The early years

Picking schools for your child is never a simple decision, especially when they’re young. The choice on offer – particularly in an area as blessed with good schools as Salisbury is – can be bewildering.

    “Schools that offer nursery and reception classes vary hugely,” explains Godolphin prep school head Julia Miller. “Some start at 8am and finish at midday, others offer either morning or afternoon sessions, and others offer school and care from 8am to 6pm.”

   One option that could offer the best in terms of facilities, opportunity and ease of access is a school that caters for a bigger age range.

“As the head of a prep school that educates girls from three-11 years, and is part of a school that educates girls from three-18 years, I think there are numerous advantages to joining a school that caters for a wide age range, as it removes a great deal of anxiety about the transition from one stage to the next of your child’s education,” says Julia.  

And it’s not just about reducing stress for your child. Bigger schools can provide more opportunities to learn and develop, like at Godolphin:

“At a school where facilities are provided for girls from three-18 years, the younger girls benefit hugely from having access to science and technology labs, plus specialist art, drama, music and sports facilities,” says Julia. “They also share specialist teachers with the senior girls, which offers them a much wider range of academic subjects and opportunities.”

Other benefits

Another advantage that, we think, any parent would appreciate, is how attending a larger institution can make life a lot simpler when it comes to logistics.

 “Most of the extra activities your child might be interested in doing can be provided at the school,” adds Julia. “This saves you, as a parent, from having to drive all over Wiltshire so that your child can attend music or ballet or yoga or French lessons, or just stay and have tea with her friends. As they get older, the number of after school activities increases to match their interests and expectations.”

    Also, having your child’s education centred around one location is not just easier, it can also give peace of mind.

   “Consider the schools which can offer you a broad education, after school care and activities, all in one safe and happy place where you know and can trust the staff,” advises Julia. Sounds ideal to us.  

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