Academic excellence stands at the heart of learning and teaching at St Helen’s; we aim to give each student a challenging and well-balanced education which develops her intellectual, creative and physical abilities to the full.
At all stages the focus is on the learner: pupils are encouraged to think about different ways of approaching their learning and to decide upon and use the methods which work best for them, enabling them to develop an independent approach to their studies.
Our curriculum is underpinned by traditional academic disciplines, progressively builds on the pupils’ prior knowledge and understanding, and offers breadth, balance, stretch and challenge to all our students of all ages. Programmes of study for the development of numeracy, literacy, language acquisition, ICT and scientific skills and understanding operate across the School, providing a logical and coherent framework for learning from Early Years Foundation Stage to A Level.
Our curriculum is underpinned by our ambition that every student develops the critical Learner Habits and Character Attributes which are essential for success in education and life. By nurturing these key characteristics, we will empower our students to be critical thinkers, to know themselves, to develop a life-long love of learning and to stand up for what is right.
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Teachers know their pupils as individuals and deliver effectively differentiated learning programmes which enable them to develop their knowledge, skills and understanding with the appropriate balance of support and challenge.
A significant number of pupils are identified as being of high intellectual potential in at least one and often several subject areas, and our provision, including our Scholars (HIP) Programme in Senior School, nourishes and develops this potential. Many of the Academic, Music and Sports Scholarships to the Senior School are offered to Prep School pupils in a highly competitive field.
Whether the pupils are taking their first steps in imaginative story-writing or programming bug robots for the first time in Early Years Foundation Stage, thinking through a tricky philosophical problem or discussing a challenging poem in Key Stage 2, using higher-order thinking to solve a complex problem in Mathematics or Science, or constructing a complex explanation of cause and effect in A Level History, all learning experiences are designed with the achievement of excellence in mind.
Public examination results are excellent, and our extensive Futures Programme (higher education and careers) encourages our pupils to apply for the most competitive courses at the most highly-regarded universities.
Equally impressive is the range of careers which St Helen’s alumnae embark upon when they enter the world of work. Such successes reflect the intellectual development effected throughout their time at St Helen’s, and the way that our through-school curriculum has developed our students’ capacity to think and apply their skills, knowledge and understanding to unfamiliar situations.