When you’re planning to move house, the quality of the schools in the area is an important factor to consider for any parent. Fortunately, the Catford area is convenient for a great range of state and independent schools, covering all ages from nursery to sixth form education. 

Secondary options in this area include a Catholic Catford boys’ school, several co-educational establishments and girls’ schools in the independent and state sectors. As well as Catholic and non-denominational primaries, there are also schools in this area offering education from the foundation stage – or earlier – right up to sixth form. 

Catford is the ideal choice for parents who want to maximise their children’s life chances by enrolling them in an outstanding school. From fee-paying options to state schools offering music scholarships, there’s a school for every pupil in southeast London.

Here are a number of the best schools in the Catford area.

Rathfern Primary School

Rathfern Road, London SE6 4NL

  • Type: mixed primary school
  • Ages: four years to 11 years

This primary school positioned between Catford and Forest Hill stations is currently rated Outstanding by Ofsted, following a 2021 inspection. It’s a multicultural learning environment here, with over 40% of pupils for whom English is not their first language.

Open mornings are held regularly here and visits are available on a first-come, first-served basis.The school is a relatively large London primary school with two or three classes for each year group. 

Harris Girls’ Academy Bromley

Lennard Road, Beckenham BR3 1QR

  • Type: Girls’ secondary school
  • Ages: 11 years to 18 years

This Catford girls’ school is based in nearby New Beckenham and was also rated Outstanding by the most recent Ofsted report. It was formerly known as the Cator Park School for Girls.

The school is prized for its cultural diversity as well as its record of academic success. Its motto is ‘All Can: We Will’, reflecting the fact that this thriving and cosmopolitan establishment turns out confident, accomplished learners. 

Holy Cross Primary School

Culverley Road, Catford, SE6 2LD

  • Type: Mixed primary school
  • Ages: two years to 11 years

Holy Cross is suited to those seeking either Catford primary schools or pre-schools, as it accepts children from nursery age right up to year six. The school is also another of southeast London’s schools rated Outstanding by Ofsted. 

Holy Cross is a Catholic primary that works in partnership with another local school, St Augustine’s. Together, the two schools form the Aspire London federation, and both institutions prioritise developing pupils with a lifelong love of learning.   



Prendergast Ladywell School

Manwood Road, London SE4 1SA

  • Type:  Co-educational school
  • Ages four years to 16 years

Prendergast is another Catford school that formerly went by another name: in this case it was Crofton School. It was renamed as Prendergast Ladywell School following a rebuilding programme completed in 2008, and is located in Crofton Park. 

This school offers an education for pupils aged between four and 18, so primary, secondary and sixth form education is available here. 

St Dunstan’s College

Stanstead Road, London SE6 4TY

  • Type: Independent mixed school
  • Ages: three years to 18 years

St Dunstan’s College also offers both primary and secondary education in the Catford area. Pupils aged between three and 18 can attend this independent, mixed school on Stanstead Road.

St Dunstan’s College is a registered charity, and both scholarships and bursaries for children are offered here. The public can apply for these at the start of the secondary school or sixth form stages of education. 

Thomas Tallis School

154 Kidbrooke Park Road, London SE3 9PX

  • Type: Mixed comprehensive school
  • Ages: 11 years to 19 years

Named after a prominent composer who was a Greenwich resident, Thomas Tallis is a sizable school providing secondary and sixth form education. The Blackheath school was first opened in 1971.

Thomas Tallis School is a leading edge arts specialist college and also has a dedicated centre for post-16 education. Creativity is encouraged here as much as academic achievement, leading to well-rounded pupils with a range of skills. 

Haberdashers’ Hatcham College

135 Pepys Road, London SE14 5SF

  • Type: Secondary comprehensive school 
  • Ages: 11 years to 18 years

Haberdashers’ Hatcham College boasts both a music specialism and academy status. The New Cross establishment was formerly a grammar school, and presently operates from two sites. 

Pupils at Haberdashers’ Hatcham College make good educational progress and there is also a focus on developing professional and life skills. 10% of places here are awarded to students demonstrating an aptitude for music. 

Holbeach Primary School

Nelgarde Road, London SE6 4TP

  • Type: Mixed primary school
  • Ages: four years to 11 years

Holbeach Primary School offers a broad and well-balanced curriculum to students aged between four and 11. As well as engendering learning and life skills, the school is also committed to caring for the environment, tackling inequality and encouraging families to follow a healthy lifestyle.

The ethos of this Catford primary school is to develop pupils who are ambitious, hardworking and fearless, yet compassionate and responsible. Developing individual confidence and providing a secure learning environment are key to the school’s success. 

Do you have any more questions about what life in Catford is like? Talk to a reliable Catford estate agent and find out all you need to know.