It doesn’t matter how much you love your job or how excited you are about calling London home; if your children are relocating with you, they will be your priority.
Choosing a school that matches your family’s requirements will, therefore, be one of the most important decisions you make during your move. Particularly if you plan on sending your children to a state school in the capital – according to the Good Schools Guide, there are 10 times more applications for good state schools than places available.
These statistics highlight the vital role your home search plays in the school search process. So, where should you focus this search to ensure you live within the catchment area of high-performing state schools?
The best London neighbourhoods for state schools
We’ve listed some boroughs below that score top of the class when it comes to good passes at GCSE in English and maths, based on state and grammar schools. A Borough is an administrative section of London, managed by a local authority, read our article: what is a London borough? to find out more.
1. Kingston & Sutton
A favourite amongst British families looking to settle slightly outside of London, whilst staying within easy reach. Average rental price for a 2 bedroom flat is £504 (Kingston) and £392 (Sutton) respectively*.
To find out more, read out article: Kingston upon Thames: where royal history meets modern suburbia
Located on the Northern edge of London, Barnet is an absolute favourite for families looking to live in larger houses with gardens, whilst keeping a public transport access to Central London. Average rental price per week £518 per week*.
To find out more, read out article: Barnet: where London meets the Hertfordshire countryside
A definite favourite amongst expatriate families for its amenities, excellent schools, Thames river access, great access to central London. Average rental price per week for a 1 bedroom flat is £381*.
To find out more, read out articles: Richmond: the beloved suburban area for expat families in London
4. Kensington and Chelsea
Definitely not the cheapest area in London. If you can afford it, great shopping, museums, and restaurants await you. Average rental price for a 1 bedroom flat per week £701 (Kensington) and £664 (Chelsea)*.
On the Eastern side of London, Redbridge offers families huge amounts of space – inside as properties start to get much bigger as in more central areas, and outside, with parks located on every corner of the Borough. Definitely a keeper. Average rental price for a 1 bedroom apartment per week £400*.
State schools are not what you think of first when thinking about Westminster, but their state schools are amongst the best in London – so it isn’t just about private schools here. Average rental price for a 1 bedroom flat per week £545*.
A fantastic location for affordable rents, great multicultural communities and all amenities one can dream of. Average rental price per week for a 1 bedroom flat is £357*.
To find our more, read out article: Ealing: a bright future for this West London neighbourhood
Another favourite of British families looking for more space when expanding their family size. Great access to Central London, more affordable rents. A good first step when exiting the urban life. Average rental price per week for a 1 bedroom apartment is £508*.
To find out more, read our article: Wandsworth: London riverside living at its best
Famous for some of the school carrying its name, Harrow also offers excellent access to Central London and a very strong community feel. Average rental price for a 1 bedroom flat is £329 per week*.
To find our more, read our article: Harrow: where leafy living meets metropolitan energy
House prices rise sharply within the narrow catchment area of Ofsted-rated “outstanding” state schools, whereas selective grammar schools don’t cast a catchment area as part of the selection process. Instead, potential pupils are required to take an entrance exam. Therefore, if you’re confident your child will pass, you might be able to purchase a well-priced home a little further away.
Find out more by reading our article: the best areas for grammar schools.
*This article has been reviewed in April 2022 for accuracy purposes. For up-to-date rental prices, you can subscribe to our London Membership where you will find the most recent rental prices for all London areas. You can find out more here.