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It can be surprisingly difficult to choose a school. Of course, each one has a beautiful brochure and an attractive website, so how can you know which is the right one? I understand the challenge: I have 3 children with large age gaps between them, so I have been deciding on the right schools for one of them for over 20 years now. Our family has been lucky enough to benefit from a Catholic grammar school, a boarding school at the top of a mountain, a Steiner Waldorf education, a top state school in the UK, a tutorial college and even a brief stay at a school in China. Where this education took my children is equally varied: One is now teaching in Japan, another is studying Law in the Netherlands and the youngest is auditioning for drama school in the UK at the moment. In English, we have a lovely expression ‘Horses for Courses’. Just as some horses win races on particular ground, but don’t do so well on others, children thrive in different environments.

Our job as parents is to know our children and provide the opportunities they need to become the best person they can be.

We know that choosing a school can change our child’s life, so it is exciting, but also a significant responsibility. I was fortunate enough to be professionally involved in the field and therefore know the options. I have been the principal of an international school as well as a boarding school teacher and head of house. I have been working in major exchange organisations for many years, helping thousands of young people to study in Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Japan, France, Canada and the USA. It has been a pleasure to return to the UK after half a lifetime abroad and be able to say with knowledge and confidence that this country has an excellent system of state and private schools. It is now a privilege to welcome approximately 150 new students a year to our country and see them flourish in our great schools.

Our job as education professionals is to know the options well and make sure we are finding the ideal setting for each child.

We hope that parents can relax a little, knowing that they have experts to help them. We know that children will embark on an amazing cultural, personal and educational journey with us.

Juliet Cassells

 

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