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Jan 15, 2018
| Category: News Feed


An independent prep school in North Yorkshire has been praised by education inspectors and awarded their highest possible rating.



Harrogate’s Belmont Grosvenor School and Magic Tree Nursery has been ranked EXCELLENT and OUTSTANDING by a team of inspectors from the Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI) – the Ofsted equivalent for the independent sector.

Both the ‘excellent’ and ‘outstanding’ results are the highest accolades that ISI can award in both age ranges – under twos and two to 11 years -  and reinforces Belmont Grosvenor’s reputation as one of the best independent prep schools in the Harrogate area.

A team of five ISI inspectors spent three days at co-educational Belmont Grosvenor, which, along with its nursery, cares for children from three months to 11 years.

Across ALL ages, inspectors concluded, for the second ISI inspection in a row, that the quality of education provided at Belmont Grosvenor is ‘outstanding’ and ‘excellent’ and that the school has met all the ISI’s regulatory targets.

Headteacher Jane Merriman said she was delighted with the findings of the ISI report – and its praise for the school’s excellent use of its 20-acres of grounds.

“This is the second inspection in a row that we have been awarded the ISI’s highest ratings and confirms what we have always known at Belmont Grosvenor - that we are both outstanding and excellent in educating and caring for children from three months to 11 years,” she said.

And Gordon Milne, Chairman of the Governors said: “We are very pleased that our commitment to offer pupils an all-round education enabling them to develop into confident, self-motivated, high achieving and well-behaved children with a deep sense of right and wrong has been recognised by the ISI.”

“We are extremely proud of the entire team at BGS who have worked incredibly hard to maintain our outstanding and excellent ratings,” he added.

ISI inspectors rated the quality of Belmont Grosvenor School’s education for two to 11 year olds as ‘excellent’ – the highest accolade that can be awarded in this age range.

“Pupils exhibit substantial levels of knowledge, skill and understanding across a wide range of subjects. They achieve highly because they have well-planned lessons ensuring that they have full access to a wide and exciting range of subjects and activities, many of these using the outdoor facilities,” say inspectors, who recognise that pupils’ attainment is higher than national age-related expectations.

Inspectors commended BGS’s practice of encouraging independent learning and increasing pupils’ perseverance, resilience and research skills while pupils are singled out for their “excellent social awareness and ability to work together for the good of the school community”.

“Exciting lessons and activities consistently promote pupils strong love of learning,” say inspectors, who also recognise BGS pupils achieve highly outside the classroom as well, including sport, music and drama.

ISI inspectors rated Belmont Grosvenor School’s Under 2 provision as ‘outstanding’– the highest honour that can be handed out to this Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) age group.

Inspectors heaped praise on BGS across all five areas of assessment, including personal development, quality of teaching, leadership and outcomes for children, highlighting Magic Tree Nursery’s “family atmosphere” and recognising the benefit of its 20-acres of grounds.

“EYFS staff work as a conscientious team to plan an exciting range of challenging and creative indoor and outdoor activities which enthuse and motivate children and further their learning.

Inspectors applaud the free-flow access to the outdoors, the walks and outdoor experiences on offer which ensure children can “develop their physical skills and….take risks in a safe environment”.

The report praises Magic Tree Nursery’s “family atmosphere” and describes it as “extremely happy” and a place where children “feel safe and secure within their nurturing environment”.

“The setting offers a very broad, well-balanced and exciting curriculum…..EYFS staff work as a conscientious team to plan an exciting range of challenging and creative indoor and outdoor activities which enthuse and motivate children and further their learning,” say inspectors.

To read the full report visit our website: About Belmont Grosvenor School/ISI Inspection Report

Co-educational Belmont Grosvenor School and Magic Tree Nursery is set in 20-acres of grounds in the village of Birstwith, on the outskirts of Harrogate. For more information or to arrange a tour, visit or call 01423 771029.

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