School Podcasts

The Surbiton High School podcast is a series that gives you an inside look at the School, staff and pupils who make Surbiton High School one of the most successful and enduring independent schools in the country. Episodes follow the Senior School and the Girls’ and Boys’ Preparatory Schools with the aim to share what life at Surbiton High School is really like, focusing on breadth of curriculum, sports, arts and the traditions of the School that make it what it is.


Episode Descriptions

  • Episode 1 – ‘Off to a Flying Start’ – with Principal Rebecca Glover (Senior School)


Starting a new year is an opportunity for a fresh start and to turn over a new leaf. In this episode, Principal Rebecca Glover gives her insight into the best way to start a new school year, whether you’re in Year 7 or Year 13, and shares her thoughts about the year ahead (2022-23).

  • Episode 2 – ‘Putting the Right Foot Forwards’ – with Tracey Chong & Louise McCabe-Arnold


Starting a new year in primary school is a big thing. Starting a new chapter of your life in Reception is even bigger. In this episode, Louise and Tracey (the Heads of Surbiton High Girls’ and Boys’ Preparatory Schools, respectively) share their thoughts on the best ways to prepare children for a new year at school, or for their first year of school entirely.

  • Episode 3 – ‘Talking about bereavement with children’– with Tracey Chong & Louise McCabe-Arnold


Bereavement can be one of the most difficult topics to cover with your child. Following the passing of Her Majesty The Queen, your children may be filled with questions about death. In this episode, Louise and Tracey (the Heads of Surbiton Girls’ Prep and Boys’ Prep, respectively) draw on their combined experience of talking to pupils, parents and colleagues about death, and share their thoughts on the best approach with young children.

  • Episode 4 – ‘Taking education beyond the curriculum The Co-Curricular Fair 


An education that is narrow provides limited opportunities. At Surbiton High, we believe that a broad education provides the full spectrum of opportunities. That is why we run over 150 clubs (co-curricular societies) at lunchtimes and after school, with everything from ‘Intro to Archaeology’ and ‘Beginners Italian’ to the full range of sports: hockey, football, netball, etc. In this episode we take you to the Co-Curricular Fair where you can hear for yourself the clamour and drama of several hundred students joining the clubs that will define their time at SHS.

  • Episode 5 – ‘The value of picture books’ – with Tracey Chong & Louise McCabe-Arnold.


From Eric Carle’s ‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar’ to Julia Donaldson’s ‘Room on the Broom’, picture books are one of the most formative and magical experiences in a child’s educational development. In this episode, Louise and Tracey (the Heads of Surbiton Girls’ Prep and Boys’ Prep, respectively) share their love of picture books and their thoughts on it’s importance as a cornerstone of language and learning.

  • Episode 6 – ‘The importance of Grit’ – with Tracey Chong & Louise McCabe-Arnold.


According to a tremendous amount of research from a range of education academics such as Carol Dweck and Angela Duckworth, grit and resilience are two of the most important virtues that impact educational development. So, how do we build a sense of grit and resilience in our own children. In this episode, Louise and Tracey (the Heads of Surbiton Girls’ Prep and Boys’ Prep, respectively) share their thoughts on grit, how to build it, how to sustain it, and the role it plays in life-long learning.

  • Episode 7 – Senior School: The Surbiton Literature Society ‘Lit Soc’ celebrates 10 years


Books are magical things that communicate experiences and bring people together. In a corner of the library, surrounded by hardbacks, paper backs and cups of tea, for 10 years Ms Huntley and Mr Humphreys have been bringing students together for an hour each week to talk about novels, non-fiction, poetry and plays with students from Year 7 to Year 13 – and even some Old Girls who come back every now and then. Lit Soc is a safe space from which students explore the world through the lens of literature.

  • Episode 8 – Senior School: An inside look at our MFL department


Bonjour bienvenue, willkommen to the Surbiton High School Podcast. In this episode we celebrate the European Week of Languages with a range of international cuisines from our canteen and students singing Euro pop hits in multi-lingual karaoke. Later on in the episode, we shine a light on the incredible work done by our Modern Foreign Languages Department, led by the enormously talented and passionate polyglot, Mme Paul.

  • Episode 9 – What does an outstanding Careers Department look like? 


The years we spend in education in our youth are miniscule when compared to the 30-40 years we spend working and building our careers in adulthood. However, education forms the foundation for all future development. At Surbiton High, the Careers Department work with students from Year 7-13 to ensure that students are exposed to opportunities and supported every step of the way in their career journey. Led by Terry McDermott, Director of Careers and Head of Oxbridge, (winner of the United Learning Support Worker of the Year Award 2020 for his work across United Learning Academies creating programmes to support entry into the most competitive universities), the Careers Department work tirelessly to ensure students know where they want to go – and get where they want to go.

  • Episode 10 –Senior School: Legally Blonde – School Musical Promo


In this episode we give you an insight into all the hard work that has gone into making this year’s musical, Legally Blonde, a huge success. Tickets are still available at the following address.

  • Episode 11 –Behind the scenes at the musical: Legally Blonde


In this episode we take you behind the scenes at Legally Blonde to show you the hard work and talent that has gone into producing Surbiton High School’s 2022 musical. Listen to the band rehearsing and hear interviews with the musical director, Petina Morris, and a number of students in the cast and crew. Oh my God, you guys! Just one week to go!

  • Episode 12 -12 ‘Reading with your child’ – with Tracey Chong & Louise McCabe-Arnold.


​“The limits of my language mean the limits of my world.” – Ludwig Wittgenstein,

Literacy is access to knowledge. Getting your your child into reading in an enthusiastic, but non-pushy way is the key to starting their education career. In this episode, Louise and Tracey (the Heads of Surbiton Girls’ Prep and Boys’ Prep, respectively) share their thoughts on reading strategies with young children.