St Mary’s School to extend offering to girls as young as three

Responding to parent demand, the independent school in Cambridge will extend its provision to early years children for the first time

St Mary’s School in Cambridge is extending its provision to girls as young as three for the first time.

The independent day and boarding school will open St Mary’s Preschool in September following demand from parents, who expressed their interest in an early years option for the younger sisters of current pupils.

The preschool, which will educate three and four year olds, will be based in the current junior school building located on Chaucer Road. The coach house is being reconfigured to create an early years centre that includes space for preschool pupils, as well as reception and year one pupils.

There will initially be space for 10 preschool pupils.

Jo Christian, head of juniors at St Mary’s School, said: “We are delighted to announce the opening of our new preschool in September. Creating an early years centre on site, that includes the provision of a preschool, will ensure an even smoother transition into the junior school for our girls.”

She continued: “Our pupils learn free from gender stereotypes, in an educational environment that helps develop their independence, initiative, creativity and problem-solving skills.”

The early years centre will consist of a large room for free-flow activities for all early years children, which will also act as a base for preschool aged pupils; a smaller room for structured teaching and reception class activities; and a year one classroom. There will also be an outdoor learning area with a stage and sandpit.

The school said preschool pupils will follow an individualised learning programme tailored to each child’s own developmental needs, with learning predominantly based on experiential play.

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