Inspiring girls to have the confidence to make their dreams reality results in individuals who are successful inside and outside the classroom at Mayfield School.
Whilst academic success is important, Mayfield believes a good education is more than just exam certificates – it is about creating confident girls ready to face the wider world.
This Catholic independent boarding and day girls school gives pupils the confidence to be themselves and provides them with the opportunities to learn they can do anything they set their minds to.
Pupils’ academic experiences are designed to challenge and enrich. Pupils not only work hard, leading to outstanding exam results and places at the top universities, but they also play hard. Girls enjoy hockey, netball, tennis and swimming, use the fitness suite, dance studio and fabulous Equestrian Centre. Art and ceramics, displayed throughout the school, are exceptional. Textiles, film, photography, cookery, music and drama develop their creative side. All these elements are seen as just as important as Maths, English, Science, Humanities and Languages in creating well rounded young women.
Mayfield understands girls. As a result Mayfield girls feel comfortable taking risks and asking questions so they become more resilient and sure of themselves. They learn it is alright to make mistakes and realise that nothing is impossible with hard work, commitment and self belief. They are encouraged to question and challenge.
Headmistress Antonia Beary described Mayfield girls as “original”. “We help each girl find out what she is good at and then do it really well,” she explained. “The girls do interesting things because they are worth doing, not simply to get exam grades, and we give them the confidence to make the right choices for them. We want our girls to make things happen, but be altruistic: to have a sense of responsibility and be grateful for what they have received. We expect them to contribute and to learn that the more you give the more you get from life. Our girls are committed to each other and the school.”
Mayfield is home to 356 girls aged 11 to 18, a size Miss Beary thinks is crucial to its success. “We are big enough to have the full range of subjects and facilities for the girls but small enough that we know every girl.”
The school’s Catholic beliefs ensure pupils are taught to be respectful of themselves and others, to be dignified, to contribute to the wider community and use what they have received at Mayfield to make a positive difference.
Founded more than 150 years ago, Mayfield combines historic buildings and traditions with modern teaching and technology. Newly built Sixth Form Centre is a perfect example – state of the art design and cutting edge technology create a fabulous learning space in the most historic part of the school, next to the 14th century chapel. This beautiful, tranquil space is used for liturgy, mass and prayer as well as the school’s highly popular live crib event at Christmas.
Although housed in historic buildings, Mayfield’s classrooms are light and airy. Wide wood panelled corridors lead to beautiful stone staircases overlooked by leaded windows. Never afraid to mix the old and the new, the ICT room has state of the art computers sitting atop glass and chrome desks.
The Hub cafe provides girls with a place to meet, relax and socialise. Concert Hall is used for assemblies, fashion shows, drama and music. Mayfield has a strong tradition for choral singing, with a host of choirs covering every genre of music. Most prestigious of all is Schola Cantorum which regularly performs at top venues across Europe including Westminster Abbey, York Minster and the Vatican.
Pastoral care at Mayfield is exemplary. It is seen as a crucial element if girls are to be successful academically. The chaplaincy door is always open and the sixth form Oratory is a tranquil haven overlooking the chapel.
Mayfield girls are grounded, eloquent and charming. They leave the school with strong friendships that support them through the good and bad times and excellent exam results that stem from the confidence the school gives them.
The words of the school’s founder, Cornelia Connelly, are still relevant for Mayfield pupils today: “To educate young women to `respond to the needs of the age’ in which they live”.