Falkner House

19 Brechin Place, London SW7 4QB

Profile: Located in the heart of South Kensington, Falkner House is a very friendly family-run preparatory school for girls headed by the founder’s daughter Anita Griggs, winner of the Tatler School Guide’s “Head of the Year Award” in 2010. It gets glowing parent reviews whereever you look, and has become a major competitor to Glendower Preparatory School in recent years in snatching away South Kensington’s smartest girls. It prides itself in being a very happy place with excellent parent relations and offers a wide range of extracurricular activities and opportunities for personal developments. Working parents benefit from an “Early Bird Drop-Off” from 7.45am onwards, as well as afterschool care until 5.30pm, where girls can attend afterschool clubs or simply read books and chat to their friends under teachers’ supervision.

The 2011 Inspection report by the Independent Schools Inspectorate couldn’t give a more glowing review:

“Falkner House is exceptionally successful in meeting its aims. Pupils’ achievement is outstanding and they reach extremely high standards of attainment in both their academic work and their extra-curricular activities, especially sport and music. Pupils are very articulate and have excellent literacy, numeracy and ICT skills … Class teachers and specialist teachers display an infectious energy and enthusiasm in their lessons, which motivates pupils and stimulates their intellect”.

“The pupils’ personal development, including their spiritual, moral, social and cultural development, is excellent. As a result of the warm, family atmosphere in the school, pupils are able to flourish and develop self-confidence in their abilities”.

You can imagine based on these reviews that Falkner House is a very popular school indeed, and early registration is recommended.

Admissions: Parents need to register their daughters by sending in the registration form with a £60 registration fee. In the year prior to entry, parents can visit the school and children will attend an assessment at the school. According to the school,

“During the year before entry girls (including girls in the Falkner House Nursery) are called for an assessment. The staff work hard to make sure that this experience is both friendly and personal. We are looking for potential rather than attainment and we balance a wide range of factors before offering places. Our key objective is that your daughter should be successful and happy at Falkner House”.

If your daughter is due to attend an assessment at Falkner House, you might find it useful to read the “Reception Information” (pdf file) for parents in advance, which outlines what the school expects of girls entering Reception in terms of intellectual and social skills.

Exit Results: “Falcons” are very successful in gaining admission to the top London Senior schools, with about 25% getting into St. Paul’s and another 25% into Godolphin and Latymer. About 30% move on to top boarding schools such as Downe House, St. Mary’s Ascot and Wycombe Abbey. The school is very transparent about the excellent results, and you can loot at the most recent 2011 results as well as an overview of senior school placements from 2007 – 2011.

Further resources:

School reviews on this website express my personal expression, based on web research, school visits and word of mouth between parents. If you have a different experience of the school or would like to add information missing here, or if you have any other helpful hints, please leave a comment below.

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