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A lot at Knighton happens in fresh air. They play outside in their dens, make up games with bits of sticks, climb trees and converse with ponies, goats, hamsters etc. We watched them at it. A delight. What they (arguably) do best indoors is sing. The music-making tradition here is as old as the ponies. Overnighting and weekending joyously popular because the boarding staff are lovely and make it such fun, and the head of boarding is a force of nature...

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What the school says...

Set in 30 acres of glorious Dorset countryside, just outside Bryanston School, Knighton House is a small, vibrant and wonderfully unique girls prep school. The happy atmosphere emanates from the relaxed nature of the pupils and the overall policy of hard work and fun.

Pupils are prepared for common entrance or scholarship at 13+ to a variety of senior schools, but equal importance is placed on activities outside the curriculum and on offering as many opportunities to the children as possible. Accordingly, Knighton House is renowned for its exceptionally high standards in music, art and drama and its huge spectrum of activities. Sporting achievement is highly valued too with an ever broadening range of options.

Small pets and ponies may come to the school with the children provided they are as well behaved as their owners! Riding alternates between lessons in the school, over the cross country course or hacks on the miles of bridle paths around the school.

Flexibility is a key factor in Knighton life and extends to the option of day or boarding life here. Children are welcome for as few as two nights a week, to as many as seven or none at all - but few can resist the outstanding pastoral care. Day girls and boarders alike have plenty of people with whom to share exciting news or worries.
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Equestrian centre or equestrian team - school has own equestrian centre or an equestrian team.


What The Good Schools Guide says


Since 2014, Mrs Sarah Wicks, previously deputy head. BEd from the University of Hertfordshire; taught at a state primary in Mill Hill and the Royal Masonic School before joining Knighton in 1995 as head of drama and junior class teacher. She's been there ever since, rising through senior mistress to deputy and then head. Retires July 2017.


Non-selective. Come any time so long as there’s room. Invariably an ongoing swelling of numbers by children unhappy at their present school. Taster days. Scholarships. Bursaries (Greenwood Awards) for families who wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford it. Parents local, Forces and expats. Not much of an ethnic mix, this being Dorset, but it wouldn’t be an issue in the slightest. Always a horizon-broadening contingent from Spain, France, Italy, Belgium.

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Special Education Needs

Knighton House is a mainstream academic school. It provides tuition for children with mild to moderate learning difficulties in the areas of numeracy and literacy. The school has a learning support unit and staff are qualified to meet the needs of children with specific learning difficulties.

Condition Provision for in school
ASD - Autistic Spectrum Disorder Y
Aspergers Syndrome [archived]
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorders Y
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorders [archived]
CReSTeD registered for Dyslexia
Delicate Medical Problems [archived]
Dyslexia Y
English as an additional language (EAL) Y
Epilepsy [archived]
Has an entry in the Autism Services Directory
Has SEN unit or class Y
HI - Hearing Impairment
Hospital School
Mental health
MLD - Moderate Learning Difficulty
MSI - Multi-Sensory Impairment
Natspec Specialist Colleges
Not Applicable
OTH - Other Difficulty/Disability
Other SpLD - Specific Learning Difficulty
PD - Physical Disability
PMLD - Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulty
SEMH - Social, Emotional and Mental Health
SLCN - Speech, Language and Communication
SLD - Severe Learning Difficulty
Special facilities for Visually Impaired
SpLD - Specific Learning Difficulty
VI - Visual Impairment

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