The academic curriculum at Highgate forms the very core of what the school is about. Of course, we place great value on our extra-curricular activities and we are very proud of our pastoral care, but our chief aim is to encourage each pupil to maximise his or her academic potential at every level. Further information of the curriculum in the Senior School appears on our website here and in the Senior School Curriculum Policy document here.
Highgate boasts a rich collection of co-curricular offerings. Whether a pupil is interested in playing an instrument or singing in a choir, performing in a drama production, playing a sport or joining a society or club, there is something for everyone. Sport and Exercise (SpEx) is also an important part of a child’s experience of the healthy life at Highgate. Further information on societies and clubs, music, drama and sport is here.
Each pupil is placed on arrival in Year 9 in one of the twelve Houses. The House is the social and pastoral group within which each will remain throughout their time at Highgate. Each Head of House, assisted by a team of Tutors, is responsible for monitoring the progress and welfare of the members of his or her house and for liaison with parents. The House system establishes a basis for lasting friendship and each house has its own distinct identity forged in a varied programme of friendly inter-house activities and competitions.
Pupils in Year 7 and 8 are placed into a Form Group of around 20-22 pupils under the care of a Form Tutor. Pupils are encouraged to take part in inter-form competitions and activities and to contribute to the weekly assembly and tutorial programme. The pastoral care of the pupils and the work of the Form Tutors are overseen by the Head of Lower School, who is supported by a Head of Year 7 and a Head of Year 8. The pastoral teams in Year 7 & 8 aim to ensure that all pupils enjoy a successful transition from the world of primary education to the environment and opportunities of secondary school. Parents are welcome to contact the appropriate Head of Year at any time if they have any queries or concerns about their child.
Education is a shared venture, and we wish to establish a close partnership with parents. Day-to-day contact between home and school is through the Head of Year (Years 7 & 8) and Housemaster (Years 9-13). Academic progress is monitored by the regular reporting of academic skills, effort, attitude and achievement. Tutors will review these with pupils, offering encouragement and, where necessary, strategies for improvement. Full reports are sent to parents at regular intervals as a formal record of their child's progress. For convenience, this information is also available to view on the electronic Parent Portal. In addition, each year-group has an annual parents' consultation meeting at which all the teaching staff are present to discuss academic matters.
The School and the HSPA also organise a series of pastoral presentations and discussions each year, covering such areas as internet safety, substance abuse, managing the party scene and dealing with exam stress. See also Parents' Associations.