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Best-schools.co.uk

for impartial advice on the BEST UK SCHOOLS from Education Advisers Ltd

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Hurtwood House - a top co-ed boarding school

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Cardiff Sixth Form College - Top Independent School and Top 6th Form College

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Hurtwood House

Sevenoaks - a top IB School

Sevenoaks - a top IB School

Tonbridge School - a top boys' boarding school

Tonbridge School - a top boys' boarding school

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Brighton College - a top co-ed boarding school

wycombe abbey

Woldingham School

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The Cheltenham Ladies' College - a top girls' boarding school

Explaining Prep Schools

16th October 2015

The word “Preparatory” relates to independent schools whose original purpose was to “prepare” pupils for entry to Public Schools on a competitive basis – by passing the Common Entrance exam at ages 11, 12 or 13. However, there has been a major expansion of UK independent education. These days the schools are more flexible in meeting the needs of parents and their children. 

The words “Public School” relate to the old traditional schools like Eton and Harrow. Nowadays there are considerably more private schools in the senior sector and the term “independent senior school” is more generic. Prep schools still prepare children for entry to these schools, but some parents want to send their children to a good private school before switching them to a state school at 11 – a perfectly reasonable strategy as long as there are good state schools in the area.

Blackheath Preparatory School, London

Accepting their Education Advisers Award

Preps typically cover ages from 7 or 8 to 11 or 13. The words “Pre-Preparatory” relate to schools in the previous age range from ages 2/3 to 7/8. Some schools call the period before age 5, Nursery or Reception. Thus Prep and Pre-Prep combined are equivalent to the term “Primary” in the State sector. Up to the age of 8, children are usually taught by their class teacher. After 8 they may be streamed into subjects according to academic ability.

There are well over 1000 Preps/Pre-Preps in the independent sector of which approximately 500 belong to the Independent Association of Preparatory Schools (IAPS) and/or Independent Schools Council (ISC). We do feel that it is important for a school to have the necessary accreditation. Although, if a school is not a member of IAPS or ISC does not necessarily mean it is a weak school. However, you might like to ask questions about its professional status and whether or not it belongs to another recognised schools’ association.

Most Preps/Pre Preps are day schools, but a small number also offer boarding. Often these are part of a senior boarding school.

Newton Preparatory School, London

Accepting their Education Advisers Award 

Some schools cater for children from 3 to 18. These are known as ‘all through’ schools and they can be attractive to some as they offer a complete education in a well-known and settled environment. It also means that children can maintain their friendships throughout their schooldays, which some may feel is very important.

Call +44 1622 813870 Enquiry Form info@educationadvisers.co.uk