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International Applications BKH

At the core of Bryanston Knighton House is our mission to help children of all nationalities gain the confidence and skills that will enable them to move to the next stage of their education, well on the road to becoming happy and fulfilled adults.

Children leave Bryanston Knighton House with confidence, which they will draw on in their senior schools, universities and in the working world. Wherever in the world they may go and however far their ambitions take them, Bryanston Knighton House pupils know they can try anything and be optimistic about success and resilient when things do not go according to plan.

Our boarding starts at Year 3, the British academic year in which boys and girls turn eight, although we have in the past had younger boarders, so it would certainly be an option if required.

For the prep school, the latest point of entry is Year 8 which is the final year at Bryanston Knighton House, after which our pupils move to their chosen senior schools. Should this be the level you are considering for your child, it is highly recommended that they come for a full year.  However, a number of children do come for one term and many of our past pupils return for the summer term; we run popular short stay packages. Please see our separate brochure for more details.

Annually, we receive pupils from various destinations, including Spain, France, Italy, Germany, Belgium, Asia, Eastern Europe and Africa.

We are delighted to welcome international children and value the contribution they make to school life; adding an exciting dimension to the school community.  Mutual benefit is gained from the exchange of languages and cultures, often resulting in long-lasting friendships and future opportunities in both learning and work.

Our staff are committed to working with overseas agents and parents to provide the best opportunity for our international pupils to learn in a fully integrated community. We value the partnerships we make and endeavour to provide an efficient and personal service; excellent communication with agents and parents, and a thorough understanding of the individual child makes our offering to the international community highly successful.

Taster Sessions 

Taster days and/or nights are a fun and informal way of meeting a year group and gaining an insight into life at Bryanston Knighton House. We recommend that you book a local B&B or hotel (we can recommend local accommodation and book this for you) so that you can get to know the area and for your child to spend a taster day/night at Bryanston Knighton House; our boarders love to have a new friend for a ‘sleepover’ and we would be delighted to arrange this for you.  If time is short, a taster day is always a good compromise.

We always enjoy meeting prospective pupils and their families in person, but this is not always practical.  Melanie Burton, our dedicated International Admissions Coordinator would be delighted to answer any questions you may have either by:

Email: international-admissions@knightonhouse.co.uk
Telephone +44 (0)1258 452065 or via a pre-arranged Zoom call, if preferred.

Entry Process 

We recommend that our international pupils join us for a year, in order to settle in, make friends and gain fully from all that Bryanston Knighton House has to offer, but this is not always possible (depending upon the guidelines of the home country). Children often join us for a term (and then sign up for the rest of the year) or in some cases are only able to join us for a matter of weeks; please see our Short Stays package for what will suit the requirements of your child best.

Although generally our new arrivals join us at the beginning of a term, we are very happy to accept pupils at any stage during the academic year, providing all our entry requirements are met and there are places available. In order to benefit from a total immersion into the English community, we do limit the numbers of any one nationality joining each year group.  For this reason, early registration is recommended in order to secure a place.

Registration Process

The registration form should be completed and returned and the appropriate registration fee should be transferred to the school account (please refer to the fees page for details). If a particular year group is full, children are placed on a waiting list and we will let you know as soon as a place becomes available.

In order to secure your child’s place, the payment of a deposit will be required a term in advance of their start date. The balance of this deposit is refunded after the deduction of any outstanding charges following your final account. Should you decide not to take up the secured place however, the deposit cannot be reimbursed. Our International Admissions Coordinator will email you with details and a reminder of the required payment as the time approaches.

Additional documents required for registration

There is no entry exam for admission to Bryanston Knighton House, but it is important that your child flourishes; we therefore pay particular attention to the academic report and reference from their current school.  It is also very important that we are aware of the level of English at which a prospective pupil is working so that appropriate support is provided.

At the point of registration it is also important that we are made aware of any learning difficulties your child may have. We have a dedicated learning support team at Bryanston Knighton House, and it is useful for us to be aware if extra assistance may be required.

The completed registration form should be returned together with the following:

  • a copy of your child’s passport
  • a copy of your child’s birth certificate
  • a copy of their most recent academic report and reference from the school
  • a short piece written in English by your child about themselves and their hobbies
  • The completed Personal Profile.

Medical Conditions, Medication and Allergy Information 

Should your child require specific medication, have allergies or dietary constraints, it is important that the School is notified when you register. We have an extremely competent matron on our boarding house team who works closely with the school doctor.

It is very rare that the School is unable to cope with medical requirements; however, in order to be prepared for your child’s arrival, we ask for details in English of all required medicines to be sent to us in advance. Our school doctor insists upon the receipt of these to make sure that she is able to administer the equivalent drugs in the UK. Our doctor visits the School once a week and the GP surgery is less than five minutes drive from the School.

All dietary requirements can be catered for by our school chef. We are a nut-free school; nothing containing any form of nuts can be consumed on the premises.

Guardians 

Every child whose home is overseas or whose parents currently live or are posted abroad must have a guardian, regardless of the duration of their stay at Bryanston Knighton House. This guardian must be resident in the UK, over the age of 25 and should speak English.

The main duties of the guardian are: 

1. To take decisions in emergencies on behalf of the parents where the School is not responsible.

2. To arrange transport and provide accommodation for the child:

  • during fixed exeat weekends, half-term and holidays as required
  • in the case of emergencies
  • in the event of illness (should a period of recuperation be needed)
  • in the event of an expulsion or suspension.

3. To attend relevant parents’ evenings and school events where a parental presence is required or invited.

4. To make the necessary travel and administrative arrangements for the children in absentia, and ensure that passport, visas and inoculations are up to date on behalf of the parents if required.

5. To assist in the event of an emergency or a disciplinary incident where the child has to leave the School and the parent cannot immediately attend.

A pupil without parents living in the UK cannot be accepted as a boarder unless a confirmed guardian is in place. Admission may be refused and the deposit surrendered. Bryanston Knighton House does not arrange guardians, nor do we recommend a specific agency; however, we do recommend that you use an AEGIS accredited company. All guardianship agencies provide a variety of plans and fees to suit individual needs.

Half Terms and Exeats 

Bryanston Knighton House closes for the half-term week (ten days during the longer Autumn term). School finishes at 4.30pm on the Friday of half term and boarders return by 6.00pm on the Sunday. Some boarders return home for this mid-term break, or stay with their designated guardian. Often parents choose to take the opportunity for a holiday in the UK over this period.

We stay open at exeat weekends!

There are usually two exeats a term (Friday 4.30pm to Sunday 6.00pm), one either side of the half term. Bryanston Knighton House remains open during this time as an option for our boarders. The exeat fee includes all excursions and activities provided during the weekend.

Long and Short Stays 

In order to gain from the all round experience at Bryanston Knighton House, we would recommend a full year’s immersion. The children who have spent three terms at Bryanston Knighton House leave with confidence, both in their English language and as a fully integrated, active member of the school. Often they have stayed with Bryanston Knighton House families for weekends and life-long friendships are made.

No two education systems are the same, and we understand that in some countries it is not possible for children to leave their school for more than a few weeks at a time. The Bryanston Knighton House staff and children are very used to welcoming pupils from abroad for a matter of weeks to a full term (or two!) and being a small, family school, we find that our new beginners settle into life at Bryanston Knighton House quickly and are often reluctant to leave at the end of their stay.

It is possible to tailor make a stay at Bryanston Knighton House and Melanie Burton, our International Admissions Coordinator would be delighted to hear from you should you like to discuss a potential opportunity for your child. Please feel free to contact her on international-admissions@knightonhouse.co.uk.

English as an Additional Language 

Bryanston Knighton House has a long tradition of welcoming international pupils from Europe and the wider world into the safe and nurturing environment of our school family.

In the EAL Department, specialist EAL teachers offer pupils the opportunity to improve the four English skills of reading, writing, speaking and listening. Equally, we aim to encourage pupils to access the whole curriculum alongside continuing EAL support. Most pupils choose to stay at Bryanston Knighton House for a minimum of a year to improve their English language skills; others opt to stay one term or several weeks.

Following their arrival at school the proficiency level of new EAL pupils is assessed. Once an initial assessment has taken place, specialist EAL lessons are arranged according to the pupil’s needs and these are conducted in small groups or one-to-one lessons. Pupils' progress is carefully monitored and EAL staff liaise closely with subject teachers to ensure that EAL pupils are fully supported in all parts of the curriculum.

Long stay pupils are given the opportunity to take the Cambridge KET (Key English Test), PET (Preliminary English Test) and FCE (First Certificate in English) examinations in early June of the following year.

Throughout, Bryanston Knighton House has achieved 100% pass rates in the KET, PET and FCE examinations, with many pupils achieving merit passes and some attaining distinctions.

In addition to helping pupils progress through the various levels of language proficiency, the EAL Department is ready to help with general aspects of life in an overseas environment; we provide a safe framework for pupils to learn about Britain and its customs and traditions.

Once pupils have left Bryanston Knighton House, we offer an EAL online tuition service; providing continuity of teaching. When our overseas students come to Bryanston Knighton House for a year or for a term, during that time they prepare for a wide range of EAL examinations, from KET to FCE, they are taught intensely by our Head of EAL and obtain excellent results. On returning to their schools, many children wish to take further examinations online, under the guidance of our staff; our online tutoring service meets that need. Pupils take home all the resources they require (syllabus, textbooks, notes) and book a weekly online lesson slot.

COVID-19 

The Autumn term brought with it the sound of much missed chatter and laughter of young children as they caught up with news from the past six months.  It is a real joy to be back, and we are lucky to be a small school with a manageable number of pupils.  The boarding house is busy, with fewer International pupils than usual, due to the universal uncertainty of Covid-19. Many of those that were due to start this term have deferred, so we anticipate an increase in numbers from January onwards.

The issue of quarantining was interesting, but we are fortunate to have separate accommodation for our Year 8s, which has been used to house the pupils who have travelled from relevant countries. We have managed to set up a classroom within the flat so, though not actually living with the other pupils, they were able to join in with lessons and socialise remotely.

Dorset continues to have one of the lowest cases of Covid-19 in the country, and we are very lucky to be living in a rural part of the country.  With this in mind, we are keen to promote Bryanston Knighton House to International families and hope very much that there will be an increased interest for 2021/22. If you have any questions and/or would like a virtual tour of the School we will happily arrange this through our admissions team. Please contact Melanie Burton at international-admissions@knightonhouse.co.uk or telephone: 01258 452065. We would be delighted to hear from you.