Information for all Applicants
Information For All Applicants
AN EDUCATION FOR LIFE
We believe that a truly excellent education is about more than academic achievement alone. We are a forward thinking school that focuses on developing the whole person, aiming to ensure that each pupil leaves here ready for life at university and beyond. We do not simply prepare pupils to do their best in exams. We help each pupil to understand how to think independently and creatively. We train pupils in information skills so that they understand how to make best use of reading skills and research techniques. As a family school with Christian values we provide a caring and stimulating environment.
The Senior School has 870 pupils of whom around 290 are in the Sixth Form. The staff to pupil ratio is 1:9. There are around 170 boarders. Class sizes in the first three years are likely to be 20 – 21. This decreases to 15 – 20 on average for the two years of GCSE and, usually, 8 – 12 for the Sixth Form. Whilst most of the pupils are from the UK, we welcome pupils from 23 overseas countries. This year we have 100 pupils from overseas living in the school.
We are one of the leading independent co-educational day and boarding schools in the UK. All our pupils progress to university. Last year excellent A-level results enabled 95% to accept a place at their first choice university with 85% going to one in the UK's top tier.
In the first three years, pupils have a very broad curriculum of subjects to allow them to experience as much breadth as possible. GCSE options are made for the Fourth and Fifth Years – seven subjects are compulsory (English Literature, English Language, Mathematics, Biology, Chemistry, Physics and a Modern Foreign Language.) In addition, three or four optional subjects are selected from the following: Art & Design, Business Studies/Economics, Drama, Geography, German, Greek, History, ICT, Latin, Music, PE, Religious Studies, Spanish, 3-D Design.
We have introduced the IGCSE for Maths and Sciences to make these subjects more stimulating and challenging for the pupils.
In the Lower Sixth pupils concentrate on four (sometimes five) subjects and in the Upper Sixth they specialise in three or four. The choice of subjects is from: Art & Design, Biological Sciences, Business Studies, Chemistry, Drama/Theatre Studies, Economics, English Literature, French, Geography, German, History, ICT, Latin & Greek, Maths, Further Maths, Music, Philosophy & Ethics & RS, Photography, Physical Education, Physics, Psychology, Politics, Spanish, Textiles, 3-D Design.
BURSARIES AND SCHOLARSHIPS
About a third of our parents benefit from reduced fees, either through scholarships or bursaries.
We wish to ensure that Caterham School is accessible to talented students, irrespective of parental income. Therefore, any prospective pupil from a low-income family is eligible to apply for a Caterham Bursary to obtain means-tested financial support in respect of day fees. Bursaries do not preclude pupils from holding a scholarship award.
Bursaries are also available for the sons and daughters of URC Clergy.
In addition, a reduction in fees of 10% may be admissible for Regular Forces personnel.
Scholarships are assessed with a view to encouraging pupils. The breadth and depth of the awards can vary each year depending on the quality of applicants. All 11+ and 13+ day pupil candidates are automatically considered for Academic Scholarships but specific application forms are required for other scholarships.
- Scholarships are available to registered candidates and are all based on assessment. In the event of there being no outstanding candidates for a particular award the money may be allocated to another category.
- The awards are made without regard to parental income and are worth a percentage of the school fees. The scholarship will remain throughout a pupil's school career provided they maintain the expected standards.
- Candidates in receipt of a specific scholarship award, eg Art, Music, Science, Sport must play an active part in these areas throughout their school life to retain their award.
- Even if a bursary is awarded as a percentage of the annual fee, a scholarship may also be given.
- A pupil who pays reduced fees because of a bursary may also be awarded an honorary scholarship, which can be implemented if future family income were to increase.
- There is no set number of scholarship awards but a sum equivalent to ten full fees may be given each year.
THE ROLE OF LEARNING AND TEACHING
At Caterham we believe that thinking is a skill which can be developed. We do not simply prepare pupils to do their best in exams. We also aim to give them life skills to help them succeed in whatever they may do in the future.
To achieve this each pupil needs to understand how they best learn and how to think independently and creatively. Our teachers understand and respond to different learning styles and encourage pupils to stand on their own two feet for learning. To support this belief we have undertaken an extensive programme of staff training in De Bono Thinking techniques. Currently over one third of the Senior School staff and over a half of the Prep School staff have been certified in the use of both the Six Thinking Hats™ and CoRT 1 Skills™. We are accredited as a De Bono School. We use Multiple Intelligence Testing throughout the Lower School and also train pupils in Information Skills so that they understand how to make best use of reading skills and research techniques. In the Sixth Form we include Critical Thinking in the curriculum and in the First and Second Years we explicitly teach Thinking and Study Skills as part of a Carousel programme. We have a dedicated Director of Learning & Teaching to manage all of these initiatives.
All pupils are in a Tutor Group, a Year Group and a House. The Tutor and Head of Year are responsible for academic and pastoral matters.
There are five Day Houses and two Boarding Houses with combined boarding Tutor Groups. Each House participates in competitive sports, music etc and provides the Sixth Form prefect teams that support the staff.
There is a wide range of music, drama and dance clubs and activities available. Practices take place at lunchtime or after school. There are musical concerts every term and a major drama production each year. There are twenty different music groups so all styles of music are accommodated, from violin to voice to electric guitar. Individual tuition is available for an additional fee. Both music and drama can also be studied at GCSE and A Level.
Both the Duke of Edinburgh scheme and the Combined Cadet Force are thriving with pupils progressing to Gold Level in DoE and winning Armed Forces scholarships. There are also around 36 other clubs and societies ranging from chess to photography and from debating to equestrian.
Overall we offer 18 different sporting activities. The major boys' sports are rugby (Autumn term), hockey (Spring term) and cricket (Summer term). The major girls' sports are lacrosse and netball (Autumn and Spring terms) and tennis (Summer term). Additionally both boys and girls can participate in swimming, football, tennis, athletics, cross-country, badminton, squash, Tae Kwon Do, etc. Each Year Group has a practice session (turnout) one afternoon a week after school for the major sports. There are some matches during the week but Saturday is the major fixtures day. If selected for teams pupils are expected to attend turnouts and ensure their availability for matches. Sports tours take place on a regular basis and teams have visited Canada, Malaysia, Grenada, and New Zealand. PE can be studied as an examination subject at both GCSE and A Level.
The school has invested consistently in equipment and infrastructure. In 2006 we renovated the Art & Design block and built a new refectory and Science block which contains thirteen new laboratories. The new refectory has up to the minute catering equipment providing our eight chefs with the capacity to cook over 1,000 meals each day.
We have 620 networked computers, with dedicated IT rooms and PC clusters in Science Laboratories, Geography, Maths, History, the Library and the Sixth Form Centre plus a language laboratory. Every classroom in the Senior School has an interactive whiteboards to facilitate multi media teaching and presentations.
In 2008 we rebuilt the North Wing to provide a new location for the Health Centre and excellent new facilities for the Sixth Form incorporating an area for collaborative study and a floor for quiet study.
The sports centre is open to staff (subsidised subscription), pupils, parents of pupils, Old Caterhamians, Eothen Old Girls and external community organisations. The facilities include a 25-metre swimming pool, gym and sports hall with facilities for badminton, basketball, 5-a-side football, tennis, volleyball, hockey and netball. In addition to Home Field and Beeches Field there is an all weather synthetic pitch.
Governing of Caterham School
Following the merger with Eothen School in September 1995, Caterham School became associated with the United Church Schools Trust (UCST) but remains a separate charity with its own Trustee body. UCST, which manages a group of notable schools, is an educational charity which was founded in 1883 with the specific purpose of providing for pupils a sound education based on and inspired by Christian principles. It is an Anglican foundation and its patrons are the Archbishops of Canterbury and of York.
The trading name for United Church Schools Trust is United Learning, which also encompasses United Learning Trust.
The independent schools in the Group are ArnoldKS, Ashford School, Bournemouth Collegiate School, Guildford High School, Hampshire Collegiate School, Hull Collegiate School, Lincoln Minster School, Rowan Preparatory School, Sunderland High School and Surbiton High School.
There are also twenty Academies in the United Learning group.
Caterham School is independently managed with its own Trustees, who are responsible for oversight of the day-to-day running of the School and appointing the Head, Bursar and Chaplain (URC); they are responsible for setting the fees and approving the annual budget.
Whilst it remains very much a "local" school, Caterham benefits from its partnership with the schools in United Learning and looks forward to seeing this relationship mature and evolve - making Caterham all the stronger in the face of continued threats and challenges to independent education.