Sorting out the perfect school for your child can be a stressful process, particularly if you’re not up to date on the best independent schools in your local area. While there are a wide number of public schools available, it is important to be able to provide the very best education for your child in an environment where they will be properly nurtured. Granted, there is no reason why they will not thrive in a public school. However with generally smaller classes and more time to evaluate each child individually, many children benefit highly from private school education as teachers can more easily focus on each child.
Throughout the area of Surrey there a number of highly recommended independent schools suitable for all ages, however depending on the age of your child, you may have slightly more limiting options. Some independent schools re only for those up to 11 years, whereas others are up to the age of 13, and some are only for 16+ years. It is important to do your research! Take Key Stages 1 and 2 for example. Here are five stunning examples of independent schools that offer first class education for boys and girls of around 3-13 years
Danes Hill, Oxshott
With just under 900 students and suitable for ages 3-13 years, Danes Hill is one of the larger independent schools in Surrey. Recognised as one of the leading co-educational day preparatory schools in the country, Danes Hill offers a broad and balanced curriculum situated in their own 55 acres of landscaped ground. Each subject is taught by specialist teachers, with a range of after school activities provided by those interested in chosen subjects.
The registration process is fairly simple and consists of an initial enquiry, followed by a tour of the school and then finally, the registration. Forms are given out at the end of the tour, although prospective pupils are always advised to go home and think it over before making a decision.
Bloo House, Esher
Offering placements for children of 5-11 years and with only 40 students in the whole school, Bloo House is a unique independent school that focuses completely on each individual child, using 8 main aptitudes to assist in the learning and development of each child. Designed to push children academically, socially and emotionally, the school focuses on preparing pupils for the world.
The admissions process is fairly extensive, as there are limited spaces for children to apply. A first interview is given at an Open Day or by appointment, after which the registration is given. The child is then put on a waiting list, after which they will be able to undergo a trial period, where their experience of the environment is assessed and then reviewed by both teacher and pupil. A place may then be offered.
Offering Day & Boarding Attendance, with slightly under 350 students, Edgeborough is suitable for children aged 2-13 years and offers all major subjects available for study, in addition to both French and Latin from the ages of 3 and 9 respectively. The school has a stunning Nursery which is an integral part of the pupils’ education and provides its own house and gardens for the children there.
Applications can be made at 2+ years for the Nursery, 4+ years for the Pre Prep and 7+ years for the Prep School. Each level provides its own benefits, making good use of well-equipped classrooms and offering both breakfast and after school clubs for eager students.
Hampton Court House, East Molesly
A co-educational school, Hampton Court House is suitable for ages 3-18 years with 200 students in attendance at any time. Children may stay on at Hampton Court House to take GCSE’s, although it is not compulsory many do take this option. With emphasis placed on individual learning and ensuring quick and clear communication, the school provides a safe learning environment for those wishing to better improve their passions. The school also has an ethos for cultural empathy and teaches a number of languages to consolidate this concept.
The school offers a tour for prospective students so that they can better acquaint themselves with their surroundings and is split into five sections; Early Years (3-5), Lower Years (5-9), Middle Years (9-13), Upper Years (13-16), and Sixth Form (16-18), which will be available in September 2015.
The Hawthorns School, Bletchingly
Suitable for children aged 2-13, The Hawthorns School houses just over 450 students, offering a happy family environment on the school site situated in rural South-East England. The school provides a broad curriculum, taking special interest in Modern Languages, Conservation and the core subjects.
The Admissions process requires no formal assessment for children entering nursery and reception, although informal observations are made during the taster session. The process consists of the filling out of a registration form following a visit to the school itself. Entry into year 3 and above requires a formal assessment in concurrence to the number of places currently available.
While there are countless incredibly ostentatious schools throughout the South East of England offering unique opportunities for your children to grow and learn, at the end of the day it is important that they feel at home at the school of your choice. While you may have selected the best school for the needs of your child, if they do not feel comfortable there, they will not thrive as readily.
Some schools provide ‘induction weeks’ whereby the child’s reaction to their new environment is assessed as well as the child’s opinion of the new environment. A place may then be offered based on the response, which the child can then accept or reject. While you may think you know what is best for your child, unless they enjoy themselves they cannot truly reach their full potential. Listen to what your children want, as at the end of the day it is they who have to learn, not you!
Article provided by Bloo House, an innovative, independent school in Esher, Surrey, for 5 – 11 year olds, offering a modern and unique learning environment.