretty good at knowing your child and which senior school they would be best suited.

If the parents have high hopes of a particularly strong Senior School then some may tutor but that also depends on how academic your child is.

Prep Schools are more homework based but this is more about the teacher being able to reinforce the work & see how the child is understanding the topic. Of course it is lovely if the state school gives little homework but, unless your child is naturally clever, if not, the child could end up way behind other children.

A lot of state school parents do Kumon (much cheaper than a tutor) but kids are doing 20 mins or more of work every night and parents have to mark. Then kids still have to do school homework on top. I did Kumon for a couple of years and it’s full on. Personally I saw both of my kids thrive at Private School so it was worth the sacrifice.
Post Reply
actuallyadad
Posts: 242
Joined: Dec 2014
Options:
Share this post on:

Re: Honeywell School or local private prep?

Postby actuallyadad » Tue May 01, 2018 12:11 pm

I don't know why people think state schools are so diverse? As unless there's some fiddling going on with the catchment area, then everybody at Honeywell must live in a c. £1.5m house (or a flat worth the best part of £1m) within a few hundred meters of the school. So I'm not sure how diverse they can really be.

If they were really poor families they wouldn't live BTC, and if they were really rich families they would go to private schools. So all this banging on about diversity at Honeywell I think must be nonsense as I suspect vast majority people there are from very similar BTC backgrounds, even if a tiny minority are less well off.
Post Reply
Goldhawk
Posts: 1028
Joined: Jul 2010
Options:
Share this post on:

Re: Honeywell School or local private prep?

Postby Goldhawk » Tue May 01, 2018 1:09 pm

Has all the social housing been sold off then?
Post Reply
actuallyadad
Posts: 242
Joined: Dec 2014
Options:
Share this post on:

Re: Honeywell School or local private prep?

Postby actuallyadad » Tue May 01, 2018 1:16 pm

I don't know. But what % of kids at Honeywell live in social housing? A tiny % I bet.
Post Reply
sid_seal
Posts: 74
Joined: Sep 2014
Options:
Share this post on:

Re: Honeywell School or local private prep?

Postby sid_seal » Tue May 01, 2018 1:42 pm

Data from the Ofsted Compare schools tool: % of pupils eligible for free school meals in the past 6 years at HW and neighbouring school:

Honeywell Infant 4.4
Honeywell Junior 12.3
Belleville 9.4
Wix 25.6
Alderbrook 29.8
High View 49

National: 24.6
Post Reply
actuallyadad
Posts: 242
Joined: Dec 2014
Options:
Share this post on:

Re: Honeywell School or local private prep?

Postby actuallyadad » Tue May 01, 2018 2:40 pm

right so exactly as I thought - if you're at Belleville or Honeywell in a class of 30, there are about 3 kids on free school meals and about 27 living in £1.5m houses (or £1m flats). So it's not really that diverse is it!
Post Reply
K1999
Posts: 48
Joined: Sep 2017
Options:
Share this post on:

Re: Honeywell School or local private prep?

Postby K1999 » Tue May 01, 2018 6:25 pm

When I was at Honeywell, the majority of parents I ever got to know where all shockingly middle class. There was one family who lived on Honeywell Road who were in a council house. What you also can find is that once the kids are in the school, the family can then leave the area, and are still allowed to stay at the school. Which rather defeats the idea of being at a local school, and lots of cars dropping off. It also means that anyone moving into the area may not get a place.

I don't know if they still have sibling priority but I know when our second started at Honeywell, there were so many siblings joining that year - leaving far fewer places for new pupils, which also means an even smaller catchment area.

To be fair, not eveyone has just moved into the area, so may well have not paid the £1m mentioned, and some live in flats, but there is definately more parents who are well off than not.
Post Reply
firsttimerSW11
Posts: 521
Joined: Apr 2013
Options:
Share this post on:

Re: Honeywell School or local private prep?

Postby firsttimerSW11 » Sun May 06, 2018 3:38 pm

To the OP who asked about HW or a local prep, I'd say this:

You're not going to get the same facilities/small class sizes etc at HW as you would at the likes of Thomas's/EH/Broomwood etc.

You are however, going to get broadly speaking exactly the same middle class families, bar the odd one or two.

So if you are middle class and professional and want your child to be in school with similar children, then yes, you will get that Honeywell and Belleville.

You won't get it at any other state school in the area which is why most parents BTC will only really consider HW or BV in terms of state options.
Post Reply