Posted on 24/05/2016
A School that Stands out from the Crowd
One of the biggest changes that any child faces is the transition from the cosy comfort of primary school to the more grown up challenge and academic rigour of secondary school.
Like many other families with a Year 6 child, we put a lot of time and thought into our son’s transfer to secondary school. We researched and visited a wide range of different schools, including many of the top independent schools, and there is no doubt that West London offers an outstanding educational choice.
However, every family is looking for something different. The one thing we were looking for, above all, was not academic results, the facilities or the reputation of the schools that we toured – what we wanted most was to find a school that our son would look forward to going to every day.
We were looking for a school that was the right ‘fit’.
We were impressed in many different ways with each and every school we toured and all of them had certain aspects that excited us enormously.
What we weren’t prepared for was The Fulham Boys School. It was one of the last schools we saw and even while suffering tour fatigue from our previous school visits, the experience came as a complete surprise. The environment and ethos that FBS has created in such a short time was not only inspiring, it was distinct, refreshing and original.
Quite simply, we liked just about everything we saw. We liked the wonderfully warm welcome. We liked the teaching team. We liked the staff. We liked it that the Headmaster is empowered to say what he means and mean what he says. We liked it that his own son is one of the pupils. We liked that everywhere we looked, resource and energy were cheerfully stretched that extra mile.
We liked the thought provoking messages posted all around the school. We liked the library, filled to bursting with exactly the sort of books that boys actually want to read. We liked the high expectations that were so actively encouraged in the pupils. We liked the respect and rapport that seemed so natural between school, parents and pupils. And despite references to the state-of-the-art campus being planned at the Police Station, we even liked the temporary site.
Above all, we liked the enthusiasm of the boys – there was a contagious sense of pride, a feeling of belonging and an overall vibe that they all thoroughly enjoying being there.
Every school talks about academic standards. Every school claims to be looking for rounded individuals and to create a fun environment. FBS is actually doing it – the commitment and culture of the school is consistent throughout, and there is an infectious sense of optimism and sincerity in everything they do.
Had, at long last, one school ticked absolutely all the boxes for us?
Every boy and every family is unique and will have a different response to any school they visit, but if a future Year 6 parent were to ask me what my impressions were of FBS, I would say, no matter whether you are considering state schools or independent, please invest some of your tour schedule in having a good look and listen to the people at The Fulham Boys School.
Schools are a very personal choice so it may or not be the place for you. But in our experience, it has turned out to be just our cup of tea.
Like the current boys who are fortunate enough to be the founding pupil base of FBS, the school’s future seems to be fuelled with an enormous wealth of personal energy and passion, creativity and curiosity, manliness and mission.
We felt our son could only flourish in such an environment.