FAQs — Senior School | Streatham & Clapham High School


How many students are in each class?

In Year 7 (Upper 3rd) girls are in form groups of around 24 but are taught in smaller classes for subjects including Maths, Science and Modern Foreign Languages.
The average GCSE class size is 16. For the Sixth Form the average class size is 8.

Do you stream/set girls?

Girls in Year 7 are not set for any subject, so they have an equal opportunity to develop regardless of material covered in their previous school.
In Years 8 (Lower 4th) and 9 (Upper 4th), girls are set for Mathematics, English, Science and Modern Foreign Language.

Is the school library open before and after school?

The Senior School Library is open from 7.30am until 5pm every school day.

Do girls study all three sciences or are they combined?

The girls study Science in the Upper Third and Lower Fourth, this is delivered by one or two teachers. In the Upper Fourth, the students begin AQA GCSE Science which is delivered as three separate sciences by specialist teachers.

What languages do girls study?

In Year 7 (Upper 3rd) pupils study French, Latin and Mandarin. Spanish is introduced in Year 8 (Lower 4th).
From Year 9, students continue with two modern foreign languages and Latin. For GCSE, students are encouraged to continue with a language.
In order to study French, Latin, Mandarin or Spanish at GCSE and beyond, you MUST have studied these languages during Years 7 (Upper 3rd), 8 (Lower 4th) or 9 (Upper 4th).

What provision do you have for bilingual girls?

We have a programme for speakers of French, German, Italian, Spanish and Mandarin. In Years 7 (Upper 3rd), 8 (Lower 4th) and 9 (Upper 4th), bilingual pupils do not attend normal lessons in the relevant language and instead receive tuition from a native speaker or qualified teacher.
The extra language GCSE is usually sat at the end of Year 9 (Upper 4th) and the decision to enter a pupil for the early exam is made with careful consideration.

How much homework should girls expect?

In Year 7 (Upper 3rd), girls are given a maximum of four subject homework each evening. Each is expected to take around 20 minutes.

What Music provision do you have?

Music is a classroom subject for all girls in Years 7 to 9 (Upper 3rd – Upper 4th) and a popular GCSE choice in Years 10 and 11 (Lower 5th and Upper 5th). Every year girls choose Music A Level and go on to study at leading universities and conservatoires. There are three choirs offering differing repertoire, a large school orchestra, Advanced Chamber Ensemble, and many smaller ensembles.
Many learn instruments and around 250 instrumental lessons are taught each week, with a visiting specialist staff of 17. Some pupils also study at the Junior Conservatoires or are members of regionally and nationally auditioned choirs and orchestras. The Senior Chamber Choir performs Evensongs at London Cathedrals and Oxbridge Colleges each year, whilst also performing a large-scale work.  The school regularly provides choruses for the Royal Opera House and we have provided 25 girls for the last two productions of Carmen there.  We also produce operas in school – most recently John Blow’s Venus and Adonis.
There are opportunities to compose and to have your work performed. Concerts range from the regular Informal lunchtime concerts, to instrumental and vocal showcases and larger termly ensemble performances.

When do girls have Music lessons – do they have to miss other lessons or is it during break times?

Lessons are available for the full range of instruments, including drums and voice. In Years 7–9 (Upper 3rd – Upper 4th) these are scheduled on a rota basis throughout the day (8am to 5.15pm).
From year 10 (Lower 5th) upwards, Music lessons do not clash with any academic classes. There are special arrangements for players of two or more instruments.

What sports do girls play?

All girls have lessons in netball, hockey, cricket, cross – country, fitness and athletics (both indoor and outdoor)
The extra – curricular programme includes netball, hockey, cricket, athletics, cross – country, gymnastics, football, rowing, badminton and dance.
Girls can try out for the rowing squad in Year 9. Rowing can also be chosen as a Kinza activity.
The Sixth Form Centre has its own Fitness Suite. The school has achieved particular success in hockey, rowing, gymnastics, cross country, football, biathlon, netball and acrobatic gymnastics. In rowing, girls compete at the Head of the River and Nationals – some of the biggest events in the sport. Tennis coaching is available before school and at lunchtimes.

Where do girls play sport?

We have a Sports hall, Fitness suite, dance studio, full size hockey all weather pitch, tennis and netball courts on-site.
We row at Barn Elms and the school has membership of the Barn Elms Rowing Club.

What about Computing and ICT?

Computer Science with an emphasis on computational thinking and problem-solving skills is embedded in the KS3 curriculum. Students are encouraged to think creatively about technology and its positive impact on the community.
Upper 3 start coding with the Python programming language and gain an understanding of the basic programming constructs. This leads into Lower 4 where pupils deepen their knowledge of hardware, use HTML to create websites and apply their knowledge of the Python programming language. In Upper 4 pupils develop their knowledge of computing theory, for example, using logic gates, truth tables and binary numbers.
Computer Science is an option for GCSE and A Level. The school’s secure virtual learning environment means that girls have access to their school email and learning resources across campus and from home.

Do you offer scholarships and/or bursaries?

At 11+, all applicants are automatically considered for an Academic scholarship. Music, Art, Drama and Sports scholarships are also available. At Sixth Form, current pupils and external candidates are eligible to apply for an Academic, Music, Art, Drama and Sport scholarship.
We are keen to offer the opportunity of a Streatham & Clapham education to applicants regardless of their family’s financial circumstances and offer a number of means-tested bursaries. An award can be up to 100 per cent of school fees dependent on individual circumstances, with joint household income and assets taken into account.

Do you have a House system?

There are five Houses
Paston Brown
We hold regular House assemblies where girls make friendships across year groups through regular House competitions in sport, drama and debating. Each pupil is placed in a House as soon as she arrives.

What about Pastoral Care?

We pride ourselves on the quality of our pastoral care. The happiness, personal development and wellbeing of our pupils comes before all else. Your daughter is supported by her Form Tutor, her House Mistress or Master and every member of staff in the school.
The House Mistress/Master is a guiding influence who will really get to know a pupil and who can build relationships with her and her parents for the following seven years.
Excellent communication with parents, and within the staff body, is pivotal so students know there is always someone available to listen.

What trips do you offer for Year 7?

Upper Third take part in a team building activity early in the school year, as well as trips to support the subject curriculum.

Are girls offered careers guidance?

Our bespoke careers programme offers support on subject options, work experience, CV optimisation, interview technique, career paths, as well as helping to develop real-world skills for the future.
There are regular careers evenings and lunches and external careers fair visits. There are talks with business leaders and visiting entrepreneurs. We also run an annual entrepreneurship initiative which involves a Lower Fifth sales fair. The Lower Fifth also spend a week in industry in the summer term.
We have a dedicated Oxbridge and Competitive University Specialist who works in-house to guide and support students through their applications.
Alumnae lunches link students with current and recent SCHS undergraduates, giving them insight into university life.

What extension activities do you offer?

Everything from Drama Society to a Dungeons and Dragons group to Debating Society. Our weekly Sapientia Society provides academic enrichment for the younger years.  
Our timetabled Kinza programme gives the girls the opportunity to explore various types of subject enrichment freely, with no examination pressure at the end, all the while enjoying the process of learning and developing new skills.  Each Kinza course reflects the personal interests and expertise of the teaching staff.

There are trips to Iceland, China, Israel and Berlin, to name a few.

Do you accept applications from international students?

Whilst we welcome applications from pupils that are overseas at the time of applying, they must have a permanent status in the UK when they join Streatham & Clapham High School.  Streatham & Clapham High School is a day school, therefore we are unable to offer boarding arrangements and applicants must have a parent, education guardian or legal guardian living within a reasonable distance of the school with whom they can reside.
In order to cope with the high academic and social demands of the school, applicants must be fluent English speakers (we have a programme to support bilingual students who are speakers of French, Italian, Spanish or Mandarin). It would help if the applicant is already following the British curriculum, however, this is not a prerequisite.

What does the motto mean?

Our motto: ad sapientiam sine metu (‘towards wisdom unafraid’).
Our vision: To be unrivalled in empowering our young women to discover, nurture and project their unique identities and character.
Our purpose: To enable every girl to achieve beyond the bound of expectation on a daily basis, across the spectrum of endeavour.
What are the distinctive features of SCHS?
We nurture, not coerce, excellence
We are a family, not a factory, school
We celebrate difference through our buzzy, diverse community, drawing strength from all that is great about London
We have an unstinting commitment to innovation; we do not stand still but are trailblazers
We draw strength from being part of the GDST family of schools, being pioneers in, and the shapers of, girls’ education.

Is there a school bus service?

A school bus service for Junior and Senior pupils operates to and from school. From September 2020 there will be six bus routes in operation: Please see our website for current routes. Each May, we ask parents of new students if they are interested in using the minibus service. Once we know where the demand is, we can plan our new routes for Autumn accordingly. We do try to accommodate as many stops as possible.

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