“We are a well-established school delivering an outstanding education in a caring and inclusive environment, for pupils aged two to 18 years.
We aim to nurture and inspire, igniting pupils’ interests throughout their entire school life, so they become well-rounded, confident, and enthusiastic young people, both now and in the future.
We have a unique offering here at Highclare, with three separate locations in Sutton Coldfield and Erdington, each suitably sized to maintain a family atmosphere. This allows staff to know their pupils thoroughly and successfully guide them through each stage of their school journey.
We believe in fulfilling potential in everyone. Not only do our excellent grades reflect the outstanding teaching delivered at Highclare, but we offer a rounded programme of activities as standard to bring out the talents of every child – from one-on-one music tuition to astronomy or ballet.
Underpinning all that we do is a nurturing and supportive pastoral commitment based on our unshakeable belief that a young person who is happy is much more likely to be an effective learner, and a contented and giving member of our school community – and our society.
This website provides good insight into life at Highclare School, and I invite you to take a look around to get a taste of what we have to offer, then come and see first-hand what makes our school so special – I would be delighted to meet you.”
When considering the education of your child, the volume of options can be daunting. As an independent school, we believe Highclare is able to offer your child much more than they would receive at a state school or grammar – from Pre-School through to Sixth Form.
At our school, the pursuit of excellence in every area of the pupil’s life is important. Not only do our superb grades reflect the outstanding teaching delivered at Highclare, but we offer a rounded programme of activities as standard to bring out the talents of every child. Each child has access to one-on-one music and LAMDA tuition with peripatetic experts, and the provision of a wide variety of extra-curricular activities to suit every interest, from ballet to environmental issues. Our philosophy of educating the whole person ensures the pupils develop their emotional and spiritual intelligence as well as their academic excellence.
Our ultimate aim is to create a warm, happy environment where children can thrive – after all, a happy child is much more likely to reach their fullest potential. Our size allows for a place where every student is known, and every student is valued – there are normally no more than 22 pupils in one class, meaning each child has individual attention, with the curriculum tailored to their needs.
This personalised care extends beyond the classroom. As well as having a Form Teacher, each pupil at Highclare Senior School is assigned a Personal Tutor upon entry to the school. This Personal Tutor will remain with them throughout their time at Highclare, meeting with them on a regular basis, and generally taking an active interest in their academic progress and emotional wellbeing.
Highclare’s all-through offering means we are there for every step of your child’s educational journey. This means there is no disruption to learning, and the transition through the school is smooth – avoiding the ‘dips’ in learning accompanied by transitions to new schools. Students also benefit from the leadership and mentoring of older pupils, with whom they have much interaction at Highclare – as well as having access to the specialisms and facilities of the senior school. Most crucially, all-through education means we know and support your child as a learner from the earliest age up until adulthood in the Sixth Form.
The quality of pastoral care at Highclare has been independently recognised by the ISI Inspections in recent years, which have consistently ranked it as being “excellent”. The most recent inspection report commented that “… the staff know their pupils really well, and the excellent rapport that exists between staff and pupils is evident throughout the school”.
Highclare firmly believes that a co-educational environment is vital in preparing students for their futures, which is something many of the local grammar schools can only offer at Sixth Form. The development of the individual in terms of social skills is as valuable as achieving academic excellence to ensure their school journey sets them up for life.
Highclare Pre-Prep caters for boys and girls from two years at both Highclare Preparatory School: Woodfield and Highclare Preparatory School: St Paul’s, each of which are located in Sutton Coldfield.
In preparing Highclare children for a successful and happy life in school and beyond, we aim to develop an inquisitive mind within a small setting where pupils feel engaged and confident. Our dedicated staff members appreciate the unique qualities of each child, ensuring every step of their education is tailored to meet their needs. This is reflected in our staff ratios, which are 1:4 for Pre-Prep Cygnets and 1:8 for Pre-Prep Swans.
The timetable for pre-prep children includes numeracy and phonics every morning, with creative activities on offer in afternoon sessions within a warm, welcoming and safe environment, in which there are separate areas for rest and play.
At each location, children have the advantage of access to the educational resources and facilities of the preparatory school, including sessions in the gymnasium, visits to the school library and gardens, and joining school assemblies.
We understand how important it is for you to be kept updated of your child’s progress and happiness. Communication diaries are shared with parents each day to ensure constant links between home and school. In addition, daily records are kept to provide parents with information about their child, and we offer an open door policy – parents are welcome to visit at any time.
Learning at our pre-prep consists of sessions from Monday to Friday, 7.30am to 6pm. We’re open 51 weeks a year, or term time-only places are available if preferred. Full and part time sessions are available, with a minimum of five sessions (either morning or afternoon), required per week. All sessions include food, drinks and nappies, freshly cooked lunches and tea – our chef will be happy to discuss any dietary requirements your child may have.
As with the pre-prep, Highclare Preparatory School has two infant settings, one based at Highclare Preparatory School: Woodfield, and one at Highclare Preparatory School: St Paul’s, both in Sutton Coldfield. Both locations offer the same high standards of education for boys and girls from Reception class to the end of Yr2.
Moving from pre-prep to prep is a big step for any family. Children who have been with us from the pre-prep stage are able to transition in familiar surroundings, with no disruption to learning, which is true of every step of the journey at Highclare, where we cater for children from the age of two to 18. We ensure the process is handled as smoothly as possible for all children at every stage.
To build the individual’s sense of attainment and morality, we operate reward systems such as ‘Good to be Green’ and ‘Golden Time’, which reward both curricular and extra-curricular activities. These awards, together with accompanying certificates, are presented at weekly Merit Assemblies. Talents in extra-curricular activities such as Spanish, ballet and sport are nurtured using award stickers.
At Highclare we believe in nurturing not just the academic intelligence of a child, but also the emotional. Pupils are encouraged from an early age to look after one another. A structure is in place in the infant settings, using different strategies to recognise others’ pastoral needs, and awards are made for good playground behaviour.
The learning needs of individual children are recognised and discussed through regular staff meetings where information is shared, and particularly in the case of children moving from Pre-Prep to Reception, and from Yr2 to Yr3 (infant to juniors), the milestone stages of any child’s school life.
The school day for our infant children (Reception to Yr2) starts at 8.45am and finishes at 3.25pm. Our excellent wrap-around care service starts at 7.30am and continues after school until 6pm for those parents who wish to take advantage of this.
In the spirit of nourishing a child’s all-round awareness of living a happy and fulfilled life, a healthy eating food policy is delivered by our chefs who cook meals on location, and pupils are regularly assisted in making healthy choices when in the dining room. Parents are able to view the lunch menus regularly on Highclare Virtual (the school’s virtual learning environment) and on the notice boards.
Each setting offers learning success co-ordinators who provide additional provision for pupils with specific learning needs – so no matter the requirements of every child, we are equipped to help them grow in the best way possible.
As with the pre-prep and infant provision, Highclare has two junior settings, one at Highclare Preparatory School: Woodfield, and one at Highclare Preparatory School: St Paul’s, both located in Sutton Coldfield.
Each step along your child’s school journey is treated with care to ensure their transition is smooth and each pupil feels confident and excited to learn. Both Highclare Preparatory School: Woodfield and Highclare Preparatory School: St Paul’s offer an excellent pastoral system and a caring ethos to welcome each child into the warmth of the schools’ family atmosphere, and to build on the foundation of educational, emotional and spiritual development founded in the pre-prep and infants setting.
This is achieved through clear moral values fostered by assemblies, circle time, PSHCE and a house system to generate team spirit. The pupils benefit from leadership opportunities and are given positions of responsibility, including Head Boy and Head Girl, prefects, form captains, school council representatives, sports captains and house captains.
Highclare offers a rich and vibrant educational experience to equip happy, confident children with a lifelong love of learning and expressing themselves. We firmly believe in fulfilling potential in everyone, and respect each and every pupil’s unique qualities. Our superb grades reflect the outstanding teaching delivered at Highclare, with our small class sizes allowing for personalised learning and individual attention, including differentiated work to cater for the needs of each child.
Pupils are encouraged to interact and develop a wide range of social and communication skills through attending assemblies, school trips, circle time activities, performances and more.
The promotion of reasoned discussion to think through and solve problems is encouraged, and respecting everyone within the school community is an important Highclare value. Our teachers challenge and engage children, particularly at the junior school stage where teachers are allowed greatest freedom from the curriculum,
The progress of each and every child is monitored carefully, with monitoring and assessment key to informing future learning opportunities for each child.
Highclare Senior School, including the Sixth Form, is based in Erdington and is open to girls and boys aged from 11 to 18 years.
Our philosophy is that every pupil at Highclare should be known and valued. As well as having a form teacher, each student at Highclare Senior School is assigned a personal tutor upon entry to the school, who will remain with them throughout their time at Highclare. The personal tutor will meet with them on a regular basis, and take an active interest in their academic progress and emotional wellbeing.
The individual pupil’s unique talents are the priority, and there is great celebration of variety and difference. Our excellent staff to pupil ratios allow for a tailored approach to allow each student to grow and develop in the best way for them. While meeting the requirements of the National Curriculum, we have the freedom to adapt our teaching build on individual strengths both inside and outside the classroom.
Highclare provides high quality teaching and encourages independent learning. This is evident in the excellent examination results achieved by individuals at GCSE and A-level, with overall pass rates placing us high in the league tables.
Teaching staff are highly motivated, well-qualified and caring professionals who have a wealth of experience of building good relationships with pupils. We aim to stretch pupils’ own development through extra-curricular activities, providing many opportunities for this within school, including participation in the Duke of Edinburgh award, thereby fostering team-building and leadership skills.
Highclare offers specific guidance and support for gifted and talented pupils.
Our established house system encourages a spirit of competitiveness and belonging which is invaluable to a child’s overall development.
Our high standards of behaviour ensure that lessons take place in a calm and purposeful atmosphere, allowing teachers to devote all their time and energies to the learning and achievement of the pupils in their care. We believe that by focusing on the importance of good manners and mutually respectful conduct, we are able to create a calm environment which is conducive to the achievement of academic excellence.
The school provides well-developed career guidance so that senior pupils have a clear idea of their forward plan.
Above all, pupils of Highclare Senior School leave the school as articulate and confident young people, who are assured of their personal strengths and who possess the ability to present themselves well in both higher education and the wider world of work.