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A Berkshire Mummies Review of Eton End School

(AD Disclaimer: This blog post was written in paid partnership with Eton End School. Views are those of Berkshire Mummies following a tour of the school in January 2023)

Overview of the School

Eton End School founded in 1936 are focused on the future and have impressive plans ahead. With a Headmistress on a mission and the full support of the governing body behind the plans, Eton End is an exciting place to be educating children of the future. The ethos behind the improvements to the school is to prepare children for the ‘world they are going into, not the world we have left behind’.

Eton End is a co-educational independent preparatory day school for children from rising 3 – 11 years old based in Datchet, set in 6 acres. The school is spilt into the Nursery, Pre-Prep and Prep School. The school is non-selective.

Eton End School
Photo by Liz Finlayson/Vervate Eton End School

The school website says Eton End has ‘a fun, happy and vibrant atmosphere where our children thrive in a supportive and collaborative environment. We teach the ‘whole child’, ensuring they have a genuine thirst and love of learning. Children who leave Eton End are rounded individuals who are well prepared for an exciting future on the next stage of their educational journey’.

The school motto, ‘I Am, I Can, I Ought, I will’ enables the school to help develop the children in their self-belief and self-confidence.

Eton End Cookery
Photo by Liz Finlayson/Vervate
The Future of Eton End

The school have been working closely with a psychologist. The changes ahead will support the children’s cognitive load, prepare them for a world of technology all whilst doing their part for the planet with their sustainable drive.

Eton End are changing the traditional classroom set up; forget tables and hard chairs lined up in a row in-front of the whiteboard and think, softer more comfy seating, tables where the children can opt to work standing or seated. No more bright colours and cluttered noticeboards, just subtle calming neutrals to stimulate the learning environment.

Eton End Reception
Photo by Liz Finlayson/Vervate

A Robotics and Digital Media lab is coming, supporting children to fully embrace the digital world which they will live and work in. A new specialist lab is being created alongside the appointment of a new Director of Digital Strategy. Every child from Year 3 upwards will have their own ipad device, connected to Microsoft Teams, where their work will be completed… don’t panic though, there will still be work completed with pen and paper but touch-typing will form part of the curriculum.

The Head

Mrs Rachael Cox has been Head at Eton End since September 2022, this is her second headship having previously been head at LVS Ascot Infant and Junior School. Mrs Cox has big plans for Eton End and change has already started to happen. Mrs Cox is a Head who likes to be actively involved with the school, knows all the children by name and during our tour many children were keen to show her their work or come for a little hug.

Mrs Cox wants children at Eton End to be wholesome happy children who are excited for life, whilst academics are important Eton End is aiming to support the whole child. The Head works closely with each child, their parents or guardians, staff and future senior schools to ensure the children are nurtured and inspired whilst having psychological security and happy childhoods.

Eton End Headmistress
Photo by Liz Finlayson/Vervate
School Life and the Curriculum

The school has a busy nursery which is split over a number of rooms, including an open area where the children can build their train tracks and play independently. The nursery contains all the elements of the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum and follows a topic which is built into the play and learning for the children to explore and discover. The nursery has been re-developed alongside the reception area in-light of the schools forward vision, which includes wooden natural furniture and neutral walls but there were still plenty of homemade pictures on display.

Eton End The Nest
Photo by Liz Finlayson/Vervate

The Pre-Prep incorporates Reception, Year 1 and 2 and this is where the children’s formal learning journey begins. The learning is topic based, however over the course of the pre-prep years learning becomes more subject focussed.

In Pre-Prep the children are taught French as well as Music and Physical Education by specialist staff. In Year 1 swimming at Eton College is added to the timetable and in Year 2 Art and DT taught in the Art Room form part of the curriculum.

In the Prep School a wide range of subjects are taught both inside and outside the classroom. Covering the core academic subjects alongside the physical and creative subjects, the children’s education is well-rounded to include Mathematics, English, Science, Languages, Art, Music, Sport and Drama. During Berkshire Mummies tour the children seemed hungry and all keen to demonstrate their learning and work.

For sport, pupils can play which ever sport they choose. There are no set sports for boys or girls.

Eton End Sports
Photo by Liz Finlayson/Vervate

Pastoral Care is of great importance. There are small class sizes, a strong pastoral system in place between pupil, parent and staff and a house system, which runs vertically across the school.

Extra-Curricular and Extended Provision

There are extra-curricular opportunities for the children during breaktimes, lunchtimes and after school including choir, dance, music and the library. Plus a full after school timetable of crafts, drama, sport and activity clubs which are run by the teachers.

The school also have a number of specialist coaches which visit the school for LAMDA drama classes, Gymnastics, Netball, Street Dance, Multi-sports, Football and Tennis.

Music is also on offer for children in Year 1 upwards from Peripatetic Music Teachers who visit the school.

In terms of extended provision there is before and after school provision on offer if you need your child to stay in school to help with childcare.

There are also school holiday camps run at the school as well.

Eton End
Facilities

Eton End is deceptive, as there is no large entrance and the school starts from the moment you enter the gates next to the road. However, behind the gates the school is set in 6 acres. Where you will find a large playing field, little woodland, outdoor classroom, garden, large welly store (always a good sign of plenty of outdoor play and learning) and a hard-court sports area. There are also a series of buildings with classrooms, art room, music room, science laboratory, learning support room, sports hall which is used for everything from assemblies to concerts. There is also a library and plans to make a dance and drama studio too, alongside the brand new Robotics and Digital Media Centre.

Although the school doesn’t have a swimming pool, it does have close historical links to Eton College and the school use Eton College’s swimming pool and other facilities.

Dining Room Eton End
Photo by Liz Finlayson/Vervate
Destination Schools

The school has good links with future destination schools and Mrs Cox is working hard to strengthen those relationships with fellow Heads.

Here is a list of the Destination Schools which the Eton End Summer 2022 leavers went on to.

Fees and Bursaries

Click here to view the school fees.

The number of bursaries offered each year varies and are at the discretion of the Board of Governors. Click here to find out more.

School Inspection

Eton End Prep School was last inspected in May 2019 and achieved ‘Excellent in All Areas’. Click here to read the latest inspection report.

How to Visit

Click here to find out more about the latest Open Morning, Personal Tours and Stay and Play sessions. Alternatively email the Registrar Abby Forster who will be more than happy to assist with any enquiries.

Website

Click here to view the school website.

You can also follow on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter

Conclusion

What really stood out for Berkshire Mummies during the tour of Eton End was the sense of community and warmth of the school. It was inspiring to hear the vision and forward plans to help prepare the pupils at the school for our future world. A sense of belonging really shone through, with weekend walks, theatre trips and Saturday Socials playing a key part to the week, allowing the whole community time to come together… the pupils, the families and the staff, giving a sense of togetherness and an understanding that it’s the whole community coming together that helps individuals to thrive.

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Disclaimer

This post was written in paid partnership with Eton End School. Berkshire Mummies was invited for a tour at Eton End School, this review is written based on what we saw and have learnt about the school doing our visit.

By Berkshire Mummies

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