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St Ives School crowned winners at the Independent Schools of the Year 2019 awards
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St Ives School crowned winners at the Independent Schools of the Year 2019 awards

Pupils and staff at St Ives School in Haslemere are celebrating after winning the Small Independent School of the Year Award at a national awards ceremony.

The Independent Schools of the Year awards are run by Independent School Parent magazine and are designed to showcase the excellent school experience available to students across the UK. To win an award, schools must impress the independent judging panel made up of heads, parents and governors by showing evidence of individual successes and innovative practice.

As winners of the Small Independent School of the Year Award, St Ives School beat tough competition from over 250 entrants to take home one of the evening’s top prizes. The judges praised the school for the inspiring student experience it offers to pupils across all year groups and the high quality of pastoral care.

To celebrate and reward their efforts, all finalists were invited to a drinks reception and ceremony in London where the winners were presented with trophies by the judging panel. The finalists will also be featured in a widely distributed special winner’s supplement magazine and given a rosette to display alongside their brand.

As well as a time for celebration, the event gave representatives from independent schools of all sizes and from different geographical areas the chance to come together and share their experiences and best practice. This year saw a record number of entries for the twenty different categories of award, including from small rural pre-preparatory schools to large urban secondary schools; a reflection of the depth and breadth of the independent school experience.  

Kay Goldsworthy, Headteacher of St Ives, said:

“We are thrilled to have received this award and are delighted with the glowing feedback we received from the judges. This accolade reflects the hard work and dedication of both our staff and the children, and our commitment to ensuring we provide our pupils with the very best educational experience there is to offer. We have always believed we have the best pastoral care in the country and it’s wonderful to see this being recognised.”

David Moncrieff, Chair of the Editorial Advisory Board at Independent School Parent magazine who run the awards, said:

“Following the huge success of the inaugural competition last year, which saw more than 250 school nominations entered, we are delighted to have surpassed that figure for Independent Schools of the Year 2019. The awards were once again designed with the student experience at their heart and to provide schools with a platform to showcase their stories of innovation and success. The judges had a tough job on their hands picking the winners from the shortlisted entries, but the winning schools are hugely deserving.”

Sir Jon Coles, Chief Executive of United Learning, said:

“I’d like to congratulate everyone at St Ives on this success which is very well deserved. I know how much parents appreciate the breadth, depth and excellence of the teaching and learning across the school and value the family atmosphere that Kay Goldsworthy and her team engender. This results in a school in which the children feel at home, are eager to learn and are inspired by what they are taught. Staff work particularly hard to ensure that every child feels welcomed, is encouraged to learn and makes the most of every opportunity presented to them.  I hope that everyone in the school has the opportunity to celebrate this success and to share in the acclaim that awards such as this bring.”

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