Head's Welcome

M Barker

Welcome to Westbourne House. I dare say that you will have found your way to this page because you are interested in sending your son or daughter here, and I probably won’t be telling you anything new in that choosing a school is one of the most important decisions you will ever make for your child.

My belief is that if children are happy, and able to develop self-confidence, many good things will follow. How do we go about achieving that? In the classroom, we have the flexibility to be able to set children according to performance, and by subject. So, if a child is performing well in maths, but struggles more so in English, they can be placed in an appropriate set that matches the pace at which they feel comfortable. There is also enormous breadth across the curriculum, where in addition to the ‘normal’ subjects, children will experience the likes of drama, textiles, food technology, ceramics, art, music and a wide variety of sports. Taking children out of their ‘comfort zone’ in experiencing this wide variety of activity is where the confidence aspect really kicks in – with this kind of exposure they tend to take on new challenges with enthusiasm and a ‘can do’ attitude rather than pulling back and withdrawing.

The school has an outstanding reputation for all-round excellence, and well over 100 scholarships in the last five years in a variety of disciplines would bear testament to that. We offer a superb preparation for children going to senior schools, including Bedales, Benenden, Brighton, Bryanston, Canford, Charterhouse, Cranleigh, Eton, Harrow, Hurstpierpoint, Lancing, Marlborough, Portsmouth Grammar School, Portsmouth High School, Radley, Wellington, and Winchester, which are popular destinations for leavers.

However, the overriding ethos of the school is to be inclusive wherever possible, such that each child has the opportunity to make the most of all that is available to them – after all, if this rich variety is not experienced at this age, when will it be?

Finally, if you have looked around our Virtual Tour, you will see some amazing facilities and open space for the children to enjoy, although this would count for little without an exceptional group of staff, about whom you can read elsewhere on this website. Above all I believe we have an exceptional offering here at Westbourne, which will see your child grow and flourish into a well rounded, happy and confident person. I look forward to meeting you.