Cambridge Education Guide Spring:Summer 2020 Newsletter

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Nicola Foley 01223 499459 CONTRIBUTORS Charlotte Phillips ADVERTISING GROUP AD MANAGER Sam Scott-Smith 01223 499457 KEY ACCOUNTS Ed Grundy 01223 499463 DESIGN & PRODUCTION DESIGNER Emily Lancaster AD PRODUCTION Man-Wai Wong 01223 492242


the generations to come. They are ensuring that the focus is firmly on the future so that the next batch of school leavers and those that follow on afterwards are equipped with the right skills to take their place in a rapidly changing world and lead it through the many exciting and daunting challenges that await. That means equipping them with tools that, increasingly, include soft skills like creativity, curiosity and resilience. Qualifications, however brilliant, need to be paired with a robust mindset that enables people to cope with pressure, challenge and failure, get up when things go wrong and start over. Nobody says it’s easy to do. But with so much talent, drive and determination around, if any area is going to do it, it’s ours.

t’s arguably never been a more exciting time to live and work in and around Cambridge. Our area garners plaudits like few others, and rightly so. We’re famed for the levels of innovation and creativity that propel people who live here into careers with the potential to transform society. Big name companies would certainly agree. With the benefits of a highly educated workforce at their disposal, many are setting up home here. What helps the process along is a first- rate education system. While there are glittering prizes for the taking (as one politician proudly announced, our area is in receipt of more Nobel prizes than the whole of France), our educators can’t afford to be blinded by past glories and neglect

MANAGING DIRECTORS Andy Brogden & Matt Pluck 01223 499450 BROUGHT TO YOU BY





12 | CAMBRIDGE SEMINARS COLLEGE Cambridge CB5 8HA | 01223 300123 | A warm, friendly and high-achieving college that is renowned for its teaching excellence and individual support to students. Cambridge Seminars College specialises in Foundation, A-levels, Pre-Master’s, Pre-Doctoral programmes and English language courses. 14 | CULFORD SCHOOL Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk IP28 6TX  |  01284 385308  | Set in 480 acres of beautiful parkland with an 18th-century mansion at its centre, Culford provides first-class boarding and day schooling for more than 670 children aged from 2¾ to18. With a strong emphasis on sport, Culford believes in educating the whole person to deliver awell-rounded, fulfilled individual with excellent academic results. St Faith’s School is an independent preparatory day school for boys and girls aged four to 13. The school prides itself on its dynamic community and warm, welcoming personality. It has a reputation for excellent standards, academically and across a huge breadth of subjects and activities. 18 | FELSTED SCHOOL Felsted, Essex CM6 3LL  |  01371 822600  | Only 45 minutes south of Cambridge, Felsted School offers families contemporary boarding options with a choice of three, five or seven nights a week. Pupils can access a wide academic curriculum, balanced with a rich programme of co-curricular activities to suit their talents and interests, all available on-site. 16 | ST FAITH’S Trumpington Road, Cambridge CB2 8AG 01223 352073  |

20 | FRAMLINGHAM COLLEGE Framlingham, Suffolk IP13 9EY 01728 727220  |

A vibrant boarding and day school for boys and girls aged three to 18, set in 85 acres of beautiful countryside in rural Suffolk. The schools prides itself on providing a safe, happy and secure environment.




22 | GRESHAM’S Cromer Road, Holt, Norfolk NR25 6EA  |  01263 714500  | Set in 220 acres in beautiful north Norfolk, Gresham’s provides a high-quality, fully rounded, excellent education to boys and girls from the age of two to 18. 28 | HAILEYBURY Hertford SG13 7NU  |  01992 706353  | Haileybury is an independent co-educational school, enrolling pupils at the 11+, 13+ and 16+ stages of education. Over 780 pupils attend Haileybury, of whom more than 500 board, and the school is situated on a 500-acre campus. The school encourages academic excellence, intellectual curiosity and is committed to delivering outstanding pastoral care. 30 | ST JOHN’S COLLEGE SCHOOL 73 Grange Road, Cambridge CB3 9AB  |  01223 353652  | St John’s College School, winner of the national Best Prep School and Best Prep School Head in the Tatler Schools Awards, is an independent co-educational day and boarding school, which offers an exceptional educational experience to pupils aged four to 13. Also offers a Flexible Learning Programme. 36 | KIMBOLTON SCHOOL Kimbolton, Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire PE28 0EA 01480 860505  | An independent co-educational day and boarding school, Kimbolton School offers a busy and stimulating environment for pupils between the ages of four and 18.




38 | KING’S ELY Barton Road, Ely CB7 4DB  |  01353 660707  | A day and boarding school, King’s Ely offers an outstanding education for children and young people aged one to 18. The school provides a broad and balanced curriculum, with a focus on nurturing the abilities of each pupil. 52 | THE LEYS Cambridge CB2 7AD  |  01223 508900  | The Leys is a co-educational independent day and boarding school in Cambridge for 11 to 18 year olds. The school offers a close-knit, engaged and friendly community in which pastoral care is a top priority. 54 | MANDER PORTMAN WOODWARD 3-4 Brookside, Cambridge CB2 1JE  |  01223 350158  | MPW is a small, independent fifth and sixth form located in the heart of Cambridge, offering a range of courses. For children at other schools, it also offers popular Easter revision courses.

56 | ST MARY' S SCHOOL Bateman St, Cambridge CB2 1LY  |  01223 224167

An independent day and boarding school for girls aged four to 18, St Mary’s School operates from four locations around the Cambridge University Botanic Garden. The school offers GCSEs and A-levels.

62 | OAKS INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL Cherry Hinton Hall, Cherry Hinton Road, Cambridge CB1 8DW 01223 416938  | This independent day school offers an exciting, international education for boys and girls aged three to 16. Pupils from all over the world, as well as Britain, are taught a wide range of engaging lessons in small classes. 66 | STEPHEN PERSE FOUNDATION Union Road, Cambridge CB2 1HF | 01223 454700 | The Stephen Perse Foundation is a group of independent schools that provides excellent opportunities for students and achieves exceptional exam results without sticking blindly to the syllabus or having to cram facts and figures.

68 | STOKE COLLEGE Stoke-by-Clare, Sudbury, Suffolk CO10 8JE 01787 278141 |

Stoke College is a day and boarding school for pupils from reception age to sixth form. With an average class size of ten, Stoke prides itself on its excellent pastoral care and strong academic success.




Top of the Class O U R A R E A M A Y B E M O S T W E L L K N OWN F O R I T S WO R L D - C L A S S U N I V E R S I T Y , B U T O U R S C H O O L S A N D C O L L E G E S A R E T H R I V I N G , T O O


op of the class, first among equals, best in show. When it comes to education- related accolades, our area scoops the lot. According to local data, the percentage of local residents

educated to undergraduate degree level or higher is way higher than the national average (39% compared with 32%). It helps, of course, to be home to one of the best universities in the world. But it’s not just Cambridge’s higher education providers who are achieving amazing things. Overall, 68% of all schools and colleges in our area are rated good (which is slightly ahead of the country as a whole) and 17% are outstanding (3% below the rest of the country), compared with 11% that require improvement and 3% that are inadequate. Over time, the biggest change has been the increase in ‘good’ schools – up by 6% between 2015 and 2019. That improvement is particularly marked in our area’s secondary schools, where in August 2019, 81% were ranked either good or outstanding, compared with a national average of 76% – and better than all but two other regions, London and the South East. And while those glittering grades are phenomenally impressive, they’re just one of the aspects that matter. We don’t get everything right. In particular, the disparity between the haves and have nots

“It’s not just our higher education providers who are achieving amazing things”




has been widely reported. Our city is the most unequal in the UK, according to the Centre for Cities. Our area isn’t as good at helping children from disadvantaged backgrounds reach the expected standard in reading, writing and maths. In England as a whole, 51% of children aged seven to 11 reached those educational goals. Here, it was just over 30%. At the other end of the age range, adults are increasingly turning away from learning in later life, with under a third in our part of the country choosing to participate in any form of education, compared with 43% in the West Midlands, for example. Increasingly, schools are having to rethink the ways they prepare pupils for a future world where many of today’s certainties are likely to have been replaced with completely new ways of doing things. Ask any senior teacher for the key words they would choose to sum up what really matters when it comes to education, and it’s more than likely that creativity, resilience, adaptability and wellbeing would all feature. Taking failure in your stride is an important component in the education process. You’ll find schools in our into schools in our area, using fun, arts- based strategies to support troubled and anxious children” “One local charity sends therapists




area being increasingly upfront about addressing this, upping their pastoral care resources, making it easier for students to know who they can speak to when they’re in distress and feel confident that they’ll be listened to, taken seriously and helped. Some schools go even further, featuring failure prominently on their websites and stressing not just that failure is part of life but also that success isn’t just about exam results and academic and sporting achievements, but related to qualities that include kindness, patience and persistence. One important task will be to ensure that the amazing resources our area has to offer are accessible to everyone who lives and works here. One local charity sends therapists into schools in our area, using fun, arts-based activities to support troubled and anxious children and give them strategies to cope. Almost half the 1,000 or so they help in a year, they say, are from low income families – something that can have a major impact on their emotional wellbeing. No longer is education merely about realising academic potential. Today, it’s all about equipping children with the superpowers they’ll need to cloak themselves with so that they can adapt to change, relish new ways of doing things and, if necessary, reinvent themselves to succeed in a succession of different careers. In the past, someone starting out in a career could be reasonably confident of ending up in fundamentally the same line of work. Schools and colleges nowadays are responsible for setting young people on paths that could lead just about anywhere. Can we do it? If any area is geared up to embrace a challenging future, it has to be ours. There’s an old Chinese saying, ‘May you live in interesting times.’ It was originally intended to bring bad luck to enemies. Round here, it could be more of a blessing.




Cambridge Seminars College C A M B R I D G E

stablished in 1981, Cambridge Seminars College is a warm, friendly and high-achieving college. CSC is renowned for its teaching excellence, its personal attention to student needs and its individual support to students. For the past 39 years, it has been preparing students for their university studies both at undergraduate and postgraduate levels and continues to strive to meet and exceed the students’ expectations. Cambridge Seminars College specialises in Foundation, A-Levels, Pre-Master’s, Pre-Doctoral programmes and English language courses. CSC’S MISSION The college’s core mission is to ensure that every student can fulfil their potential and achieve their academic aspirations. Alongside this, students are seen as individual people, helping them to develop their self-confidence, maturity, social skills and much more. TO ACHIEVE THIS MISSION, THE COLLEGE STRIVES TO: Ƚ Ƚ Provide a system of wrap-around pastoral care, ensuring that students are fully supported in a caring and safe environment throughout their stay. Ƚ Ƚ Ensure students have high aspirations, both in terms of their behaviour and their academic pathways. Ƚ Ƚ Provide a first-class curriculum and negotiated syllabus, providing individual attention and allowing individual needs to be met and students stretched, challenged and supported as necessary. Ƚ Ƚ Work with students, parents, agents and other




stakeholders to encourage a strong work ethic, good behaviour and the confidence and self-belief to challenge and achieve. Ƚ Ƚ Assist students in achieving academic success through small class sizes, quality teaching and a focus on learning. Ƚ Ƚ Provide comprehensive and accurate advice to allow students to make informed and realistic choices about educational progression routes and enhance their chances of securing places on suitably challenging courses. Ƚ Ƚ Provide a friendly, supportive and safe environment conducive to study, where all students are able to learn and develop. EASTER REVISION New to the college this year is the Easter revision programme. The programme runs for three weeks, with subjects tackled comprehensively within one week. The programme provides: Ƚ Ƚ Focus on key areas within the specification.

Ƚ Ƚ Expert tuition from highly qualified and experienced tutors. Ƚ Ƚ Pre-course diagnostic tests available, thus tailoring the course to individual needs. Ƚ Ƚ Exam board-specific group tuition in small classes (maximum of four per class). Ƚ Ƚ Daily one-to-one sessions to tackle individual issues and gaps. Ƚ Ƚ Exam and revision technique workshops. Ƚ Ƚ Up to one-hour, post-course online one-to-one support Ƚ Ƚ Free lunch and snacks. ACCREDITATION The college is accredited by the British Accreditation Council and Independent Schools Inspectorate and has been highly praised by many of the leading universities for the quality of its academic achievement. This accreditation means that students have the reassurance of knowing that they will be receiving the highest level of academic and support.


01223 300123






Culford School B U R Y S T E D M U N D S

the pupils, who go on to excel in both their academic and sporting pursuits. Indeed, Culford School itself is just as unique as its staff and pupils. A blend of the historic and the modern, the school is set in 480 acres of beautiful Suffolk parkland with an 18th-century mansion at its centre. It also boasts modern academic and sporting facilities that are the envy of schools and academies across the UK. No matter a pupil’s interest or passion, Culford School provides the foundation for them to flourish. Pupils have secured places at the most respected universities in the world, competed at national and international golf championships, and have been

here are few places quite like Culford. It is a school that places the individual at its heart, where teachers are committed to helping every child realise their potential and become the best they can be. You can see such dedication run throughout the school. Whether your child is one or 18 years old, Culford provides a high-quality education and the dynamic support needed to open up opportunities for every pupil. These combine into a highly personalised learning programme that helps each child achieve their aspirations. The Pre-Prep and Nursery, Prep and Senior Schools combine to offer a superb through-school experience for children. The school takes enormous pride in all


01284 385308





KEY FACILITIES State-of-the-art library

Championship- standard indoor

tennis centre 25m heated swimming pool Football programme Indoor golf studio Drama theatres and music studio Dance programme

ranked among the top ten junior tennis players in the UK. To that end, it is no coincidence Culford is currently ranked the top co-educational school for tennis in the UK by the Lawn Tennis Association. The school sees education as a transformational process that guides pupils toward academic success, gives them clear moral values and develops their leadership qualities in readiness for the adult world. SUPPORTING BUSY FAMILIES At Culford School, an Extended Day Programme is provided that has been designed to help busy working parents by giving them extra flexibility. The programme allows pupils to come into school as early

as 7.30am and leave as late as 6pm for Pre-Prep, 8pm for Prep pupils and 8.30pm for Senior pupils. Culford also offers full, part and flexible boarding options, which can be a great solution for busy families. CAMBRIDGE CONNECTION There is a shuttle services for pupils who live in and around Cambridge, leaving from Park & Ride stations and delivering pupils to school within 40 minutes. If you would like to learn more about the school, attend an open day or organise a personal visit, please visit the website or contact the admissions team on 01284 385308 or email

OPEN DAYS Nursery & Pre-Prep Prep School Friday 15 May Senior School Saturday 16 May




St Faith’s C A M B R I D G E

here are many reasons why The Times Education Supplement named St Faith’s 2019 Pre-Prep/ Prep School of the Year. Not least, according to the judges, because of the school’s innovation, commitment to sustainability and narrative of excellence in a number of key areas of school life, but also because: Ƚ Ƚ Opportunities to learn, explore, create and think abound in every classroom, from English to engineering, science to sport, and classics to computing. Ƚ Ƚ Children at St Faith’s are developed, nurtured and taught to equip themselves well for life, whatever path they choose to tread. Ƚ Ƚ World-class teachers tailor their styles to meet each child’s individual needs, making lessons accessible, engaging and challenging for every pupil. Ƚ Ƚ The school’s academic curriculum (including computing and engineering) is groundbreaking in its innovative content, resulting in an average of 28 senior scholarships awarded annually. Ƚ Ƚ Future-facing academic subjects are interspersed with numerous sporting endeavours, musical experiences, artistic creations and dramatic performances. Ƚ Ƚ Children have the space and time to express themselves away from the classroom, thanks to a spacious site, carefully planned timetables and holistic pastoral care structure. Ƚ Ƚ Across all subjects the school follows an accelerated curriculum, thanks to small class sizes, talented teachers and pupils’ above-average abilities. Ƚ Ƚ Every classroom is equipped with the latest teaching technologies, while screen-free days ensure teaching is not digitally reliant. Ƚ Ƚ The library boasts over 12,000 volumes relevant to all readers, from the youngest to the most advanced.

Ƚ Ƚ The engineering and computing facilities are equipped beyond many inventors’ wildest dreams, complete with virtual reality studios and an astronomy suite. Ƚ Ƚ A state-of-the-art STEM Hub provides expansive indoor space for large-scale interdisciplinary projects, including home-made wave machines and suspension bridges. Ƚ Ƚ Plentiful sporting opportunities – not just a focus for glory and trophy collection, sport empowers mental as well as physical fitness, resilience, team spirit, and is an emotive demonstration of getting out of life what you put in. Ƚ Ƚ St Faith’s performing and creative arts develop self- belief and confidence and give children a lifelong appreciation of the arts.


01223 352073






In 2018, The Times Educational Supplement awarded St Faith’s Strategic Education Initiative (for the introduction of engineering). The Good Schools Guide says, “Overall, a very impressive school. Plenty of space, an excellent innovative education but, most importantly, a joyous place to be”. The Week Independent Schools Guide 2019 selected St Faith’s as the ‘Best for Innovation’, referencing the STEM facilities. Finally, Tatler commented, “If your child is destined for Silicon Valley, this is probably a good place to start. It’s a trailblazer of a school, where pupils study engineering from Year 3 and spend free time stargazing from the new multi-million-pound STEM Hub.” But don’t just believe what you read – come and see the school for yourself. Drop in on lessons, observe children engaged in their learning, sample the delights of the kitchens, and feel what it’s like to be part of this award- winning school. Contact the Registrar, Anna Cornell, on 01223 229421 to arrange your personal visit.




Felsted School N O R T H E S S E X

ore and more children are reaping the benefits of going to school outside Cambridge, where they can take advantage of wide open spaces, countryside air, academic excellence, superb on-site extra-curricular activities and modern boarding facilities. Situated only 45 minutes south of Cambridge, in the picturesque North Essex countryside, Felsted offers families a variety of flexible boarding options to suit modern family lives. With a school bus leaving Trumpington on a Sunday evening for weekly boarders, such a flexible approach has encouraged many families to choose Felsted as the right option for their child. M

A SUPERB ALL-ROUND EDUCATION Every child is exposed to a wealth of opportunities and developed on their intellectual, emotional, social, physical, artistic, creative and spiritual potentials. Small class sizes taught by highly qualified and dedicated teachers ensure talents are nourished and every child’s personal growth is encouraged. With pupil well-being at the heart of all we do, our pupils flourish in an atmosphere of diversity and excellence, intellectual curiosity and challenge. A broad curriculum in balance with a rich programme of co-curricular activities is on offer to suit individual talents and interests, all available on site. Felsted focuses on building each child’s character to become happy,

FELSTED SCHOOL, FELSTED, ESSEX CM6 3LL (45 minutes south of Cambridge)

01371 822600





well-rounded and confident young adults and to empower them to believe that they can really make a difference in the world, whatever path they choose. ACADEMIC CHOICE Felsted offers sixth formers a choice of A-levels or the International Baccalaureate Diploma, to suit their individual strengths and interests. Alongside a superior work education programme and a robust parent/former pupil network offering top work experience opportunities, most pupils gain access to their first choice university or on an increasingly popular degree apprenticeship program. TOP RESULTS Felsted offers a holistic education to children of all abilities, priding itself on adding exceptional added value through outstanding pastoral care. Felsted is proud to be in the top 5% of schools in the UK for academic progress at A-level and in the top 20 of IB Schools for performance in the UK (2018 results). NATIONAL SPORTING REPUTATION Ranked 11th in the country by School Sport magazine, Felsted has an enviable reputation both locally and nationally for the high quality of its sporting teams and the dedication and expertise of its coaching staff. All abilities are catered for and every pupil is encouraged to enjoy a recreational interest in individual or team games, while developing a healthy attitude to fitness and exercise. Close links with Essex Cricket, Saracens Mavericks & London Pulse Netball and Blue Hornets Hockey ensure that a pathway of excellence is in place for those excelling in their field. JUNIOR GUILDHALL PARTNERSHIP In addition to a fantastic music school with numerous opportunities to perform, those showing outstanding talent may study at the Junior Guildhall in London in partnership with Felsted. This combination of top level tuition in music and academics offers an exceptional educational package for top young musicians. “A school that brings out the best in everyone” The Good Schools Guide


Prep School of the Year

Boarding School of the Year

INTERNATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES Central to the international ethos that permeates all areas of Felsted life, an active Model United Nations programme ensures students leave school as informed global citizens. As a Global Member of the Round Square Organisation, students have the additional opportunity to exchange with partner schools around the world. SCHOLARSHIPS AND BURSARIES Felsted offers a number of scholarships and awards in academia, sport, music, drama, art and design technology from the age of 11, with the opportunity to access a top-up bursary, on a means-tested basis. Several 100% means-tested bursaries may also be offered each year. Felsted hosts a number of open mornings and taster days each year but also welcomes families on an individual basis. Further details can be found on their website or by contacting their Admissions Office on 01371 822605.

Sports School of the Year








Framlingham College S U F F O L K

ramlingham College is a vibrant boarding and day school for boys and girls aged from three to 18, set in 85 acres of beautiful countryside in rural Suffolk. Here, pastoral care is paramount, with the emphasis on providing a safe, happy and secure environment. The school believes a happy child will thrive. A spirit of enquiry and a love of learning permeate the classrooms and corridors; lessons are engaging, challenging and inspire pupils to develop their creativity, their cognitive flexibility and their curiosity. In the sixth form, the emphasis is on breadth of study with a diverse range of A-levels, Pre-U and BTECs on offer. Pupils in Years 10 and 12 have the opportunity to complete the HPQ and EPQ. For scholars, the school’s scholarship pathways ensure every pupil is stretched and challenged. Framlingham College is a forward-thinking school and, as a 2020 Microsoft Showcase School, it is leading the way in its use of technology to enhance learning. It is committed to preparing pupils for the adult world – a world where innovation and technology will play an increasingly large part. The college has an outstanding sporting reputation and regularly competes in national finals in major sports. It is currently ranked fourth in the country for hockey and was shortlisted for the Independent Schools of the Year Sporting Achievement Award 2019. At the Prep School, the ‘no one on the bench’ policy means that every pupil in Year 3 to Year 8 plays in a competitive fixture each week. Framlingham College has first-class facilities, further enhanced by the recent installation of groundbreaking video technology on the hockey pitch, which will enhance post-match analysis, training sessions and have the capability to livestream matches.

OPEN DAYS Early Years and Pre-Prep: 21 March 2020 Senior School: 25 April 2020 Prep School: 8 May 2020




“We are committed to instilling a lifelong curiosity and a love of enquiry in all our pupils. Here, we celebrate the individual and enable each child to find the confidence to follow their own path” Louise North, Principal


01728 727220

they are encouraged to try something new and discover a passion. The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award scheme is hugely successful and Framlingham College is ranked first in the region and fifth in the country for the number of awards achieved. To book a visit please contact Emma Rutterford, Head of Admissions, on 01728 727220 or email:

Music at Framlingham has produced world-class talent including classical singers Christina Johnston, Laura Wright and Busted member Charlie Simpson. The facilities include a recital hall, recording studio and a music technology suite. The co-curricular programme is extensive. From Years 3 to 13, pupils have the opportunity to try out over 150 activities, ranging from street dance and drone flying to the ukulele band and bridge club. Making the most of the fantastic facilities,






Gresham’s H O L T , N O R T H N O R F O L K

resham’s is a historic and vibrant co-educational school, founded in 1555, providing a fully rounded education to children aged two to 18. The school has

outstanding facilities spanning a 200-acre site, in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, just four miles from the breathtaking North Norfolk coast. Gresham’s holds an Excellent rating across all nine categories following an Independent Schools Inspectorate visit, which is testament to the high-quality teaching and excellent pastoral care. OUTSTANDING ALUMNI A Gresham’s education enables pupils to succeed in a variety of areas with a tradition of producing outstanding achievers in all walks of life, including architects, diplomats, engineers, musicians, sports men and women, and many more. Old Greshamians have been inspiring others for generations, from composer Benjamin Britten to poet W H Auden. More recently, Old Greshamians making their mark and creating headlines include international rugby players Tom and Ben Youngs and Academy Award- winning actor Olivia Colman.




Image: Wilkinson Eyre Architects


01263 714500



“Hard to think who would not thrive in this happy, well-run school” The Good Schools Guide

that. By creating state-of-the-art spaces, I hope that we can foster, inspire and educate more brilliant young minds. I am so pleased Gresham’s will be leading the charge.” Douglas Robb, Gresham’s headmaster, said: “The new spaces will have an immense impact on the quality of STEAM education that our students receive, now and for decades to come. The building will enable new approaches to teaching, encouraging project work and collaboration. Spaces will be equipped with the latest technology; from robotics and programming, to artificial intelligence and machine learning.” A PERFECT LOCATION North Norfolk is a beautiful place to live and learn. A weekly bus operates to and from Holt and Cambridge, leaving school at 4.30pm on Saturdays and dropping off at Trumpington Park & Ride at 6.30pm. Pick up from Trumpington Park & Ride at 6.45pm on Sunday arriving back at school for 8.45pm. Academic, art, music, drama and sport scholarships, and bursaries are available.

THE DYSON BUILDING Soon, the school will be able to add a state-of- the-art science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics (STEAM) building to its offering thanks to a £19 million donation from Sir James Dyson, founder of Dyson and another of Gresham’s former pupils. The Dyson Building will be a new centre for STEAM education, located at the heart of their senior school. Construction will be completed for the beginning of the 2021 academic year. Sir James joined Gresham’s aged nine, attending from 1956 to 1965. He has consistently acknowledged his gratitude to the school and its then headmaster, Logie Bruce-Lockhart, for giving him the financial support to continue his education following the untimely death of his father, Alec, who taught Classics at Gresham’s. Sir James said: “Engineering and science are the most fulfilling of careers, they are also vitally important to our society and economy. To prime a pipeline of young people who want to study engineering, we must inspire them at the earliest possible stage – I hope this building will do just

AGES 2 TO 18



OPEN DAYS Next open mornings are: Senior – Saturday 2 May 2020 Prep – Saturday 16 May 2020 Pre-prep – Friday 1 May 2020




Schools Get Social S O C I A L M E D I A O F T E N G E T S A B A D P R E S S , B U T I T H A S O P E N E D U P N E W WA Y S T O C OMM U N I C A T E F O R B O T H S C H O O L S A N D P A R E N T S

chools might have been slightly slower than their number of different audiences they’re able to reach? Social media enables schools to S pupils to take to social media – but boy, are they making up for it now. It’s a rare school that doesn’t have its own Facebook page, and they’ve taken to Twitter like a duck to water – or, more literally, a birdie to tweets. And who can blame them, given the

(a winning hockey fixture), a successful brush with gourmet cookery (no taste buds harmed in the process) and a cyber skills- sharpening session. In addition to showcasing classroom-to- playing field news and views, there’s also the reassurance of seeing that your child’s teachers have the digital know-how that matters when it comes to crafting timely, well-honed messages. Social media is an immensely powerful tool, bringing to life the stories of a school

reach out to current families, members of staff, the students themselves and former students. It’s also a great way for prospective parents to get a feel for the school and the opportunities on offer. Parents don’t have to move far from a comfy chair to see what their child’s school has been up to on an hour-by-hour – almost minute-by-minute – basis. Over a 24-hour period on Twitter, whizzy events and activities reported in 280 characters or less by local schools included successes in sport




“Social media does a wonderful job of keeping parents connected with the life of their child’s school in a way that just wasn’t possible a decade ago”

in real time. Facebook and Twitter are probably the best-used channels but you’ll also find schools on Instagram and YouTube. It certainly keeps schools busy. Keeping social media ticking over is often the province of dedicated marketeers and can be virtually a 24/7 operation. Used effectively, it reassures existing families and gives others who are thinking about sending their children there an in-depth understanding of what life at school is like, from a pupil’s-eye perspective on lessons to insights into schools’ charitable work. Social media can convey details of school life in a way that says worlds about a school’s character and ethos, combining a mix of the factual and the pleasantly quirky. Recent posts at one school have ranged from a celebration of a gifted student’s academic achievements to pupils’ reactions to a surprise meteorite shower filmed to look as if it had taken place in the grounds, making for a memorable lesson on the topic. For parents working long hours, social media does a wonderful job of keeping them connected with the life of their child’s school in a way that just wasn’t possible a decade ago. There’s nothing like being able to take five minutes out before a meeting to see what’s going on, from reports on school trips and concert rehearsals to clocking the latest guidance in exam revision (something of a preoccupation for many families at this time of year). Schools’ digital presence isn’t just a godsend for current parents but an increasingly important part of their interaction with prospective parents.




Schools put a lot of effort into their communications. They may be carefully curated to reflect the school’s corporate goals but what also comes across is an authenticity – an infectious enthusiasm for what they do. In some schools, individual departments or teachers have their own Twitter accounts. It’s not hard to see, from the number and variety of posts, which staff have a campaigning zeal for their subject and take a real pride in their department’s achievements. (It’s not

Taking a closer look at schools’ social media presence can tell you an awful lot about what a school’s like and whether it might suit your child. And while scanning a school’s website or scrolling through its latest Tweets can’t replace the first hand impressions gained by touring a school, getting to know it virtually can help to address the worries and questions that every prospective parent has – in a nutshell, helping to reassure them that their child will flourish, make progress and be happy.

unheard of to find a particularly gripping equation taking centre stage online). And with so much to gain from getting to know a school virtually, it’s a good idea for prospective parents to start the process early. Don’t wait until the week before visiting to start following schools online. Keep an eye on what they’re up to well beforehand and the insights you gain into their descriptions, activities and achievements will ensure you make the very most of your time when you’re there.




Haileybury H E R T F O R D S H I R E

an artificial intelligence platform to help understand a pupil’s learning profile. The school uses this information to present an individualised pathway that suits the pupil’s learning needs. The platform also produces rich data that indicates to the teacher the pupils’ strengths, weaknesses and next steps. Haileybury offers a dedicated Lower School for Years 7 and 8, a wide range of GCSE and IGCSEs, and the choice of the International Baccalaureate Diploma or A-levels in Sixth Form. A key part of the school’s philosophy is empowering each pupil to follow their passions and to build self-confidence. They are encouraged to be independent, creative and intellectually ambitious. Pupils can choose from an enormous range of co-curricular options and over 130 clubs, activities and societies. Haileybury has been named in the top three schools for ‘best extra-curricular activities’ by the Good Schools Guide. Activities range from trekking in the

stablished in 1862, Haileybury is a top co-educational boarding and day school for 11 to 18 year olds nestled in a historic 500-acre campus in Hertfordshire, just 20 miles north of London. It is an academically selective school and most of its pupils take up places at the best universities in the UK and around the world, with the vast majority of pupils going on to study at their first-choice university. Based on 2019 exam results, The Sunday Times ranked Haileybury in the top six co-educational independent schools for the International Baccalaureate (IB). Overall, it was listed in the top 20 best performing co-educational independent schools in the south east. In addition to providing academic rigour and challenge, the innovative and ambitious curriculum lays the foundations for the pupils to excel across a broad range of subjects and activities. As part of the school’s commitment to innovation, it is delighted to be using


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Himalayas and debating global issues at the Model United Nations conference to performing at concerts or drama productions. A central part of Haileybury life is sport. Recently, the school has been recognised by The Good Schools Guide and Tatler Schools Guide 2020 for its outstanding sporting provision and it was once again listed among the UK’s best cricketing schools by The Cricketer Schools Guide 2020 . Boarding at Haileybury is very strong indeed, with the Independent Schools Inspectorate describing the quality of the boarding as excellent. The houses lie at the heart of a

Haileybury education and have done so for over 150 years. They are vibrant, happy, productive and home-from- home communities where lifelong bonds are formed. The school believes that a caring environment is crucial to happiness and fulfilment. Haileybury is a warm, friendly school – it gives each and every child the confidence to find their identity, embrace challenges and celebrate success along their personal journey of discovery. To explore Haileybury further, visit during one of the open days, or arrange an individual visit at or email

OPEN DAYS 13 May and 20 June (11+/13+ open morning); 18 June (16+ open evening); 11 September (11+ open morning); 16 September (16+ open morning)




St John’s College School C A M B R I D G E

t John’s is the only school to have been awarded national Best Prep School and national Best Prep School Head awards in the Tatler Schools Awards. It is the only prep school to have its teaching rated ‘inspirational’ by the Independent Schools Inspectorate, and the first of very few to have achieved the coveted ‘Exceptional’ grade for children’s attainment. It is described by The Good Schools Guide as “a joyous place that’s buzzing”. At St John’s, staff believe in a childhood filled with affection, in which children know that they are known and valued, in which they learn to trust themselves and each other, in which they find and express their voices, discover the differences they can make for themselves and others, learn to think for themselves, to question, to collaborate, to be independent, and to own and take charge of their learning and their lives. The education at St John’s is about the whole child. Pupils become independent learners and creative thinkers prepared to question, with their curiosity very much alive. They get the best from themselves and achieve very highly within and beyond the classroom. The aim is for the children to develop a real generosity of spirit, to know and care about how to get the best from others, to do well while at the school and long after they have left for pastures new. FLEXIBLE LEARNING The youngest children are full of questions, rich with curiosity, and staff work to preserve and strengthen their questioning and thinking skills. From the earliest age, pupils are given essential tools, knowledge and understanding, with the aim to also give them more. St John’s College School has a Flexible Learning programme of development, incorporating child-led, independent learning, creative and critical thinking, digitally




OPEN DAYS The next open morning will be held on Thursday 14 May 2020 between 9.45am and 12pm. To register to attend, please contact the registrar, Mrs Mary Robb, (01223 353652 or admissions@

learners: up to one third of past pupils in due course gain Oxbridge places each year, more than in the most academically selective of schools. KNOWING AND CARING FOR YOUR CHILD Education at its best is a profound act of care. If we care, then we will notice. If we notice, then we will act on a child’s behalf. If we act for each child, then each child will achieve their best and become their best selves. To be known, to be noticed, to be valued, to be cared for – fundamental things for all of us, these are the essentials of a good childhood, and they are at the heart of the St John’s way. FIND OUT MORE You can visit and get to know what St John’s College School is like during a normal day by signing up for our open morning or by arranging a personalised tour. A key aim is for parents to have the opportunity to see staff and pupils in action, tour each of the school’s sites (usually with the children) and experience its atmosphere, as well as meet teachers to discuss the school’s educational approach, and to ask any questions. To find out more and to arrange your visit, please contact the registrar, Mrs Mary Robb, on 01223 353652 or

enhanced learning, philosophy, emotions for learning, compassion and loving kindness, as well as outdoor learning, which benefits from access to a landscaped forest garden. An Enrichment programme has been implemented for nine- to 13-year-olds to explore the development of sustainability projects, as well as enjoy cross-curricular work in computing, the arts, design technology, maths and science, and to give space to My Mind (incorporating mindfulness, study skills, tai chi, PSHEE and philosophy, as a foundation for the skills necessary for critical thinking, self-management of learning and management of self). The aim is to foster children’s ability to possess their own learning, to engage their innate curiosity and creativity, and to encourage them to connect with their feelings about themselves and the world. ATTAINMENT A curriculum that puts belief in children at its core draws from them the highest levels of attainment, and pupil’s achievement is described by inspectors as ‘exceptional’. Though the school is not selective at kindergarten, the children are on average in the 85th centile on national tests or ability before they leave. Exam results are outstanding and, on average, the 56 leavers gain around 26 scholarships to the strongest schools. The children continue to be exceptional


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Parent Power D O N ’ T B E P U T O F F B Y T H E T H O U G H T O F ‘ G O I N G B A C K T O S C H O O L ’ – G E T T I N G I N V O L V E D C O U L D B E T H E M O S T R E WA R D I N G T H I N G Y O U D O

hen you visit a school, you tend to look at it from your child’s perspective. Will they be happy, fit in, slot into the crowd at playtime and get their fair share of birthday party invitations? But while your child’s wellbeing is paramount, yours matters, too. Schools – primaries in particular – are the places where firm friendships are forged, in some cases lasting a lifetime. Whether you meet up for an occasional chat or end up arranging joint family holidays W

ordinary people who simply want to give back something to the school community. Some are fairly low key, helping to set up Santa’s grotto at the Christmas Fair or arranging face painting at the end-of-year picnic. Others can be incredibly ambitious, organising summer balls, proms, silent auctions and quiz nights that involve months of preparation and raise thousands of pounds. In the past, many parents’ association meetings happened during school hours, penalising working parents. Today, the familiar coffee morning is still alive and kicking but increasingly interspersed with

over the summer, on a day-to-day basis there’s nothing like having a network of like-minded people who can share the conundrums, queries and problems that crop up during those early years at school. So when you’re doing your background research on schools and mugging up on admissions deadlines and the intricacies of after-school clubs or drop-off and collection arrangements, it’s also worth checking who organises parent get-togethers and how they work. Parent associations are often at the heart of the process. Despite their somewhat ferocious reputation, most are run by




“For parents, it’s a way of getting a first-hand insight into how schools tick and how lessons are taught”

evening drinks or meals so that everyone can be involved. For any busy parent keen to lend a hand at their child’s school but worried about how they’ll cope, particularly when they’re also balancing other care- or work-related commitments, the best advice is not to overdo things. For those fortunate enough to have more time available during the day (and in these more enlightened times, you certainly shouldn’t feel judged if you don’t), offering to help out at your child’s school can be surprisingly satisfying. For parents, it’s a way of getting a first- hand insight into how schools tick, how lessons are taught, and why the maths all seems different compared with the way you learned it (this helps no end when you’re giving a child a hand with their homework). For schools, it’s an opportunity to access additional support and – where a parent has a particular skill, say in languages or sport – the opportunity to add extra inspiration to the curriculum. You may even find parents who are keen gardeners, for example, encouraging pupils to get involved in the full cycle, from planting the seed to harvesting the crop. In financial terms, parents’ contributions – either through direct gifts or through events – raise millions of pounds for schools. On average, donations equate to just under £60 per child. While the money raised is undoubtedly vital, giving cash-strapped schools a financial lifeline, there’s another reason to help. Pupils who see their parents coming into school and working with their teachers to support them also get positive messages about the value of their education and why it really matters. And that’s something you can’t put a price on.


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