Jewish schools offer exceptionally high achievement, good behaviour, warm, caring environments, and the chance for young people to learn about their identity as 21st century Jews.
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Choosing a school

Why should I think about choosing a Jewish school?
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Jewish schools create confident, knowledgeable and well-educated adults. They offer safe, caring and warm environments where young people flourish personally and academically. Pupils at Jewish schools make lifelong friendships and the networking skills that will stand them in good stead in the future. The Jewish foundations they receive enable them to find their own place and identity in today’s fast-changing and challenging world.
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How do I go about applying to a Jewish secondary school?
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For voluntary-aided schools, application is made through the local authority and for independent schools, application details are on the schools’ websites. For admissions criteria please look on the schools’ websites. For more detailed information on how to apply, click here.
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Are all Jewish schools voluntary-aided schools?
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No, of the Jewish secondary schools listed on our website, some are independent, some are voluntary-aided and one is a free school.
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Academic performance

How well do Jewish secondary schools perform academically?
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Jewish secondary schools are all very high performing. They regularly appear in the top of the UK league tables. This is one of the reasons they are so popular with parents. They offer the highest academic standards, combined with an enriched Jewish education and social life, and are very ambitious for their students.
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Admissions policy

Do I have to go to a Jewish primary school in order to go to a Jewish secondary school?
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No, many children who attend Jewish secondary schools have not been to a Jewish primary school.
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Do you have to pay anything extra to go to a Jewish secondary school?
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No. The state-funded Jewish schools do however request a voluntary contribution towards the additional costs of a broad Jewish studies curriculum and also the cost of security. Details of fees at London’s independent Jewish school can be found on its website.

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How religious do I need to be to go to a Jewish secondary school?
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Jewish schools accept a wide variety of Jews with different levels of belief and practice. There are six main secondary schools in London. Families from all parts of the Jewish community send their children to these Jewish schools although the schools will vary in the emphasis they place on religious practice. All of the schools share a common aim in strengthening young people’s Jewish identity and knowledge in a variety of ways.
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Do Jewish secondary schools make provision for gifted and talented/special needs pupils?
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By law all schools have to have clear policies for children with special or additional needs. This includes gifted and talented who will certainly flourish with the wide offer available at Jewish schools.
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What is a CRP?
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CRP is shorthand for a Certificate of Religious Practice.  For most Jewish schools, when applying for a place at either a primary or secondary school, you will need to have completed one.

 

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Why do we need a CRP?
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The 2010 School Admissions Code allows the religious authority of schools with a religious character (sometimes called faith schools) to 'provide guidance for the admission authorities of schools of their faith that sets out what objective processes and criteria may be used to establish whether a child is a member of, or whether they practise, the faith' (para 2.52). The Chief Rabbi recommended that schools under his religious authority (sometimes called OCR schools) should develop tests of Jewish religious practice, which can be used for this purpose.  It is by no means satisfactory, but is the best option in order to remain compliant with the School Admissions Code.

Some schools aside from OCR schools also use a CRP and/or their own supplementary information form to be completed by the parent or a Rabbi.

 

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What do we need to do with a CRP?
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A copy must be sent direct to the school together with relevant supporting documents and the school’s Supplementary Information Form (SIF), which you should be able to download from its website. You should keep a copy of the CRP and its relevant supporting documents for future use. Not all schools have adopted identical CRP forms and some have varied their CRP requirements and chosen different criteria.  Individual websites should be consulted to see what the differences are and how evidence is to be gathered.

A CRP may have sections such as:  Synagogue Shabbat service attendance; Jewish educational activities; voluntary Jewish communal, charitable or welfare activities.  Points will be awarded for the level and quantity of activity in each area. You can aggregate the points from a range of activities.

If you wish to gain CRP points by Shabbat morning service attendance, you must first register at the synagogue you will be attending. Check with the synagogue for registration details.

The main difference is that at secondary level, only the participation of the child is to be recorded, whereas at primary, it is the child and/or its parent/guardian.

NB: Private schools can select pupils on other criteria and we recommend that you contact them individually. They may include parent or child interviews, which VA schools and ‘free schools’ are precluded from administering by law.

 

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When does the CRP have to be handed in?
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The CRP must be handed in at the same time as the application national closing date in October. There is a timeframe for completing the CRP and it will vary slightly each year. For children starting schools in September 2016, the process starts on 2 May 2015 and will end by 9 January 2016 for secondary schools. However, applications made outside the usual admissions round also have to complete a CRP form. This should also be printed on the CRP for each school. Independent schools will vary and you should consult their individual website for more information.

 

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When do secondary schools announce their places?
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Every year, local authorities for all voluntary-aided schools, free schools and academies will make their offers of Secondary places in Y7 on or around 1 March in the year when the child will be admitted (known as National Offer Day). Y12 dates are set by each school individually.  

The dates for independent schools will vary and you should consult their individual websites for more information.

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FAQs on Secondary School place offers
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The process of applying for secondary places can be stressful and those going through it are often anxious, especially as key deadlines approach. We hope the information in this link will be helpful in understanding the process. 

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Faith and inter-faith activity

How much time is spent on Jewish Studies? Do they learn about other religions/cultures?
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Time spent varies between schools. More information can be found on the schools’ websites. All schools take their commitment to community cohesion seriously and want to ensure their pupils grow up as contributing citizens who appreciate the breadth of cultures that make modern day Britain so special.
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Facilities

Do Jewish secondary schools have good facilities for art, music and sport?
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Yes. Art, music and sport are all regarded as important parts of the curriculum and have high take up at GCSE and A’level.
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Extra-curricular activities

Do Jewish secondary schools arrange trips and extra-curricular activities?
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Jewish schools place high value on the importance of trips and extra-curricular activities. As well as subject related trips, all the Jewish schools offer study trips to Israel, weekends away and for older students, trips to Poland and Eastern Europe. All schools have policies in place to ensure that no student is denied a place on these trips for financial reasons.
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Curriculum

Is there any part of the curriculum Jewish secondary school pupils are not allowed to be taught?
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No. All schools follow the national curriculum and all offer a very broad and balanced education. Jewish schools have a particular high take up of Science ‘A’ levels. As faith schools, Jewish schools will stress family and community values when teaching about sex and health education. All have very strong anti-drug policies.
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General information

Secondary schools are much bigger than primary schools – how do Jewish schools help the pupils with this change?
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The move from primary to secondary can seem quite daunting. Jewish schools are particularly good at making children feel welcome and part of their community. Pastoral care is a real strength. Check out the schools’ Ofsted reports, and in the case of the independent school, the Independent Schools Inspectorate report, to see how well they do.

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Where do pupils go on to after Jewish secondary school?
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Graduates of Jewish secondary schools gain places at all the major universities, including Oxford and Cambridge and the Russell Group. For details of the courses to which this year’s graduates have been admitted, visit the schools’ websites.
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If Jewish secondary schools have such a strong sense of family and community, does it mean their children are less disciplined?
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Not at all. Ofsted reports, and in the case of the independent school, the Independent Schools Inspectorate reports, consistently praise Jewish schools for excellent behaviour.
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Do all Jewish secondary schools have uniform?
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Yes. Dress codes may vary according to the particular school. See each school’s website for more details.
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