As the start of the school year is looming, schools in London are not only getting ready to welcome their new cohorts, they are also preparing their so-called Open Days.
First and foremost, what is a School Open Day?
Well, as the name might indicate, this is a Day where schools open their doors to families whose children do not yet attend the school, but wish to visit the schools.
When do they take place?
They usually take place at the end of September, or during October.
How can I attend these Open Days?
The most important is to pre-register. Most schools will want to know who is coming to visit, for their own information, and for security purposes. So turning up at the door on the day is not recommended.
All schools advertise their open Days on their website, and an online registration for the Day is usually offered.
How can I prepare the visit(s)?
Get as much information on the school beforehand as possible:
- Which levels do they offer?
- Which extra-curricular activities?
- Who is the Head teacher?
- What are the specificities, if any?
- How many pupils?
Prepare your questions, and look interested on the day (without looking desperate).
Can I register my children on the day if I like the school?
Very probably not – most schools will offer advice as to how to fill out the application documents, but most schools will want to see these documents, and assess them, before offering a place.
Can I register my children without visiting a school?
Sometimes this is possible – only after speaking directly with the school (for private schools only – state schools do not require a visit).
Some private schools are adamant they want to see the children – in that case you can suggest to have a Skype interview if you cannot travel to the UK on time with the children.
And for oversubscribed schools, you will need to travel to London with the children.
Whilst this can seem daunting and expensive, this is a sign that schools take the quality of their pupils very seriously – so if you join, you will be grateful for that!
For further information about London schools, you can click here to access our information and free Guide to London Schools.