Each parent in the world wishes their child to be the world's gentle tenderness. However, in a world full of fierce competitions, does it really matter if you are kind or gentle? Well, the answer by Windlesham House School, one of the oldest prep schools in the UK, is a definite yes.
Each parent in the world wishes their child to be the world's gentle tenderness. However, in a world full of fierce competitions, does it really matter if you are kind or gentle?
Well, the answer by Windlesham House School, one of the oldest prep schools in the UK, is a definite yes.
About the things our headmaster would encourage the children to do are three things: be kind, be kind and be kind.” said Lucy Thorton, Admissions Officer at Windlesham House School.
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BE Education (BE): First of all, could you please give us some information about the history your school? What makes it different from other schools in the UK?
Lucy Thorton (Lucy): Windlesham is one of the oldest prep school in the UK. This year we're celebrating our 180th anniversary. We were the first prep school in the UK to go co-ed and accept girls and we are celebrating 50 years of co-education. We are situated in West Sussex, about 10 minutes from the sea and about half an hour from Brighton.
BE: What are the percentage of international and residential students respectively?
Lucy: We have 370 children in our school and the age range is from 4-13. 80 percent of our children are from the UK with 45 percent of those being from the local area. The majority of them board. The remaining students are from overseas, from 20 different countries across the world. So they are from Russia, China, Hong Kong, Italy, France, Spain, the US, Saudi Arabia, Lithuania. Just to name a few, I could go on.
BE: Could you please talk about the philosophy of your school? What kind of values and skills are promoted?
Lucy: Obviously, we are a prep school, so our purpose is to prepare children for the most appropriate senior schools for them to go to. We have a very strong family ethos, and our pastoral care is renowned. About the things our headmaster would encourage the children to do are three things: be kind, be kind and be kind.
We encourage children to have a go at all sorts of things and to try different things because until you've tried something, you don't know whether you are good at it. We encourage them to take risks and to fail at things. Because in life, you need to know how to deal with failure as well as success.
BE: What are the unique courses on offer at your school and what about extra-curricular activities?
Lucy: We follow the curriculum and they take common entrance when they are in Year 8 to go on to their senior schools. In terms of extra-curricular activity, they can do over 50 different things. We have Polo that just started. Horse-riding. We have 9-hole golf court set at school. They can learn mandarin if they are from China but the English children learn mandarin as well. They can do survival nights out in the woods where they learn how to build fires and sleep in their built-on tents. As we are in the South Downs, there are lots of organized works and mountain biking. They can do Yoga, Karate, cooking. The list goes on.
BE: Could you please talk about the matriculation results of your school over the past two or three years?
Lucy: Over the last two or three years, all of our students have gone on to their choices of senior schools. And on average, we've had 25 percent scholarship right. We've had King's Scholars Eton, Music Scholars, Academic Scholars or rounders, ICT scholars, as well as Art and Design Scholars as well.
BE: We know that teachers in your school are very professional and qualified. Many students want to know much more about your teachers.
Lucy: We have a number of teachers from a diverse range of backgrounds. Some of them have always been teachers and some of them come from other professions. And we think it makes a rich learning environment. So we have ex-lawyers. We've had people who've been in marketing. We've had people in the medical profession who've turned over into teachers. They can offer a wide experience to the children.
All of our teachers are qualified. There's quite a big age range from early twenties up to mid-fifties. They all provide something different for our children.
BE: If international students want to be admitted to your school. What should they prepare to get through application process?
Lucy: The most important thing is that they speak and understand English to a good level. Here's the application process, which includes some overnight stays and assessments. Can't be quite enough reckoning if you are a young child. And they need to be able to articulate their views on things. The quality we are looking for in any student is a willingness to learn, to try different things out. We call it a can-do approach, so that they want to throw themselves into different things and really get the most out of an education.
Windlesham House School
Founded in: 1837
Type of School: Co-educational
Nearest airport: 1 hour and 20 minutes' drive from Heathrow Airport
Location: West Sussex
Age range: 4-13
Number of pupils: 380
Percentage of boarders: 54%
Percentage of international students: 20%
School website: www. windlesham.com
Curriculum and Destination Universities & Colleges
Classics, EFL, English, History, Geography, Mathematics, Modern Languages, Religious Studies, Science
The School provides the opportunity for all pupils to play at the best and most appropriate level for themselves. This may be at inter-house, inter-school, county or at national level.
Drawing, Innovation Design, Drama, Vocal Music
An extensive choice of over 60 extra-curricular activities which include plenty of options from fencing, shooting or ballet, to riding, textiles or even chess.
Nearly all pupils go on to senior schools of their own choice. About 25 percent have won scholarship awards. Leavers' Destinations include Eton, Harrow, Brighton, Cheltenham, Downe House, Benenden School, Lancing, etc