Welcome everyone to Abbot’s Hill School

Our school was founded over 100 years ago by the Baird sisters who sought to provide an ‘education of character’ for young women.  This desire and the accompanying motto ‘vie et virtute – through strength and valour’ to us encapsulates the courageous, caring and ambitious young women that make up our community at Abbot’s Hill School.

Abbot’s Hill School is a day school in Hertfordshire for girls aged 3-16. Our co-ed Nursery for children aged 6 months – 4 years sits on the same site. Our small but vibrant school is unique in so many ways. We consistently achieve superb value-added at GCSE and celebrate excellent academic results alongside the numerous achievements within our wide and varied co-curricular activities too.

View our latest school prospectus by clicking here. We look forward to welcoming you to Abbot’s Hill School in the near future.

View our Prep School Q&A panel 

View our Senior School Q&A panel

“Pupils move on to the next stage in their lives with confidence and self-assurance wanting to live adventurously whilst approaching the concept of risk sensibly in all that they do.”

ISI Report, February 2020

“Generous ratios enable staff to build a warm close relationship with the child for whom they are responsible.”

ISI Nursery Report, January 2020

“Pupils develop high levels of resilience, perseverance and teamwork through their committed engagement in the wide range of creative and performing arts available to them.”

ISI Report, February 2020

“Leaders and managers’ vision for the EYFS is inspired by their passion and enthusiasm for the children in their care.”

ISI Nursery Report, January 2020

“Underpinning the pupils’ excellent decision-making skills is the application of integrity, a quality that pupils understand through clear unambiguous teaching and guidance from the pastoral team who encourage young people to think for themselves”

ISI Report, February 2020

“Pupils’ achievements in external competitions, in gaining other scholarly distinctions, and their success in sport and the arts are outstanding.”

ISI Report, February 2020

Interactive Map

The Stables

“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.” ― Maya Angelou
The Stables are home to a variety of creative subjects such as Art and Design, Textiles and Home Economics. Practical and technical skills, techniques and processes are developed through wide-ranging projects, covering technical drawing and painting, printmaking, textiles, theatre design, jewellery, installations, collaborative murals and three-dimensional design. Our Home Economics coursework gives pupils an insight and understanding of how to prepare and cook a wide range of foods and develops an understanding of basic nutrition and healthy eating. Lessons are once a week and are a combination of practical and theory work.
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Davidson

“Everyone shines, given the right lighting.” – Susan Cain

The Davidson building is home to our Senior School English and Religious Studies departments. Both areas of our curriculum are very popular at Abbot’s Hill and our GCSE results are always impressive in this area. The pupils are introduced to varied learning opportunities including trips and cultural engagements. It is an epicentre of deep thought and critical thinking as students delve into theoretical topics and literature.

View Davidson Building

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Nursery Playground

“The goal of early childhood education should be to activate the child’s own natural desire to learn.” – Maria Montessori

Abbot’s Hill Nursery follows the Early Years Foundation Stage framework (EYFS), which is a mandatory for all Early Years providers. The ethos of the EYFS is that ‘Every child deserves the best possible start in life and the support that enables them to fulfil their potential’. We place great importance on your child’s earliest years with us, providing an inspirational beginning to their education. We believe that playing outdoors encourages a healthy and happy learning environment.

View Outdoor Play Area

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Nursery

“I really love being human. But some days I really wish I could be fairy.” – Greta, age 4

The Nursery provides an excellent, positive Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) education. We provide high-quality care and education through rich and varied, planned and spontaneous activities, tailored to each individual child’s needs. With the building all on one level, children have free-flow access to the outside areas which can be used all year round, whatever the weather.

View Tiny Toes

View Footsteps

View Stepping Up

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Woodland School

“It’s a wondrous thing how the wild calms the child.” – Unknown

Girls in the Prep School have the most amazing opportunities to learn outside through adventures and activities planned by our dedicated Woodland Leader.  During these woodland lessons, girls are able to work on projects such as brightly coloured flowers out of recycled materials that could be put out in the garden on a sunny day to attract butterflies. As one pupil stated, ‘Not every school is lucky enough to have its own Woodland to teach from!’

View Woodland Classroom

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Pre-Prep

“Education is the best friend. An educated person is respected everywhere. Education beats the beauty and the youth.” – Chanakya

Our Pre-Prep journey starts at age 4+. For some this is a natural continuation from our Nursery, for others they join Abbot’s Hill for the first time. This time of transition is recognised as an important one in a child’s life and staff work closely to establish a strong home/school partnership to the benefit of the individual child. We believe in a varied approach to learning with emphasis placed on securing firm foundations in literacy and numeracy. French, Music, PE and ICT are taught by specialist teaching staff.

View Reception Classroom

View Year 1 Classroom

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Main House and Senior School

“I raise up my voice—not so I can shout but so that those without a voice can be heard… We cannot succeed when half of us are held back.” – Malala Yousafzai

Senior School is an exciting time for your child and their enthusiasm is echoed by ours! You and your daughter will no doubt be looking at future opportunities and direction for her education. Abbot’s Hill is a strong, caring community which helps your child on to a path of success. Our GCSE results are impressive but beyond that, our girls go on to explore a multitude of opportunities ensuring their futures are supported by the very best foundations. We are proud to work in partnership with a number of schools and other local institutions to ensure the success of our girls wherever they go.

View MFL Classroom

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Library

“Today a reader, tomorrow a leader.” – Margaret Fuller

Our Prep and Senior library settings are warm and welcoming. We aim to create spaces that inspire, not just a love of books and the written word, but also the appreciation of the dedication that storytelling requires. Our pupils are encouraged to read and research and fundamentally underpin their education with these learning skills.

View Library Classroom

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Dining Room

“Food can bring people together in a way nothing else could.” – Yotam Ottolenghi

Our Catering team aims to provide well-balanced, nutritious, tasty meals which are served in a calm and relaxed environment. Fresh food is sourced locally wherever possible. At Abbot’s Hill School, we are very proud of our catering team. It’s a cut above the rest in terms of quality and creativity. We believe in eating together and celebrating friendships and learning over good food.

View Dining Hall

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Prep

“Nine tenths of education is encouragement.” – Anatole France

As girls move into Year 3 they move into the Junior Department with its own buildings. Pupils continue to work in small classes supported by dedicated and experienced teaching staff and are set in some subjects. High flyers are stretched and extra support is given where needed. Increasing use is made of specialist facilities and of teaching staff from the Senior School. It’s a very nurturing environment for girls to grow and develop.

View Prep Classroom

View Garden Classroom

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Sports Hall

“Courage, sacrifice, determination, commitment, toughness, heart, talent, guts. That’s what little girls are made of; the heck with sugar and spice.”

– Bethany Hamilton, Surfer

No matter how sporting mad your daughter is she will find her niche at Abbot’s Hill. With an emphasis given to the contribution that exercise has on a healthy lifestyle all pupils are encouraged to try their hand at many sports, many excel to national levels whilst others gain confidence and skill through school fixtures. Our expert teaching and coaching staff are able to provide specialist tuition to both groups and individuals guaranteeing that every girl receives the right level of training she needs to make progress.

View Sports Hall

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Dance Studio

“After all, Ginger Rogers did everything that Fred Astaire did. She just did it backwards and in high heels.” – Ann Richards

During your daughter’s time at Abbot’s Hill, she will have the opportunity to study a variety of dance forms including contemporary, street, salsa, physical theatre and Lindy Hop. They learn to appreciate professional dance works both live and recorded. Pupils are encouraged to participate in the Gym and Dance Display which occurs biennially. We also have a very successful GSCE Dance Programme, which is extremely sought after. Pupils are encouraged to see a wide range of live performances and trips are organised throughout the two year course.

View Dance Studio

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Music Room

“Nothing is better than music. When it takes us out of time, it has done more for us than we have the right to hope for.” – Nadia Boulanger

The Music Department at Abbot’s Hill is a fundamental part of school life. During their time at Abbot’s Hill pupils are encouraged to get involved where possible, from individual music and lunchtime concerts. Your daughter will begin her musical journey in the Nursery with weekly singalongs, progressing to music appreciation in the Prep. The highlight of the year is the Whole School Carol Concert taking place at St Albans Cathedral, a compelling display of the musical prowess that students gain during their time here.

View Music Room

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Performing Arts

“Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else.” – Judy Garland

Abbot’s Hill is filled with opportunities for bright stars to shine and for girls of all abilities to explore their love of Performing Arts.  Our goal is to infuse every lesson with laughter and creativity and all girls are encouraged to take part in our drama productions. Our performing arts team is dedicated to nurturing talent and inviting every girl to come alive on stage.

View Theatre

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Tennis Courts and Swimming Pool

“The best teachers are those who show you where to look but don’t tell you what to see.”  -Alexandra K. Trenfor

It is our outdoor space that sets us apart from all our competitors. Situated on over 70 acres of green space and woodlands, Abbot’s Hill is able to offer something unique on the outskirts of London — fresh air. Playing tennis, swimming or simply running along our beautifully landscaped green, our girls are able to stretch their legs and fill their lungs. It is this space and the views that stay with our girls for their entire lifetime.

View School Lawn

View Tennis Courts

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St Nicholas House Hall

“Children are apt to live up to what you believe of them.” – Lady Bird Johnson

St Nicholas House Hall is an idyllic setting for performances and presentations for the Pre-Prep and Prep School children. This beautiful space is also used for clubs and dance classes, music productions and workshops.

View St Nicholas House Hall

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Book a Bespoke Tour

FAQs

What are your entry points?

Providing that we have places pupils can enter the School in any year group. Our main points of entry are the 4+, 7+ and 11+ assessments.

What is the admissions process?

In the first instance, parents who are considering Abbot’s Hill School for their daughter can arrange to visit the School for a private tour.  Following this visit, you will be asked to complete a registration form, if necessary, supply school a report and be invited for a taster day which is designed to allow children to experience a normal school day.

During the day, your child will take an informal assessment which will allow us to assess whether we are able to meet their pastoral and academic needs.  Places are offered following the taster day and once an acceptance form and deposit has been received, your child’s place will be guaranteed.

Is it possible to arrange a private visit?

Yes, from September we will be offering private tours and visits for families. Please contact admissions@abbotshill.herts.sch.uk to arrange a visit.

What procedures do you have in place for Covid-19?

Our school follows all government guidelines and has completed the necessary risk assessments to maintain a safe and secure learning environment. Please visit our dedicated microsite: https://www.abbotshill.herts.sch.uk/abbots-hill-connected/

Is it possible to talk to teachers during the virtual working open mornings?

Yes, we will be offering a range of one to one appointments with key members of staff during the morning.  You will be able to pre-book these appointments and we will be in touch with more information ahead of the day.

Do you offer scholarships and bursaries?

Yes, we do. Please visit our scholarship page and our bursary page on the website.

How is the typical school day structured?

The structure of the school day differs on whether your child is in Nursery, the Prep School or the Senior School. For nursery, please click here for full details.

For Prep School children, the day varies by year group. For years reception to Year 6, the school day commences at 8.15am with tutor time. Children in Reception to Year 2 end the school day at 3.25pm. Years 3 and 4 finish at 3.35pm and Years 5 and 6 finish at 4pm.

Our Prep School childcare provision starts at Breakfast Club. Breakfast club starts at 7.40am and includes a hot breakfast selection. After school, children are invited to stay for After School Club or co-curricular activities until 6pm. A light supper is served during After School Club.

For Senior School pupils, a hot breakfast is available for Years 7-11: 7.40am and the school day starts at 8.10am. Senior School pupils may also take part in a variety of co-curricular activities and prep until 6pm.

Please can you tell me about your Pastoral Care?

Abbot’s Hill School is well recognised for its pastoral care and at the heart of this is a recognition that Form Teachers are just as committed to the pastoral needs of each pupil in their class as much as their academic progress.  The clan system also offers pupils the opportunity to be involved in a number of team building activities. Visit our Pastoral Care for more info.

How do you support and stretch the individual learner?

At Abbot’s Hill, we understand that each girl will required individual attention to reach her full potential.

Our Learning Support is housed in the Rose Garden and supports the development of numeracy and literacy skills and following discussions with parents, our specialist teachers can put a programme together based on the pupil’s specific needs.  Prospective parents are encouraged to discuss potential SEN requirements early in the admissions process.

We also have a dedicated gifted and talented coordinator. Each of our year groups also receive opportunities for increased enrichment and these are provided as a matter of course for a stimulating curriculum.

What is the co-curricular programme like?

Activities and clubs at Abbot’s Hill run throughout the school day and the programme changes each term.  Pupils can make independent choices about what to participate in and over time, even become involved in the organisation and leadership of activities. There are a whole host of choices across areas including educational enrichment, arts and crafts, games and hobbies, the performing arts, sport squads and general fitness.

Do you offer transport?

Abbot’s Hill School has a dedicated member of staff specifically organising school bus services from as far as Rickmansworth, Watford, Aston Clinton, Harpenden and St Albans. Please email us at admissions@abbotshill.herts.sch.uk with any specific queries on routes or visit our website.