One word to describe Christ’s Hospital: Remarkable. This school offers pupils the rare opportunity to achieve their full academic potential while developing their interests and talents in a caring and supportive boarding school environment.
Christ’s Hospital has a rich history, which is evident in many facets of school life. The most obvious is the uniform, which just so happens to be the most famous school uniform in the world. In fact, it is possibly the oldest in existence — hardly altered since Tudor times.
The get-up consists of a long blue coat, belted at the waist, worn with matching knee-breeches, yellow socks, and white neckbands. Girls at the school don the same coat, but with matching skirts.
While boasting many historic elements, the school does have a particularly modern outlook. Its focus is primarily on providing its pupils with the best possible preparation for life. In an ever-changing world, resilience and agility are key. Such traits are developed through a vibrant curriculum that has both challenge and opportunity at its heart.
The signature Christ’s Hospital curriculum is made up of three interwoven parts: a stimulating academic curriculum which covers the fundamentals from state-of-the-art classrooms; an extensive broader curriculum which encapsulates everything beyond the classroom; and a pastoral curriculum, deep-rooted in the boarding house system and complemented by a dynamic ‘learning for life’ programme which teaches personal development.
Pupils’ experiences outside the classroom are challenging, varied, and rewarding. The school’s diverse curriculum encourages the development of even more life skills. An extensive range of Art, Drama, sports and outward-bound activities are offered, including the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, Young Enterprise, Model United Nations, chess, debating, and public speaking, amongst many others.
Music is big here too. In fact, it is the beating heart of the school. Max, a Year 13 pupil, has taken part in every musical opportunity possible. He plays the piano in the Symphony Orchestra, Big Band, Marching Band, Chapel Choir and the Schola Cantorum.
“A particularly important thing for me was playing with the National Youth Jazz Orchestra Academy Big Band every weekend, something that CH encouraged me to apply for and supported me throughout my time at school,” he explains. Soon, he plans on auditioning for the main NYJO band.
Keenan, a fellow Year 13 pupil, agrees on the joy extracurriculars can bring. “The best thing about living at School is the opportunities you have,” he says. “From Drama to friendships and everything in between, there is always something to do. When you start you will be allocated a mentor, someone who looks out for you and makes sure you’re OK. I liked having a mentor as it was someone I could go to and ask questions.”
“I can honestly say, making the bold decision to join Christ’s Hospital for Sixth Form was the best decision of my life. The environment is very welcoming and perfect for productive work hence the fantastic results.”
Here, the outstanding outcomes Keenan speaks of are common. Even in light of COVID restrictions, unpredictable periods of remote learning and the sudden public exam cancellations, almost 30% of all Pre-U and A Level grades achieved were equivalent to an A* with 62% of all grades awarded being an A or A* grade.
Superior academics and extracurriculars aside, what truly sets Christ’s Hospital apart is the extent of resources on offer: outstanding teachers, a broad range of enriching activities including societies such as the medics group to help with university applications, as well as extensive — and impressive — sporting facilities.
When pupils start at Christ’s Hospital they are encouraged to fully immerse themselves in the collective experience and try as much as they’d like. In the process, they often discover new talents and develop the confidence needed to fully leverage the wonderful facilities that surround them. Christ’s Hospital’s eighteen boarding houses are just some of them.
“In every House there is the Matron who is very caring,” enthuses Jasper, a Year 8 pupil. If you have any worries about anything or don’t feel so good she is another important go-to person. I feel very lucky to be at CH. I’ve made great friends and already have some fantastic memories. Everyone is very enthusiastic about being here!”