Online School Fee Guide for Parents: Hacks to help you choose the right British Online School for your child
When searching for a leading Online British Private School, parents often find themselves faced with a huge range of online school fees; from the cheap and cheerful self guided model without any teacher led instruction instruction, affordable models with limited live teaching or very large class sizes, to those who are offering a full British Private School experience within an online education setting.
When researching online schools UK, parents should arm themselves with a set of key questions when speaking to the online education providers of British Online Schools. How much is the online school uk? What does the online school provide in terms of curriculum coverage? What is the online school provision for daily contact and instruction with qualified teachers with experience in the British Curriculum? How many children are in the live lessons in an online school, and how does this make a difference when it comes to the quality of learning and teaching?
Affordability for personal circumstances is important, as very few UK online schools are free and online school fees, registration fees, school deposits and school fee payment structures can very widely across providers. Its hugely important parents take into consideration the full breadth of curriculum on offer and how each online school approaches online education when making the best decision for your child.
When looking for the best online school UK, here are the top 8 factors that may impact online high school fees / online primary school fees, and which you should consider to make an informed decision as you decide what model of education will best suit your own children and their learning needs.
1. Are the British Online School Teachers qualified?
One important consideration is to know whether the online school teachers are fully qualified, with degrees. In the UK, all qualified teachers hold Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). Hiring practices vary widely from school to school, and many online schools use unqualified teachers from any part of the world.
This is not just important to ensure the quality the teaching, but also to ensure that all teachers are familiar with the curriculum delivered.
At Sophia Online High School, all of our teachers are experienced, fully qualified and based in the United Kingdom. Meet our online school teachers.
2. How many students are in each class?
The teacher-to-student ration can make a big difference when it comes to how much online school costs. Some online schools offer lessons in groups of 60+ students. In an online learning environment especially, this makes collaboration and interaction very difficult.
While an online school with a strict policy for the maximum number of students per class might be more expensive than other alternatives, smaller class sizes also affect how fast students learn and make progress.
This can also be an important factor for children who are overwhelmed by large amounts of people, or who need more personalised teaching, as teachers will be able to provide more individual attention in a smaller classroom.
Our policy is to teach in groups of no more than 6 students per class, to allow for interactive teaching and individualised learning.
3. How are the online lessons delivered?
Most school at home online programs generally rely on some form on video teaching: whether these are pre-recorded or live can also impact online school fees.
Pre-recorded lessons can be of outstanding quality, they can be unengaging for students, making it difficult to keep them focused as there is no interaction.
At Sophia High School UK, our blended learning programme offers live interactive lessons delivered by our passionate teachers. This allows children to ask questions, and to learn from / interact with others at our online school Year 1 to Year 9. Visit our Virtual Experience to see our students and teachers in action.
4. How is the online curriculum uk delivered?
Beyond knowing which curriculum is offered (American curriculum, UK National Curriculum, Cambridge curriculum, etc.), one important consideration is to know how it is delivered.
This includes what a typical day at online school looks like, lesson duration, and how many lessons per week do the students receive in the core subjects. Practices vary while, with some online schools only offering two 40-minute lessons in English and Maths per week, while others offer one 2h30 English lesson per week.
Finding the right balance between the number of lessons in each subject and the lesson duration to maintain students’ attention spans requires expertise, and is very important to make sure that your child is learning effectively and making progress.
This can affect how many teachers are in the school, how many days a week they work for the school, and hence can affect school fees as well.
Our online school British curriculum timetables include 3 to 4 live lessons per day, with a duration of 40-50 minutes each. This is followed by a programme of independent learning, creating a balanced blended learning programme.
5. Which safeguarding measures are in place?
While safeguarding is easy to overlook, it is one of the things that are essential to ensure that students are learning in a safe environment.
Safeguarding at an online school is important on multiple levels:
– All staff should have background checks and up-to-date Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks
– Cybersecurity is essential to protect students and their data against cyber attacks
As safeguarding requires checks by third parties, it can explain part of why fees might differ between British online schools.
All of our teaching and support staff are on the Update Service of the DBS, and our school is Cyber Essentials certified by the UK National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC). Read more about safeguarding at Sophia High.
6. Is it an accredited online school?
Although some online schools might claim otherwise, currently no British Online school is accredited by the U.K. Department for Education or British Government. However, in June 2020, the Government published their consultation response to the ‘Online Education Accredited Scheme’.
Sophia High School was chosen as 1 of 4 online primary schools and online secondary schools in the UK to work with the Department of Education and Ofsted on the Pilot Online Education Provider Accreditation Scheme (OEAS) for UK online education providers in July 2021. It is expected that the scheme will be available to full-time online school UK programmes in January 2022.
7. Beyond the curriculum, what is being offered to children to expand their learning?
When it comes to education, real value for students can come from what is actually being offered beyond the curriculum to inspire them to be leaders, independent, mindful, global citizens, and digital natives. It is hugely important to research the online education providers purpose and approach to education.
At Sophia High School, we place huge importance on developing global citizenship and social responsibility, as our students connect with their peers from around the world and have the opportunity to learn from each other and about each other every day. Find out more about Our Purpose at Sophia High School.
This includes our student leadership programme, career workshops, extra-curricular learning camps, and much more that goes beyond the British curriculum online. Find out more about our Beyond the Curriculum programme
It is important however to note that online private school cost does not always correlate with quality when it comes to online schooling options. With the rise of online schools in the past few years, which was accelerated in 2020, many online schools are being founded by business experts looking for market opportunities rather than experienced educators looking to deliver outstanding online learning.
Great educational leaders will always put the students above any financial gain. This means ensuring that the needs of current and prospective students will always be taken into account when any decision is made.
Sophia High School – A leading British Online School
Sophia High School’s Educational Leadership Team share more than 50 years of teaching and headship experience at outstanding schools in the UK and British International Schools abroad. We offer a flexible Online School Fee Payment structure from as little as a half term with no commitment required beyond this period and built in discounts for longer fee payment plans on a termly or annual basis. Sibling Discounts are available.
To find out more information about our pioneering approach to British Online Education, visit us at www.sophiahigh.school
Meet our Education Team: https://sophiahigh.
If you would like to speak with our Education Team about online schooling for your child, schedule a call with them here: https://sophiahigh.
Thinking about an International British School for your child? Looking for UK British curriculum online education provider or the best online secondary school UK?
Here are 10 Things you should consider when choosing a British Online School
If you are thinking about applying for a place at Sophia High School for your child, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org call us on +44 20 4547 5870 or complete the Registration Form to arrange a call back.
Alternatively you could schedule a video call with one of our Education Team.