Streatham and Clapham High School

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Streatham & Clapham High School
SCHS Full Achievement.jpg
The school's coat of arms, granted by the College of Arms in 2017
Motto ad sapientiam sine metu
Established 1887
Type Independent school, Day school
Head Master Dr Millan Sachania, MA Cantab, MPhil, PhD, FRSA
Second Master Mr Richard Hinton, BSc (Dunelm), PGCE
Chairman of Governors Mrs Fiona Smith, BA (Dunelm), PGCE
Gender Girls
Ages 3–18
Head of Prep School Mr Thomas Mylne, BA (Hons)
Location (Senior School)

42 Abbotswood Road, Streatham, London.

SW16 1AW
Location (Prep School)

Wavertree Road, Streatham Hill, London.

Telephone (Senior School) + 44 (0)20 8677 8400
Telephone (Prep School) + 44 (0)20 8674 6912

Streatham & Clapham High School is a successful[1] independent day school for girls aged 3 to 18, situated in south London. The school was founded in 1887 by the Girls' Public Day School Company, which aimed to establish schools for girls of all classes by providing a high standard of academic, moral and religious education.

The Head Master is Dr Millan Sachania.[2] The Head of the School is in membership of the Girls' Schools Association.

The ability profile of the school is above the national average, with a proportion of pupils being far above the national average.[3] The 2010 Independent Schools Inspectorate report noted that 'the outstanding personal development of pupils of all ages demonstrates that the school meets its aim of developing girls who are happy, confident and inspired to meet the challenges of life and work'.[4]

The school is located on two sites, the Prep School in a Victorian building in Wavertree Road, London SW2, and the Senior School (including the Sixth Form) in buildings designed in the 1930s by J. E. K. Harrison, FRIBA, on Abbotswood Road, London SW16.


'Brixton Hill High School' began in February 1887 in a house at 260 Brixton Hill. Continued expansion led in 1894 to a temporary move to a home in Palace Road to await the completion of the new building in Wavertree Road, Streatham Hill (now the location of the Junior School). The building was opened by H.R.H. Princess Louise, Duchess of Argyll in 1895, and the school was soon renamed Streatham Hill High School. In 1938 Streatham Hill merged with (but essentially took over) the older Clapham High School (established in 1875, with Mary Jemima Alger as its first head), and was renamed 'Streatham Hill and Clapham High School'.

The Second World War created many challenges. Some girls were evacuated from London, while others continued their schooling in often difficult conditions. Misfortune struck during the school holidays on 27 July 1944, when a V-1 bomb damaged the school badly; and though parts of the building were still usable, the operation of the school had to be split between four separate sites. Two of the sites were 'Winchester House' on Upper Tulse Hill and 'Courtlands' on Christchurch Road. Winchester House had a huge garden and the girls were allotted small plots for gardening. In the summer the lawn and the shrubbery were the backdrop for several dramatic productions including A Midsummer Night's Dream. It was not until 1949 that the contract for rebuilding was finally signed, and then followed three years of demolition and reconstruction. By 1953 the old building had been reconstructed enough that a brand new gymnasium was opened with completely modern equipment and change rooms.

On 22 October 1952, Princess Alice, Duchess of Gloucester, as Patroness of the Girls' Public Day School Trust, opened the new Wavertree Road building. The further expansion of the school led to the GPDST's purchase in 1993 of a new site (for the Senior School) at Abbotswood Road, the former buildings of the Battersea Grammar School, purchased from London South Bank University.

Since then the Abbotswood Road site has been expanded with the Millennium Building, comprising an Art Suite, Music Suite and a Recital Hall, and a Sports Hall. In January 2017, a new Sixth Form Centre opened on the newly built fourth storey on the Harrison building. The Prep School, at Wavertree Road, has been refurbished.


The school offers a wide range of subjects. Pupils in the first, second and third years of the Senior School (Years 7 to 9) study the core disciplines of English, Mathematics, and Science. Other subjects offered include Art, Computing, Design & Technology, Drama, French, Geography, History, Italian, Latin, Music, Physical Education, Religious Education, and Spanish. All of these subjects are available at GCSE or IGCSE in the fourth and fifth years (Years 10 and 11). The school also offers an enrichment programme, 'Kinza', which enables pupils to sign up for a diverse range of subjects such as beekeeping, forensic science, genealogy, photography, Arabic, etc.

Sixth Form[edit]

The Sixth Form is housed in accommodation which opened in 2017, comprising a study centre, a common room, and a staffed café. The school offers a range of subjects for study at AS and A Level. Sixth-form students also have the opportunity of taking the Extended Project Qualification.

Findings of the ISI Inspections 2010 and 2016[edit]

The Independent Schools Inspectorate inspected Streatham & Clapham High School in October and November 2010,[5] and the key findings of its report are:

  • 'The school is successful in meeting its aim of providing the pupils with high-quality all-round education. From the EYFS [Early Years Foundation Stage] onwards, pupils achieve well, gaining good results in public examinations' (Section 2.1).
  • 'The outstanding personal development of pupils of all ages demonstrates that the school meets its aim of developing girls who are happy, confident and inspired to meet the challenges of life and work' (Section 2.2).
  • 'A notable feature of the pupils' personal development is the excellent integration between pupils from diverse social, ethnic and cultural backgrounds' (Section 2.2).
  • 'The spiritual, moral, social, and cultural development of pupils is excellent' (Section 4.1).
  • 'From an early age, pupils have highly developed social skills' (Section 4.4).
  • 'The quality of the arrangements for [pupil] welfare, health and safety is excellent' (Section 4.5).
  • 'One of the school's aims is that girls should be educated in a supportive and compassionate environment and it is very successful in achieving this aim' (Section 4.5).
  • 'The quality of links with parents, carers and guardians is excellent' (Section 5.8).
  • 'The school provides an outstanding start to the children's education' in the EYFS (Section 6.1).
  • The inspectors recommended that the school should establish a system to disseminate the good practice of heads of department in the senior school more widely, ensure that all teaching provides opportunities to challenge the most able, and consider the length of lessons (Section 2.5).

The 2016 regulatory compliance inspection found that the school complied with all regulatory requirements.

Heads of Streatham and Clapham High School[edit]

  • Miss Alice Tovey (1887–1898), Headmistress
  • Miss Reta Oldham (1898–1923), Headmistress
  • Miss Ruth Gwatkin (1923–1938), Headmistress
  • Miss Marjorie Jarrett (1938–1947), Headmistress
  • Miss Margaret Macaulay (1947–1963), Headmistress
  • Miss Agnete Wulff (1963–1973), Headmistress
  • Mrs Nancy Silver (1973–1978), Headmistress
  • Miss Gillian M. Ellis (1979–2002), Headmistress
  • Mrs Susan Mitchell (2002–2011), Headmistress
  • Mr Richard Hinton (2011), Acting Head Master
  • Dr Millan Sachania (2012 to date), Head Master

Notable past pupils[edit]

Former teachers[edit]

  • Dame Mary Green, Headmistress from 1954 to 1973 of Kidbrooke School, London's first main comprehensive school (taught from 1938 to 1940)
  • Danielle de St. Jorre (taught French from 1967 to 1969)


  1. ^ Independent Schools Inspectorate Report, 2010: see section 2.1, which states that 'the school is successful in meeting its aim of providing the pupils with high quality all-round education. From the EYFS onwards, pupils achieve well, gaining good results in public examinations'.
  2. ^ His publications include over 35 editions of music by Poulenc, Stravinsky, Godowsky, Philip Glass, and many others, for publishers including Carl Fischer, Inc., Chester Music Ltd., Novello, Peters Edition, and Bosworth.
  3. ^ Independent Schools Inspectorate Report, 2010: see section 1.4.
  4. ^ Independent Schools Inspectorate Report, 2010: see section 2.2.
  5. ^ Independent Schools Inspectorate Report, 2010.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 51°26′06″N 0°08′17″W / 51.4351°N 0.1381°W / 51.4351; -0.1381