Quality Assurance

...more than a school, a way of life.

We are committed to ongoing quality assurance evaluations and self-evaluation is ongoing and remains on the agenda. The following methods for self-evaluation are used:

  • Staff Appraisals are ongoing within Departments.
  • Weekly Phase meetings are held to discuss curriculum, assessment methods, support of children, class activities, special celebrations, duties, staff grievances, differentiation etc. Termly “Review” meetings are held where children’s special needs are discussed, and support measures updated or put in place. The progress of all children is discussed. All formal assessments (tests) in the Junior and Senior Phase are moderated, including exams, which are internally and externally moderated.
  • We are evaluated by the WCED annually.
  • We obtained our Umalusi Full Accreditation in 2018, after submitting an online evaluation and hosting a formal site visit.
  • The Head meets formally with each academic staff member and Head of Department annually, and ad hoc meetings are scheduled throughout the year, if required by the staff member or the Head. The Academic / Cultural Heads of Department meet weekly to discuss curriculum, reporting, assessments, events and any issues. Communication between phases and departments is done regularly and encouraged.
  •  “Senior Staff” – a group of all the Heads of Department (including Facilities, IT, Learning Support, Finance, Academic, Administration etc meet with the Head weekly to discuss a large range of school-related activities, issues, concerns, as well as to plan for the week, term and year ahead).
  • There are many other, ongoing discussions on numerous topics that happen as and when necessary.
  • A quarterly Occupational Health and Safety meeting is held with the appointed Safety Representatives. Minutes are kept and all incidents/accidents and the individual Safety Representative physical inspection reports are discussed. The Head signs these off after each meeting.
  • For 3 years running we have been awarded a 5-star rating by NOSA (National Occupational Safety Association). In 2019 we were also awarded a 1st place position in Southern Africa for School Safety.
  • Our Catering Department undergoes a GMP Food safety Audit annually and we have consistently achieved excellent results of over 90% for the last 3 years.

The School participates in the following bench-marking tests:

  • The WCED Systemic Tests for Grade 3 and 6 (Mathematics and English)
  • The IEB Core Skills Test for Grade 6
  • The IEB Grade 7 MATCH Test for Grade 7
  • The Grade 3, 6 and 7 International Benchmark Tests (Australian Council for Education).

Our performance over a number of years on these tests has been most pleasing.

We are affiliated to the following organisations:

  • Independent Schools Association of South Africa
  • ISASA is the largest association of independent schools in South Africa and the Southern African region. Independent schools are also known as private schools. ISASA is a services organisation rather than a governing body. Membership of ISASA is voluntary and the association provides around 50 professional and collegial services to its member schools. ISASA currently has 700 diverse members that provide quality, values-based education to over 157,000 pupils.
  • Southern African Heads of Independent Schools Association
  • The Southern African Heads of Independent Schools Association (SAHISA) is a membership organisation for heads and principals of independent (private) schools. SAHISA strives to foster collegiality and the professional development of school heads and their staff.
  • Southern African Bursars of Independent Schools Association
  • The Southern African Bursars of Independent Schools Association is a professional membership organisation for business managers and bursars at independent (private) schools. Any business manager or bursar from an ISASA member school is automatically eligible for membership of SABISA.
  • Independent School Marketing Association
  • The Independent School Marketing Association (ISMA) is an interest group for marketers at ISASA member schools.
  • International Education Board (IEB
  • The IEB is an independent assessment body offering a range of certified assessments, benchmarked assessments and training. They are accredited by Umalusi for school and adult assessments, the QCTO for the Foundational Learning Competence and the ETDP SETA for training courses in assessment practices.

MySchool

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Our Mission

Somerset House is an independent preparatory school that strives to provide an excellent all-round education for children preparing them thoroughly for their futures.

Our Philosophy​

Somerset House is a family school and is welcoming to all. Somerset House endeavours to teach us all to live unselfishly, considering others. Non Nobis Solum. 

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Mission

We are firmly committed to recognising and developing each child’s individuality and potential.

We embrace change as a challenge and an opportunity, whilst respecting tradition.

We choose to provide a unique small school environment for a stimulating and demanding academic programme, emphasising child-centred education, deep-thinking and the development of life-long learning habits. 

We are a caring, Christian based environment, where self-esteem is nurtured, initiative is encouraged and children are able to develop self-discipline while maintaining an awareness and concern for others. 

We understand the valuable role that the arts, sport, extra-mural activities and leadership play in the development of rounded children. 

We are committed to the development and retention of top quality staff and to remaining up to date with appropriate educational and technological progress. We will allocate financial resources responsibly to ensure the delivery of world-class educational standards. 

We are committed to playing our part towards building a better South Africa. 

Philosophy

Somerset House is special in that it seeks to embrace a modern, dynamic, diverse and changing world while underpinned by sound values.

Somerset House is an independent school which makes its own decisions regarding curriculum and learning, while taking cognisance of national and international trends in education.

Somerset House is a disciplined environment where effort, participation and excellence are honoured.

Somerset House has a specialness and smallness which in this day and age is quite unique. The historic buildings and natural grounds are appreciated by all.

For seventy years Somerset House has remained a caring environment based on Christian values where self-esteem is nurtured, initiative is encouraged and children are able to develop self-discipline while maintaining an awareness and concern for others.