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Mrs Austin stresses that this isn’t a school full of ‘frightened little rabbits – we don’t want to be the sweet little girls’ school but the excellent girls’ school where they grow up into confident young ladies ready for the next step.’ Year 5 pupil, diligently putting final touches to delightful Father’s Day specs case, very definitely no Cottontail. ‘I’ll expect something in return,’ she said. ‘This has taken all year.’

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What the school says...

Halstead Preparatory School is an independent school with a Christian ethos and family atmosphere for girls from Nursery (aged 2) to age 11. Every girl is known and taught as an individual in a stimulating environment where respect and kindness towards each other is the norm. We pride ourselves in giving every girl an excellent and thorough preparation for senior school entry, but most importantly in preparing every girl for a happy and successful life.
In the Nursery girls may attend part-time or full-time; parents can decide how many sessions their daughter attends in a week (we recommend a minimum of 3 of the 10 available sessions). From Reception all girls attend school full-time. There are two classes in each year from Reception to Year 6. The maximum class size in Reception-Year 2 is 16; in Years 3-6 it is 18. These small classes enable us to cater for individual learning needs and allow teachers the time to support and challenge each girl appropriately. We run a minibus pick-up service in the mornings in the Woking area.
Within our idyllic setting the girls benefit from a wide range of opportunities in first-class facilities for learning and play as well as the expertise and enthusiasm of well-qualified specialist teachers. The three courts and open green space provide plenty of opportunities for sports including netball, hockey, tennis, rounders and athletics and include a newly installed adventure play area. Our sports hall is also home to our large stage on which every girl performs in a production every year and the music suite allows for class music lessons as well as individual instrumental lessons. The bespoke science laboratory enables the girls to develop their investigative skills as scientists through practical experiments. Creative skills are developed in the bespoke Art & Design Technology classroom and culinary delights are created in our state of the art Food Technology classroom. ICT is used across the curriculum as a learning tool with an up-to-date ICT suite, interactive whiteboards in each classroom and iPads for pupils to use. As well as classroom libraries the main school Library is a well-stocked resource where reading for pleasure and research are actively encouraged.
We work closely with parents as they choose the senior school that is right for their daughter and are very proud of the results achieved by Halstead girls in the entrance examinations – the results and long history of scholarships speak for themselves. The girls leave Halstead aged 11 as happy individuals confident in their abilities, interests and talents with a thirst for learning, many friends and so much to look forward to.
A parent recently wrote: 'Halstead is an amazing school, with an amazing staff and a special Halstead magic; I am very appreciative of everything that you have done for my daughter.'
You are warmly invited to see our happy and nurturing school in action on any school day or on our next Open Morning or Open Evening.
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What The Good Schools Guide says


Since 2013, Mrs Penny Austin BA. Age not disclosed so we’ll hazard 40s. Previously head of Walthamstow Hall Junior School, which she joined in January 2004 after working for 10 years at Ardingly College Prep School, starting off as class teacher and promoted to deputy headship in 2002, when also became an independent schools inspector. Musical training – was a professional singer - took her into schools where was willingly subsumed into world of education. Led inexorably to a PGCE followed by two years as class teacher in state primaries in Brighton and East Sussex before move to independent sector.

Whether in academic dress for special occasion assemblies or – admirably - working as a teaching assistant with all year groups (ensures she knows pupils and staff inside out), style...

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