ISI/Ofsted inspectors rated Danes Hill School 'OUTSTANDING' in all areas in our school inspection. Danes Hill is located in the grounds of over 55 acres on the edge of Oxshott village in leafy Surrey. We are very proud of our excellent academic results and the increasing number of senior school scholarships being awarded to our pupils. Our pupils achieved 57 senior school scholarships in 2019.
About the school
At Danes Hill we aim to take every child in our care on a most extraordinary journey, and one which can nurture the talent and provide the skills and experience to last a lifetime. From the nervous child’s first arrival at Transition's door to the self-confident teenager addressing his or her final Speech Day, from infant to young adult, it is a privilege to be responsible for a child’s development through these formative years. Danes Hill is a large school, and this enables us to provide an unusually broad curriculum and specialist staff. Challenge, encouragement and the pursuit of excellence mean that our pupils very often lead the way, achieving success on the sports field, in the examination hall, or wherever their talents lie. But we are also an inclusive school, where every pupil is equally important to us. The balance of learning support, academic scholarship, physical development and pastoral care is tailored to the needs of the individual boy or girl. We lay the greatest possible importance on good communications with parents: we believe that education is a team effort, with home and school journeying together for the benefit of the child. Sport, Music, Art and Drama are all renowned strengths of the school, and a glance at our termly calendar reveals the wealth of activities, trips and events which provide so many opportunities for our boys and girls to shine. We believe that every child possesses talents, and it is our job to unlock and nurture them and put them to greatest use.
On Tuesday 17 March, Danes Hill School pupils planted over 300 trees, the remaining trees will be planted later in the year. Every child in Year 2 and Year 3 planted a sapling, assisted by older pupils from the school’s very active Eco-Committee, which recently won a Bronze Eco-Schools Award.
20th March 2020 — On Tuesday 17 March, Danes Hill School pupils planted over 300 trees, the remaining trees will be planted later in the year. Every child in Year 2 and Year 3 planted a sapling, assisted by older pupils from the school’s very active Eco-Committee, which recently won a Bronze Eco-Schools Award.
All of the trees were donated by the Woodland Trust, which is working in partnership with Defra and various independent companies to plant 2.2 million trees in schools and educational establishments in the UK over the next four years. The trees were a mixture of native wild wood, year-round colour and copse varieties, such as silver birch, rowan, wild cherry, hawthorn, hazel and goat willow, and were hand planted in the school’s 55-acre grounds.
“This is an important day for our pupils as they will contribute positively to their environment and have an experience which they will remember into adulthood,” said Headmaster, Willie Murdock. “Enriching our natural space is very close to our hearts at Danes Hill; through outdoor learning in the most beautiful natural environment, our pupils connect with nature and make discoveries in memorable ways. And they also have a great deal of fun.”
To enhance and develop their knowledge, pupils also had lessons on the impact of trees. They also learnt about how trees disperse their seeds, tree identification, clean air quality, habitat for other species, as well as woodland wildlife and flowers, and of course the uses of different types of wood. Many of these lessons took place outside, where children also participated in leaf and bark rubbing and art activities, such as making leaf crowns and leaf masks.
As the school’s recent inspection found, the pupils at Danes Hill School ‘develop a natural awe and wonder for the world through the woodland learning environment’ - a sentiment supported by Ella Sisson in Year 3: “I really enjoyed planting a tree because I love learning outside,” she commented. “It was be a bit muddy, but I know we helped the planet.”
Danes Hill School is Excellent, say impressed ISI inspectors
Danes Hill School is ‘a strong, harmonious and happy community’ where every individual ‘is valued and making a positive difference’, independent schools inspectors have found.
11th March 2020 — Danes Hill School is ‘a strong, harmonious and happy community’ where every individual ‘is valued and making a positive difference’, independent schools inspectors have found.
The ISI’s latest Educational Quality Inspection of Danes Hill School in Oxshott assessed Danes Hill pupils as attaining ‘exceptionally high levels of knowledge, skills and understanding’. It concluded that the quality of both pupils’ achievement and of their personal development is excellent, and that children show ‘extremely high levels of perseverance and commitment in lessons’.
Inspectors identified that the pace of lessons, effective questioning and high expectations of teachers, and consistent encouragement to follow their passions create a school in which children become articulate, passionate people who make the most of opportunities, being eager to engage and succeed. Moreover, the understanding and support of the governors ensure that pupils’ academic and personal needs are met, meaning that pupils can achieve highly and grow healthily physically and emotionally.
The report states that Danes Hill pupils thrive in a culture that offers considerable opportunities and activities, and inspectors identified that the independent, well-behaved and confident pupils make ‘excellent progress and achieve standards well above average for their age by the time they leave the school’. They become respectful individuals who enjoy their numerous successes, contribute to the school and the wider community and are highly respectful and accepting of those from all backgrounds and traditions.
Headmaster Willie Murdock said, “I am so proud of the children, staff and whole school community, all of whom make Danes Hill the outstanding and exceptional place it is. We are truly thrilled with the stunning findings of the ISI inspection.”
As part of their polar topic last term, Year 5 were given the opportunity to track a team of polar explorers called “Polar Latitude” from LikeToBe.org, as they embarked on an exhibition to the Arctic.
10th February 2020 — As part of their polar topic last term, Year 5 were given the opportunity to track a team of polar explorers called “Polar Latitude” from LikeToBe.org, as they embarked on an expedition to the Arctic.
The explorers carried a Danes Hill flag with them on their journey and have shared some of the images they took. While our flag has now returned to school, “Polar Latitudes” will continue to post updates to LikeToBe.org over the next few months and hopefully, the children will be able to ask the guides and scientists questions about their expedition which they intend to answer from the ice!
On Monday 20 January our Eco Warrior team comprising of eight children who are leading the crusade to make Bevendean more environmentally friendly and sustainable, organised ‘No Electricity Day’.
24th January 2020 — On Monday 20 January our Eco Warrior team comprising of eight children who are leading the crusade to make Bevendean more environmentally friendly and sustainable, organised ‘No Electricity Day’. The aim was to get through a school day without using any electrical items at all. Children are becoming increasingly aware of our over-dependence on electricity and the adverse impact its production and overuse can have on the environment. On ‘No Electricity Day’ lights, computers and interactive whiteboards were all switched off and lessons were conducted in a traditionally tried and tested fashion. Going the extra mile, the children even enjoyed a cold lunch of crudités, sandwiches and homemade flapjacks and fruit!
A communal assembly on the day proved to be the perfect opportunity for the children to reflect on their efforts. One child said ‘I loved using the tambourine in our dance lesson instead of dancing to music from a stereo’. Without doubt the children all felt they would be more careful when using electricity in future.
‘No Electricity Day’ proved to be a huge success in raising awareness amongst children and staff of what we collectively and as individuals can do to make the school and our environment greener and more eco-friendly. Well done Bevendean!
Danes Hill, Oxshott - Triple National IAPS Hockey Winners!
A record breaking week for Danes Hill sport. Our girls’ hockey teams have been crowned in three national hockey titles - U11 and U12 IAPS National Cup Champions and U13 IAPS National Plate Champions.
25th November 2019 — A record breaking week for Danes Hill sport. Our girls’ hockey teams have been crowned in three national hockey titles - U11 and U12 IAPS National Cup Champions and U13 IAPS National Plate Champions.
The U11 IAPS National tournament took place at Haileybury College. Having won their regional competition, the girls were excited to compete amongst the best 24 schools in the country after a phenomenal 189 teams had entered. In a fiercely competitive group stage, the girls fought hard to top their pool with 10 points from their 5 games, conceding just one goal in the process. The girls then went on to beat Foremarke Hall 1-0 in the quarter finals. In the Semi-Final, the girls faced St George’s, with normal time and Golden Goal ending scoreless, it took a brilliant penalty save by our goal keeper and a winning penalty from Danes Hill to send the girls through to the final. In the Final, the girls faced Ashford. After hitting the post in normal time, a scoreless 10 minutes resulted in Golden Goal to decide the winners. Danes Hill piled on the pressure to score and to crown Danes Hill as U11 IAPS National Champions!
The U12 hockey team took part in the IAPS National Hockey Finals at Rugby School. The girls travelled up to Rubgy the day before and stayed overnight in a hotel. They were ready and raring to go on the day of the tournament. In the pool stages, the girls scored an outstanding 14 goals in 4 matches and only conceded 1 goal, putting them top in their pool and through to the cup competition. The next knock out match was crucial. The girls again demonstrated their strength at scoring goals and beat St Faith's 5-0. They were thrilled to be through to the semi- finals and played local school Cranleigh. This was an exciting game and both teams had chances to score. In the last 10 seconds of the 14 minute match, Danes Hill scored the winning goal to put them through to the finals. The final game was against last year's Year 6 IAPS National winners, Clifton College Prep. What a final this was! On the final whistle Danes Hill won the match 4-2 and were crowned U12 IAPS National Champions!
The U13 Girls Hockey team competed in the IAPS National Finals at Repton School in Derbyshire. The girls travelled up the night before to prepare them ahead of a tough day.
With a very hard pool, the girls got off to a 0-0 draw in a closely fought match with Dean Close. They faced a tough 3 matches, all close together. A 2-1 win over Downsend saw the girls show great character before beating The Downs 4-0 with a brilliant display of attacking hockey. Immediately afterwards, we headed to the sand-based pitch to face Winchester House, unfortunately, losing 1-0. Going into our final game, the just needed a draw to reach the quarter-finals of the Cup but unfortunately lost 2-1 to The Oratory. As a result we were through to the plate competition, facing Lambrook in the Quarter-Final and comfortably winning 2-0. In the semi-final, the girls faced Northampton and after a tense match, scored a late goal to seal a 2-0 win to set up a rematch with Winchester in the Final. The Final was an extremely tense match with Winchester having lots of chances with Danes Hill defending brilliantly. With just a couple of minutes left, Danes Hill sprung a counter attach to break through the Winchester defence and score to win the game 1-0 and crowned U13 National Plate Champions!
“We are so proud of our girls; they have shown determination, dedication and commitment in preparing for the finals. Their talent and ability to support each other and work together has been remarkable. They are exceptional young women and a credit to Danes Hill”.
On Friday 13 October, Year 5 took part in their annual Polar adventures.
23rd November 2017 — On Friday 13 October, Year 5 took part in their annual Polar adventures. The children spent their afternoon investigating how blubber keeps animals warm in the Arctic and Antarctic and trying to make gloopy glaciers out of clay and cornflour. During the final part of the afternoon, the children returned to the classrooms and decided where they would like to visit and planned an expedition to their chosen region. They also had to try to design logo for their trip. The children had great fun and the event gave them more of an insight into the topic which they are studying in geography.