Our Review of Hawkesdown House School

We regularly review the UK’s leading independent schools, as part of our Education Consultancy service. In this article, we review Hawkesdown House School, a co-educational independent nursery and prep school for pupils aged 2 to 11. If you want infomation on whether this school is the right fit for your child, contact one of our education consultants today.

Hawkesdown House is a charming Nursery and Preparatory School for girls and boys aged 2-11, located in a handsome building on Edge Street, just off Kensington Church Street.   The school has a small, intimate and family orientated environment. The school is expanding and in the Summer Term of 2019 they opened The Walnut Tree Nursery for children from the age of 2, and by 2024 they will have boys and girls all the way up to year 6.

The school maintains very high academic standards  and also promotes a clear set of morals and values, such as kindness, courtesy, persistence and taking responsibility. The school Motto “Endeavour, Courage and Truth” reflects this. Individual attention, personalised feedback and pastoral care for each pupil is also of great importance. All of these areas, as well as being known by many local parents for having “the cutest uniform in London” have helped build Hawkesdown’s respected reputation.

Jenny Mackay has been Head since April 2017. She  has seen the school go from strength to strength due to her passion for the best education and her drive to build relationships with the teachers, parents and children around her. Jenny can be found standing at the entrance to the school greeting the children as they arrive for school, and parents are welcome to speak to their child’s teacher wherever they wish. This is one of the many reasons why Hawkesdown encompasses such a tight knit community where everybody knows eachother, and everyone has a part to play in making the school what it is today. 

Jenny believes that supporting parents is fundamental to supporting the children within the school, which is why the parent community at Hawkesdown is robust and quite unique. The school hosts regular ‘parent masterclasses’ that run after school, on interesting topics such as emotional intelligence, raising resilience, and a creative approach to maximising success. The school also delivers various ‘themed weeks’ throughout the academic year such as, STEM, book, and creative week. Each includes a global focus aimed at promoting the different cultures that students come from. Parents, as well as outside speakers, are asked to come in and run various workshops for the children adding another dimension to the normal curriculum. So there is plenty of scope for parents to get involved in school life. 

Other interesting areas of the curriculum include, chess, fencing and judo classes. The children relish the opportunity to try out different activities and Jenny believes that it helps them grow as individuals ready to take on life’s challenges. Forest School is also part of the curriculum for reception students, allowing them to explore the outdoors for one afternoon a week. The school also employs an SEN coordinator who isn’t attached to one class but is on hand to support those needing EAL and SEN support during the week. 

Preparing for life after Hawkesdown House starts with informal chats with parents at the end of Year 1 to identify possible prep schools. Children in recent years have left at the end of Year 3 or after 7+, generally heading for a mix of boarding and London day Prep Schools. 2020, leavers went to St Pauls Junior School, Westminster Under, King’s College School, Summer Fields and Sussex House. The destination school the parents have in mind will determine which entrance exam they must take and Hawkesdown House is well equipped to support each individual’s journey. Boys and girls joining the school now will be able to stay on to 11.

Being located in central London, Hawkesdown utilises Holland Park and Kensington Gardens for sport and a lunchtime run-around. The school has a large assembly hall and a small outdoor courtyard for the younger children to play in and the School is close to Kensington Gardens. A highlight for the children is House Colours’ Day, which is a whole afternoon for fun challenges and competitions between pupils in different houses, promoting a sense of teamwork and coming together.

Hawkesdown House is a vibrant and nurturing place where children possess individuality and a love for learning.

Listen to our podcast with Head Teacher, Jenny Mackay, below. We discuss the community at Hawkesdown House, extracurricular activities, and life after Hawkesdown House.

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