10 best schools in Birmingham and where to live nearby

King Edward School – one of the top 10 schools in Birmingham

Where are the very best schools in Birmingham? England’s ‘second city’ continues to grow larger and more affluent each passing year. As this West Midlands city expands and flourishes, it attracts more families with school-aged children looking to settle there. This makes the provision of outstanding schooling options more important than ever.

Why are schools so important when looking to move?

The number, concentration and overall quality of schools in a given area are important because schooling represents a crucial element of family life. Firstly, parents want their children to receive the best education possible.

Secondly, more schooling options provide a greater chance of a ‘better fit’ for a specific family. Ideally, the chosen school will be as close as possible to the family home, and will follow an educational ethos that suits the wishes of the parent(s) and children.

Having all these options makes an area more suitable to a wider range of families.

The 10 best schools in Birmingham

Birmingham has an outstanding reputation for providing both independent and state schools that are competitive in the national rankings. Whether you’re looking for a private fee-paying, grammar or non-selective school, you will find that Birmingham delivers.

The following list comes from The Sunday Times Parent Power 2022 league tables. It uses A-level and GCSE past performance data to identify the 1,600 top-achieving schools in the country. These are the best schools in Birmingham, across all types.

*Please note that in 2021, students did not sit public examinations due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Grades were awarded by teachers according to strictly controlled internal assessment criteria. However, the rankings below also consider pre-pandemic grades, for a more rounded picture.

1: King Edward VI Camp Hill School for Boys

A-level A*-B: 87.1%

A/A*: 66.4%

GCSE (9-7): 86%

Overview: Birmingham’s top-rated school is ranked 10th nationally, thanks to its outstanding academic performance results and widely praised educational offering. This makes it one of the most successful state schools in the UK. Set adjacent to the stunning King’s Heath Park, the school is a selective, state-funded, boys’ school (11-18 years) serving Birmingham and its surrounding areas. It provides excellent access to top-notch sporting and arts resources. The school encourages students to get involved at the community level.

Where to live: Kings Heath

Ellis Court, B29

Charles Church
4.03 (3 reviews) 4.03 (3 reviews)
Area guide to Birmingham
Ellis Court, by Charles Church, is located in Birmingham. Recently converted from a workhouse, the building is over 100 years old. The collection of one-bedroom apartments is built from the main central block that was once part of the infirmary. Read reviews and details of Ellis Court, B29

2: King Edward VI Camp Hill School for Girls

A-level A*-B: 82%

A/A*: 52.5%

GCSE (9-7): 85.9%

Overview: Also set within Vicarage Road in King’s Heath, King Edward VI Camp Hill School for Girls provides an educational offering just as exciting, robust and successful as its male student counterpart. Alongside the excellent academic, sporting and artistic education provision, there is a strong emphasis on building students’ confidence and resilience.

Where to live: Kings Heath

The Oaks Apartments, B29

Persimmon Homes
3.52 (9 reviews) 3.52 (9 reviews)
Area guide to Birmingham
The Oaks Apartments by Persimmon
The Oaks Apartments is a new development by Persimmon Homes within a new village development. It is located in a popular residential area close to Birmingham city centre. Read reviews and details of The Oaks Apartments, B29

3: King Edward’s School, Birmingham

A-level A*-B: 92.7%

A/A*: 61.2%

GCSE (9-7): 86.6%

Overview: As you can see from the repeated logo, schools from the King Edward VI Foundation represent a powerhouse of education in Birmingham. King Edward School (KES) is situated in the leafy suburb of Edgbaston, where it shares a 50-acre site with King Edward VI High School for Girls. KES provides schooling for boys aged 11-18. While it is a selective, fee-paying school, it’s raised over £12 million in recent years under its Assisted Places scheme. This ensures that schoolboys of every background can have access to the best schooling options in the city.

Where to live: Edgbaston

King Edwards Wharf, B16

MCD Property
4.75 (3 reviews) 4.75 (3 reviews)
Area guide to Birmingham
Located just a short canal walk away from the International Convention Centre, National Indoor Arena and Brindley Place, King Edwards Wharf features 108 apartments and penthouses. Five Ways train station is less than a 20-minute walk away with links to West Midland Trains. Read reviews and details of King Edwards Wharf, B16

4: Nelson Mandela School

National Rank: 58th

Reading Scaled Score: 110

Maths Scaled Score: 112

Overview: Nelson Mandela School is the top-ranked primary school in Birmingham. It’s the best in the entire West Midlands region, in fact, just outside the top 50 nationally. With the globally revered Anti-apartheid leader Nelson Mandela as its figurehead, the school is understandably committed to giving its students a firm grounding in equality, kindness and mutual respect. The school was opened in 1987 by Archbishop Desmond Tutu and currently teaches around 450 pupils.

Where to live: Sparkbrook

B5 Central, B5

Barratt Homes
4.16 (20 reviews) 4.16 (20 reviews)
Area guide to Birmingham
B5 Central, Birmingham by Barratt Homes
B5 Central is a development of homes and luxury apartments by Barratt Homes, situated right in the heart of Birmingham city centre. Read reviews and details of B5 Central, B5

5: King Edward VI Five Ways School

A-level A*-B: 71.8%

A/A*: (undisclosed in 2021)

GCSE (9-7): 72.2%

Overview:  King Edward VI Five Ways School is another selective grammar school located in Bartley Green, right on the southwestern tip of the city. Constantly in demand, it caters to around 1300 pupils each year as a boys’ school with a mixed sixth form. King Edward VI Five Ways School is undergoing a transformation, with an ambitious building programme to develop brand new drama and music studios, sixth form centre and the £1 million Osmend Language Centre and Pavilion complex.

Where to live: Bartley Green

Manor House at Bournville Park, B31

Crest Nicholson
4.37 (3 reviews) 4.37 (3 reviews)
Area guide to West Midlands
Manor House at Bournville Park by Crest Nicholson
Manor House is a collection of new homes by Crest Nicholson within the Bournville Park development, situated six miles from the centre of Birmingham and surrounded by open green space and mature grassland. Read reviews and details of Manor House at Bournville Park, B31

6: King Edward VI Handsworth School

A-level A*-B: 67.7%

A/A*: 37.7%

GCSE (9-7): 70.6%

Overview: Part of the expanding King Edward VI group, this all girls’ institution was founded in 1911 as a merger of three existing schools. Today, it’s vision is to inspire all of its 1100+ pupils to embrace the transformative power of education and value a love of learning and intellectual curiosity. 

Where to live: Handsworth

Simple Life at Galton Lock, B66

Simple Life Homes
3.45 (6 reviews) 3.45 (6 reviews)
Area guide to West Midlands
Image of Simple Life at Galton Lock, B66
Galton Lock offers 2,3 and 4 bedroom family homes near Smethwick. The area offers great transport links, being a 5 minute drive away from the M5, giving wiser access to the West Midlands. Read reviews and details of Simple Life at Galton Lock, B66

7: King Edward VI Aston School

A-level A*-B: 59.1%

A/A*: 32.7%

GCSE (9-7): 58.7%

Overview: Situated up in the northern end of Birmingham suburbia, King Edward VI Aston School is a multi-ethnic selective school for boys. There are just under 1000 pupils in attendance, and the school expects them to leave as, “articulate, well-educated young men, capable of independent thought with the confidence and flexibility to face future challenges”.

Where to live: Aston

Browns Green, B20

Evenbrook Estates
4.09 (5 reviews) 4.09 (5 reviews)
Area guide to West Midlands
Browns Green, by Evenbrook Estates, is situated in Handsworth. This gated development offers rented accommodation with a range of studios, 1 bed, 2 bed, and 3 beds. The apartments are located within close proximity of local amenities and approximately 3 miles from Birmingham City Centre. Read reviews and details of Browns Green, B20

8: Edgbaston High School for Girls

A-level A*-B: 68%

A/A*: 38.1%

GCSE (9-7): 62.1%

Overview: Edgbaston High School for Girls caters all the way from pre-school to sixth form. Founded in 1876, it is Birmingham’s oldest independent school for girls, and aims to provide every girl with a “broad, modern, enriching and inspiring education”. The school prides itself on its advanced pastoral care and vast array of nearly 50 co-curricular activities ranging from fencing to Duke of Edinburgh Award programmes.

Where to live: Edgbaston

Ryland Place, B15

McCarthy & Stone
0.00 (0 reviews) 0.00 (0 reviews)
Area guide to Birmingham
Ryland Place is a gated retirement development of luxury apartments by McCarthy & Stone, situated in the centre of Edgbaston in Birmingham. A range of purchase and rental options is available and residents enjoy onsite estate support with care provisions and 24/hour support. Read reviews and details of Ryland Place, B15

9: MPW Birmingham

A-level A*-B: 63%

A/A*: 33.3%

GCSE (9-7): 36.7%

Overview: Also set within Edgbaston, MPW Birmingham is part of the MPW Group. This is one of the best-known and well-respected independent college brands in the UK. Since opening 40 years ago, MPW Birmingham has created a socially relaxed yet disciplined educational environment. Its 19th Century building has also been entirely refurbished to the highest standards required for a fully modern educational offering. These include the presence of high-tech projectors, interactive whiteboards, and other ed-tech features.

Where to live: Edgbaston

The Lansdowne, B16

Way of Life
4.71 (135 reviews) 4.71 (135 reviews)
Area guide to Birmingham
Image of The Lansdowne, B16
The Lansdowne, managed by Way of Life is located in Birmingham’s Edgbaston Village. The building offers 206 apartments, furnished or unfurnished. There are a mix of one, two and three-bedroom apartments and duplexes on offer. In addition, residents have access to a wide range of amenities including 24h concierge and free super-fast Wi-Fi.  Similarly, facilities […] Read reviews and details of The Lansdowne, B16

10: Highclare School

A-level A*-B: 46%

A/A*: 18.3%

GCSE (9-7): 26.7%

Overview: Highclare is one of the few fully mixed schools within the top-tier of Birmingham schools. It takes the full range of pupils aged 2-18. Relatively small at 480+ pupils, Highclare aims to maintain a family atmosphere, where teachers know their students’ strengths and personalities to the fullest. There’s a well-rounded programme of activities catering to the interests and passions of every pupil. These range from one-on-one music tuition to astronomy and ballet.

Where to live: Erdington

Perry Park View, B42

Persimmon Homes
3.93 (13 reviews) 3.93 (13 reviews)
Area guide to Birmingham
Perry Park View by Persimmon Homes
Perry Park View is a development by Persimmon Homes, situated in the Perry Barr area just 3.9 miles north of central Birmingham and 5 miles from The Royal Town of Sutton Coldfield, with local amenities at close hand. Read reviews and details of Perry Park View, B42


If you want to find out more about the best private and state schools in the UK, as well as specific areas, consult our growing range of school-focused guides below. We know how important it is for families to understand their options before making the all-important move.

Read more

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Jan Moys

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