Surrey prep schools - Aberdour & Hawthorns

(7 Posts)
Nico70 Wed 11-Sep-19 13:39:47

We are moving to Kingswood from Wimbledon and have decided to send our kids to a private school, mainly because my oldest struggles - more than the average 7 year old boy - with his attention span and may benefit from a more focused nurturing environment.

We are torn between Aberdour and Hawthorns and would love to hear any inside thoughts/views from parents who are familiar with either.

Hawthorns is a stunning school with amazing facilities and a warm friendly environment. We were totally sold having seen several schools. But I visited Aberdour today and the head has such a wonderful energy and such fantastic-sounding schemes in place to individually cater for each child and I must admit, against all expectations, I am wondering whether it would be the better choice. Aberdour does not have the wow factor of Hawthorns in its buildings and class rooms and indoor sports areas (appearance wise Hawthorns is in an entirely different league) and you can hear the A217 in many outside parts of Aberdour. But how important are those things for the children? I’m confused. Any help appreciated!

OP’s posts: |
JoJoSM2 Wed 11-Sep-19 14:02:44

In terms of nurturing schools, have you visited Ewell Castle? That's what they have a reputation for. Collingwood in Wallington is tiny and nurturing - some classes of 8-10 children but no proper facilities.

We're just looking around at the moment but I find Aberdour a bit gimmicky. Haven't been to Hawthorns as it's too far for us. Have you looked at Banstead Prep?

LIZS Wed 11-Sep-19 14:08:01

The facilities are only important if your child is going to benefit from them - are they sporty, musical, academic. Bear in mind M25/23 are close to H and you do hear the noise if the wind is in that direction. Not that it really bothers the children.

Nico70 Wed 11-Sep-19 18:07:19

Jojo - I haven’t looked at Ewell Castle, mainly because I thought it was selective (and I’m not considering selective schools) - is it? It’s not completely obvious from the website. I can see why Aberdour might appear gimmicky....but the gimmicks do appear to be delivering results and putting the school at the forefront of learning with technology. One of the reasons I was so impressed.

Liz - I wouldn’t be concerned about the distant hum of the M25 at Hawthorns - but Aberdour is literally fronting on to the A217. Still it’s not a major consideration, wouldn’t bother the kids as you say. Are you familiar with Hawthorns?

OP’s posts: |
LIZS Wed 11-Sep-19 18:11:18

H is selective, even if they claim otherwise.

JoJoSM2 Wed 11-Sep-19 20:36:52

Kids might not notice busy roads especially if you're moving from a more central location. As long as your son isn't asthmatic, he'll be fine.
I don't think Ewell Castle is selective. It's well liked for being nurturing and open to pupils who might not be that academic.

Lexy47 Thu 21-May-20 23:38:30

Hi. Moving to South Nutfield, east Surrey and would appreciate local knowledge of prep schools. Only one I’ve heard of is Hawthorns as friends went there about 20 years ago and loved it but heard some mixed reports recently. Any advice gratefully received!

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