LVS Ascot


Image for LVS Ascot

  • Category: Pre-Preparatory / Preparatory / Senior / Sixth Form
  • Pupils: Co-Education
  • Type: Day & Boarding
  • Religious Affiliation: Non-Denominational
  • Roll: 499 (Boys) 324 (Girls)
  • Age Range: 4 - 18 years
  • Founded: 1803

General Information

If you want to be sure that your child gets the best education, in an environment where they can shine, then LVS Ascot has everything you are looking for. As an independent, non-selective, co-educational school, for young people aged 4-18, LVS Ascot provides a stimulating curriculum, taught in small classes led by highly qualified and enthusiastic teachers.

‘Relationships in the school are outstanding, and contribute to the strong personal development of the pupils and to a highly conducive learning environment.’
ISI inspection 2011

‘A school with timeless values that makes non-selectivity the starting point for success rather than a justification for its absence.’
Good Schools Guide 2012



LVS Ascot is a non-selective, co-educational day and boarding school of around 870 pupils aged 4-18. It is a through-school so pupils can begin their school career at LVS Ascot at age 4 and remain there until they complete Sixth Form.

The school is located on a bright and spacious site amongst 25 acres of landscaped gardens and playing fields. As one of the most modern boarding and day schools in the UK, the purpose built campus provides excellent facilities in a safe and stimulating environment, including a sports centre with indoor swimming pool, fitness centre, sports hall and all-weather sports pitch, dance studio, medical centre, a 300 seat theatre, drama studio and a music technology suite with recording studio, plus a Learning Resource Centre and over 500 networked computer workstations.

Both Junior and Senior school follow the National Curriculum, but with the added feature of a wide range of GCSE, A Level and Vocational options, catering for each individual pupil's strengths. An extensive range of activities and extra-curricular clubs and societies underpin academic studies by providing opportunities for pupils to extend their horizons in team sports, drama and music, visits, clubs, hobbies and interests.

Pastoral care is a great priority at LVS Ascot. In LVS Ascot Senior School each child is allocated to a house, and within that to a tutor group. House Masters and Mistresses, supported by teams of tutors, oversee the welfare and development of their pupils. In LVS Ascot Junior School, pastoral care is undertaken by the children's class teacher. Students are encouraged to give of their best, whether the goal is university entrance, success at GCSE, honour on the Sports field, artistic endeavour, or coping with the trials and tribulations of growing up. LVS Ascot aims to develop ‘caring, confident citizens’ for the future.

Entrance Requirements

Current school report and interview. There is no entrance examination. Main ages for entry are 4, 7, 11, 13 and 16 years. Limited entries at other ages.


Academic scholarships at 11+ and 16+.

Open Days

Please contact us to find out more about our inspiring learning environment and to arrange a visit to see the school and meet the people at the heart of our community – our students. We look forward to seeing you.


2017/2018. All per term.

Our refreshing view of school fees offers a transparent fee structure that includes lunch for day pupils and all meals for weekly and full boarders, curriculum books, exam entrance charges, sports fixture travel, personal accident insurance, the majority of after-school activities and the evening and weekend programme of activities for boarding pupils.

Infants: £3,236 (International £3,595), Junior Day: £3,876 (International £4,303), Junior Boarding: £8,282 (International £9,196)

Senior Day: £5,498 (International £6,107), Senior Boarding: £9,610 (International £10,898)

Sixth Form Day: £5,801 (International £6,203), Sixth Form Boarding: £10,192 (International £10,898)

HM Forces, Licensed Trade and sibling discounts are available.


ISI Inspection 2016

School Contact Details

Headteacher: Mrs Christine Cunniffe

Contact for enquiries: Mrs M Buttimer, Registrar

LVS Ascot
London Road

[t]: 01344 882770
[f]: 01344 890648

Location Description

A 26 acre site, to the west of Ascot on A329. Although set in the Berkshire countryside we are within easy reach of London, M3, M4 and M25 motorways and Heathrow and Gatwick airports.

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School News

LVS Ascot Independent Berkshire LVS Ascot Principal Warns New GCSE Gradings Will Have More Influence On Students’ University Hopes

August is a nerve-wracking month for Berkshire students – and parents – with A-level and GCSE results days looming. This year especially will be an

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anxious time for GCSE pupils with over 20 subjects using the 9-1 gradings instead of A* – G, and LVS Ascot Principal Christine Cunniffe is warning that they are set to play a bigger role than before in shaping students’ futures.

The head of independent, all-ability LVS Ascot, who has been an education voice of authority on ITV’s This Morning show a number of times, said: “The most contentious issue is the grade 4 and 5 ‘C’ grades. A grade 4 is a pass grade but it is more likely that for degree courses universities will be setting their entrance pass criteria at a grade 5”.

Christine also warned that changes to the A-level system, whereby AS levels are now a stand-alone qualification and not progressive to A-levels, mean that GCSE results will be under more scrutiny on UCAS application forms: “With the new linear A-levels there are only terminal exams at the end of year two. Under the old system pupils could retake AS levels to count towards their final tally. Now when students submit their UCAS applications they don’t have AS grades from Year 12 to include, only their GCSE grades, so it is more important to get good GCSE grades now”. She added: “It is very much a buyer’s market for university places, with more unconditional offers again this year, so good success at GCSE could reap great rewards later”.

With GCSE results day coming up on Thursday 23rd August, there will be a lot of uncertainty about what to expect amongst pupils, parents and teachers and Christine said: “Everyone is very much in the dark when it comes to this year’s results. We’ve been told that a grade 9 will be awarded very sparingly, much less frequently than A* grades, and indeed feedback from Year 11 pupils who sat GCSE exams this summer has shown that the upper end questions in the exams were certainly very demanding”.

Christine is also urging sixth forms to be more flexible this year in response to the new GCSEs. Many students collecting GCSE results will be aiming to go on to sixth forms that have minimum entry requirements for their courses, for example a B under the old grading system at GCSE to study that same subject at A-level, and Christine said: “There is a possibility that GCSE grades will be low this summer – we can’t predict the outcome – which could result in students missing out on the A-level subjects they want. Schools may need to be sensitive to this and re-examine their A-level entry requirements when the results come out”.

LVS Ascot Independent Berkshire Mayor Praises LVS Ascot Excellence At Prestigious President’s Day Celebrations

The Mayor of Bracknell Forest, Alvin Finch, was guest of honour at LVS Ascot school’s prestigious end of year awards ceremony on Thursday 5th July,

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and praised the school for its all-round excellence.

Mr Finch, who joined the Platform Party on stage in front of around 1,000 senior and sixth form students and parents for the awards, said: “It was a marvellous celebration of excellence and everything that is good about the school. You can see how aspects such as academia, sport, art and other activities contribute to the all-round excellence that you see here”.

You can watch a video clip of the Mayor’s interview at LVS Ascot, and other footage from the day including emotional leaving speeches, in a short highlights reel here:

An introductory welcome from Anita Adams, Chair of the LVS Ascot Education Committee, recapped a fantastic year of inspiring education at LVS Ascot and how as a result that of 13 schools and colleges in Bracknell Forest, including Wellington and Heathfield, LVS Ascot topped the table for student progress at A level in 2017. This puts the school well inside the top 15% in the country for A levels progress. She added: “this exceptional year has shown that our non-selective education is exceeding expectations”.

An emotional atmosphere with Year 13 leavers saying goodbye to the school was enhanced by poignant speeches from outgoing Head Boy, Oliver Bonnett, Head Girl Ella Desmond and Head of Boarding Ana Vasylyk. They spoke of their experiences, development and friendships gained during their time at LVS Ascot, conveying the special sense of community at the school alongside the academic and all round educational improvement they have felt.

The prizegiving aspect of the ceremony has always been an integral part of President’s Day, and rewarding effort and achievement in each year group and all subjects allows those who excel in specific areas to be recognised for their work. Scholarships were also presented, along with the new Heads of School, including Head Girl Megan Du Toit, Head Boy Darshan Solanki and Head of Boarding Ojas Limbu.

David Yu, father of Year 7 academic achievement winner Angelina Yu, said: “We are very proud. She’s done so well since she came to LVS Ascot and has thrived. We can see she is doing really well in the senior school – she is so confident and takes part in all the drama productions and sports too. I like the all-round character building aspect of the school”.

Principal Mrs Cunniffe summed up the day and the year: “We have enjoyed a variety of events here at LVS Ascot this year; a visit from Clare Balding, hosting a national girls’ football tournament, the LVS Ascot Festival of Music, through school productions and our Routes To The World of Work events to give our students a head start when seeking employment, to name just a few. The school is so vibrant with so many things going on to inspire students, that it is no surprise to see them excel, and today is a great opportunity to reward that”.

Photo: Mayor of Bracknell Forest Mr Alvin Finch with LVS Ascot Principal Christine Cunniffe

LVS Ascot Independent Berkshire “Make The Most Of Summer Holiday Opportunities” Urges LVS Ascot Principal

The summer holidays are a great time for relaxing and recharging your batteries, but for students they also represent a great opportunity to boost their

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prospects for the next academic year says LVS Ascot Principal Christine Cunniffe. Christine, who has been a guest speaker at both the Independent Schools Show and the Festival of Education, said: “If you are not feeling stimulated during the long summer break, perhaps with parents working and friends away, there are a number of things you can do – academic or non-academic – that will stand you in good stead at school and beyond”.

The head of the all-ability through school’s first piece of advice is that those old enough should look to take on a job over the summer break. LVS Ascot’s work experience week is a key time in preparing students for independence beyond education, with a range of innovative and exciting placements, and replicating this in the holidays is important. It can even be voluntary, non-paid work as that will show willingness to be proactive and help in the community, ticking many boxes for future employers. Christine says: “It doesn’t matter how much you work or what work you do, this will look impressive on your CV. It also shows that you are enthusiastic and diligent, can work with other people and that you are independent and confident”.

Whether students are at junior school, senior school or approaching crucial A-level years, for young people of all ages the summer break is also a good opportunity to tackle some topics they found hard in the previous year. Christine says: “It might not seem an exciting prospect picking up your maths book but it would be a great job done to take some time looking over difficult topics so you hit the ground running in September. YouTube is a great

resource to help explain difficult topics and working at your own pace in a quiet environment can be very productive. Come September when you are feeling more comfortable and familiar with the subject matter than your peers might be, you will be really pleased you took some time to prepare!”

Developing a wider range of non-academic skills is also a good way of using the summer break in an interesting and engaging way. This can be honing existing skills or trying out completely new ones to help demonstrate on your CV what you are interested in and what non-academic skills you are developing. With a thriving Duke of Edinburgh’s scheme at LVS Ascot that provides many opportunities for students to test themselves and enjoy enriching experiences, Christine’s advice is that: “Developing skills and interests doesn’t have to be expensive. Walking or hiking, swimming, learning a language, reading, and writing short stories is a good way of extending yourself and keeping yourself occupied over the holidays”.

LVS Ascot Principal Christine Cunniffe sums up by saying: “It’s easy to lay in bed too long or play computer games but my advice is to treat the summer days as you would school days – a little of everything goes a long way in keeping yourself occupied, learning new skills and preparing yourself for the next academic year. It should not then be too difficult when the alarm clock sound in the first week of September, and can help to relieve any anxiety about returning to school for the next academic year”.

Photo: LVS Ascot Principal Christine Cunniffe is urging young people to use their summer holidays constructively

LVS Ascot Independent Berkshire LVS Ascot Sees Rise In A* A-Level Results

Students at independent all-ability school LVS Ascot celebrated an increase in A* grades amongst their A-level results, rising to 5.7% from 4.6% last year. The

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school’s overall pass rate was 98.3%, surpassing the national average of 97.6%.

LVS Ascot, which topped the table for student progress at A-level in 2017 amongst the thirteen schools and colleges in Bracknell Forest, again saw a high level of progress amongst students. This was particularly the case in economics, history and philosophy with improvement of over half a grade per student based on their expected grades when they began A-levels.

Headline figures are:

  • Grade A* – B results – 39.4%
  • Grade A* – C results – 67.9%
  • Overall pass rate A* – E – 98.3%
  • 60 students took A-level and BTEC exams

Riley Thrower is celebrating winning a prestigious sponsored degree with Santander in London, having passed a seven-stage interview process which over 10,000 people applied for. Having made it to the final 48, he subsequently was awarded one of only a handful of level 7 apprenticeships in corporate investment banking. Riley, who joined LVS Ascot on a sports scholarship, enjoyed results including an A in graphics and a B in business studies and his mother Amanda Thrower said: “Having joined in Year 7 Riley has developed a really strong work ethic at LVS Ascot. He has a great relationship with his teachers which has really helped, and has taken every opportunity that the school has provided him with which has turned him into a very assured individual”.

George Alcock, 18, received A*AB and will be going to Newcastle University to study Business Management, whilst Head Boy Oliver Bonnett is going to study Product Design at Bournemouth University.

Alex Hill was accompanied to collect his results by parents Chris and Sarah Hill, who met when they were both pupils at LVS and have now put all four of their children through the school. Alex, who has devised, produced and starred in his own stage productions at LVS Ascot, received three Bs and will now go on to drama school. His father Chris, who returned with Sarah to LVS Ascot for the annual alumni event in June, said: “It is 17 years now since we put our first child into LVS Ascot. Matt now runs his own business in London, Emma is a teacher and Jonny is studying at Perth University in

Australia. We love that whilst there is an academic focus there is also so much focus on character development at LVS Ascot – creating confident, well rounded individuals. It has a real community feel to it, and the teachers have all found a way to work with Alex who is very much his own person”.

LVS Ascot Principal Christine Cunniffe said: “The first year of results under the A-level reforms has proven to be, as expected, very difficult for students with a drop nationally in the overall pass rate and the proportion of students achieving grade C or above. We are delighted that despite this LVS Ascot’s proportion of A* results has risen, and that our students have stood up well in the face of a more demanding challenge”.

Photo: LVS Ascot students celebrate their A-level results

LVS Ascot Independent Berkshire Public Services And High-Flying Past Pupils Descend On LVS Ascot For Inspiring Careers Evening

A host of representatives from the public service sector joined forces at LVS Ascot last night as the independent school held an inspiring careers evening

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to educate students on the range of options available to them when considering further education. The evening finished on a high with two former students returning to also speak on stage about their professional development and how they transitioned from A levels to successful careers without opting for the traditional university route.

Speakers Nick Chubb and Alastair Bolton from the Merchant Navy, the Royal Air Force’s Tony Pickett, Thames Valley Police Sergeant Cassandra Oswald, Katie Humphrey from the NHS, and the Met Office’s Dr Lee Hawkness-Smith revealed the ways to access funded further education within their organisations through apprenticeship options that allows students to learn as they earn whilst developing careers. This was followed by an alternative viewpoint being pitched by Kally Tomkins from Royal Holloway University of London to give LVS Ascot students the opportunity to fully consider all options available to them. The evening was launched by keynote speaker Andy Gardner from the Central Careers Hub, who revealed research findings into the most effective ways for students to progress into careers and told the audience about the range of training options they could take up.

The final two speakers were former LVS Ascot students who were able to demonstrate that through training available to them on the job, they had successfully developed impressive

careers without the need to go to university first. 22-year-old Ben Viney was at LVS Ascot for 14 years from Reception class to Year 13, and left to join leading construction company Laing O’Rourke where he was able to learn on the job and is now a planner on the Crossrail site at Liverpool Street Station.

He was followed on stage in the all-ability school’s theatre by Tom Slingsby, also 22, who was at LVS Ascot from 2007 to 2014 and whose training to become a pilot whilst studying led to him flying easyJet passengers by the time he reached 20 and completing a BSc Professional Aviation Pilot Practice degree.

The evening was devised by the school’s WOW (Women of Work) group, made up of Principal Christine Cunniffe and a host of professional mothers from the school who are creating innovative ways to use their experience to educate LVS Ascot students on career options.

LVS Ascot Principal Christine Cunniffe said: “As a school which focuses on inspiring young people to exceed their expectations and helping them grow as individuals, this was a highly successful event in showing students that there are lots of different routes they can take to the future, depending on their individual skills and ambitions, and helping them find the path that best suits them. I was incredibly proud to see two past pupils in Ben and Tom up on stage – prime examples of the types of students we have here and the character they leave with which allows them to go on to enjoy such successful careers”.

Photo: All speakers from the careers evening (l-r): Tony Pickett (RAF), Cassandra Oswald (Thames Valley Police), Christine Cunniffe (LVS Ascot Principal), Ben Viney (former student and Laing O’Rourke), Dr Lee Hawkness-Smith (Met Office), Tom Slingsby (former student and easyJet), Katie Humphrey (NHS), Andy Gardner (Central Careers Hub), Kally Tomkins (Royal Holloway), Alastair Bolton and Nick Chubb (both Merchant Navy)

LVS Ascot independent day and boarding school Berkshire

 Students across Berkshire returned to school this week after the Easter break, with many preparing to undertake a crucial few months

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of exams that will help to decide their futures. Head of Sixth Form at independent all-ability school LVS Ascot, Dr Paul Hodges, has issued the following useful advice to all students heading into those important GCSE and A level exams:

Give yourself adequate time to prepare

It is so easy to keep putting off starting revision, and that only adds to your stress levels. Use an exam planner to give you a “to do” list for each subject and assign each task with a deadline to make sure you don’t run out of time.  Try working through the day in sessions of 45 minutes with a 15 minute rest break every hour.  Make sure you stop for lunch and reward a hard day of revision by relaxing before going to bed. Also make sure you have at least half a day off over the weekend so you don’t burn out.  An easy way of putting together a weekly study timetable is to mirror the lessons on your school timetable.

Practice exam papers

Go through past papers and identify where you lost marks. You should aim to complete at least five full practice papers for each subject.  Start by doing parts of a paper in timed chunks with the textbook to hand.  Later, challenge yourself to do past papers, without notes, in silence and within the time limit so that it feels like a proper examination.  It is a good idea to get these marked by a teacher who will be able to pinpoint any errors and give you tips to improve.  

Turn your phone off and go off-line

Avoid the constant distraction of social media during your revision sessions.  If you can’t bring yourself to leave your mobile alone then hand it over to a parent, lock it away or leave it in another room.  You can always catch up at lunchtime or in the evening when you have finished revising for the day.

Before the examination

Develop a routine to get all your exam equipment ready the night before and double check the date and the time of each exam.  This will help to reduce exam day stress by having one less thing to worry about. Make sure you stay calm and avoid people who will stress you out. Find a space where you can mentally prepare for the exam you are about to take.  Everyone has a different strategy so work out what is best for you.  Try to learn a breathing exercise that you can do in the exam room while you are waiting to start.

In the exam room

When you turn over the question paper take a minute to work out how much time you should spend on each section and jot it down.  Rationing your time in this way will make sure you get to the end of the exam with time to check your answers.  Use all of the time available in an exam – even if you think you have achieved 100%. Check your answers and check them again.  No one has ever found an extra mark that gave them a higher grade by staring at the ceiling!

Dr Hodges concludes: “There are a number of ways schools can boost the chances of students preparing for exams. LVS Ascot holds memory workshops led by Head of Psychology and former UK memory champion Mr Paterson to help improve students’ powers of recall, and has a Revision Hub Café where those facing exams can relax and talk through queries with a range of teachers in an informal setting. We also opened our new Sixth Form Centre in September, and more recently invited former pupil Hattie Audaer back to talk to share tips on how to pass exams with our students. But the key to success is often how students themselves approach exams, and following the tips above will help to ensure students across Berkshire can happily say that they did all they could to prepare properly. Good luck to all Year 11 and Year 13 students heading in to a vital few months”.

Photo:  Dr Paul Hodges with former student and First Class Honours graduate Hattie Audaer who returned recently to talk to students about passing exams

LVS Ascot Independent Berkshire Celebrity TV Chef Inspires LVS GCSE Students

Celebrity chef James Tanner gave students of all ages an inspirational cooking masterclass on Thursday 8th March as he spent the day teaching different age

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groups at independent all-ability school LVS Ascot. His sessions gave them a new confidence in food preparation and an insight into the importance of sustainable fishing.

James, who became famous on Ready, Steady Cook before going on to Saturday Kitchen, also on BBC 1, and ITV’s Lorraine and Saturday Cookbook, demonstrated the techniques that have made him one of the most respected chefs in the country. He also gave tips on how students can improve their skills to obtain the best possible exam results in food preparation and nutrition.

A seafood session with the LVS Ascot Juniors saw James talk candidly about the importance of sustainability for future generations, fish preparation and the difference between various species with a range of examples on hand to show them.

LVS Ascot students from 4-years-old to 18 enjoyed a surprise and benefited from James’ talents at lunchtime as he took over one of the many varied food stations in the canteen to cook up a range of tasty treats including tempura battered pollock and breaded hoki goujons. With meals included in LVS Ascot’s all-inclusive fees, all 800+ students from 4 to 18 were able to enjoy James’ cooking and gave very favourable feedback, with some students also taking the opportunity to collect autographs.

Food preparation GCSE students were able to gain inspiring and expert guidance from James in an afternoon cooking demonstration that enabled them to learn high-level

technical skills such as fish filleting. Students such as Amy Price, 14, were also able to pick up valuable guidance on flavour development and plating and presentation skills that will give them an edge in their qualifications. She said: “I will now feel more confident about using these skills in my GCSE examinations”.

LVS Ascot’s Teacher in Charge of Food Science Melanie Holloway said: “Our students learned that the food industry is very diverse with lots of career and travel opportunities within the industry. James’ passion for food was evident and very infectious. The students now feel confident using more technical knife skills and are already using them in their lessons”.

James Tanner is an ambassador for Independents by Sodexo who supply the catering at LVS Ascot with an emphasis on a balanced, healthy diet. LVS Ascot Principal Christine Cunniffe said: “We aim to inspire students to try new things, express their talents and exceed their expectations, and James Tanner’s visit helped students of all ages to gain the confidence to take their own skills forward whilst instilling in them the importance of sustainability for future generations”.

LVS Ascot Independent Berkshire Science Week Inspires LVS Ascot Students To Take Action On Plastic Pollution

Students’ eyes were opened wide to the damage being done to the environment at LVS Ascot’s Science Week from Monday 12th – Friday 16th March.

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The independent all-ability school inspired students with a range of high profile visitors to demonstrate the importance of tackling plastic pollution, and integrated the content across a range of other subjects.

From Reception Class to Year 13, students enjoyed a programme of events including presentations from Sky Ocean Rescue, civil engineering company Costain, Shorts recycling and Ecover. Sky Ocean Rescue hosted a workshop where Year7 to 9 students devised innovations to tackle plastic ocean waste. The lucky students will now visit Sky to film pitches for their ideas, and all students watched a screening of the thought provoking Sky Ocean Rescue documentary, ‘A Plastic Whale’ in the LVS Ascot theatre.

A representative from Ecover visited Year 10 and 11 students to look at plastic waste issues and how the company is helping to provide alternative products. An eye-opening trip out saw a group of Year 7 to Year 10 students visit Oakleaf at Stanwell Moor, a new state of the art facility which converts waste which would normally be sent to landfill into SRF, a fuel used in industry. The trip was organised by Shorts Group Ltd, LVS Ascot’s waste management company. In addition, a whole school survey helped the school find out its plastic waste footprint and saw staff, students and parents make pledges to reduce their plastic waste.

LVS Ascot’s innovative approach to Science Week involved integrating related cross-curricular activities into other subjects and lessons. From English to Geography, Languages to Maths students looked at plastics from every angle, discovering the many fantastic uses and examples of plastics available. Activities included the launch of a reusable container initiative in food technology lessons, making pinhole cameras from single use plastic items in art and photography and looking at ethical and philosophical issues around plastic use in Philosophy.

STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) Ambassador Adrian Topham visited the Junior School to provide an enlightening talk, whilst the benefit of being an all-through was demonstrated by a number of exciting sessions in the senior school science laboratories for Junior pupils.

LVS Ascot Head of Science Sarah Catlin said: “‘The topical theme of the week has really permeated all areas of the school. The students have really engaged with the issues presented by both our teachers and the external speakers who have given their time so generously. We now hope to use the week to review the way we use plastic in school and make a difference with our actions”.

LVS Ascot Independent Berkshire First Class Honours Student Returns To LVS Ascot To Give Sixth Formers Tips On Passing A Levels

A former LVS Ascot student who went on to gain a first-class honours degree returned to the independent school on Wednesday 21st March to give

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a talk in the theatre on how to pass exams.

Hattie Audaer, 22 and from Windsor, was returning to the all-ability school representing Elevate Education to give advice to Year 13 students on developing clarity around revision and how to approach their studies. Her “Ace Your Exams” presentation covered revision techniques and how to manage stress effectively. She said: “A lot of students are in the dark when it comes to the kind of revision they should be doing, which can culminate in feelings of stress and anxiety. My goal is to present study skills in an interesting and engaging way”.

After studying Philosophy, Psychology and Drama A Levels at LVS Ascot, along with Spanish AS Level, Hattie went on to study Drama and Theatre Arts at Birmingham University where she graduated last summer with a first-class honours degree. In October she began a Masters degree in Applied Theatre at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, with a view to working with children and adults with learning difficulties to help aid their communication and imagination.

Hattie said: “It was a pleasure to come back to LVS Ascot. The school really helped to shape me as an individual and I couldn’t be more grateful to my teachers who gave me a real passion for education. Without them I wouldn’t be in the position I am now”.

LVS Ascot Principal Christine Cunniffe said: “It was great to have Hattie back at the school. What better way to inspire our students to focus on their A-Levels and aim for the highest achievements they can than to be able to talk to a former student who was in their position a few years ago, has gone on to gain the best possible degree, and has a clear career goal?”

LVS Ascot Independent Berkshire LVS Ascot Students Top Medal Table At Festival Of Music

Music students from LVS Ascot are celebrating after a record number of medal winning performances at a festival that attracted 160 entries from all over

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the home counties and beyond. The LVS Ascot Music Festival on Saturday 3rd and Sunday 4th February, taking place for the fourth time, demonstrated the school’s commitment to inspiring young people to exceed their expectations and resulted in LVS Ascot pupils winning 28 medals including 9 Golds and 14 Silver.

The event is quickly becoming established as one of the premier music performance events in the area for young musicians, with a record 160 entries over the two days up 36% on last year’s record of 118. Students from six to eighteen took part in categories including piano, vocal, strings, woodwind and brass in a celebration of musical diversity that reflects the range of music on offer at LVS Ascot.

LVS Ascot students William Brooke, 12, and 15-year-old Alexandra Skachko were the biggest winners, each claiming two Golds and a Silver. William won the top prize in the Piano Grade 6 class and Classical Intermediate Singing Grades 3 and 4, whilst Alexandra was a Gold medallist in Classical Advanced Singing and Folksong Advanced, both Grade 7 and above. Alexandra also won a Bronze medal for Rock and Pop Vocals Grade 7 and above. Students from schools in London and Surrey were also amongst the winners.

As an all-through school, LVS Ascot develops musical talent in pupils from a very early age and this was rewarded by five junior school pupils winning seven medals between them, the youngest being 7-year-old Zachary Bryant who won Silver in the Romantic/Modern Piano Genre class.

LVS Ascot Head of Music James Bryant said: “Our aim as a school is to inspire students to exceed their expectations, and this festival does exactly that for musical pupils. To be able to play in a professional theatre in front of an audience and have your efforts recognised and rewarded is important, and makes a real difference in the musical development of our students. We are delighted that the LVS Ascot Music Festival helps us share that ethos with other schools and allows their students to enjoy the same experiences and recognition which will help their musical development”.

The overall Best Musician trophy will be awarded at the Festival Winners’ Concert at LVS Ascot on Friday 23rd February, with guests welcome to come and enjoy free entry to watch the performances.

Photo: Double Gold medal winner William Brooke is delighted after one of his performances

LVS Ascot Independent Berkshire Former Secretary Of State For Education Nicky Morgan Praises LVS Ascot’s Focus On Character Education


MP and former Secretary of State for Education Nicky Morgan visited LVS Ascot where she addressed parents on the importance of character education and praised

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the school for its development in this area. She said: “Character isn’t a one-size fits all concept, it is a combination of traits that sets people apart so they can achieve their dreams. I think LVS Ascot is probably much further along on this journey than other schools”.

Nicky, who has been MP for Loughborough since 2010, was invited to LVS Ascot’s theatre where she discussed with parents of pupils from the junior school up to sixth form the benefits developing positive character traits brings. She detailed the advantages this provides to students when applying for jobs and, having been Secretary of State for Education from 2014 to 2016, was perfectly placed to talk about key strengths that employers are looking for from students. The independent all-ability school recently introduced a set of ten Learning Values and Skills to develop junior pupils’ characters for senior school and beyond, of which Nicky was keen to impress the importance. She said employers are looking for candidates that they can train fully in a specific role, but who arrive with key personal skills that will help them to succeed within that training and career.

Nicky said: “The LVS Ascot learning values including self-confidence and collaboration, risk taking and resilience, creativity and curiosity are great values that we all want to see

developed in our young people. The resilience, empathy and initiative traits will really help set the pupils apart in terms of making a success of life, and alongside persistence when things don’t go so well those are the things employers will say they want and they help in terms of high academic attainment too”.

Head of LVS Ascot Junior School Rachael Cox said: “Increasing evidence suggests characteristics such as creativity, empathy and collaboration can be learnt, and acquiring such positive character traits is associated with a range of positive life outcomes. At LVS Ascot we are committed to weaving these into the curriculum along with tailored lessons and engaging activities”.

Sixth form politics student Daniel Walker also interviewed Nicky after her talk. You can view some of the highlights of Nicky’s visit to LVS Ascot here, or watch her full presentation here.

Photo: MP Nicky Morgan with LVS Ascot Head of Junior School Rachael Cox and sixth form student Daniel Walker

LVS Ascot Independent Berkshire UK Memory Champions Descend On LVS Ascot To Inspire Students To Greater Academic Success

LVS Ascot became the focal point of the memory world on Saturday 4th November as four memory champions inspired students

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to learn special techniques that will help them surpass their expectations in exams and share the new found knowledge with fellow students. They were at the school to take part in the UK Memory League Championships.

As the only teacher ever to win the UK Memory Championships, LVS Ascot Head of Psychology James Paterson welcomed former UK Memory Champions Marlo Knight, Ben Pridmore (also former three-time World Memory Champion) and Katie Kermode (also reigning UK Memory League Champion) to do battle in a series of challenges that also gave a group of Year 11 students the opportunity to pit their wits against some of the best brains in the world and learn their secrets.

The event saw the memory experts go head to head in a series of 60-second memorisation tasks such as learning an eighty-digit sequence of randomly generated numbers, a full pack of playing cards, a list of fifty random words and the order of thirty unique images.

Select group of students Henry Bole, Simeon Jack and Owen Lambert had the rare opportunity to go head-to-head against the experts in competition and were amazed to see first-hand what is capable with a fully trained memory. Experienced competitors are able to memorise eighty digits in less than 30 seconds as well as a full pack of cards in less than 25 seconds. It was a great opportunity for the students to meet the competitors and discuss their use of memorisation techniques to enhance their own skills.

Alongside this event, the three Year 11 students at the independent all-ability school took part in the first ever UK Schools Memory League Championships, competing in a shortened version of the events, with Henry Bole emerging victorious. Henry said: “It was a great opportunity to meet some of the best memorisers in the world and showed us just how far it is possible to take these skills. I have used them in revision and I can already see how useful they will be when it comes to my GCSE exams this summer”.

The boys will now be invited to train much younger students at LVS Ascot with a view to hosting inter-school competitions in the future.  LVS Ascot Head of Psychology and former UK Memory Champion James Paterson said: “Ultimately this exciting competition will help students apply new found skills to their studies, something that I have done successfully in the past and something that students always find a great addition to a balanced set of study skills. It fits perfectly with the school’s ethos of inspiring students to flourish and exceed their expectations”.

LVS Ascot Independent Berkshire LVS Ascot Principal Addresses Forum On Future Of Education At International Show

LVS Ascot Principal Christine Cunniffe was invited to share her expertise at the Independent Schools Show in London on Sunday 12th November,

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addressing a forum on the future of education.

With 5,000 visitors from around the world attracted to the Independent Schools Show, a series of talks featured the Vice-Chancellor of Birmingham University and the Education Editor of The Sunday Times alongside Christine Cunniffe, who has also featured several times recently as an education voice of authority on ITV’s This Morning show.

In her address on the future of education, Christine Cunniffe said: “The employment landscape is changing with certain professions disappearing and I believe automated services will signal an impact on the workforce. My youngest son spends 3 hours or more a day on his computer, which horrified me initially, but for what he wants to do it is essential and therefore what is the difference between that and me practicing on the piano for 3 hours a day forty years ago?”

She continued: “Now we are all producers, not consumers, and we are not all the same – that’s why we recognise at LVS Ascot that all students are individuals and learn differently and at different times. The confines of the traditional classroom often don’t recognise this. I’m not sure that there is enough encouragement of entrepreneurship and innovation and encouraging our children to take risks. Our job should be to nurture and support them, and give them the opportunities to find and develop new skills. We have set up a party of LVS Ascot parents working in industry to look at the challenges of the future and help initiate programmes at school, such as our recent apprenticeships evening where we welcomed Coca Cola amongst others to talk about future opportunities for our students”.

LVS Ascot’s stand at the event drew large numbers of visitors to find out more about the independent all-ability school’s ethos of inspiring students to exceed their expectations. The confidence being instilled in pupils was demonstrated by LVS Ascot sixth formers Ana

and Ilia Vlasov, both 17 and boarding students at LVS Ascot, managing the stand for an afternoon as ambassadors for the school. This allowed prospective parents to find out from the students themselves what LVS Ascot has helped them to achieve, and express interest in attending the school’s next open day on Saturday 18th November.

LVS Ascot independent day and boarding school Berkshire

All 160 students in the LVS Ascot Junior School enjoyed a captivating day of activities last week as Outdoor Learning Day on Thursday 12th October took

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them from the classroom into the school’s 25 acre grounds to explore and discover new things, with some students making the trip to the World Heritage Site of Stonehenge in Wiltshire.

The youngest pupils in Reception Class to Year 2 enjoyed a scavenger hunt around the school grounds to encourage them to use their imaginations to find items which met certain criteria including bugs and plants.  The sessions were overseen by one of the school’s Outdoor Pursuit teachers, Mr Wyndham-Smith who leads sixth formers on Duke of Edinburgh trips, demonstrating the benefit of being an all-through school with teaching expertise shared across age-groups.

Year 4 pupils were given a session on trust and communication which involved a number of teamwork activities and problem solving tasks, whilst all pupils enjoyed an opportunity to read outdoors. Older students in Year 6 were taught map reading skills as part of an orienteering session which involved following a series of instructions to move from point to point within the leafy school grounds.

Pupils in Year 5 made the exciting trip to Stonehenge in Wiltshire where they discovered the history of the famous monument and learned how prehistoric man lived and how they managed to create the iconic ring of stones.

The independent all-ability school has recently launched a new focus for the juniors on five sets of learning values and skills – creativity and curiosity, empathy and reflection, independence and initiative, risk taking and resilience and self-confidence and collaboration. These characteristics are woven into all lessons, but the outdoor learning day presented the perfect opportunity to reinforce those values in a different setting.

Head of Junior School Rachael Cox said: “By having a day like this outside the classroom, where every child is involved, they are able to work together across year groups and show collaboration and self-confidence, take risks and do things that they might not otherwise do. It was an inspiring day that really engaged them with learning and trying new things”.

You can see more of LVS Ascot’s Great Outdoor Learning Day here, and people can see the school’s grounds for themselves at the next open day on Saturday 18th November. 

Pictures:  A group of LVS Ascot pupils at the school’s lake on Outdoor Learning Day

LVS Ascot independent day and boarding school Berkshire

Almost 400 girls from schools as far away as Middlesbrough and Wales descended on LVS Ascot school on Tuesday as 46 teams took part in

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the ISA Girls Football Festival. There was further great excitement as Reading and England internationals Jade Moore and Jo Potter were joined by Arsenal’s American World Cup-winner Heather O’Reilly to present the prizes and sign autographs.

With nine pitches in operation at any one time, the independent all-ability school’s 25-acre site was a sea of colour as girls in three age categories – under 11, under 13 and under 15 – battled it out in mini-leagues and then knockout competition.  In between matches, players were able to have their pictures taken with the women’s FA Cup to inspire them to aim for the top, and each team was also able to enjoy a masterclass training session with the Arsenal women’s community coaches.

World Cup winner Heather O’Reilly said: “It is exciting for me to be at an event like this to see how much the sport has grown over here, how many girls are having fun playing and learning so many qualities about themselves through football. LVS Ascot has amazing facilities, there are so many beautiful fields for the girls to compete on”. You can see more of Heather’s interview and highlights from the event here

The full list of final results are as follows:

U11Trophy: Parsons Green (London) beat Holme Grange (Berkshire)

U11 Plate: LVS Ascot (Berkshire) beat Gateway (Bucks)

U11 Cup: Southbank Kensington (London) beat St Mary’s (Bucks)

U13 Bowl: Luckley House (Berkshire) beat LVS Ascot (Berkshire)

U13 Trophy: King Alfred (London) beat Park School (Somerset)

U13 Plate: Akeley Wood (Bucks) beat Lingfield College (Surrey)

U13 Cup: Ballard (Hampshire) beat Red House (Stockton on Tees)

U15 Trophy: Holme Grange (Berkshire) beat Lingfield College (Surrey)

U15 Plate: Akeley Wood (Bucks) beat King Alfred (London)

U15 Cup: Meoncross (Hants) beat LVS Ascot (Berkshire)

LVS Ascot Principal Christine Cunniffe said: “LVS Ascot aims to inspire young people to exceed their expectations, and by supporting this incredible ISA event by hosting 46 teams from all over the country we will hopefully help to produce women’s footballers of the future. To be able to welcome international players to the school as well as the Women’s FA Cup also helped inspire the girls present and open their minds to the possibilities ahead of them in the future”.

LVS Ascot will be welcoming families to see its facilities for themselves again at the school’s next open morning on Saturday 18th November.

Picture: Girls from LVS Ascot excited to be hosting the national ISA Girls Football Festival

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