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A Parent’s Guide to School Open Days: How to Make Smart Decisions for Your Child’s Education

Posted: 29th January 2024

What things should you look out for when visiting a School Open Day?

Research is key to choosing the right school for your child. School open days give you a chance to experience the environment, interact with teachers, and get a feel for the school’s culture. This guide will help you with what to look for at a school open day and what questions to ask to ensure informed decision making.

How friendly and inviting is the environment?

When you arrive at the open day, notice the environment. A friendly and inviting atmosphere usually reflects a good school culture. Observe how staff and current pupils greet visitors. Also important is watching how staff and children relate to each other when they are not talking to visitors. This will give you a more accurate idea of the overall warmth of the school environment and community.

 

Explore the facilities

Assess the learning environment and picture your child in that setting. Look for neat classrooms, displays that showcase and celebrate the work of pupils and quality educational materials such as charts, maps, and learning aids to support learning. Many schools will also use off site facilities in the community and local area.  Make sure to enquire about how regularly these are used and how children travel to these facilities.

Discover the curriculum

Learn about the school’s curriculum and educational philosophy. Consider whether the school offers a well-rounded education that includes not only academics but also extracurricular activities, arts, and sports. This will give you a sense of how the school supports the holistic development of children.

Talk to as many people as you can

Use any chance to chat with the headteacher, teachers of all levels, office staff, pupils and current parents. This will help you to form a realistic image of the school from different viewpoints. Does what they say align with the school’s ethos, values and goals? Do the teachers speak honestly and passionately? Are the children polite and confident?

Helpful Questions to Ask

General

  • How do the school’s values and ethos influence daily school life?
  • How does the school accommodate students with different learning styles or needs?
  • What extracurricular activities are available to enrich the overall development of pupils?
  • How does the school use technology to enhance the learning experience?
  • How is pupil progress measured?
  • How do pupils perform compared to the national average?
  • How are teachers and staff prepared to deal with diversity and create an inclusive environment?
  • What steps does the school take to ensure the safety and well-being of students?
  • How does the school communicate with parents about pupil progress and school events?
  • Can you give examples of how the school builds a sense of community among children and parents?
  • What resources and support systems are available to help children cope with their academic and personal challenges?

Questions to ask pupils

  • What do you do during break times?
  • What is the headteacher like?
  • What subjects do you enjoy the most? What subjects do you enjoy the least?
  • What extracurricular activities would you recommend?
  • Are there any school traditions or events that you particularly look forward to?

 

 Visit Weston Green School

We are an excellent rated prep school in Thames Ditton for boys and girls aged 2-11 years. Nurturing the individual talents and personalities of every child, we provide a safe, inspiring, and well-resourced environment for them to grow and develop. We offer a challenging and engaging curriculum, delivered by experienced, specialist staff in small class sizes that prepares pupils for successful futures at top senior schools. With a strong sense of community, fostering positive relationships among staff, pupils, and parents, Weston Green School is a school where every child can enjoy their childhood and achieve their potential.

 

Discover more at our next open morning or book an individual tour with our Head.  Contact Mrs Ranger on info@westongreenschool.org.uk to book your place.

Next Open Morning: Tuesday 19th March, 9-11am

Weston Green School Open Morning

Experience our ISA excellent rated prep school for boys and girls aged 2-11 years.  Come to our open morning, hear from our Head Teacher, meet our friendly staff and speak directly with the children about their experiences of our wonderful school!

 

Book your place here