Student Case Histories
(Most recent case histories from 2015/2016 at the top)
Tara joined MPW from Hurstpierpoint College with AS level grades of CCCC. After one year at MPW she achieved A*A*A in Chemistry, Maths and Biology and won a place to read Medicine at University College London. Tara says:
I moved schools after I did not do well in my AS levels; I had underperformed and felt that my current school was not quite right for me. The teachers have been amazing and have all gone over and above everything I needed. In addition, the Director of Studies system is incredible and having that support was so helpful. I liked that I could arrange a DOS meeting when I liked and that it was in my control rather than being told what to do. Coming to MPW is the best decision I ever made, I’m just so glad I came here. I would never have got these grades without the support of MPW and my fantastic teachers.
Sarah joined MPW from Benenden School with A level grades of A*BC in History, English and French. She took an A level retake course in English and also took History of Art A level from scratch over a single year. Sarah achieved grades A*A* and won a scholarship place to read Liberal Arts at Durham University. Sarah says:
MPW has revolutionised my life and put it back on track in a way I never thought possible. It’s been amazing: they have seen me come in at my absolute lowest but they were clearly so experienced with what they were doing that I felt safe which was really comforting. Although the courses were intensive they didn’t feel suffocating or rushed and getting to spend so much time talking to the Head of English about a subject I’d lost so much confidence in was a real gift. MPW were great at easing any panic and stress – with retakes there could have been pressure and nerves over getting it right but I went into my exams thinking “this is fine, I’ve done all the practice”. Although I had felt stupid in the past I never felt like that at MPW: I felt like I was seen as an individual and my teachers were completely prepared to go the extra trillion miles for me. They never settled for second best and made me strive for the top.
George joined MPW from St Paul’s School with A level grades of BBB to take short A level retake courses. He achieved grades A*AA in Biology, Chemistry and Maths and won a place to read Cellular and Molecular Medicine at the University of Bristol. George says:
I retook my A levels because I had my heart set on going to Bristol and I knew that I could do better than BBB. I knew that my A level grades would be on my record for the rest of my life and I wanted to have the results I felt I was capable of achieving. My parents chose MPW for me because of its fantastic reputation and when I had my interview I felt like it was the best place to get good grades, which is what I was looking for. MPW has been so much better than I expected. I met other people in the same situation as me and made some great friends. The teaching is so enthusiastic, they do exactly what you want and are really focussed at the same time as being very personable and taking a genuine interest in you. I got on really well with all of my teachers and with my Director of Studies who was always there to help with anything I needed.
Charlotte joined MPW from King’s Canterbury to take a one-year A level course in Physics alongside short retake courses in Maths and History. Charlotte achieved grades A*A*A and won a place at the University of Bristol to study History and Innovation. Charlotte says:
I had a friend at MPW who had recommended the college which is why I came here when I was disappointed by my A level grades. If you’re the sort of person that needs to knuckle down it’s so good. The teaching is amazing. It’s so relaxed and if there is anything you don’t understand it is easy to ask. I wanted to do a course that is not usually taken by History students at MPW (Tudor Rebellion) so they tailored a course for me and I had one-to-one tuition for that part. It’s been really good to boost my grade.
Nicola joined MPW from Immanuel College for one-year A level courses. She achieved grades A*A*A in Biology, Chemistry and Physics and won a place to read Medicine at University College London. Nicola says:
I chose MPW because my brother came to MPW, loved his time here and came out with really good grades. When I didn’t do so well in my AS levels I knew something had to change. I came for an admissions meeting and it felt like a good fit for me. It’s been absolutely amazing. I’ve really, really enjoyed it and genuinely enjoyed all my lessons and being taught. My teachers are phenomenal! Coming to MPW was definitely the best decision for me. I’ve never had an exam period before where I wasn’t stressed, panicky or not feeling prepared but at MPW they have changed that. The exam preparation that you do throughout the year has helped me so much.
Hector joined MPW from St Paul’s School for one-year A level courses in Further Maths and Physics as well as retaking his Maths A level. He achieved grades A*A*A and won a place to read Philosophy and Mathematics at the University of Edinburgh. Hector says:
I knew of MPW because my twin had done an Easter Revision course and recommended it. My last school was very cerebral but here the atmosphere is completely different. It is relaxed but at the same time it is very rigorous and throughout the year you make such substantial progress. Each lesson has a purpose and all of the students are so driven. MPW felt more like a university than a school for me. I really liked having the freedom to plan my own time around the set periods of lessons and there is also a real focus on doing your work on time, being methodical and preparing well so there is no last-minute stress at the end of the year. Unlike at some schools where it can be a lottery who your teachers are, at MPW they are all first-rate. If, like me, you change your mind after school about what you want to do and need to get some new A levels there is nowhere better to cater to your needs. I would recommend MPW. It is a fantastic school.
Coco joined MPW from Godolphin and Latymer for our two-year A level courses. She achieved grades A*A*A*B in English, Geography, Geology and German alongside an A in AS level Economics and won a place to read Geography at Durham University. Coco says:
Although I was keeping up academically at my previous school it was very high pressure and I wanted to go to a more flexible college. MPW is a more relaxed environment and a great transition for university in terms of time management as well. The staff are really supportive and the practice tests you take throughout the year are really helpful. I used to get really nervous before exams but because I did them so often at MPW I’m a lot less nervous than I used to be. The pastoral system at MPW is really helpful too. There has been lots of individual attention for university applications. My Director of Studies is so approachable and it is also really easy to make an appointment to see her. MPW isn’t just for people who are retaking, it’s for people who want a different way of learning.
Emily joined MPW from China for two-year A level courses in Economics, Geography, Maths and Further Maths. She achieved grades A*A*A*B and won a place to read Mathematics with Economics at UCL. Emily says:
The teaching has been very helpful throughout my two years at MPW. The UCAS week at the end of the AS year gave us a general idea of university applications as well – and we also got lots of help on completing them in personal meetings with our Directors of Studies. MPW met all of my expectations. My Economics tutor has been fantastic, for example he taught us the Economics in the textbook and also applied it to real-life. It allowed us to evaluate the subject and understand it more deeply and I found I had a real interest in Economics.
Katrina joined MPW from Latvia for two-year A level courses in Biology, Maths and Chemistry alongside an AS in Religious Studies. She achieved grades A*A*A and won a place to read Medicine at Queen’s University Belfast. Katrina says:
I was purposefully looking for colleges that would help me get into Medicine and chose MPW because of the help with UCAS applications and interviews. From the first year they really involved me in getting ready for the process, I think it has paid off. The teaching is great and the lessons are really high quality. I was surprised the first time I came here because the whole teacher/ student relationship is so different to what I was used to. In my old school, we were supposed to stand up when a teacher walked in and say hello properly but here it’s a relaxed kind of atmosphere. It’s really nice as it makes it easier to ask questions, there’s no reservation or awkwardness. I’ve realised so much more of my potential, the teachers saw I could do more and challenged me some more. If you’ve got a clear goal, it’s definitely the school to come to because there are so many highly qualified people who can help you achieve it.
Natasha joined MPW from Surbiton High School with AS grades of BBBC. She dropped Maths, which she had a B grade in, and took one-year A level courses in English, History and Politics. Natasha achieved AAA in her A levels at MPW and won a place to read Politics and International Relations at the University of York. Natasha says:
While I liked being at Surbiton and there was a good community, there wasn’t a lot of focus on students who were competent but couldn’t excel or ask extra questions. When I came to MPW there were no limits on what you could learn and I really liked that. The teaching is excellent. My English teacher is like an encyclopaedia of knowledge and my other teachers structure their lessons and break it down in a way that is tailored to you so it helps your revision later on. I think of it as like when you go to a museum you can either get a headset that talks at you or an actual person who will take you around, show an interest, and let you ask questions. That experience is much more tailored to you – and that’s what it is like at MPW. Coming here is like having a real tour guide.
Adam joined MPW from Malaysia for 18-month A level courses in Chemistry, Mathematics and Physics. He achieved grades A*AA and won a place to read Chemical Engineering at University College London. Adam says:
I knew I wanted to come to the UK for my A levels and I chose MPW because of its location. Before MPW I was at a boarding school where everything was very strict and scheduled. I learn much better when I am managing my own time and so I really like the free periods at MPW that you can use for self-study. The teachers here have really helped ignite my passion for the subjects I am studying by teaching things outside of the syllabus, which has also helped with my personal statement. MPW has provided a great exposure to a new culture. I think the system here is better than the Malaysian education system: the class sizes are much smaller and the schedules are better managed. I was nervous about coming at first but now I am really happy and I have made friends through my lessons and through where I live.
Max did a degree in Architecture at UCL before having a change of heart and deciding on a different career path. He did not have the prerequisite A level subjects to apply to read Medicine so he joined MPW for one-year A level courses in Biology and Chemistry. Max achieved grades A*A in Biology and Chemistry and won a place to read Medicine at St Edmund’s College, Cambridge. Max says:
My sister recommended MPW to me after having taken the second year of her A levels here and I liked it because they have an amazing course for ‘mature medics’. To be able to study with other people who are going through the same thing is a fantastic opportunity. MPW has been excellent. The small class sizes are great and the teachers are happy to help whenever you need anything. I also found the way the teachers taught was very useful for the Medical School interview process – particularly at Cambridge - as I was used to being stretched and challenged by topics I was unfamiliar with. I would absolutely recommend MPW for the high quality teaching and their flexibility in meeting unusual requirements. Also, having studied architecture, it was lovely to be in these buildings: they are one of my favourite things about the college!
Hossein joined MPW two years ago to take A levels in Maths, Further Maths and Physics. He achieved grades A*A*B and won a place to read Mechanical Engineering and Business Finance at UCL. Hossein says:
My most memorable moment at MPW has been results day – to get not one, but two A*s has been great. I know that without MPW’s teaching I would never have got these grades and got into UCL. If you want to go to a top university, this is the best place to come. All the staff help you so much – your teachers, your Director of Studies, everyone. You only have 8 students in a group and the teachers put so much effort into what you’re doing. They know what to do best to help you achieve – if you want an A/A* they know exactly what to do to get you there.
Jane joined MPW from the International School of London to take one-year GCSE courses. She achieved grades A*A*A*A*A*A*A*AAA and progressed into the sixth form at Godolphin and Latymer School. Jane says:
I loved my teachers at MPW, they were my favourite thing about the college. The classes are really small so you can really get to know your classmates and it feels so comfortable with an informal atmosphere. We had some great classroom discussions, for example in English Literature we would sometimes go off-topic with something interesting and we were always encouraged to think more about what we were doing. Before I came to MPW I would never have thought I would want to study English after GCSE but now I am thanks to how interesting and encouraging my teacher was. My other teachers were astonishing too, for example my
Mathematics and Physics teachers were constantly pushing me further and challenging me with extra-curricular questions which was great. They have really sparked my love for learning.
The Director of Studies system is another thing I really liked. I had regular scheduled meetings as well as extra meetings with my DOS; she always really encouraged me. I felt stressed with everything I had to do at the start of the first term but she really supported me and helped me to cope with it.
John joined MPW from Dulwich College for our one-year GCSE courses. He already held two A* grades from GCSEs he had taken early and went on to achieve A*A*A*A*A*A*AA in his remaining exams. John stayed with us for A level and took two-year courses in Maths, Further Maths, Physics and Chemistry alongside competing internationally at judo. In spite of his demanding extra-curricular activities (John qualified for this October's Junior World Championships by winning the American Junior U21 Nationals), he achieved grades A*A*A*A and won a place to read Mathematics at the University of Chicago. John says:
I like the atmosphere at MPW – it is productive but relaxed so you can get all your work done without getting stressed. The teachers are really helpful – they cared that I had dyslexia and were really supportive, always patient with me and happy to take extra time if I needed something explaining twice. The small class sizes helped with that too. Feedback after tests was very constructive. MPW set a lot of revision tests and timed assignments but they are nothing to worry about and taking so many over the course meant that by the time I got to the exam I felt very confident. My Director of Studies has a good track record with American university applications. She helped me a lot with putting those together, making sure I had the right paperwork and working with my tutors on my references.
Harry joined MPW from Felsted School, where he had achieved AS level results of ADDD, for our two-year A level courses. He achieved grades A*A*A in English Literature, Politics and History. Harry won a place to read Law at King’s College London. Harry says:
Friends recommended MPW to me so I came in and had an admissions meeting with the Principal which was great. It is important for me to have a great headmaster and I got on with Steve really well. I love the teaching at MPW. They mark you tough so you strive to work harder to achieve high grades and then when you eventually sit the exams they are easier in comparison. I got 100% in both of my AS Politics papers and a History paper. The teachers also genuinely care for you. Although I have a different teacher for A2 English than I had last year my AS teacher, Angela, still helped me with this year’s coursework even though she was technically not involved any more. I was amazed. It is the same with my Director of Studies. I must have spent 12 hours going through my UCAS application with her: at one point I saw her every other day and she even emailed me about my personal statement from her skiing holiday. She really cared and I don’t know anywhere else that you get such dedicated one-to-one support. I’m going to send my kids to MPW.
Sakeena joined MPW from Chigwell School for two-year A level courses in Classics, English and Psychology. She achieved grades AAA and won a place to read Law at Queen Mary, University of London. Sakeena says:
I was initially attracted to MPW by the wide range of A level subjects and then when I visited I was impressed by the A level results and I liked the environment and small class sizes very much. The teaching has been amazing. Everyone is lovely – the Classics department is wonderful, my English teachers have still been emailing me over the summer and staying in touch, and my Psychology teacher knew the whole syllabus so well. He taught us everything we needed to know really efficiently. My Director of Studies was amazing. She put up with me, was always there when I needed her and whenever I had a problem I knew I could talk to her and get it sorted.
After achieving grades CCC in his Biology, Chemistry and Maths A levels at Shrewsbury School, James took a gap year teaching rowing to children in Sydney. He then returned to the UK and joined MPW, retaking his A2 year in Chemistry and Mathematics with us and achieving grades A*A* this summer. He also took a one-year course in Economics from scratch and achieved a B. James won a place to read Economics and Politics at the University of Exeter. James says:
MPW had great word of mouth – I knew students who had come here and spoke highly of it. They were right. I have really enjoyed my time at MPW. The teaching is really good – in all of my previous schooling I have only had one teacher of the same quality as the three who taught me in my year at MPW. They were great at explaining everything clearly and the exam preparation was brilliant too. When it finally came to sitting them, I felt ready and there was much less panic. My Director of Studies was a really nice, helpful guy. He gave me lots of personal statement advice when I was applying to university and always responded quickly if I had any questions.
Oliver joined MPW from King's College School for our one-year GCSE courses. He achieved grades A*A*A*AAAAA and will now remain at MPW for two-year A level courses. Oliver says:
I really enjoy MPW because although the atmosphere is relaxed, you are still expected to work hard and you are pushed to achieve what you are capable of. A large part of the stress of exams and school work is taken away by the relaxed atmosphere and the fact that pupils are treated like adults. The classes are small, which means that learning is easier and communication with teachers is far easier than in a class of ~20. There are revision tests every month to make sure that students don't fall behind, alongside a Director of Studies who monitors progress and keeps in contact with parents. I am much happier at MPW and it has impacted my approach to work hugely.
Esther joined MPW from Singapore for one-year A level courses. She achieved grades A*A*A* in Economics, Politics and Mathematics alongside a B in AS level Chemistry. Esther won a place to read Law at UCL. Esther says:
I really wanted to apply to read Law at university and chose to do my A levels at MPW because I had heard good reviews from friends who came here about the teaching and the UCAS support. I really like the teachers here, they are so passionate. I never used to like Maths but now it is one of my favourite subjects – our teacher is great and instead of relying on textbooks he comes up with relevant examples for us to practise and makes it interesting. In my Politics class we all get on really well and we work as a team to make the most of our time on such an intensive course. We decide on extra work amongst ourselves and prepare model essays. Our teacher is always happy to mark anything extra and then we share all the work between us and learn from it together. My Director of Studies has a legal background so she was very helpful with my university application. She lent me her own LNAT book [for the university entrance tests in Law], arranged tutoring for the tests and was really reassuring while I was nervously waiting for my offers.
Imogen joined MPW from Wycombe Abbey for January-June A level retake courses. She achieved grades A*A* in Mathematics and Politics and won a place at the New College of the Humanities to read Philosophy with a minor in Politics and Economics. Imogen says:
I visited a number of tutorial colleges to discuss my retakes and MPW was easily the most impressive one I saw. The facilities were great and it seemed the most well-organised. I wasn’t sure exactly what I wanted to retake and the meeting I had with the Director of Studies was really helpful. He advised me about what to do and gave me lots of options to consider. MPW was also willing to be flexible and fit around my other plans for my ‘gap year’. I wanted to work as well and they allowed me to modify my timetable to miss Wednesday lessons and have an individual surgery to make up for that so that I could fit my job in too.
Agatha joined MPW for two-year GCSE courses and afterwards continued into the sixth form with us. She took A levels in Biology, Chemistry and Religious Studies over three years, achieving grades A*AA and winning a place to read Law at SOAS. Agatha says:
I initially knew about MPW because my mother came here. More recently, one of my best friends came and told me about it. I came for my interview and my interviewer was the kindest person – I instantly wanted to come. The teaching is excellent. I got really close to all my teachers and sometimes after lessons I would stay for some extra help because I am dyslexic; they were always willing to spend more time with me. Me and the other year 10 students formed a really close bond when we started and then when we finished year 11 nearly all of us stayed for A level. I have been at MPW for so long that it has become like a second home. My Directors of Studies have been wonderful – they have exactly the right balance of pastoral and academic support. They were like second mothers to me. When you join MPW you join a family.
Freddie was a professional footballer before having a change of heart and deciding that he would rather become a doctor. He took A levels at MPW over 18 months in Biology, Chemistry and Mathematics. Freddie achieved grades AAB and won a place to study Medicine at the University of Liverpool. He says:
I knew that MPW would be a really good place for me to get good grades even though I was doing fast-track, condensed courses. My teachers were great and always willing to help when I needed it, either at the time or through extra surgeries. MPW completely changed my opinion of private schools. I had never been to a private school before and thought they were really elitist and all about churning out exam results. MPW are not like that though, everyone was so friendly and they really care about their students: they have a holistic approach and look after you as a person in addition to making sure you are doing your best academically. I also had a lot of help with my university application through the Medical School Programme. There was tuition for the standardised tests, talks from current medical students and doctors, and mock interview practice.
Chris joined MPW from Emanuel School for our one-year GCSE courses after which he remained with us for his A levels. Chris achieved grades AABB in English, Religious Studies, History and Sociology and won a place at the University of Exeter to read English and History. Chris says:
I took some GCSEs early at my previous school and did not achieve the grades I felt I was capable of so I thought it was time to move. Both my brothers came to MPW and they had told me it was a step up. They were right: MPW turned me from a C/D student to an A grade student. It is very intensive and they are so willing to help you fulfil your potential. MPW helped me learn who I wanted to be; if you’d told me before I came here that I wanted to be a motor racing journalist I would never have believed you but my teachers have always supported me and if I have written something completely off-syllabus they are more than happy to still mark it and give me feedback. On the same morning that I received my A level results, I had my first article published in Autosport. I have such good memories of my time here, especially the school play. It felt like a group effort which is unlike what I had been used to previously. We were all working with the teachers rather than the teachers acting like directors and telling us what to do.
Flora completed a Geography degree at Oxford University before having a change of heart and deciding to pursue a career in Medicine. She came to MPW to get the requisite A levels, studying Biology and Chemistry over 18 months and Mathematics AS level over 6 months. Flora achieved grades AA alongside a B her Mathematics and won a place to read Medicine at Wolfson College, Cambridge. Flora says:
Having done no science since GCSE I really had to go back to basics but that was completely understood and accommodated by my tutors. If I don’t understand something the teacher will keep trying to explain it in different ways until the penny drops. The small classes are great and the atmosphere is so friendly. No-one seems to care that I am older than them and it has been really easy fitting in which has been one of my favourite things about being here. Everyone else in my class is working at a high level too and taking the lessons seriously, they are all ambitious. The exam preparation is really well organised, we are given folders of past paper questions divided into topics to practice. My Director of Studies was great in helping with my personal statement and the Head of Science organised lots of support. I had interview practice with a doctor and there were also loads of lectures to attend, including one on Ethics which was lucky as I had an ethics question in my Cambridge interview. I also had quite a complicated science question and the way the A level syllabus at MPW was taught really related well to that question.
Isabella joined MPW for a one-year A level programme in English, History and Religious Studies. She achieved grades A*A*A* alongside an A in AS level French and won a place to read Law at the London School of Economics. Isabella says:
MPW was recommended to me by a friend and I would continue to recommend to my friends that they go here. I feel that I got everything from my teachers that I needed to do well and if you want high grades this is the place that you should come. The teachers I had were all Heads of Department, they were all engaged with their subjects and knew what you needed to do to get top marks. Some had even authored the text books that we were using.
I asked a lot of questions and my teachers were always ready and willing to answer them. Even if I was away from college in the middle of exams I would email them and they would reply within 15 minutes. I know I was a demanding student but they were always happy to help me and very patient.
We were set a lot of Timed Assignments and Revision Tests. At the start, I found them annoying but now I am so glad that we did them. For me, exam technique was a key thing that I needed to work on and they really got me on track from the beginning of the year.
Adam joined MPW from John Hampden School for our two-year A level course in Biology, Chemistry, and Mathematics. He achieved grades A*AA as well as a B in English Literature AS level and won a place to read Medicine at St George’s, University of London. Adam says:
I came to MPW because I thought that it was a great environment for me to maximise my potential and I was right. The teaching was second-to-none. They are not just really good teachers but you also get to know them really well because of the small class sizes.
The help I received with my Medical School application was really good. I had lots of guidance on my personal statement and mock interview practice. The mock interview helped a lot, it taught me what to expect and made me more relaxed when I was approaching the real thing.
MPW is brilliant and there isn’t a much better setting for a college than South Kensington. I have had a great two years.
Vlad joined MPW from Millfield School for a two-year GCSE course and then remained with us for a further two years while he studied for his A levels. Vlad achieved grades A*AAA in Russian, Economics, Mathematics and Religious Studies alongside a B in AS level Physics. He won a place at SOAS, University of London to read Economics. Vlad says:
The thing I have enjoyed the most about being at MPW is the close communication between students and their teachers and Directors of Studies, as well as how friendly everyone is. The teaching is very good because the small class size allows you to have almost individual guidance on each topic. The atmosphere is welcoming and friendly, like a home.
My Director of Studies is fantastic. She has done everything for me and helped me with anything I had going on. She was always there for moral support as well as helping me academically, for example with university.
I played football for the MPW team while I was here which was really fun. It is a great team and we did really well in our league.
Olivia joined MPW from Wellington College for our two-year A level course in History of Art, Economics and Religious Studies. She gained grades A*AA as well as a C in AS level Spanish and is now going to take a gap year. Olivia says:
I really didn’t like boarding so after my GCSEs I wanted to move to a day school in London. I chose MPW because everyone seemed really friendly and nice and I liked that it was big enough for me to be able to meet a lot of new people. Although I didn’t join until October, I settled in very quickly and I found it really easy to make friends.
At my old school I always used to sit at the back of the class and not pay attention but you can’t do that here and now I am much more productive. My teachers really care and they talk to you like an equal which I really like. You are on the same level as them. They give you everything you need and you also have to put in a lot of work and drive yourself to succeed so now I am much more self-motivated. MPW allowed me more freedom than my previous school. I really like being more independent.
Mathilda came to MPW to do one-year GCSE courses. She already held an A* in GCSE Religious Studies when she joined us and went on to achieve A*A*A*A*A*A*AAA in the rest of her GCSE examinations this summer. Mathilda will now go on to study A levels at Harris Westminster Sixth Form. Mathilda says:
I wanted to do my GCSEs in one year rather than two so MPW’s intensive course appealed to me. The teaching was brilliant, I really liked the small class sizes and I was taught individually for Latin which I enjoyed as it meant that I could go at my own pace. I had some inspiring teachers. Before I came to MPW, I did not enjoy Physics but my lessons were so good that now it is one of my favourite subjects and I am going to take it for A level.
After less than a week I had forgotten what it was like to have just started a new school, I settled in so quickly and I got to know everyone in my year really well.
My Director of Studies was the best! She knew everything about me: what I wanted to get out of the year, my aims, my pace of study. She spoke to my teachers a lot about how I was getting on and was in contact with my mum a lot too so I felt really well supported.
Katie joined MPW from Marlborough College for our two-year GCSE programme and then continued on to a two-year A level programme with us. Katie achieved grades A*A*B in History of Art, Politics and English Literature and won a place to read Anthropology at the University of Sussex. Katie says:
I don’t know where to start in talking about MPW. I love it so much. The teaching at MPW is amazing. The teachers’ knowledge is so broad which makes a subject much more interesting because you are able to explore it in more depth, and they are all so passionate about their subjects. I have known my Director of Studies for four years now and she is brilliant. She just gets me. She is so involved in my life and my school. Last year when I was finding revising for my French oral really hard she spent time with me and sat me down, making me speak to her in French and helping me to relax. She is so approachable. I am really going to miss MPW. The education you get here is so unique.
Amin took our two-year A level course in Economics, Maths, Further Maths and Physics. He achieved grades A*A*AA and won a place to read Computing at Imperial College London. Amin says:
My favourite thing about MPW is the independence. I have much more control of my learning now and I know that my achievements are down to my own work rather than someone spoon-feeding me. You get so much support and help with your studies by the teachers – my favourite teacher is really organised and he has always pushed me and helped me learn more.
Whenever I have had any problems I have been able to see my Director of Studies, either by popping in and seeing if she is at her desk or making an appointment. She has been brilliant and has helped me so much, especially with UCAS.
I have also got involved with the extra-curricular side of things at MPW. I had to stop attending football because of a pre-existing injury but then I started Debating which was really good. We came
Joseph joined MPW from Downside School with A level grades of BBB in Economics, English and History. He took a split retake course with us, enabling him to enjoy a short ‘gap year’ at a language school in Spain. Joseph received an offer of a place to study at every university he applied to and this summer he achieved grades A*AB, winning a place to read Business Management at King’s College London. Joseph says:
The teaching at MPW has been very impressive. At my last school I felt that we relied on the teachers and we were not very well taught. Here, my teachers are enthusiastic and engaging but they have also empowered me to take more control of my learning and I feel like I am better at studying independently as a result. This time, my A level results have been down to me. The teachers made everything enjoyable but at the same time were very clear about what we needed to do. The first time I took my A levels and did coursework I felt lost and confused but at MPW I have felt relaxed and in control.
Both myself and my father have been very impressed by my Director of Studies. I saw him regularly to go through everything with my university application and throughout the year he has helped me to organise anything I needed and been very helpful.
I told all my friends in the year below that if they don’t meet their offers they shouldn’t go through Clearing. If you retake it’s just one year out and then you have the chance to go to a good university and do exactly what you want to do. I have felt confident the whole year long that I was going to get into a top university.
Hannah took A2 retake courses at MPW this year. She was initially holding grades CCC in Biology, Chemistry and Mathematics and this year achieved grades A*AB, winning a place to read Biomedical Science at Exeter University. Hannah says:
The teaching at MPW is amazing and I knew I would get the grades I needed here. The teachers make you focus but you also develop a really nice relationship with them. Some lessons, for example Mathematics, were very structured because that suited the nature of the course and we were handed out a book of notes that the teacher had prepared for us which was really helpful. Biology was one of the lessons I really looked forward to. My teacher didn’t just follow the syllabus, he expanded it, making it far more interesting and memorable. I would never have believed that I could get an A in Chemistry until I came to MPW. At my old school I found it baffling but here it was much clearer and I understood all of the concepts better.
There is a lot of support at MPW. My Director of Studies has been amazing this year. Even if, in our meetings, there was nothing specific to discuss I knew that she was always keeping track of me and making sure I was alright. The library staff were really helpful too, they kept us focussed and productive. I would not have had a chance of getting into Medicine before I came to MPW but now I am hoping to apply for a post-graduate course.
Edith joined MPW from Lady Eleanor Holles School for our two-year A level course in English, History and History of Art. She achieved grades A*AB and won a place to read History of Art at University College London. Edith writes:
I left my previous school with an A-Level in Art but only AS qualifications in History, English and History of Art as I had not been very well. At MPW I completed the courses and gained offers from all my university choices, including one from Oxford, and have decided to study History of Art at UCL about which I feel very excited and well prepared thanks to the encouragement and teaching I have received here.
On visiting MPW for an open day I was struck by the enthusiasm and friendliness of staff and students. My experience this year has, if anything, exceeded my first impressions. The teaching has been inspiring, broadening and has increased my academic confidence which had taken a bit of a knock in the previous couple of years. I love the varied, international nature of the student population and the college's keenness and ability to adapt to the wide variety of the students' needs. I have been lucky enough to take part in a trip to Florence with the History of Art Department and I will treasure those memories for a long time.
Zoe joined MPW from Singapore for our two-year A level course in Chemistry, Economics, History and Mathematics. She achieved grades A*A*AA and won a place to read Law at the London School of Economics. Zoe says:
The teachers at MPW are really attentive and whatever you need they are approachable and happy to help you. You get a lot of personal attention and feel like you are in charge of your own academic welfare. The surgeries in each subject tell you exactly what you need to know and clarify everything. I feel like I am able to maximise my academic potential and do well. Socially, MPW is really welcoming and my Director of Studies is always there to help me with any problems which made me feel safe and secure right from the start. I have also been to lots of events in college like Nauryz and Chinese New Year, it’s so nice to interact with people and get to know their cultures, you really see a wider perspective of life. When Sandra Gregory came to do a talk here [Sandra is the author of ‘Forget You Have A Daughter’ about her time in a Bangkok jail], it made me realise how lucky I am and events like that really help with students’ personal development.
Matthew joined MPW from St Olave’s where he had underperformed in his AS levels. In his first year with us he achieved A*A* in A level Physics and Biology and in his second year he achieved AA in A level Chemistry and Maths, and won a place to read Biology at UCL. Matthew says:
The understanding and support provided by the staff at MPW was exactly what I needed to help me. The flexible programme I joined, which meant that I took my A levels in a slightly unusual order, reduced the pressure on me too.
Fahrid took his GCSEs at MPW Birmingham and when his family relocated to London, he was keen to continue his education in a similar style to the one he had enjoyed there. He took a two-year A level course at MPW London in English Literature, French, History and Government & Politics. He achieved grades A*A*AA and won a place at King’s College London as a scholar in Politics, Philosophy and Law. He says:
I remember talking to Patrick on my first day in London. I knew him because I came in during the summer and met him to discuss my A level options. He was really welcoming and told me that all of my teachers were Heads of Department which I was pleased about. We were also given a folder on our first day about all the extra-curricular options. I started debating and then switched to Philosophy Club, and I also played table tennis every Friday morning. I also attended all the Principal’s lectures this year and wrote an article for the student magazine on Sir Malcolm Rifkin’s Politics talk. I find the teaching at MPW amazing. I was familiar with the style because Birmingham is based on the same ethos but I really enjoyed how at A level you can explore your subject in so much more depth than just covering the syllabus.
Alexia joined MPW from Cheltenham Ladies’ College for our one-year GCSE course. She won the Laura Freeman prize for her fantastic results and then stayed with us as a scholar for A levels in English Literature, Mathematics and Physics. Last year she took her AS exams alongside A level Maths, in which she gained an A*, and this year she gained A*A* in her two remaining subjects and also took Further Maths over one year, gaining an A* and winning a place to read Physics at Imperial College London. Alexia says:
The teaching at MPW is amazing. I didn’t enjoy Mathematics at my previous school but then I came here. The teachers were attentive and were able to stretch me and push me to learn more without it ever being too stressful. All of the teachers are so passionate about their subjects that I got a lot of joy and interest out of their own enthusiasm; when a teacher is excited to teach a subject it makes a lesson so much better. I have a lot of respect for my teachers and I will keep in touch with them all because they have contributed so much to my life and my future. My Director of Studies was always there for me and I could talk anything over with him. At MPW I was treated like an adult and trusted to manage my own work which I really appreciated.
Caroline joined MPW from Notre Dame Senior School after AS as a Year 13 transfer student for our one-year A level course in Biology, Chemistry and Mathematics. She achieved grades AAB and will go to study Veterinary Medicine at the University of Grenada following a year reading Animal Science at the University of Nottingham. Caroline says:
Coming here was the best decision of my life, I wish had known about MPW earlier so that I could have had two years of A level study here rather than one. Everyone is so welcoming and there are no cliques. It is really easy to make friends and settle in. In my first Maths lesson I was handed a timetable showing me what I would learn over the year; my teachers were so well-organised and they got to know me so quickly so they could see where the gaps in my knowledge were and also my strengths. I didn’t enjoy Chemistry at my previous school but the teaching here has been brilliant. I’ve felt really supported and totally changed my opinion on the subject. There is always so much support and extra help available at MPW and my Director of Studies, Sarah, was fantastic and has helped me in every way she can.
Peter joined MPW from Harrow School for our one-year GCSE course. He already had an A* in GCSE Religious Studies and after five months with us achieved an A* in the January sitting of his GCSE Mathematics. He achieved A*A*A*A*A*A*AAA in the rest of his GCSEs and his family have now relocated to South Africa, where he will study for his A levels. Peter says:
MPW gives you the freedom of an adult and they let you make your own decisions. My first day here was so easy, everyone is so kind and they go out of their way to help you. My year group feels like a small family and I can approach anyone to talk to. I also like that there is a wide range of students here from lots of different backgrounds
Jonny joined MPW from Tonbridge School for our A2 course in Geography, Religious Studies and Economics. His original intention was to leave his education behind him after his A levels but, having achieved grades A*AA, he decided instead to apply to university. Jonny won a place to read Business at Durham University. He says:
MPW taught me to push myself on my own rather than having someone telling me to, which is a skill I can take to university with me. The small class sizes and the way everything is individually tailored makes a big difference. I get on really well with my Director of Studies who always has time for me and unlike at other schools the staff are still more than happy to help after you leave so I know I will have support with my Oxbridge application. Everyone has a different story and MPW helped me to put the past behind me and concentrate on my future.