We have compiled a set of answers to questions we often get asked at our Open Mornings and during parent visits. Please have a look through these by clicking on each one.

Should your question not appear in this list then please use the contact form at the bottom of the page to ask any specific questions you may have.

What are your goals for the pupils at Blue Coat?

Broadly speaking, our aim is for the children to become well-rounded, happy, helpful and resourceful. They’ll be confident but modest, personable, and keen to make a positive contribution as they move on to their senior schools. They’ll know how to work hard and they won’t be daunted by a challenge. Do come and meet some of them yourself!

What balance do you achieve between work and play?

Our 11+ leavers have long enjoyed excellent results, winning places and scholarships at many of the region’s top schools. To this end, our schemes of work emphasise the importance of a continuous education from 2-11. However, at Blue Coat we nurture all our children’s talents and abilities, whether academic, sporting or artistic. After all, education is about much more than academic results!

How much emphasis is put on sport?

There are all kinds of sports at Blue Coat. The major sports (Hockey, Netball, Rounders, Rugby, Football, Cricket, Athletics and Swimming) are there for everybody to enjoy, and these are balanced by a number of supplementary sports (Fencing, Golf, Judo and Tennis, for example). Many of the children have the chance to represent the school in matches – and there are plenty of other opportunities for everybody to shine in the sporting arena.

Will my child develop his/her creative talents?

Yes! Blue Coat is renowned for excellence in the Creative and Performing Arts. All our children enjoy making music, whether playing, singing or composing. Regular concerts take place both in and out of school, offering children frequent opportunities to perform before an audience. Children of all abilities are encouraged to take part in Dance and Drama, which like Music, are major strengths. Musicals such as Oliver! and Mary Poppins are highlights of the year, immensely enjoyed by pupils, parents and staff alike. Painting, textile composition, pottery or media studies? Whatever your child’s artistic gifts, we aim to cater for them. Excellent teaching in modern facilities provides superb creative opportunities.

What about life beyond the classroom?

Around 50 extra-curricular activities take place each week, ranging from Ballet and Club Français to Aston Villa Football in Pre-Prep and from Cheerleading, Juggling and Literary Film Club to Spellodrome in Prep. Many of the activities take place at lunchtime, and some after school, and we actively encourage the children to develop a range of interests outside the classroom. There really is something for everyone!

What’s the food like?

Our catering is provided by Holroyd Howe, a company founded in 1997 by two chefs passionate about providing quality food to independent schools. We offer a considerable choice of food at lunch: options include a choice of two hot meals, a jacket potato with a variety of fillings, and a salad bar with cold buffet. A vegetarian option is always available, and special diets are catered for by request. For dessert we offer a pudding, yoghurt or fresh fruit, and healthy snacks are available mid-morning.

What about the children’s happiness?

At Blue Coat we work hard to create an open and trusting atmosphere – supportive, encouraging, and free from teasing or bullying. Class Teachers and House Tutors are always there to lend a listening ear, and older children are taught how to look after those younger than themselves. We expect all the children to be considerate towards others – helping when asked, tidying their belongings, and showing respect for other people’s property.

What happens if my child is taken ill at school?

The school’s Health Centre is open from 8.30 am until 6.00 pm and is staffed by a qualified children’s nurse or a fully-qualified first aider. Children are cared for in comfortable surroundings and parents are informed immediately of any significant illness or accident. Many of the Buttons Nursery and Pre-Prep staff have a paediatric first aid qualification and are qualified to administer first aid as required.

What about holiday provision?

King’s Camps offer activities for children aged 5 and above for one week at Easter and for six weeks in the summer holidays. They sometimes offer activities during other school holidays too.

What exactly are the Houses?

The Houses – two boys’ and two girls’ – provide an important base for all the children in Prep. From 8.00 am our children are free to play and relax there with their friends before the start of morning school. At the end of the day, our late pick-up facility enables them to get on with their homework or play games until they are collected. Great for the children, very convenient for their parents – and there’s no additional charge for this facility! Since children aged 7-11 share the same House, it’s rather like being in a large family with lots of brothers or sisters. And numerous competitions and other events ensure healthy inter-house rivalry!

And the younger children?

Both Buttons Nursery and the rest of Pre-Prep offer Morning Care and Aftercare on a paid basis according to the number of sessions required (see the Scale of Fees & Charges). These sessions are again of considerable assistance to parents, and dovetail neatly with the extra-curricular activities available to Pre-Prep children on particular days. Care is taken to maintain the requisite staff: children ratios, and the children experience a range of stimulating indoor and outdoor activities over the course of the week.

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