We all want to give our children the best start in life and the Absolutely Education guide (in association with specialist school fees provider SFS Group) is your checklist for choosing the right independent school

Finding the right independent school for your child is a complex process, with so many elements to consider – from costs to academic approach. We’ve joined forces with school fees insurance specialist SFS Group to compile this guide with key elements to consider when you are making your choice.

Location, Location

School is going to be a huge part of both your child’s and your family’s life for years to come, so the location is essential. A local independent may be best for the school run, and for a network of playdate friends, but other elements come into play here. City dwellers may prefer a more rural setting, with space, freedom and fresh air, in which case look at schools with good transport connections or existing school bus routes to your locality. Also consider boarding – so much more family friendly these days, with many schools offering weekly and flexi-boarding options to give families the best of both worlds and make boarding more affordable.

School Approach

Exam results and onward school or university destinations tell you how well a school performs academically, but that’s not the whole story. Finding the setting to bring out the best in your child – academically and socially – means looking at the approach to pastoral care and understanding the school culture. Checking out ratings, reviews and parent forums, speaking to school consultants and going behind the scenes at tours and open days are good ways to understand more. Also trust your instinct – this is a long-term relationship, so it’s vital to find common ground (and like) parents, teachers and the school Head. Finally, think about how well the school will support your child’s passions and interests – be it sport, music, technology or creative pursuits – as the setting that keeps your child engaged and enthusiastic is most likely to ensure a happy, fulfilled and successful school career.

Fees Planning

Independent school costs will always be a key consideration. School fees planning ensures peace of mind for you and stability for your child, so think about what might happen if your circumstances change. SFS Group’s school fees insurance is a unique group life insurance scheme with no medical underwriting required for cover. It includes terminal illness too, with payments made directly to your child’s school to ‘ringfence’ school fees in a tax- and probate-efficient way. There’s an automatic fee tracker that increases in line with inflation (RPI) plus 2% each year and cover can be taken out at any time during the school year. The insurance costs from less than £21 per month. What’s more, if you want to continue cover beyond 18 it’s easy to convert from school fees cover to SFS Group’s university fees insurance cover. Protecting fees brings peace of mind because your child’s future is secured, whatever tomorrow may bring.

Find out more about SFS Group school fees insurance at sfs-group.co.uk or get an instant quote now at sfs-group.co.uk/quote