From Nobel Prize winning scientists, George Orwell, inventions such as the first color television and the discovery of DNA profiling – there is no shortage of innovation and entrepreneurship to emerge from the UK. The starting point? Large schools.
A British education is a passport that opens many doors. Not only do graduates master the global lingua franca, but they learn a wide variety of skills inside and outside of the classroom. Creativity and originality are encouraged as they strive to enter the best universities in the world. From the field to the auditorium, students here discover their talents, develop social skills and also make lifelong friends.
If you’re looking for a well-rounded education that prepares your child for college and beyond, consider these UK schools:
Sibford School – a day school and boarding school based on Quaker values - recognizes that students come from all shapes and walks of life. Providing an inclusive school environment that supports and nurtures academic and athletic talent, Sibford also understands that international students in particular may need extra help with mastering English.
That’s why Sibford has developed a specialist department of English to Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) where international students can learn the language skills necessary for academic success. Among the programs taught here is the Intensive English course – not offered at any other UK school – designed for students who need to improve their English skills at intermediate level before progressing to Years 10 and 11 GCSE or Sixth Form (for A levels).
Lasting one year or two academic terms, this course will guide students to become more confident in their English skills, not only in English lessons but also in other subjects with their own specific vocabulary. Attesting to his prowess, his 100% success rate for the Cambridge University Preliminary English Test, an internationally recognized ESOL exam.
This year, Sibford Sixth Form has delivered an outstanding academic performance, with 58.5% of students achieving A* to B grades in their A Level and BTEC exams – the highest on record – while 100% of students passed all their subjects. As a result, Sibford has been placed in the top 1% of schools in the UK for progress made by their pupils.
The 50-acre Sibford campus is located in the safe, rural Cotswolds, and is also close to major cities such as Oxford (20 minutes) and London (one hour). Students can also access over 90 extracurricular clubs, sports and activities at Sibford, including its own specialist rock climbing wall, rounders and triathlon.
If you are looking for a school that helps students gain the academic qualifications they need to take the next step in education while simultaneously gaining the wisdom needed to lead a good life, look no further than Bootham School.
Bootham is located in the historic city of York and provides education for pupils aged 3 to 18 through its junior and senior schools. Here, learning is not limited to the classroom. Students can choose from a wide range of sports, extracurricular activities, and volunteer and social action opportunities to learn new skills.
Quaker schools like Bootham aim to develop a caring community that values the peaceful resolution of conflict and provides opportunities for service to others, especially the less fortunate. Students and staff of all faiths and none are welcome here, while its Quaker ethos fits well with people from all walks of life. Students will develop skills such as a strong sense of social understanding, the ability to deal with adversity, and a strong sense of self-esteem.
Bootham High School Principal Chris Jeffery said their knowledgeable and passionate teachers are focused on providing students with personalized and well-resourced ministry and personal development. It is not surprising that the majority of their students have obtained places in the university course they have chosen. “I strongly believe that all parents ultimately want their children to be good people even more than they want them to be successful; doing both is our specialty!
Do you want to attend a school that will help you fulfill your academic potential and provide you with opportunities to excel in a wide range of sports in an environment that boasts a true sense of family and community? These are just some of the features of Strathallan School which draw throngs of students – including international students from more than 28 countries aged 7 to 18 – to its campus every year.
Here, teaching is built around you to ensure you get the best grades and skills needed to succeed on your chosen path. Strathallan also serves as a stepping stone to attending some of the best universities in the world. “Our goal is to send our students out into the world with strong friendships already forged and the ability to make new ones, with the knowledge and skills to succeed in college and beyond,” says the principal. DM Lauder.
In 2020, over 40% of Strathallan sixth form leavers have taken places at top 10 universities and over 70% at selective universities in the UK and overseas. From professional athletes to entrepreneurs, Strathallians evolve in impressive and ambitious roles.
Strathallan is the first school in Scotland to offer pathways comprising full GCSE and A-Level offerings, as well as full Highers, Advanced Highers and Extended Project Qualification programmes. Last year, 58% of A-level students at the school achieved straight A*/A notes, with 20% of students obtaining an overall A* in all areas. For GCSEs, 52% of GCSE results awarded to Strathallan students were graded seven to nine, previously (A and A*).
It’s not all work and no play in Strathallan. Schools sports program is outstanding — at least 10% of students play nationally or internationally each year. You can also choose from an exciting selection of activities such as golf, skiing, canoeing, equestrian disciplines and target shooting, among others.
Christ College Brecon
Few schools can boast of having a campus in the beautiful scenery of a national park – Christ College Brecon can. Located on a picturesque site on the outskirts of the historic market town of Brecon, Wales, Christ College Brecon is an independent boarding and day school for boys and girls aged seven to 18.
“We are fortunate to be based in such a beautiful region with so many opportunities for young people to develop their moral compass for life,” shares Gareth Pearson, Principal of Christ College Brecon. These opportunities include an outdoor education program where students gain more than physical prowess – they also harness leadership skills, self-confidence and experience working as a team.
Here, every student strives for academic and artistic excellence, guided by a strong support system and dedicated teachers. Every week hundreds of instrumental and vocal lessons take place. Two out of five students at school learn at least one instrument. One in three belong to at least one choir or ensemble. In its auditorium, students perform ambitious productions of Scrooge the Musical, Phantom of the Opera and Beauty and the Beast, supervised by professionals. This year, students will tackle The Addams Family.
Rigorous academics, a rich balance of extracurricular activities, an enviable location, a supportive pastoral and welfare system – at Christ College Brecon, it’s a character-education-focused environment that inspires young talent of today to become the complete leaders of tomorrow.
*Some of the institutions featured in this article are business partners of Study International