Education

St Paul’s Primary School

Education on St Helena operates with Primary and Secondary sectors, with three primary schools (Pilling, Harford and St Paul’s) and one secondary school (Prince Andrew School) serving the children of the island. 

Schooling is compulsory for all children aged between five and sixteen.

The School Year

There are three terms in each academic year, from September to December (4-week break at Christmas), January to April followed by a 2-week break) and May to August (followed by a 3-week break).  In each term, there is also a one-week break for a half term holiday.

Compulsory schooling begins in September of the academic year in which children are 5 years old.

Nursery Classes

The three primary schools have a nursery class. Attendance at nursery is not compulsory but part-time provision, mornings only, is offered to children from the term after their third birthday, providing there are places available. It is expected that, if a place is accepted, children will attend for five mornings a week. Provision is based on accepted good practice, based on the Statutory Framework of the English National Curriculum.

Pilling Primary School, Jamestown

The Curriculum

Schools in St Helena broadly follow the English National Curriculum for Key Stages 1 – 3 (ages 5 – 14).  The course of study is linked to international standards but also reflects St Helena context.  In Key Stage 4 (ages 14 – 16), pupils study towards GCSE/IGCSE examinations and accredited vocational qualifications. 

Prince Andrew School’s Sixth Form offers A level study.

Extra Learning

In addition to traditional teaching, a variety of distance learning courses increase the range of subjects available at GCSE and A level.  The majority of students reaching the statutory school leaving age of sixteen return to education for post 16 year academic studies, or to take up an apprenticeship which may incorporate vocational City & Guilds qualifications. 

A Community College is managed by the Education, Skills & Employment Portfolio.  The college provides opportunities for learning and development, from basic skills courses through to professional and higher education qualifications. 

Moving to St Helena with Children

For Officers bringing children to the Island, it would be beneficial for them to speak with others who have children of a similar age, who have lived, or are currently living, on St Helena. 

The St Helena Government’s UK Representative in London would be able to help make contact with other families who could give further information. 

Obviously all children adapt differently to a new environment and many, particularly younger children, seem to thrive on the St Helenian lifestyle.  It should be noted that the Directorate cannot guarantee provision for ‘specialist’ educational needs.  Education needs can be discussed in advance with the Assistant Director of Schools, Miss Kerry Lawrence via email: kerry.lawrence@sainthelena.gov.sh

Information on school enrolment can be found here.

Crèche Services

There are, at present, four crèches (private day care) on the island. These are in Half Tree Hollow, Alarm Forest and Jamestown.  A register of child-minders is kept at the Children & Adults Social Care Directorate; details will be provided on request, email: paul.brown@sainthelena.gov.sh

Additional Activity Groups

Other facilities available for children are – swimming lessons at school, swimming coaching sessions, Scouts (Beavers through to Explorers), Girl Guides (Rainbows through to Guides), Creative St Helena (NGO arts organisation), Football League (age 7+), and New Horizons (youth organisation for ages 11 – 21).

Harford Primary School, Longwood

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