Melissa McBride

Inspirational Leaders, Melissa McBride and David McCarthy, have supported hundreds of students and their families with school placement decisions, from Nursery through to Sixth Form and beyond to University, and have helped to make the admissions process as stress free as possible.


David McCarthy

As Director of Education, David leads the Education Team and works alongside families seeking school placement advice and support. David is the strategic lead for our tutor recruitment and on boarding process and provides superior customer care, knowledge and educational advice to our clients.

With over 45 years of independent school experience, our educational leadership team provides a bespoke consultancy service to clients through each step of the private tuition journey.


Years of Experience
Students Supported
Unique Placement Schools
Success Rate

Educational Consultancy Service

The Sophia Educational Consultancy service combines the best of data driven assessments, on going strategic advice and unparalleled communication between clients, schools and Sophia. Using their experience as former Headteachers in the Independent Sector, Melissa and David support families with the entire admission preparation process.

From face to face consultations, academic assessments and interview practice with students, our consultancy service is designed to give families expert advice on identifying the most suitable school options for students.

All Levels

School Placement Service

Supporting UK based families, overseas students and international relocations, the Sophia education team provides guidance on the best approach for each family and provides expert advice to parents so they are able to make informed decisions about their children's education.

Our School Placement support process begins with our discovery meetings with parents, which can be held in our Sophia Head Office or online for international families unable to travel to London. These discussions are imperative in order to gain a better understanding of parental educational desires, the students background, interest’s of the child and perceived their strengths and weaknesses as shared by school settings

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Initial Assessment

Students will sit an initial assessment with us in order for our team to be able to gain an understanding of their academic ability and potential. This data is used by our team in order to map a clearly defined educational strategy for parents, so that we are able to identify the right educational setting for the student and ensure they achieve their true potential.

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On-going Support

From agreeing school short lists with parents, arranging school visits, meeting admission deadlines, scholarship entrance, ongoing monitoring of progress in learning, interview preparation and sitting entrance examinations through to mentoring and ongoing support beyond the school acceptance period, the Sophia school placement service achieves the very best for our families and their children.

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If you are planning a move to London and are unsure of what to expect from the British Education System, the Sophia Education Team can help. Working in partnership with parents and relocation agents, our team work support the transition to the British Education system and provide guidance to families with short lists, school visits, applications and liaison with school admissions teams to ensure all registration requirements are fulfilled.

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Overseas Students

If your child is about to join a school or university in the UK or your family is moving abroad and you wish to have advice on your international school search and placements our experienced team can help. With educational leadership experience both in the UK and International Schools in more than three regions including North America, Middle East and Asia, Melissa and David have extensive experience in supporting overseas students and expats in the transition to a new educational setting.

Educational Consultancy Fees

Sophia offers bespoke educational consultancy services to families seeking support with the school admissions process both in the UK and in international settings around the world. No two students are the same which is why our packages are tailored to the needs of the students in our care.

The fees below act as a guide to families

Consultancy Service

  • Consultation (90 minutes): £375
  • Consultation & Assessment: £550
  • Academic Assessment & Feedback Report: £450
  • Interview Preparation (60 minutes): £200

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School Placement Service

  • Nursery Placement: £2000
  • Prep School Placement: £4500
  • Nursery & Prep School Combined Package: £5500
  • 11+: £6500 (Day School). £8000 (Boarding)
  • 13+: £8000 (Day School). £9500 (Boarding)
  • 16+: £10,000
  • Univerty Placement: UK (including Oxbridge): From £9,000
  • Univerty Placement: US / International: From £12,000
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Sophia offers a sibling discount programme across all consultancy and school placement service fees. Families taking up Sophia Educational Consultancy are also entitled to preferred rates on tuition prices.
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