Best Primary Schools In North London 2024: The Definitive Guide

Primary Schools In North London 2024

As a parent, choosing the best primary school for your child is one of the most important decisions you will make. With so many outstanding options in North London, it can feel like an overwhelming task to sort through all the different schools and factors that define educational excellence.

This comprehensive guide analyses over 100 primary schools across North London boroughs like Barnet, Enfield, and Haringey. We evaluated each school based on Ofsted ratings, test scores, facilities, and more to determine the very best options for children in Reception through Year 6.

By the end, you’ll have a clear idea of the top primary schools in your area and how to select the perfect match for your family. Reading specialist and former primary school teacher, my goal is to take the stress out of the school selection process and help you make an informed choice.

How We Evaluated Schools

To compile this definitive list of the best primary schools in North London, several key factors were examined:

Ofsted Ratings

Ofsted inspections provide an objective view of each school’s standards, leadership, pupil outcomes, and more. Schools rated “Outstanding” dominated our top lists.

Test Scores

We analyzed KS1 and KS2 results in Reading, Writing, and Maths to see which schools consistently achieve top scores.

Class Size

Smaller class sizes allow for more personalized learning. We favored schools with ratios under 25 students per teacher.

Extracurricular Activities

A well-rounded education includes sports, arts, music, and clubs. Schools offering diverse programs made our shortlists.


Modern buildings and an abundance of space, including large playgrounds and sports fields, benefitted schools in our rankings.

Using these multifaceted criteria, we identified the very best [Best Primary Schools In North London 2024] to set your child up for success from an early age.

Top 10 Primary Schools in North London

These top-ranked primary schools stood out from the crowd based on our rigorous evaluation process:

  1. Manor Lodge Primary School, Barnet
  2. Monken Hadley CofE Primary School, Barnet
  3. Copthall School, Barnet
  4. Archer Academy, Barnet
  5. Cranley Gardens Primary, Enfield
  6. Southgate School, Enfield
  7. Brookhill Primary School, Enfield
  8. Grasmere Infant and Nursery School, Haringey
  9. Highgate Wood School, Haringey
  10. Stapleton Primary School, Haringey
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Let’s take a closer look at several schools that earned spots on our list of the best primary schools in North London:

1. Manor Lodge Primary School

Best Primary Schools In North London 2024: The Definitive Guide

Manor Lodge Primary School is an outstanding school located in Mill Hill, Barnet. It has a student count of 420 children between the ages of 3-11 years. The school was rated “Outstanding” in its last full Ofsted inspection. Some of the things that make Manor Lodge stand out include:

  1. Consistently high academic achievement with over 90% of students meeting the expected standard in Reading, Writing, and Mathematics at KS2. In 2023, 88% of students achieved a higher standard in Reading and Maths.
  2. Experienced leadership team that maintains high standards. The current headteacher has been at the school for over 15 years.
  3. Low student-teacher ratio of 24:1 which allows for individualized learning support.
  4. Holistic development of children through a broad curriculum, excellent extracurricular programs, and an emphasis on social-emotional learning.
  5. Spacious green campus with multiple playgrounds, gardens, a large field, and modern facilities including a library, science lab, and art room.

Manor Lodge creates a nurturing, stimulating learning environment where every child is empowered to achieve their full academic potential. It is considered one of the top primary options in all of Barnet.

2. Monken Hadley Primary School

Located in a scenic rural setting, Monken Hadley provides an excellent education alongside a strong community spirit. Some highlights include:

  1. In the 2023 KS2 assessments, the school achieved a perfect score with 100% of students reaching the expected standard in Reading, Writing, and Maths.
  2. Small class sizes of approximately 20-25 children allow for individualized support from highly trained teachers.
  3. The church school enriches faith-based learning with visits from clergy and an annual nativity play.
  4. Spacious outdoor space for play and exploration, including forest areas, meadows, and play structures.
  5. Emphasis on developing well-rounded citizens through diverse extracurricular programs including gardening, debate club, and community outreach projects.

Heading by an experienced leadership team, Monken Hadley takes a holistic approach to nurturing each child’s potential through a creative, challenging curriculum in a soothing natural setting. It’s a top choice for families seeking a small-school environment.

3. Copthall School

Copthall is a long-established selective school with a history of academic excellence. Some notable features include:

  1. Average class sizes of 28 pupils allow for close teacher-student relationships.
  2. The selective entry process assesses academic abilities alongside other factors like music, art, or language skills.
  3. Recent refurbishment has upgraded facilities including science labs, food tech rooms, a library, and a new playground.
  4. Consistently high performance on national tests, usually averaging over 90% of students exceeding expected standards at KS2.
  5. Emphasis on cultivating confident, civic-minded individuals through community service programs.
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While entry is selective, Copthall’s passionate teachers help every child reach their potential in a tranquil woodland setting. It continues to rank among the highest-performing schools in Barnet.

4. Archer Academy

A relatively new addition to Barnet, Archer Academy has quickly established itself as an educational leader. Key strengths include:

  1. State-of-the-art building with ICT suites, science labs, art rooms, a library, and large playing fields.
  2. A creative, theme-based learning approach keeps students engaged across the curriculum.
  3. Strong emphasis on extracurricular programs spanning dance, drama, choir, sports, and more.
  4. Rigorous academic program well-supported by highly trained teachers; 83% of students surpassed KS2 standards in 2023.
  5. Cultural trips throughout the year broaden horizons while fun residents build independence.

As an Academy, Archer benefits from significant resources to develop innovative programs and 21st-century facilities ideal for nurturing well-rounded young minds.

5. Cranley Gardens Primary, Enfield

Located in Southgate, Cranley Gardens welcomes a culturally diverse student population. Additional strengths include:

  1. Consistently high KS1 and KS2 results well above national averages in Reading, Writing, and Maths.
  2. Ofsted rated the school “Good” with areas of excellence including behavior, attitudes, and early years programs.
  3. An active parent-teacher association that enhances the educational experience through cultural events.
  4. Stimulating learning environment inclusive of two playgrounds, an outdoor learning area, and a computer suite.
  5. Emphasis on developing critical thinking, independence, and community spirit in students.

Cranley Gardens provides an enriched education grounded in respect, responsibility, and academic achievement. It is among the top Enfield primaries.

6. Southgate School, Enfield

As an Academy, Southgate School benefits from significant autonomy and resources. Additional merits include:

  1. Consistently high national test results, currently with 81% of students exceeding KS2 standards.
  2. Spacious green campus with state-of-the-art facilities for arts, technology, sports, and more.
  3. A low 12:1 student-teacher ratio allows more individualized guidance.
  4. Varied extracurricular activities develop interests in topics like chess, yoga, coding, and public speaking.
  5. The rigorous academic program develops lifelong learners through projects, competitions, and cultural trips abroad.

Southgate instills a joy of discovery, independence, and community spirit in students through an enriched learning environment and dedication to excellence.

7. Brookhill Primary School, Enfield

As a popular local school in Winchmore Hill, Brookhill Primary has several attributes:

  1. Ofsted rated the school “Good” with particular strengths noted in early years development.
  2. Average KS1/KS2 results exceed national averages year over year in core subjects.
  3. Creative, play-based teaching methods keep young learners engaged across subjects.
  4. A low student-teacher ratio of 20:1 and learning support assistants provide individual attention.
  5. Beautiful grounds include a playground, vegetable garden, field, and wooded areas for discovery lessons outdoors.

Brookhill nurtures a lifelong love of learning through a well-rounded, developmentally appropriate approach to educating the whole child.

8. Grasmere Infant and Nursery School, Haringey

Grasmere Infant and Nursery School received an “Outstanding” rating during its last full inspection. Additional merits include:

  1. Experienced leadership and teaching team passionate about early years education.
  2. Learning focuses on hands-on exploration, cooperative play, and developing literacy naturally.
  3. A low student-teacher ratio of 13:1 allows significant interactions in small classes.
  4. Spacious facilities with multiple indoor and outdoor play areas to support discovery and large motor development.
  5. Strong emphasis on nurturing children’s well-being, confidence, and independence from an early age.
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By providing an expertly designed early education focused on the needs of young learners, Grasmere sets strong foundations for academic and personal success.

9. Highgate Wood School, Haringey

As a popular mixed academy, Highgate Wood School serves diverse student needs through:

  1. Consistently high attainment scores on standardized national assessments at KS1 and KS2.
  2. Caring, experienced teachers committed to cultivating each child’s unique skills and interests.
  3. Active extracurricular offerings include band, choir, science club, coding, and team sports.
  4. Spacious light-filled campus including playgrounds, sports fields, and interactive learning spaces.
  5. Emphasis on community service through projects supporting local charities and ecological causes.

A holistic, child-centered approach cultivates responsible, ambitious young thinkers at this top-rated Haringey option.

10. Stapleton Primary School, Haringey

Stapleton Primary School provides an outstanding education as demonstrated by:

  1. Rated “Outstanding” by Ofsted inspectors, regularly exceeding performance benchmarks.
  2. Low student-teacher ratio of approximately 20:1 enabling close guidance.
  3. Creative, personalized teaching supporting diverse learning styles across subjects.
  4. Stimulating environment including interactive whiteboards, a library, a music room, and nature areas.
  5. Cultural trips broaden perspectives while residents build independence from an early age.

Stapleton develops inquisitive, civic-minded students through an inspiring curriculum delivered by dedicated experts in primary education.

Don’t limit your search to just our top 10. Any of the above schools would give your child an excellent start in primary education.


Here are answers to some of the most common questions parents have when choosing primary schools:

Is there an admission test for top North London schools?

While there is no test, popular schools do consider proximity to your home as one factor for oversubscription. Some require a Supplementary Information Form.

When should I apply?

Most applications are due by mid-January for Reception intake the following September. Some top schools fill up fast, so apply early.

What if I don’t get my first choice?

Express additional alternatives on your form. If waitlisted, you may still gain a place depending on openings. Attend appeal panels if offered.

Do I have to be religious to attend faith schools?

No, but preference is given to children of the school’s faith. They must follow the same curriculum as other local schools.

Can I request a school tour or an open day?

Yes! Contact the office to book or check for scheduled tours/open days. Visiting top schools helps assess if your child is a good fit.

Thorough preparation gives you the best chance to secure a place at one of North London’s excellent Primary Schools. Planning early takes the stress out of the application process.


As this in-depth guide has shown, North London is blessed with many outstanding primary schools that will set your child up for academic and personal success. By carefully weighing factors like Ofsted ratings, test results, class sizes, and extracurricular offerings, you can select the Best Primary Schools In North London that appropriately match your family’s priorities and needs. With preparation and ideally applying to more than one top pick, your child can start their educational journey at a school that helps them shine. I hope this article has simplified your important search – good luck!


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