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Taught in the heart of the building in the main house, ‘Buckhold’, Prep school starts from Year 3 when children turn 8. Echoing our ethos that children are ‘stretched, but not stressed’, many of our Prep pupils go on to a number of leading day and boarding Senior Schools at 13, and we have a strong scholarship legacy.

The school day runs from 8 am – 5 pm. Registration is at 8.15 am with your form tutor. Breakfast is available to all children from 7.30 am, and they can also stay for supper at 6.00 pm.  

School day
Curriculum and class size

In Years 3 and 4, English, maths, PSHE and history are taught by the Form Tutor. Science, PE, French, Music, Games, ICT, RS and Art are taught by specialist subject teachers.


In Years 5, 6, 7 and 8 there may be two or three sets for some subjects while others are taught in form groups. All pupils receive specialist teaching across all subjects. The timetable allows for daily one-hour sports and games coaching or fixtures. There is also an eclectic and interesting programme of educational visits and workshops.


Class sizes are tightly managed with an average of 18 per class. There are usually two classes per year.


Setting in maths starts in Year 3, and it is gradually introduced thereafter in English, French, Latin and science. There is no setting in Religious Studies, art, music, geography and history and we are mindful of the damage caused by children believing they are weak in a subject from an early age.

Scholarship Group

The Year 7 Scholarship Group includes an extra weekly lesson in English, French, Latin and Reasoning, alongside a Scholarship Maths set, to stretch the most able. The Year 8 Scholarship Group focuses on specific exam- orientated preparation and there are Scholarship classes across most subjects.

Forest School

Outdoor learning has now been extended to Y3 and Y4 as a co-curricular activity, with Forest School learning taught by qualified Forest School Leaders.  Pupils build on their understanding of the natural environment and are encouraged to take risks, work collaboratively and learn new skills.

Prep (Homework)

All children in Years 3 to 8 can expect to be set weekly prep. Prep in Years 5 to 8 will usually take around 30 minutes to complete. Most prep is completed at home, but from 5.15 – 6.00 pm on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays there is a Quiet Study (QS) period during which time prep can be done in School.

After school

Every day after School there are a host of co-curricular activities for Prep School children. Supper Club is primarily for boarders and those doing early evening activities.

Find out more about co-curricular activities here.

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