Expert assistance in choosing the right IB school in the UK
Our main advisory services are aimed at UK private school placements. Most UK IB schools only offer the IB Diploma at 16+ and the PYP or MYP are only taught in a handful of international schools. The majority of UK IB schools offer the UK National Curriculum and GCSEs below age 16.
Choosing the right school for your child can be a complicated and confusing process. This is particularly the case at age 16+, when you may be considering which curriculum would be best, as well as the type of school or college your child would thrive at. Depending on your circumstances and availability we may need to recommend your child changes schools at 11 or 16 or both. We like to use our philosophy of an “Education for Life”, planning school applications (and any necessary changes) all the way up to 18 plus university entry.
We can talk you through the pros and cons of the IB vs A-Levels or the American AP curriculum and help you find schools appropriate to your child’s needs. We talk to you at length about your priorities and aspirations and can help you through all aspects of the registration and admissions process.
Some parents think that it is simply a matter of finding a school in the right location at the right price, but at the senior end there are hugely important decisions to be made about the six subject components of the IBDP curriculum. The IBDP is an immensely demanding programme which in some respects can be far more work than A-Levels. To be successful, students must be highly organised and committed. The choice of three subjects each at Higher and Standard Level is very important, because HL is far more work intensive than SL. Even more importantly, the subject choice must be compatible with any university degree targets. Thus, your child needs a school which actually offers the subjects needed (not all do) and teachers for the HL subjects who are interesting and motivational to encourage your child to get maximum points. Let us use our expertise to guide you to the right decisions on subject and school choice.
In the UK, a greater proportion of private schools are “selective” which means they set admissions tests for which the scores can be quite challenging in the higher-achieving schools. We can offer to assess your child to see the likelihood of passing such tests. If necessary, we can also recommend tutors to attend to any areas of weakness to prepare for entrance exams. There are also a few non-selective schools, which base admissions on previous school reports rather than tests. Whilst always respecting parents' aspirations, we will recommend schools that are appropriate to your child's ability and likelihood of being offered a place.
Many of our client parents approach us because they want top-achieving IB schools and we are the only organisation to run dedicated IB league tables. Whilst we do specialise in placements into elite IB schools, it is wise to let us assess your child to measure their likelihood of gaining entry to a top-ranking school. Additionally, to gain admission to such schools, you will generally need to start the application process at least a year in advance of entry.
In the UK a significant proportion of private IB schools are boarding schools, but most of these take day pupils as well. UK boarding schools rarely take boarders under the age of seven.
If you have a child with Special Educational Needs, the PYP and MYP may work well for them, but the language requirements and amount/range of work involved in the IB Diploma programme can be challenging. Discuss with us, because SEN children are sometimes better taking practical career-oriented subjects. The IB offers Career Programmes but so far there are so few choices in the UK, it may be more suitable to consider a school offering BTECs.
We are pleased to offer impartial advice to parents, based on our many years’ experience of assisting families find places at UK private schools. Our school advice services are provided by our team of experienced consultants. We pride ourselves on giving professional, informed and sensitive advice to help parents find schools that will best suit your child. Unlike many international education agents which only use a panel of schools which pay them commission, we consider any of the private schools offering the IB, including the elite academic schools.
The first consultation of up to 30 minutes, normally by telephone or Zoom/Skype, is entirely free of charge and without obligation. Should you subsequently choose to use our full advice and placement service we will be pleased to provide you with our terms and conditions.
If you would like to speak to one of our advisers please complete an Enquiry Form or call us on +44 (0) 1622 813 870 between 8:30 am to 6:00 pm (UK time) Monday to Friday.