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The Village School for Girls
The Village School for Girls
The Village School for Girls
The Village School for Girls
The Village School for Girls Belsize Park, London Visit
school
The Village School for Girls
Belsize Park
91 pupils, ages 2-11
Girls only
Day

The Village School for Girls

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Our view

Exciting changes are afoot at this small, all-girls’ prep near Hampstead Heath. From September 2024 it will be taking in one Year 7 cohort a year until 2029 when it will be a fully-fledged senior school, educating girls with its uniquely progressive approach all the way through to their GCSEs. With new head Kirstie Hampshire at the helm and numbers flourishing, we can’t wait to see its progress as it spreads its wings.

Where?

The school is housed in a beautiful Georgian building on a leafy residential street very near Belsize Park Tube station and several bus routes. Many pupils live within a 15-minute radius, and walk or scoot from home. Despite its small size, the school boasts a purpose-built theatre, all-weather pitch, an adventure playground (which is getting a makeover in the summer to make it more accessible) and gardening plots. As the school grows from Year 7 to 11, facilities and space will expand annually as well. Over the summer of 2024, the top floor will be renovated to house the new Year 7s, and in summer 2025 the outside classroom will get an upgrade.

Head

Kirstie Hampshire joined in September 2023 from Hereward House, located just a stone’s throw from The Village Prep. She tells us her first term has been ‘brilliant’, not least because of the warm and friendly community, which perfectly matches her own kind and bubbly personality. ‘It’s such a lovely place to be,’ she says, and she’s excited about offering up learning that’s fun, not anxiety-inducing to older girls over the coming years. She fully supports the school’s holistic ethos that family time is sacred and ‘homework’ should be done at school. It also helps staff identify anyone who’s struggling or needs stretching, she tells us.

Admissions

Assessment is a light-touch affair: the girls and their families have an interview to establish whether they will fit in and the children pop in for observation in the Early Years and a taster day in Key Stages 1 and 2. The school also asks for any reports regarding additional learning support, which is well catered for here. There are lots of international families, and pupils can join throughout the school if there is a space and they are suited to The Village Prep.

Academics and senior school destinations

The small class sizes, which will remain capped at 15 even as the school expands, means the school obtains strong academic results without the need for hothousing. ‘The girls want to learn,’ says Mrs Hampshire, and so rather than being made to jump through exam hoops, they’re encouraged to enjoy and engage in the learning process, inspired by the wonderfully passionate teachers. This gentle and bespoke approach delivers impressive achievements, while getting homework done at school frees up time for play and curiosity-led learning at home.

Languages are strong, with French, Spanish and Latin all on the curriculum, and girls use iPads and Chromebooks from the Early Years through to the Upper School. Underpinning the learning are six values: perseverance and resilience, curiosity, reflection, collaboration, creativity and independence. The girls are encouraged to learn from their mistakes and, recognising that learning isn’t always linear, the school integrates some lessons across age groups. Science, history and geography are taught by specialist subject teachers in Key Stage 2. Weekly culture lessons in Upper Key Stage 2 create an opportunity to study an idea expansively, through its art, politics, literature and history.

Interest in joining the first Year 7 cohort and beyond is growing; the school’s mission of nurturing girls to become future female leaders, thinkers and innovators is compelling. For now, its bespoke 11+ programme helps to ensure that pupils end up at the right secondary school, whichever that may be. Historically, many go on to South Hampstead High School for Girls, City of London School for Girls as well as Channing, North London Collegiate and Francis Holland, but the expectation is that many will stay on as the senior school grows.

Co-curricular

The girls take part in sport pretty much every day and it’s timetabled two to three times a week. They play netball, football, cricket, rounders and tag rugby, as well as doing swimming, orienteering, gymnastics and athletics. The emphasis is on fun and learning how to win – and lose – well. The school has ties with Saracens Rugby and Saracens Mavericks Netball, which helps hone pupils’ skills. The playground is zoned. For free play and forest school-type activities, as well as sport, a decked terrace is accessible from the pre-prep. 

Every year group stages an annual performance, from Christmas plays in the lower school to contemporary adaptations of Shakespeare and fairy tales such as Jack and the Beanstalk for older pupils. The theatre has great lighting and acoustics and also acts as a multi-purpose hall and dining room for lunch. Every Friday sees pupils leading assemblies and entertaining teachers and parents with singing, dancing, reciting and even hula-hooping. ‘It’s such a good way to learn presentation skills,’ says Mrs Hampshire. 

A creative lab the length of the ground floor is a great space for art, engineering and science activities. A refurbishment is in the pipeline which will see it develop into a fully-equipped STEAM lab, complete with food tech room and art studios which will be able to be opened up into one big room or divided as needed. 

Nearly 70 per cent of pupils learn an instrument, with everyone from Year 3 to 5 taking ukulele lessons. Every class takes part in a musical production for their Key Stage, with the music teacher composing the music for each and every one. She also runs an after-school music club and prepares pupils for the annual May Day celebration for grandparents and families.

There are over 25 clubs: fencing, art, karate, debating, drama, chess – the list goes on. One we’ve never heard of is ‘plogging’ – picking up litter while jogging. Social outreach is a strong part of the ethos; the school works with a local charity supported by the Princess of Wales called Little Village that recycles items for children under five. 

School community

The school’s tight community makes it very well placed to deliver excellent pastoral care from teachers, form tutors and specialist teachers. The approach is proactive, with every child discussed individually twice a week, meaning any potential problems are caught early. The older girls get a lot of opportunities to acquire leadership skills, and the very active school council has introduced features like a friendship bench and vegetable trays to grow produce for school dinners. There’s a strong pupil voice which has seen the girls spearheading an eco club and winning a green flag award.

Parents are very much part of the school family. There’s an open-door policy with all parents welcome to drop in to speak to the head or form tutors every morning and Mrs Hampshire is also at the school gate to meet and greet most days.

Many parents give talks or presentations about their professions. One, who works in high fashion, led a workshop on sustainability in their industry. This led to an eco fashion show, as well as pupils developing new school uniform accessories which supported the social enterprise Knit Up (run by a Village parent).

The Village Prep is a very international community – some 60 per cent of pupils speak a different language at home – and the school promotes links with the local community to foster an outward perspective.

And finally....

With its ability to nurture girls who are eloquent, well-rounded and happy in their own skin, it feels like The Village Prep and senior-school-to-be is perfectly in step with everything a good, 21st-century holistic education should be. The girls look outwards, not inwards, and the single-sex setting frees them from gender pressures, with football as popular as dance. And the presence of many international pupils gives them a healthy global perspective too.

Gallery See All

girl playing outside in front of the Village Prep School
girls in blue shirts all on ipads in class
girls standing together holding a green flag
girls standing together in the playground
girls in blue shirts and ties working in class together
girl in navy blue running with a rugby ball
girl in a grey sweatshirt and orange helmet on a skateboard
girls litter picking in the park
girls in grey sweatshirts holding eggs
girl in a blue apron modelling clay
girl in a blue apron modelling clay
Girls playing netball on blue court with blue sky and green trees
  • Senior school destinations

    Senior school destinations

    Aldenham School - 2 offers (declined) Belmont School - 3 offers: 1 accepted Channing School - 11 offers: 4 accepted City of London School for Girls - 3 offers (1 accepted) Ecole Jeannine Manual - 1 offer (declined) Francis Holland School - 10 offers: all declined Haberdashers’ Aske’s - declined Highgate School - 2 offers (1 accepted) Latymer Upper - 1 offer (accepted) Maida Vale School - 2 offers (declined) More House School - 2 offers (declined) Northbridge House, Hampstead - 3 offers (declined) North London Collegiate - 1 offer (declined) Queen’s College - 5 offers (declined) Queenswood - 3 offers, 1 accepted Southbank International - 1 offer (declined) South Hampstead High School - 6 offers: 4 accepted St Margaret's Bushey - 1 offer (declined) St Margaret's Hampstead - 2 offers (declined) St Paul's Girl School - 1 offer (accepted)

  • Scholarships for senior schools

    Scholarships

    Academic13Channing; Francis Holland Regents Park; Haberdashers' Aske's School for Girls; Queen's College; South Hampstead High School
    Drama1 City of London School for Girls
    Art2 Queenswood and Francis Holland
    OtherSection Francaise; English Prize Francis Holland; Channing


  • Fees and bursaries

    Day fees per term

    Nursery£5,830
    Reception£6,970
    Year 1£6,970
    Year 2£6,970
    Year 3£6,970
    Year 4£6,970
    Year 5£6,970
    Year 6£6,970
    Year 7£6,970




    Bursary contact:
    Office Manager & Registrar Mrs Jenny Tani
    admin@thevillageprepschool.com
  • SEND

    This school currently supports the following kinds of learning needs, health needs and physical disabilities:
    The school supports a wide range of learning needs such as dyslexia, dyscalculia, ADHD and dyspraxia in addition to supporting children with physical disabilities. They assess the students' physical needs and adapt the school environment appropriately to enable successful learning and a happy school life.

    This school currently delivers the following interventions to pupils in class and outside class to support their learning, health and/or physical needs:
    The school delivers bespoke teaching to all girls and ensure in class support is just that - guidance towards independent success. Their teachers work closely with a variety of in-house services, including speech and language therapists, occupational therapy, and EAL support. Most importantly, they work with the child first, and their parents are always part of the conversation. Girls openly and comfortably discuss their 'best environment' for learning, be that with fidget toys, seat adjustments or personal devices. The school provides in-school homework sessions and home interventions so that every child goes home feeling supported.



    For more information on this school's SEND provision, please contact us Co-ordinator: Mrs Claire Foley admin@thevillageprepschool.com
  • Transport links


    Public Transport
    Nearest London tube station: Chalk Farm, Belsize Park
    Nearest London Overground station: Hampstead Heath, Kentish Town West


  • Parents tell us

    ‘We chose The Village Prep because of its small size and sense of community. I sensed we would be names and faces rather than numbers. Fantastic outside space. Staff clearly passionate about what they are doing. Loved the no homework policy.

    We hadn't really considered single sex education but the headteacher really sold it to us. Our daughter loved the school when she visited. 

    With the admissions process our daughter didn't realise it was happening which at two is all you can hope for! For us, we felt welcomed and we were given lots of time.

    We loved the headteacher’s passion and that she let the amazing girls that attend the school show us around and 'sell' the school themselves.

    I love that our daughter has time (even in pre prep) with the head and that she spends time with the little ones. Honestly, I cannot fault the staff at all so far!

    There is quite a lot of communication and quite a few things to keep up with as a parent. The doors are always open. 

    The report we received certainly seems to have a good sense of who our daughter is as a person - her strengths and challenges.

    There is a real sense of community. Have loved trying to get to know the parents of the children in our daughter's class. 

    We're super happy.’

School Updates

  • 10 Questions with Kirstie Hampshire, head of The Village School for Girls

    10 Questions with Kirstie Hampshire, head of The Village School for Girls
  • See The Village in our London Prep Schools Guide

    See The Village in our London Prep Schools Guide
  • The Village Prep Pupil Editors

    The Village Prep Pupil Editors
  • WATCH: The Village Prep Pupil Editor - the next David Attenborough?

    WATCH: The Village Prep Pupil Editor - the next David Attenborough?
  • WATCH: 10 Questions with pupils from The Village Prep School

    WATCH: 10 Questions with pupils from The Village Prep School
  • WATCH: Remembrance Day 2022 from Chatsworth Schools

    WATCH: Remembrance Day 2022 from Chatsworth Schools
  • Chatsworth Schools wins Education Provider of the year

    Chatsworth Schools has won Education Provider of the year at the 2022 Education Investor Awards for the second year running. The awards event was held on the evening of 8th November at the Park Plaza, Westminster Bridge Hotel.
    Chatsworth Schools wins Education Provider of the year
  • It takes a Village - The Village Prep School podcast

    It takes a Village - The Village Prep School podcast

The Village School for Girls is
linked with:

Essentials

Address
2 Parkhill Road, Belsize Park, London NW3 2YN

Contact
admin@thevillageprepschool.com
020 7485 4673

Website
thevillageprepschool.com

ISI Report

Fees

Term Dates


Open Days

Open days and how to visit View Open Days Register for open Day

Open Morning 9.30am-11.30am
08 May 2024
Open Morning 9.30am-11.30am
19 June 2024


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