With a highly developed and adaptable primary and secondary education system, the UK is known for its advanced teaching methods and diverse curriculum offerings. For Chinese parents seeking early study abroad opportunities,proximity to campus is often a top consideration when purchasing property, with over 80% placing it as their highest priority. As such, Panda Residential has compiled a review of the most sought-after private schools in London for international students, along with recommended nearby housing options.
ZONE 4 & 5 | LONDON BOROUGH OF BROMLEY
Bromley, situated in Zones 4 and 5 of London, serves as the administrative hub of the London Borough of Bromley. It holds the distinction of being voted one of the happiest places to live in London and is considered one of the top five safest areas in the city. Bromley boasts the prestigious Bromley College of Further & Higher Education, alongside two specialised media and art schools, Hayes School and The Ravensbourne School.
The city centre of Bromley offers an array of international high street brands with the intu shopping centre catering to all your shopping needs. Additionally, Bromley hosts a variety of weekend markets, making it a convenient and enjoyable place to live.
Ofsted has rated six primary schools and four secondary schools in Bromley as “outstanding”. 8 other private schools in Bromley include Ashgrove, Breaside, Bickley Park, Bishop Challoner, Bromley High School, Babington House, Eltham College, and Farringtons School.
Zone 6 | Royal Borough of Kingston
Kingston, located in Zone 6, belongs to the historic Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames in south-west London and encompasses the sought-after postcodes of KT1 and KT2. KT1 covers Kingston town centre and South Kingston, while KT2 includes the prestigious enclave of Coombe, centred on Warren and George Roads. Coombe commands the highest property prices in Kingston.
Neighbouring top school districts in Wimbledon, Richmond and Wandsworth, Kingston offers superb transport links into central London. For families seeking a leafy location within easy reach of the capital’s amenities, Kingston represents an appealing option.
Despite being in Zone 6, Kingston benefits from excellent transportation links. The Kingston Railway Station, part of the South West Train route, offers direct access to Clapham Junction and Putney in just 20 minutes, and Vauxhall and Waterloo in a mere 30 minutes.
More than 70% of primary and secondary schools in the area have been designated as key schools by the Department of Education, with nine ranking in the top 10% in the UK. The renowned state schools, Tiffin Girl’s and Tiffin Boy’s, boast an annual Oxbridge enrolment rate of up to 25%, making them among the best schools in the UK. Other notable secondary schools in the area include Hampton School, The Tiffin School, Surbiton High School, St Luke’s Primary School, Collis Primary School, and Coombe Hill Junior School.
Zone 5 | London Borough of Harrow
Harrow is located in North West London’s Zone 5, 12 miles from London City Centre and falls within the London Borough of Harrow. Harrow Town consists of South Harrow, North Harrow and West Harrow with Harrow Town Centre located on top of Harrow Hill. From Harrow and Wealdstone station to Euston station takes only 14 minutes, whilst from Harrow on the Hill station to Marylebone takes a mere 16 minutes.
In Harrow one must mention Harrow School, the most renowned school nationwide. Entry to Harrow School denotes receiving the most traditional and superlative English education, consisting of elite pupils, royalty, nobility and children of the upper echelons of society. Harrow School was founded in 1572 initially as a grammar school petitioned by local farmer John Lyon to Queen Elizabeth I, and has now become Britain’s top public school, competing with the equally famous Eton College like Oxford versus Cambridge!
Barnet is a suburban town in North London, part of the outer London area and the largest town within the municipal borough. The administrative district was formed in 1965 from parts of Middlesex and Hertfordshire counties. The district has a population of 395,800 people and covers an area of 86.74 square kilometres, ranking fourth highest among London’s 32 boroughs. Barnet borough has a high value-for-money school district, with 88 primary schools, 24 secondary schools, 4 special schools and 11 private schools.
At the same time, Barnet receives outstanding and good ratings for 91% of its schools according to Ofsted assessments. Henrietta Barnet School is particularly well known, consistently ranking as the top-performing state school in GCSE league tables in recent years. Queen Elizabeth’s School is also renowned for its teaching standards, with many of its alumni attending top universities such as Oxford and Cambridge. St Michael’s Catholic Grammar School also consistently ranks highly in GCSE tables, making it one of the outstanding schools within the Barnet district.
Zone 3 | London Borough of Merton
Located in South West London’s Zone 3, Wimbledon falls within the London Borough of Merton. Wimbledon was a commuter town even before the era of railways, with many local pubs serving as transit points for businessmen travelling from Portsmouth to London in the mid-18th century. Wimbledon’s transport links have become extremely convenient post railway and underground construction: 5 tube stations and 5 train stations are scattered across Wimbledon. From Wimbledon station, it takes a mere 17 minutes to reach Waterloo.
Wimbledon boasts top-tier educational institutions with a plethora of state school choices for residents. The district’s private schools consist of 7 preparatory schools and 3 secondary schools, providing a full, quality educational program. Examples of quality educational resources in the area include: King’s College School (secondary and preparatory), Hall School Wimbledon (secondary and preparatory), Wimbledon High School for Girls, Wimbledon College Boys’ School, Ursuline High School Secondary, Dundonald Primary School, Donhead Preparatory School, The Rowans School, The Study Prep and Wimbledon Arts Academy.
Zone 5 | London Borough of Sutton
Sutton is located in Outer London’s Zone 5 and falls within the London Borough of Sutton with the postal code SM1. In 1900, more towns were incorporated into London’s boundaries, and although Sutton geographically lies within Surrey, it was policed by the Metropolitan Police instead of the Surrey Police. In 1965, with the formation of the Greater London Council, Sutton was incorporated into London and the London Borough of Sutton was established. Getting to and from London from Sutton is very convenient, as it takes only 30 minutes from Sutton station to Victoria station and Blackfriars station in London, and within one hour you can reach King’s Cross St. Pancras station.
The quality of education in Sutton schools has long been well-regarded. For Sutton district students, the percentage of students successfully admitted to their first choice primary school is 84%, one of the highest in all London districts. Outstanding private schools include: Sutton High School GDST, Focus School – Carshalton Campus, Greenacre School for Girls and more.