Children are at school for 6 hours a day, for up to 39 weeks of the year. Beyond academic achievement,
schools shape your child’s outlook, values, friendships, and extracurricular interests. It’s no wonder then
that finding the right school for your child is a big decision! After years advising on school choices at The
Golden Circle, here are our pearls of wisdom for parents looking for the perfect school:
Profile your ideal school

Consider the different types of schools available and what will be suitable for your family, location and
finances. Decisions to take include boarding school vs day school, independent vs state school, single sex
vs co-ed and religious vs non-religious? Other factors which may influence your decision-making include
the school run and transport options, catchment area, extracurricular clubs and SEN support. Be practical
about what the next 5 years may hold and whether this criterion will still work for your family in the future.
Do your research online

Resources such as the school’s website, prospectus and Ofsted reports offer only a snapshot of
information. Use The Times Parent Power to discover the highest-performing schools in your area and gain
insight into the average English and Maths attainment at each school. The Good Schools Guide or Tatler
Schools Guide both provide trusted, candid and in-depth school reviews.
Make a shortlist of the schools that you feel will be a good fit for your child. Each school has a different
ethos and philosophy, which will influence their approach towards academia, sports, arts, and social and
emotional development. As a parent, you are best placed to understand the type of environment that your
child will flourish in.

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