Queen's College

Logo of Queen's College

Pupils Info

Gender – Girls School
Age range – Age 4-18
Number of pupils on roll – 520 Pupils

Characteristics

Average Class Size: 20
Day and Boarding School
Oxbridge Entrance Percentage: 8%
Day: £5,640 Boarding: £9,400
A* to B at A-Level Percentage: 83%

Unlike many London girl’s schools, the great emphasis at Queen’s is on individuality: each girl is encouraged to tread her own path and is given as much support as she needs to do this. Though the school is over-subscribed, the admission process is not based purely on academic criteria. Consequently, though the school is relatively small (just 350 students), there is still a large range of girls of different abilities and backgrounds. However, although the school is still avowedly uncompetitive (no houses, few competitions, no formal award ceremonies), the new headmistress, Dr Frances Ramsey, who was appointed in 2008 (fresh from Westminster School where she was Head of History and Director of Studies), is keen to up the school’s academic ante. To that end, girls have increasingly been encouraged to take more GCSEs and triple honours science has been introduced for the top set. Pupils, parents and alumnae rave about the arts at Queens, which are imbued with just as much importance as the academic departments. While the school is set on Harley Street, you would be hard put to find a more central location.

Background and Reputation

Queen’s College is on the up. Though the school’s ethos has long been ‘learning for learning’s sake’, under the aegis of newish headmistress Dr Ramsey, this is increasingly being turned into good solid academic results. For the last 10 years, the public exam grades have been steadily improving; significantly this has not been to the detriment of the extracurricular activities and ethos of the school. Tiny class sizes mean that Queen’s is a cosy place: teachers and students rub along remarkably well, while parents are actively encouraged to nip in and out of school during the academic day. Significantly, although the school turns out happy well-rounded girls, on the whole they defy any more specific pigeon holing.

Academic and Exit Results

Queen’s College’s exam results have been steadily climbing, as has its position in the League Tables. In 2012, 20.8% of grades were A, 54.3% were A to A and 82.9% A* to B, with an 100% pass rate. The A Level results were even better (the class sizes averaging around 8 per class definitely help): 23.4% of grades were A*, 56.2% were A, 83.2% were B and 96% achieved C. The school’s all-rounder ethos has arguably held it back from greater Oxbridge success, for although 100% of Queen’s girls go on to Higher Education (lots go to Art Foundation Courses); just 8% go to Oxbridge. This however is changing, with record Oxbridge places offered to the graduating class of 2013.

Social and Pastoral

Queen’s College girls are known for their chattiness. This is fostered within the classroom as much as anywhere else: the small classes mean that all are expected to participate and give presentations to their form-mates; outside of school too, a Queen’s girl would never pass a teacher in the street without hailing them down and having a gossip. The school’s prime location on Harley Street means that, whether the girls stay at school to hang out after lessons are done or head straight for Starbucks, school life and friendship continue long after official school time.

Sport, Art, Music and Drama

Although Sport at Queen’s is slightly restricted by their being no games pitches on campus; Regent’s Park is only short walk away. There, girls take part in cross-country running, gymnastics, lacrosse, netball, tag rugby, rounders and tennis. There is also a new very smart onsite gymnasium where the girls do badminton, basketball, boxercise, circuit training, volleyball and yoga. Participation in sport is taken particularly seriously in years 7, 8 and 9, where girls have 6 periods of compulsory sport, including one of dance, each week. Once the students are in their GCSE years, although sport remains compulsory, they are allowed much greater freedom in what sport they choose to play. This is in addition to the option of taking GCSE Dance and GCSE PE. Art is brilliantly taught at Queen’s. Although the space is limited: there is only one studio, the attention expended on the Art students is not. Each girl is encouraged to develop their own particular style, and their sketchbooks are pored over with seriousness and attention. The limited studio space also means that art spills out into the rest of the school; the corridors are covered with amazing works from girls of all ages. Taking Art as a GCSE or A Level has none of the hit and miss type chance that it does at some other schools where large departments can mean that some students end up floundering from lack of attention. If you take Art as an academic subject at Queen’s, you will be nurtured and encouraged all the way, and are likely to achieve some pretty impressive results. Music at Queen’s takes place in the cellars, yet the acoustics are surprisingly good and the old wine racks seem purpose built to store instruments. There is a long tradition of good music at Queen’s, from orchestras that play around London to a newly formed school opera company that works with Bampton Classical Opera and the Little Opera Company. Hundreds of individual singing and instrument lessons take place each week, while a large proportion of girls take music for GCSE and A Level. Drama at Queen’s is very popular. There is a huge school play at the end of the Michaelmas term; recent productions include Menken and Ashman’s ‘Little Shop of Horrors’ and Arthur Miller’s ‘The Crucible’. Year 7 also put on yearly classical productions, and a surprising number of operas are staged for a school. Though Drama GCSE and Theatre Studies A Level are popular, a large number of girls choose to pursue the theatre either by taking Speech and Drama as an option or getting involved in one of the school productions which are open to all.

Extracurricular

The best thing about clubs and societies at Queen’s is how much they engage with the rest of London: whether you are a member of the cerebral Athena Club or the intriguing sounding Lingo Flamingo Club, there will be guest speakers and trips round the city. Duke of Edinburgh is a big thing at Queen’s too, and offers a great chance to for the girls to bond with their peers outside the city, as well as to learn some wilderness skills: something that might tend to be neglected by a school in the middle of Harley Street.

Contact

Get in touch via email, phone or visit us.

Queen's College

Head: Dr Frances Ramsey

Telephone: 0207 291 7000

www.qcl.org.uk

Address: 43-49 Harley street London W1G 8BT

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