While Prince William is in Singapore for the Earthshot Prize awards, Princess Kate stayed home to help their son during a busy week
The 10-year-old prince is buckling down for an important round of classroom exams, and Prince William even referenced the tests when explaining why Kate Middleton wasn't with him in Singapore for the Earthshot Prize.
“Catherine is very sorry she can’t be here. She is helping George through his first set of major exams,” the Prince of Wales, 41, said in a speech at the United for Wildlife summit on Monday morning, which fell ahead of the Earthshot Prize awards ceremony on Tuesday.
PEOPLE learned in September that Princess Kate, 41, would not join her husband at the third annual ceremony for the environmental prize because the inaugural Earthshot Week coincided with Prince George's exams. Instead, the royal mom is home in Windsor to support him.
According to Hello! magazine, Prince George is believed to be taking the ISEB Common Pre-Tests. The exams are typically taken by students in Year 6 (the American equivalent of fifth grade) and “used to assess a pupil’s attainment and potential prior to entry into a senior school,” the U.K. tutoring service Simply Learning Tuition states. Pupils take four tests in English, mathematics, verbal reasoning and non-verbal reasoning, which are presented in a multiple-choice format, the ISEB (Independent Schools Examinations Board) website states.
Fortunately for Prince George, he’ll probably only need to sit for the tests once. Simply Learning Tuition notes that the ISEB Common Pre-Test is a “shared assessment” and is accepted by dozens of schools, including Eton College and Marlborough College, which are Prince William and Princess Kate’s respective alma maters.
However, he won’t be finished with rigorous tests quite yet!
“If the candidate is successful, they will usually be offered a place, conditional on them passing the Year 8 Common Entrance Exam. It is important to note that the Pre-Test is a precursor to Common Entrance or Scholarship exams, which they will still be required to take,” the tutoring firm states.
While the Prince and Princess of Wales’ three kids — Prince George, Princess Charlotte, 8, and Prince Louis, 5 — all attend the Lambrook School near their home in Windsor, the prep school only goes up to Year 8, the American equivalent of 7th grade. From there, George will have to start a new school — and speculation is swirling that he might follow in his mom or dad’s footsteps at Marlborough or Eton.
In October, Richard Eden of The Daily Mail reported that Princess Kate, 41, visited the boarding school in Marlborough.
"Catherine was here the other day. It’s been the talk of the school,” a source told the royal reporter.
Princess Kate and her siblings, Pippa and James Middleton, are all Marlborough grads, as is Prince William’s cousin Princess Eugenie.
Although Eton College students are between the ages of 13 and 18, they must be registered before June 30 of the school year the boy turns 10. (Prince George marked his 10th birthday in July.) According to the school's website, "After this, the only route of entry will be through scholarships or Sixth Form entry, which open in Year 8 (for Year 9 entry) and Year 11 (for Sixth Form entry)."
Although Eton is located near the family's Adelaide Cottage home in Windsor, it is an all-boys school. Because Marlborough is co-ed, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis could potentially join George there one day.
Both Eton and Marlborough currently cost about $20,000 per term, and there are three terms per year.
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In a relatable mom moment while visiting Wales last month, Princess Kate shared Prince George’s hilarious take on testing in schools. The Princess of Wales shared her son’s comment while visiting Fitzalan High School in Cardiff with Prince William for the kickoff of Black History Month in the U.K., and hinted that George felt all the testing was excessive!
In a clip shared on TikTok by Matt Wilkinson of The Sun, Kate sat at a table of senior students and said, “George is just at the beginning of being tested. He says, ‘Mummy, I keep getting tested all the time.’ But when it gets to A-levels, you feel like you're on it.”
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