Badminton School is a small independent boarding and day school for girls aged 3 to 18 years. It is located in Westbury-on-Trym, Bristol, England. Named after Badminton House in Clifton, Bristol where it was founded, the school has been located at its current site since 1924. A highly academic school, where arts and music flourish, Badminton consistently performs well in the government’s league tables, particularly at A Level. Reputably Bristol’s most academic school, Badminton has a high percentage of boarders.
Teaching and Curriculum
Badminton offers a holistic educational experience. Academic excellence is achieved through teaching and learning in ways that are challenging and fun. The girls benefit from great resources, and support from a strong staff, allowing them to thrive academically. Most girls do 4 A levels and can follow any combination of GCSE subjects. SAT tuition for American university entrance is offered.
Selective entry, rigorous exam preparation and the small classes (an average of 14 students per class until GCSE) make for excellent results.
Entrance and Feeder Schools
Most of pupils join Badminton at aged 11 in year 7. All applicants are interviewed, overseas girls via Skype if necessary. Moreover, everyone below sixth form is required to do an online reasoning test. Sixth form hopefuls sit a general paper, in addition to papers of two of the subjects they intend studying at A level. The transition from the junior school is not automatic: Badminton junior school students sit exactly the same papers as those coming from others schools.
Top leaver’s destinations
Some Badminton students go to prestigious international universities such as Arizona, New York, Washington and Hong Kong. The most popular UK destination is London University closely followed by Durham, Edinburgh and St Andrew’s. A few students head for Oxford and Cambridge each year, although none in 2020.
Special Education Needs (SEN) Support
SEN support is limited and there is more focus on the gifted and talented.
Extracurricular: Art, Music and Sport
Sports and creative subjects such as art, drama and music, are integral to the curriculum, giving girls a broad outlook and skillset. The school has excellent facilities for girls to explore extra- curricula actvities including a new music building, with numerous teaching and practice rooms, a new music library and a generous classroom for curricular music lessons. Music is particularly strong with some outstanding musicians- most girls play at least one instrument, some two. Badminton also has extensive sport facilities: tennis courts, netball courts, swimming pool, and a new sports hall.
Badminton School has always had an international outlook. A good percentage of pupils come from overseas: the majority from Russia, Nigeria and Hong Kong.
Discipline is one of the main principles of the school. Badminton places emphasis on knowing each other well. Each girl has her own tutor, there is peer mentoring system and a vertical house set- up.
Badminton families are relatively mixed, both ethnically and socially. All have high expectations of their progeny. Girls are down-to-earth and open-minded.
Badminton is one to consider for your academic daughter, if you are looking for a school with small classes and a strong musical life.
To prepare your child for boarding school, please read our blog on boarding school preparation for more tips.