‘The boarding experience fully underpins academic study. Boarding and academic professionals work closely together to meet the individual needs of each student. Students blossom as a result of their boarding experience. They have every chance of academic success.’ Ofsted 2015
Burford School is one of the few state schools in the country to offer boarding and has done so since its establishment in 1571. Numbering just under a hundred, students are housed a short walk away from the school in one of the town’s most historic buildings. Comprising a range of nationalities and ages, the house is warm and friendly and the family atmosphere is enhanced by the presence of siblings. In 2015 the Boarding was judged ‘ Good’ by Ofsted on all counts.
Boarders are an integral part of this historic school with a high and enviable reputation. ‘They blossom as a result of their boarding experience. Students say there is a good community spirit and they are like a big family’. Ofsted 2015. Boarding students achieve consistently excellent academic results and are well noted for their achievements and their mature approach to individual and group activities, as well as their positive relationships with adults and their peers.
The Boarding Department
The Boarding Department consists of two boarding houses situated on the same site next to the church in the centre of Burford. The accommodation is housed in what used to be the Grammar School with a central courtyard – the original playground – in the centre. Younger students have shared bedrooms of between two and five students and senior students share small study bedrooms or single rooms. Common rooms, kitchens for independent cooking, a gym, prep-room and a small orchard for outdoor activities all contribute to making the boarding house a ‘home’ to come back to at the end of the day.
Boarders and the community
The boarders enjoy a high profile within the community, walking as they do to and from the school each day. They host regular lunches for the older members of Burford and the surrounding area, take part in local charity events and are a great credit to the school.
‘Students speak highly of the approach and understanding of staff. Relationships are warm and nurturing. Students say staff treat them with respect and dignity, it is an inclusive environment.’ Ofsted 2015
It is well recognised that students usually make the transition to boarding very easily and this is partly due to the ready-made network of friends and familiar faces that they are encouraged to get to know across the age ranges and also to the commitment and involvement of the boarding staff.
Careful attention and support is given to welfare and the academic and social progress of each student. Staff supervise and offer guidance during prep time and take part in a full range of evening and weekend activities from fun runs to art classes, community lunches to trips out.
In September 2016 we have a number of new staff joining us. They will be working alongside the current members of staff, which include some teaching staff, teaching assistants and specialist boarding tutors.