Newton Prep or Eaton House The Manor?

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ClaphamCommon_Mummy
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Newton Prep or Eaton House The Manor?

Postby ClaphamCommon_Mummy » Tue Nov 23, 2021 10:05 am

Morning all,

My DD has offers to start at both these schools from next September. We love Newton Prep (the facilities, the warm and dynamic teaching staff, the forward-thinking ethos and the co-ed element). The downside? It’s a 20-25m walking / scooting commute (or bus ride) down the busy Queenstown Road, when EHTM is a 5-10m walk. I also worry about the catchment size for play dates etc.

EHTM is a lovely school with a great headmaster and very convenient, but is a lot more traditional (compulsory ballet etc.!) than Newton Prep and the single sex element at primary level concerns me - particularly as I have two daughters who won’t otherwise have much ‘exposure’ (!) to boys. I am also not sure whether we want a co-ed or single sex senior education for our girls and I fear that, by sending them to a single sex primary, I would be limiting their options at senior level.

Any advice / thoughts from NP or EHTM parents would be very much appreciated. Thank you.
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Expatacular
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Re: Newton Prep or Eaton House The Manor?

Postby Expatacular » Tue Nov 23, 2021 10:51 am

We just gave up a spot at NP in favour of another primary that is closer to home. We would have had a similar commute and it just felt too far, although we shared your enthusiasm for the school itself. The school we chose is more similar to NP than EHTM (co-ed, more progressive, large), but everyone I've spoken to with kids in school says location location location should be a primary consideration. We decided on a school that is an 8 minute walk from home, rather than a train ride or drive each day.
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Moonlightdawn
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Re: Newton Prep or Eaton House The Manor?

Postby Moonlightdawn » Tue Nov 23, 2021 11:05 am

Hi

We faced a similar choice a few years ago. We really liked EHTM but not the single-sex aspect. People have wildly different opinions on this but single-sex education seems a bit outdated and archaic. Most young people when finishing school / uni will work for and with females and males. We don't have sex-segregated workplaces so why separate girls and boys in school?

I also liked that the uniform at Newton Prep is more down-to-earth and progressive. No hats and no mandatory blazers. Some people will of course want the more traditional uniform. But to me they are restricting, expensive and belong in the 20th century.

The commute to NP is a bit of a faff - no doubt about it (we live between Clapham Common and Clapham South). But you get used to it and get to know the short cuts. For play dates, do not fear as many families live around Clapham and Wandsworth Common. Playdates have never been an issue for us.

Good luck in your decision. They are both great choices to have. I'm sure your children will thrive either way.
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ClaphamCommon_Mummy
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Re: Newton Prep or Eaton House The Manor?

Postby ClaphamCommon_Mummy » Tue Nov 23, 2021 7:34 pm

Thank you so much both - really helpful advice (even though different!).
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Southsider
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Re: Newton Prep or Eaton House The Manor?

Postby Southsider » Wed Nov 24, 2021 10:09 am

We had a similar choice 4 years ago with Parkgate/NP. In fact I think I posted here(!) and we ended up deciding the longer commute was worth it.  We live off Southside and as Moonlightdawn mentioned, the commute is a bit of a faff (20-30 mins for us all in) but it quickly became part of the routine.

My eldest's best school friends all live in Clapham (3 of them live right round the corner from us) and my youngest's live a bit further afield (Battersea/Vauxhall/Kennington) but playdates and parties have never been an issue. More than happy for you to PM me if you have any specific questions re commute / school.

Sounds cliched but honestly, go with your gut feel.  Someone told me when we were choosing 'you can always change schools if you don't like it' which I needed to hear at the time! Obviously would not be an ideal scenario but it took the pressure off making the decision for me.

Good luck! Two lovely options and am sure your girls will be very happy at either.
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ClaphamCommon_Mummy
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Re: Newton Prep or Eaton House The Manor?

Postby ClaphamCommon_Mummy » Thu Nov 25, 2021 11:45 am

Thanks so much Southsider and I will PM you this weekend.
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Ak17
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Re: Newton Prep or Eaton House The Manor?

Postby Ak17 » Thu Nov 25, 2021 5:42 pm

We went with Eaton House for the commute honestly. We had the same doubts about how traditional it is and the single-sex environment. That said, our son has absolutely loved it and we really like running into classmates at the playground, etc. 

Overall, I'd agree with the poster above and say go with your gut and what matters most to you. For us, a later start to the morning with a school that's close by and a commute that the nanny can do, really helped lower our stress levels as working parents. We maybe would have been happier with the more progressive side of Newton Prep but we also would have been a lot more stressed every morning! But I know a lot of people who would have chosen differently in the same situation.
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ClaphamCommon_Mummy
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Re: Newton Prep or Eaton House The Manor?

Postby ClaphamCommon_Mummy » Fri Nov 26, 2021 1:04 pm

Thanks AK17. We are both working parents too. It’s so hard, isn’t it - but we are very fortunate to have a choice.
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Ramaboo
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Re: Newton Prep or Eaton House The Manor?

Postby Ramaboo » Fri Nov 26, 2021 11:18 pm

NP parent here and those are the same two schools we chose between. Super glad we chose Newton in the end, thoroughly impressed by it and I don't think the traditional nature of EH would have suited us.

We live CC Northside so commute would obviously be amazing to EH, but Newton is really not that bad. Loads of buses go down Queenstown road and they get there faster than cars due to the bus lanes - door to door 20 mins on the 156 :-). And if you drive there's a trick to where you need to park to make life easy.

I wouldn't worry about playdates and proximity - you will spend half your weekends at various party venues around SW London anyway, and these are the same no matter which school. We find any playground we go to from clapham common to Battersea Park and also Chelsea, we run into children we know. If we had just stuck to Clapham common I fear our world would have felt a bit too small too quickly?? Everyone is looking for different things though - good luck with your choice and feel free to pm me 
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Charlottesdress
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Re: Newton Prep or Eaton House The Manor?

Postby Charlottesdress » Mon Nov 29, 2021 7:32 am

My daughter has already left EH after 9 years, including 2 years in nursery. And our son is in EH boys school. This is outstanding school by all means- pastoral care, academic, sports. Kids loved it so much. My daughter now is the one of the best schools in the country started her year 7. We can say only best things about Eaton House. They know what they are doing in the best possible way. The Headmaster in girls school is absolutely amazing ☺️
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astro
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Re: Newton Prep or Eaton House The Manor?

Postby astro » Mon Nov 29, 2021 9:01 am

Just to add, we have two children and EHTM and find it isn’t nearly as traditional as the uniform would suggest! My daughter hates pink and frozen and is very happy there, despite the compulsory ballet.
I really didn’t want the single sex element either and fully plan to send my kids to co-Ed secondary, but for primary to be honest it has kind of worked. We can see the difference in how they approach learning between the boys and girls classes. I love that my two still go in the same door every day and see each other in the halls/ playground etc. They also do a holiday camp at the end of every term now which is mixed boys and girls so that is great for mixing.

EHTM is very nurturing and as it is non-selective deals with a broad spectrum of children. NP from all reports is a little more academic as it is selective. EH is very local - all the play dates and parties are within a 3 mile radius pretty much which is great for us.

Good luck making your decision!
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Starr
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Re: Newton Prep or Eaton House The Manor?

Postby Starr » Mon Nov 29, 2021 12:21 pm

I don't have personal experience of either school but I don't think 25 minutes walk/ scoot/ bus is bad at all.
It would be different if you had no choice but to drive but if you don't then just choose the one that stands out for you. It's not much more commute time added.
Academic/ selective schools also don't necessarily mean the better school with the best innovative hardworking teachers - they just have a more able cohort which makes strong exit results pretty easy for them. (Speaking from experience here)
Coed vs single sex is a non issue at primary but more impactful at secondary. We've gone for coed for senior although I can really see the benefits of single sex as well but I had to go with my child's wishes and her personality.
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FrankJ
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Re: Newton Prep or Eaton House The Manor?

Postby FrankJ » Mon Nov 29, 2021 2:05 pm

We have both at NP. We couldn't be happier! I would not worry about commute. We live between the commons on the Clapham Common side and manage the commute quite easily. But you are looking at two great schools, so a good position to be in.
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