United Kingdom / Greater London / Marylebone / Queen's College Preparatory School, London

Queen's College Preparatory School, London Review

A popular, kind and caring school on the London girls’ day school scene where girls learn within a very supportive learning environment
At a glance
School type
Private
School phase
Primary
Inspection rating
Excellent
Curricula taught
Availability 2021/22
No data
Availability 2022/23
No data
Annual fee average
GBP 20,500
Annual fees
GBP 19,530–21,090
Price band help
Premium
Status
Open
Gender
Opening year
1848
School year
Sep to Jul
Principal
Ms Laura Hill
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Queen's College Preparatory School, London
School type
Private
School phase
Primary
Inspection rating
Excellent
Curricula taught
Availability 2021/22
No data
Availability 2022/23
No data
Annual fee average
GBP 20,500
Annual fees
GBP 19,530–21,090
Price band help
Premium
Status
Open
Gender
Opening year
1848
School year
Sep to Jul
Principal
Ms Laura Hill
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A popular, kind and caring school on the London girls’ day school scene where girls learn within a very supportive learning environment

Queen's College Preparatory School is an independent day school for girls aged four to 11 years which Headmistress Laura Hall describes as being “a place of creativity, conviviality and cosiness, where each girl can happily play, learn and thrive. 

QCPS occupies a large house on Portland Place, and many girls move up to the Senior school which occupies four houses on Harley Street in central London. It’s been educating girls for 175 years and was the first British school to give academic qualifications to women. Class sizes are average for a public school, with up to 22 students, which helps teachers to deliver a high degree of personalised learning. 

QCPS puts student wellbeing front and centre. As it says, “We have always instinctively known that girls can only reach their true potential if they are happy and well supported at home and at school.” Parents can feel confident that their daughter is learning and growing within a very supportive environment, and they will develop the self-awareness to find their own wellbeing strategies.

QCPS has a small cohort of 200 girls from a range of backgrounds and areas of London. 

Curriculum

Queen’s follows an expanded National Curriculum for England throughout Prep, which includes lessons in music, art & design, French, games, swimming, gymnastics, computer science, drama & dance, each taught by specialist teachers with a passion and expertise in their subject. 

It is described as a rigorous curriculum that prepares students for 11+ entrance into Queen’s and other senior schools across London. While most students move up to Queen’s, there are several going to schools including City of London School for Girls, More House School land Francis Holland Regent's Park; in 2022 there were 17 scholarships awarded.

Computer science covers a wide range of skills including website design and blogging; there’s a new STEM Laboratory that is used to encourage an early love for science; and students use the theatre at the Queen’s campus for drama lessons and rehearsals. The school also takes full advantage of its central London location by taking students on a wide variety of trips and visits to the capital’s galleries, museums and exhibitions. 

Sport and the arts

There is great provision for drama, dance and music, all of which can be studied right through to A Level at the senior school. The music department includes five bespoke music-teaching rooms, a large music classroom and a handcrafted S4 Yamaha grand piano, as well as class sets of ukuleles, djembe and dun-dun drums, marimbas; the majority of girls learn at least one instrument.

There are plenty of musical and dramatic performances, as well as co-curricular clubs. Dance is particularly strong with genres including Jazz, Ballet and Musical Theatre being taught from Reception; it helps to prepare girls for the excellent dance opportunities offered at Harley Street.

As a city centre school with just a large private garden, you wouldn’t expect it to attract the sportiest of students. However, Queen’s makes full use of local sports facilities to ensure that it can teach all the traditional sports (including football, tag rugby and cricket) to girls in all year groups. Students use facilities at the nearby Paddington Recreation Ground, Finsbury Park and Regent's Park for sports such as netball, tennis, hockey, tennis, rounders and athletics. 

Beyond the classroom

Queen’s offers a co-curricular programme with clubs and societies covering the arts, sport, and outdoor education. Students can attend Forest School, take the lead in the student-led Eco Committee, play team sports such as netball, or enrol in the resident Dance Academy.

Academic results

For parents looking ahead to their child studying at Queen’s, this is a high achieving school with improving results. 

In 2021, 32% of A Level students achieved A*, 78.7% were A*-A and 95% were A*-B; 66% of GCSE students scored 9-8 and 87% were graded 9-7. While these grades are higher than previous years, Queen’s does consistently perform well above average. In 2019, the last year that exams were sat, 15.8% of A Level students achieved A*, 46.8% were A*-A and 79% were A*-B; 53% of GCSE students scored 9-8 and 77% were graded 9-7

As a selective school, it is unsurprising to see that Queen’s delivers strong academic results and has a high percentage of high achievers. Leavers destinations include Oxbridge and Russell Group universities including UCL, Bristol, Bath, King’s College London and Durham. You can have high expectations for your child’s tertiary education here. There’s also an increasing number of students choosing to study at US universities. 

Admission and fees

The most common point of entry is Reception (aged four), and all applicants attend a play-based assessments in school and a group parent meeting with the Headmistress.

Looking ahead, the main point of entry to Queen's College, London is at 11+. As a member of the London 11+ Consortium, Queens has three stages of assessment which includes an entrance exam, an interview and a reference from the applicant's current school. Applicants come from across London, from a wide range of both independent prep schools and state primaries. 

Admission to the Sixth Form is based on an interview with the Head of the Senior College and a good reference (with predicted GCSE grades) from the applicant’s current school.

Annual fees range from £19,530 to £21,090.

Our view

Good for: QCPS offers excellent preparation for moving onto leading selective senior schools across London (including Queen's College, London), and there's a good mix of different nationalities and cultural backgrounds for those looking for a diverse community. It's also one of the leading prep schools for girls in London, so definitely one to consider if single-sex education is a priority. QCPS can offer parents who a supportive, friendly school with a caring family feel, and its small community of 200 girls means that your daughter will be very much 'known' within the school.

Not for: As a city-based school, outdoor space is limited so don't come here looking for the vast sports pitches and woodlands of the many country prep schools located just outside London. With its demanding academic curriculum, this is also a school for girls who relish being challenged; while one of the school's strengths is its nurturing atmosphere, it is also very much a school for eager (and able) learners.

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