Our Review of Moreton Hall School
Situated in North Shropshire close to Oswestry, Moreton Hall is an independent boarding and say schools for boys aged 3 to 11 years and girls aged 3 to 18. If you are interested in sending your son or daughter to Moreton Hall or are struggling to find the right school for your child, please contact one of our education consultants or use the online enquiry form further down this page.
George Budd, previously deputy head at Godolphin School, took over the reins as Headmaster in 2019 from his predecessor who retired after 27 years at the helm. He focuses on creating self-confident and self-reliant individuals without being arrogant. He encourages kindless and the greatest degree of imagination and aspirations amoung pupils. The Moreton Hall community takes part in a large amount of charitable work and community partnerships with over 30 local schools and organisations.
Moreton Hall is really three separate schools in one; the prep, senior and international sections all seem to happily co-exist with one another. We didn’t get a chance to see Moreton First (the Prep School) but did witness the slightly surreal sight of twenty or so happy four year olds tri-cycling around the playground sporting a fantastic collection of sun hats. Not all children from the prep go on to the Senior School; boys have to go elsewhere as from 13+ it is a girls only school and the remaining girls are encouraged to consider which school is the best for them.
The International Study Centre (housed in the Mitchell Building) is run by Vicky Eastman and provides a really useful way for foreign students, (currently mostly from China and a few from Russia) to get their written and spoken English up to scratch before starting (or in some cases, even applying for) a senior school in the UK. It also provides additional subject specific tuition. The school has about 30 students and runs summer and full time courses. Over the summer, parents can accompany their children to stay in the centre and learn English (and/or go shopping).
Moreton Hall is a, ‘proper’ boarding school, with girls being encouraged not to disappear at the weekends. There is plenty for them to do at school and in the surrounding countryside and towns. Many day girls board for a few days a week (when, for example, there are sports matches, or plays) and the girls explained that there really is no difference between the day girls and boarders.
My impression was that the school is happy, relaxed and has the resources of a much bigger facility than one required for just over 300 children. The swimming pool, lacrosse field and gym were well kept and being put to good use. The girls were friendly and relaxed and not at all arrogant. Dorms were spacious and bright. The food was great.
The school’s inspection reports and academic results are impressive but beyond the minutia of league tables is the significance of ‘added value’. Many great schools take in the brightest and the best and simply keep them on track in order to deliver excellent results. Moreton Hall claims to take a cohort of wide academic ability and works with each child to ensure they get the most from their time at the school. This is neatly encapsulated in their aim to, ‘stretch the most able and support the least confident’.
Obviously, good results require a lot of work and the school has classes on Saturday as well as providing plenty of extra tuition (from its own teachers) if a girl needs to top up for any reason. The school’s enrichment programme provides additional education in areas that fall outside the remit of the curriculum; including a medical society and chemistry society. I was delighted to hear that one of Simply Learning Tuition’s Senior Tutors, Alex Fielding, had lectured at the school as part of her work with Art History Abroad.
Moreton Hall takes pride in its past (established 1913) but has an extremely strong focus on developing its future. Almost all sixth form leavers go to university. Cardiff, UCL, Edinburgh, Exeter, Newcastle, Leeds, Kingston, Loughborough, Nottingham amoung the most popular. The girls are not kept in an ivory tower but rather are given an awareness that the world is fiercely competitive and that they need to work hard and with genuine enthusiasm to succeed. An Art teacher explained that when the girls are taken to London to visit potential Art and Design Colleges equal importance is given to how helpful each course is likely to be in getting a job.
In conclusion, Moreton Hall seems to have all the benefits of a small, friendly school combined with heavyweight facilities, mouth watering results, and eyes that are wide open to a world far beyond its playing fields.