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Downe House School

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Downe House School



Address: Cold Ash, Thatcham, Berkshire RG18 9JJ


Founded: 1907

Number of Pupils: 591

Ages: 11-18

Fees: Full boarding: £13050 per term, Day: £9705 per term 

Head Teacher: Mrs Emma McKendrick

Religious Affiliation: Church of England

Entrance Procedure: Parents can register their daughter at any time from Year 6 onwards, but no later than June in the year prior to entry. Girls are then invited to an Assessment Day, an interview with the Headmistress and invited to sit scholarship exams as appropriate.

Contact: Mrs Angela Nutt, Registrar

Email:r[email protected]

School Visits: Families are welcome to visit Downe House by appointment or by attending an Open Morning.Either way, we aim to provide a visit which is tailored to each family’s interests with the opportunity to meet current girls and key staff as well as meeting the Headmistress.

The Curriculum

Alongside the core subjects of English, Mathematics, Languages and Sciences, there is the broadest possible choice of Humanities, Classics and Social Sciences, as well as ample opportunities for Creative and Performing ArtsMusic, Sport. 

Games & the Arts

We aim to foster a lifelong love of sport and physical activity and offer an exceptional range of sporting opportunities. Finding and nurturing a girl’s interests is our mission and there are many opportunities to explore her artistic talents.   

Pastoral Care

The unique 3-Step Pastoral Care structure means that girls benefit from the very best specialized pastoral care and provision. As they move up through the three steps of the Lower School, the Upper School and the Sixth Form boarding houses, our dedicated Housestaff and Tutors tailor the care for each individual and meet the needs of the girls at each stage of their teenage development. 

University Places

In 2020, 89% of girls went to Russell Group universities and 8% to Oxford/Cambridge. 

Head Teacher’s Philosophy

Message from the Head: “I believe that as a school, we have a responsibility to provide our pupils with as many opportunities as possible – academic, co-curricular and pastoral to allow every girl to grow and develop, and to discover and build on her individual strengths.” 

Outstanding Characteristics

So many things make the difference at Downe House: 

  • Family friendly approach to boarding 
  • Term in France for all Lower Fourth girls 
  • DH LINKS careers guidance 
  • Global Schools’ Exchange Programme 
  • Elective Programme which provides ‘super-curricular’ academic enrichment 
  • ‘Learning for Life’ – a holistic approach to wellbeing 

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