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Choosing a primary school

Think about whether the school is a good fit for your child and if you can picture them there – happy children make for engaged and successful learners.

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We know that choosing a primary school for your child can feel like a bit of a minefield, with so much information and opinion out there. As a parent myself, and having helped families through their decision-making as a teacher, I understand that the process can be overwhelming and hope you find these key things to consider useful:  

Visit the School  

Websites and social media are a great place to start and most schools will share a lot of helpful information with you online. However, nothing beats visiting the School, ideally on a working day. This will give you a real sense of how the school works and a chance to speak to teachers and, most importantly, the current students! Visits allow you to see how the teachers interact with their pupils, how big the class sizes are, how many staff are in the classroom, what technology they are using, what happens at breaktime and how topics are taught. At LHS, we encourage families to visit as many times as they need. 

We also offer Taster Days before you apply to allow your daughter to spend the day with us and her classmates, learning and playing in the School environment. Families find this experience can really help their decision-making process.  

Have a list of questions ready 

You are going to want to find out lots of information about the school so don’t be afraid to arrive with a list of questions for the staff. You will need to find out about the School’s admissions processes and deadlines, uniform, wrap-around care, the curriculum, playtime, homework expectations, extracurricular and leadership opportunitiespastoral support and more! Don’t be afraid to ask for data to back up claims about academic progress. A good school will be regularly examining this information to work out the best learning route for your child.  

Although schools are starting to return to ‘normal’, for your peace of mind, it is important that you find out what provision the school provided to their children over lockdown and what they are providing to currently to children who are having to self-isolate. At LHS we provided online learning for every lesson and do so now for those girls who are having to self-isolate. This meant there was very little ‘catch-up’ required when the girls returned to school, and we could focus instead on providing additional pastoral support to ensure they returned to school happy and ready to learn.  

If you didn’t get answers to all of your questions at your visit, call the School who will be happy to answer your questions.  

Does the School offer for you practically? 

It can be frustrating to get so far into the admissions process with a school and then realise their lack of wrap-around care means you won’t be able to combine drop off and pick up with your working life.  

Think about the distance from home and travel time, whether you will need to drop older children off elsewhere and times of breakfast and after school clubs as all of these can mean a school will just not work for you. 

is the school the right fit for your child?

This is possibly the most important consideration! Some children can find large class sizes overwhelming and need a smaller environment to thrive. Some will be particularly interested in sport or art and will need a school which caters for their interests through the curriculum and extracurricular options. Some children will need challenging academically to achieve their capabilities. Think about whether the school is a good fit for your child and if you can picture them there – happy children make for engaged and successful learners.  

If you are considering LHS for your daughter, we are happy to talk you through every stage of the process to make sure you are making the right decision for your family.  

Natalie weller

Head of EYFS  

 
 

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