A message from St Mary’s Principal, Mrs Nicola Griffiths

Welcome to St Mary’s, an independent school in Colchester, Essex for girls age 3-16 with a Kindergarten for children age 3-4.

At St Mary’s we believe that girls are remarkable. They have different educational needs and there is a demand for a more enlightened, empowering and complete education, designed specifically for girls to thrive.

At St Mary’s, your daughter will be inspired, build resilience, advance academically, learn what interests her and grow. We understand that the girls’ wellbeing matters and is critical to achieving.

Our girls are not only self-confident and capable, but also kind and considerate.

We know that as parents, you want the world for your daughter – and so do we. And when she leaves us she’ll be empowered to rise to the challenges and the opportunities the world presents.

I hope that as you explore our website you’ll get a feel for the unique character of our school.

Attend an Open Morning or arrange a private tour of the school

You’ll find plenty of information on our website but often people find that by visiting us they get the best insight into all we have to offer. So please take a look at whether you can make one of our upcoming Open Mornings or arrange an individual tour at a time that’s convenient to you.

St Mary’s is a truly independent school in Colchester, North Essex

We are proud to have charitable status, meaning all fees are reinvested into the school. We are also truly independent, with no owners or shareholders. A committed governing body oversee the running of the school to ensure we provide a high quality education and a happy learning environment.

We provide an academically outstanding education

I am immensely proud that the The Sunday Times ranked St Mary’s Lower School as the 12th highest performing preparatory school in England. It’s particularly impressive considering we have a broad academic intake. Many girls achieve scholarships to senior school and we have an impressive 11+ pass rate for those who choose to sit the exam.

At the Senior School we see fantastic GCSE results each year. We’re able to achieve such success by tailoring the education to suit the needs of each individual in our small classes and by giving the girls the encouragement and support they need to aim high.

A wealth of opportunities are on offer to St Mary’s pupils

However, I’m a strong believer that success in life comes from more than just impressive exam results. At St Mary’s we offer a brilliantly balanced education in order to develop exceptionally well-rounded individuals.

A huge variety of clubs, enrichment activities, music and drama productions, visits and international travel experiences are on offer to the girls, giving them ample opportunity to learn new skills and develop talents.

There are numerous positions of responsibility available to the girls, which help develop their leadership skills. We also foster team spirit through initiatives such as the School Council and School Houses.

A positive environment enables pupils to thrive

For young people to thrive I firmly believe they must feel confident, relaxed and secure. Every child is known and understood and the girls feel comfortable challenging themselves and asking questions.

Before children even start at St Mary’s we take time to get to know them and their families. We have initiatives in place from induction programmes to buddy systems to help pupils settle in.

There’s a positive culture at St Mary’s and we believe in instilling the values of respect and courtesy. Through our charity and outreach work the students develop a strong sense of community. We are a leading Eco School and the students get a strong sense of caring for the environment as a result. As a global member of the Round Square Organisation, the pupils also benefit from our international links.

In this positive environment that our pupils develop the strength of character and the self-belief they need to thrive.

Mrs Nicola Griffiths, St Mary’s Principal

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