Pre-IB students

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ailurophile
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Pre-IB students

Post by ailurophile » Fri Jul 30, 2010 5:58 pm

I was very intrigued to read in the Headmaster's most recent letter that as well as four day pupils, there will be four German 'pre-IB' students joining the GE next year - another new initiative. I think that this is the first confirmation we have had that CH will actually be introducing the IB in 2011 (unless I've missed something), which is good news. However, I'm curious as to how the pre-IB students will fit in; will they be joining the current GE, effectively in the final year of a three-year GCSE course, and taking UK qualifications next summer? Or will they be taught separately on a syllabus specifically designed to prepare them for the IB? The GE does strike me as a rather awkward stage for overseas (or indeed any) students to join the school.

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Re: Pre-IB students

Post by dinahcat » Sat Jul 31, 2010 12:39 am

Thta's an interesting question but I imagine the school have it organised or they wouldn't be doing it. It's interesting that the school are buying into the IB and I am wondering why. There is such a huge debate to be had about the various different 6th form exam options. My daughter is on a Classics summer school and many of the students are taking the Pre U exam and finding it very difficult which is why they have decided to attend the summer school. My daughter says that she is able to keep ahead because of the teaching she has received at CH . She says that usually they have to translate passages with no assistance based on learning the vocab and grammar beforehand so if you haven't learnt it you won't be able to do it. It would seem that regardless of which course you are studying and how difficult it is by reputation , if the teaching doesn't match up to it you won't be any better off.The IB does have a formidable reputation and is entirely different from A levels -it is easy to fall foul of that and assume that A level teaching will be similar to IB teaching .I am also wondering how the school will manage parents of full fee payers who might be more minded to complain about teaching, results and so on simply because they are paying full fees. I always feel that I can't say anytihng about unamarked books or similar things because I am not paying the full fees.If, of course, I had such a complaint. Which I don't.

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Re: Pre-IB students

Post by englishangel » Sat Jul 31, 2010 9:07 am

I am so pleased you added that bit at the end dinahcat.

In terms of of products/services the law says you can complain if the product/service not fit for purpose even if it is free. e.g a free gift with something else, remember the Hoover flights a few years ago?
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Re: Pre-IB students

Post by J.R. » Sat Jul 31, 2010 11:24 am

englishangel wrote:I am so pleased you added that bit at the end dinahcat.

In terms of of products/services the law says you can complain if the product/service not fit for purpose even if it is free. e.g a free gift with something else, remember the Hoover flights a few years ago ?

Certainly must have been an improvement on the Hogwarts mode of transport !

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Re: Pre-IB students

Post by dinahcat » Sat Jul 31, 2010 11:42 pm

There are some things that trouble me sometimes and in the ordinary way of things ,such as if my children were at a day school ,I might ring or visit the school and have a bit of a chat. I don't live anywhere near enough to drop in and I do bite my tongue at times because I am not a full fee payer and it seems ungrateful to seem to be complaining. I do wonder if full fee paying parents will feel the same. I work in an independent school and the parents are quite vocal -demanding if you like and you can't really blame them after all because they are parting with a substantial sum of money and they obviously put a lot of emphasis on education or they wouldn't be paying.I am just wondering if the full fee paying parents and the parents of day pupils will be more demanding.

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Re: Pre-IB students

Post by Fjgrogan » Sun Aug 01, 2010 9:56 am

There seems to be a suggestion here that parents who are not paying full fees - in fact the majority, therefore, by definition - should feel obliged to accept sub-standard education! Surely, given the nature of the Foundation, once parents have 'contracted' to have their children educated at CH they should be entitled to the best education available. In reality I believe that that is what CH provides (or I wouldn't have sent my own girls there!); it is the 'ancillary' parts of the whole system that sometimes give reason for doubt, for example the way housemistresses at Hertford were perceived to be unaccountable for their sometimes bizarre behaviour. This is not so much of an issue today, because the house staff also hold academic posts within the school, and therefore are intelligent educated people. The policy in the past at Hertford was specifically not to have teaching staff as house staff - I cannot imagine what qualities they were actually looking for when they interviewed, but it didn't appear to have anything to do with common sense or being 'in loco parentis'! I believe my particular housemistress had previously worked as a prison warder, or in a girls' reform school - and it showed!!
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Re: Pre-IB students

Post by ailurophile » Sun Aug 01, 2010 4:07 pm

Dinahcat wrote:
That's an interesting question but I imagine the school have it organised or they wouldn't be doing it. It's interesting that the school are buying into the IB and I am wondering why. ...The IB does have a formidable reputation and is entirely different from A levels -it is easy to fall foul of that and assume that A level teaching will be similar to IB teaching. I am also wondering how the school will manage parents of full fee payers who might be more minded to complain about teaching, results and so on simply because they are paying full fees. I
I'd guess CH are buying into the IB because they have to be competitive in order to attract the full fee payers - all the other independent schools in the area already offer this option, which is highly regarded by Universities.

As I've mentioned on here before, my DS will be studying the IB next year at a state sixth form college. It is interesting that three schools in our home area all introduced this course in 2009, the sixth form college, a comprehensive and an independent. Of these, the college has had a very successful first year and has seen applications for the IB more than double from 25 last year to 60 this; the comprehensive on the other hand saw a slow start, and has had to cancel the course after just one year because they simply can't afford to teach the small numbers applying (as Dinahcat says, the IB syllabus requires very different teaching from A levels). In total contrast I have heard that the independent school have really 'gone for it' with the IB, encouraging all their students to seriously consider this alternative. It will be very interesting to see how CH handle the introduction of this course!

With regard to managing full fee payers I think that CH is going to have to have a steep learning curve, especially when it comes to expected levels of communication. In our experience there is a tendency for the school to take a rather arrogant 'this is the way we do things: like it or lump it' attitude towards parents - and while families who receive a generous bursary often have no choice but to put up with this I suspect that parents paying £24500 pa might prove to be somewhat more assertive!

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Re: Pre-IB students

Post by Great Plum » Mon Aug 02, 2010 11:10 pm

You have to remember that the school has, for quite a few years now, had full fee paying pupils...

As for day pupils - only 4 - harldy a roaring success is it? Those 4 kids will feel very left out I feel...
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Re: Pre-IB students

Post by Mrs C. » Tue Aug 03, 2010 8:58 am

Great Plum wrote:You have to remember that the school has, for quite a few years now, had full fee paying pupils...

As for day pupils - only 4 - harldy a roaring success is it? Those 4 kids will feel very left out I feel...
I would imagine that , given the late date of announcing the places for day pupils, most local potentials would have already accepted places in other schools of their choice.
Will be interesting to see if more join next September.
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Re: Pre-IB students

Post by ailurophile » Tue Aug 03, 2010 11:40 am

Great Plum wrote
You have to remember that the school has, for quite a few years now, had full fee paying pupils...
True, but don't you think that the situation is significantly different now that CH is actively pursuing these pupils? The school used to accept a maximum 6% of pupils overall whose parents could afford the full fees. If I understand correctly, this was a limit rather than a target; pupils competed for places on a level playing field and the actual percentage of full fee payers accepted was closer to 3%. However, in order to raise fee income the allowable percentage has now been more than doubled, and appears to have become a specific target. Full fee paying families are being actively courted on a 'first come first served' basis in an increasingly competitive market, and I can't help wondering whether certain aspects of CH will have to change in order to attract and keep these pupils.

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Re: Pre-IB students

Post by Great Plum » Tue Aug 24, 2010 10:43 pm

That is true... they do seem to be be trying hard to get the full fee payers and as Janet has said, we will have to wait until next September for the true numbers of full fee payers...

So, apart from the non-foundationers, are there just 4 day pupils then?
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Re: Pre-IB students

Post by onewestguncopse » Tue Sep 14, 2010 11:30 pm

I think that the real growth will be in day places. I speak as someone who knows many local parents who would not send their child to a boarding school, (the idea of which is odd to the majority of people these days after all), but are very keen on CH as a day school. Horsham is affluent and the nearest private school is a 30 minute drive away. Once news gets out it we will fill our day places fairly easily. In a recession, full fee boarders is another kettle of fish entirely! The key will be to attract people who will pay a sizeable fee but still get a good 'scholarship'. After all a 50% scholarship still brings the school £12K per annum.

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Re: Pre-IB students

Post by wurzel » Wed Sep 15, 2010 1:45 pm

One west gun

This is not to pick a fight just to understand the differences with my experiences

Out of interest which schools are 30 mins away - i would have thought Farlington was much closer and probably Cranleigh also. I do not know as i do not live in Horsham anymore (my mum does) and so don't know the traffic on the 281. Where i live in Reading 30mins can be 30miles or 3 miles depending on direction.

From the experience of having an ex colleague whose husband is an FD of a multinational and so rolling in money the demands they made on their prep school were in my mind ridiculous.

They expected weekly updates on all subjects. When their son cut his leg -on a nail sticking out of an old fence, in the woods around the perimeter of the school, they were all for sueing. That was until they got a full handwritten apology from the Headmaster and a refund of the 3 days he could not go into school as it was "too painful to walk". (it was a 1 inch long cut requiring 1 butterfly stitch/steristrip). That was despite the wood being OOB

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Re: Pre-IB students

Post by dinahcat » Wed Sep 15, 2010 6:58 pm

I can entirely see what wurzel is getting at. Parents who buy into independent education in the usual way can be very demanding. Their view is often that they are buying results regardless of the raw material that the school is given by the parents and they do expect personal attention and quite extraordinary levels of conmmunication. Mr Franklin does come from a local independent so I am assuming that he will have the experience to have considered this. Whether the rest of the staff will be so well informed remains to be seen. The fact remains that this is the position the school finds itself in and it will have to deal with it.
Parents who choose CH as a day school are likely to be very involved in their child's school and feel they are quite well informed about education in general -even down to how and what an individual teacher is delivering. They are more likely to complain about comments in exercise books and how lessons are delivered and a whole raft of other things.Also,as they are local, they can drop into the school at any time.
It will just take time for everyone to adjust and it is easy to imagine the school hasn't thought of all this but I don't believe that this is the case.It will all pan out in the end ,I am sure because nothing is certain except that change will happen and that doesn't have to be a bad thing.

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Re: Pre-IB students

Post by onewestguncopse » Wed Sep 15, 2010 11:00 pm

My son went to a local Prep school. The most popular school to send your son/daughter to from there is currently Brighton College and Hurstpierpoint. They are both at least 30 mins away in morning rush hour traffic. Cranleigh is closer but still 30 mins drive in the morning rush hour. Farlington is the closest, but all girls and small. Others go to Guildford or even as far as Reigate. If you live in Horsham itself, CH is by far and away the closest school. Southwater (a local village) is also due to get 1000's of new homes - that will add to our potential number as you could walk to CH from there!

Parents are more demanding when they pay, but the vast majority of CH parents pay too. It does not matter to me whether you pay £24,000 or £2,000. Presumably this reflects your ability to pay and hence is equally painful! My point being that parents should demand the same from CH as they demand at other schools. Perhaps our weakness lies in the fact that in the past we were too remote from the parents and they felt unable/unwilling to get engaged. However, today at CH more and more parents (of all means) live closer to the school i.e. Sussex, Kent, Surrey and S.London. As a result more see their children regularly at the weekends (sport/music etc). Don't be fooled though - pushy and sometimes difficult parents already exist at CH!

Going back to day places, i know of a good number of parents who have children in local prep and state primaries that will now look at CH when they would never have considered it in the past as it was full boarding. After all, the market for Day places is far bigger than the market for boarding, for both social and financial reasons.

I may be wrong but i think that if well sold to the local population, CH will be a popular day school in 5 years time. It takes time to educate people who for years thought CH was a school for rich boarders! (This is still a popular view in some parts of Horsham, as I found out last week when at the local dentists!)

I hope in fact that in time the Foundation feel able to offer the same fee remission to day pupils as it offers to boarders. That way, day pupils would be truly representative of the CH egalitarian ethos. A day pupil can have need too.

By the way, as far as I am aware the Day pupils are currently in addition to boarders but I may be wrong and presumably if day places take off, we may change that in the future.

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