As a Quaker institution, Bootham School does not obsess over its position in school leadership rankings and instead focuses on delivering an education to students that they’ll remember forever.
They teach more than the basic requirements outlined on the National Curriculum and make sure their students are always engaged with the lesson material. That’s why their students consistently perform well when it comes to formal assessment.
Academic life at Bootham School
Bootham School wants to see their pupils succeed and progress into thoughtful, knowledgeable and positive young people. Starting at the age of 3, students can stay enrolled in the school until they’re 18 and ready to go in search of higher study, their first job, or a well-earned gap year.
Take a look at what can be expected in the different stages of a Bootham student’s time at the school.
Education can start as young as 3 at Bootham School. Nursery and Reception classes are run to help lay the foundation of early year’s education and to give children the best start to their lifetime of learning.
Bootham have excellent facilities for younger learners, with bright, airy classrooms and exciting outdoor play areas to help develop their minds and their bodies. Children are encouraged to learn through play and small class sizes help teachers monitor and assist the development of each child in the class.
There is a close relationship between parents and nursery staff with regular communication about the progress and any concerns about each child. Nursery Vouchers are also available to be used as payment or part-payment of Bootham’s fees.About Nursery and Reception at Bootham
Junior students at Bootham are encouraged to be adventurous engaged in their education and search for truth. Teachers want their students to enjoy learning to continue discovering things after the school day is finished. The ability to learn independently is passed on to all Bootham students while they’re working alongside knowledgeable and engaging teachers.
Support is available for any student with additional educational needs, whether that’s a child with the potential to perform above the level of their class or ones with special educational needs. Bootham School has the resources to tailor its education to each individual student to help them perform at their personal best.About Bootham’s Junior School
As they progress through the school, students develop their academic, social, physical, and spiritual selves. Bootham allows learners to be confident in their ideas and to speak up in class, sharing their thoughts or asking questions. In a Bootham classroom, there is a mature and mutually respectful learning relationship between all students and their teachers.
The academic programme of study is supplemented by the prioritisation of sports and the performing and creative arts. In years 7 to 9, students learn a wide range of subjects from the National Curriculum and choose 10 GCSE subjects for further study in years 10 and 11, though this can be tailored to individual student needs.About senior education
A-Level students at Bootham choose 3 or 4 subjects that they want to pursue to a higher level and spend 2 years working closely with their teachers and individual tutors to achieve the best possible result. Study facilities are open from 8:30am until 8:45pm each day for student use in independent learning.
Many A-Level students board with the school and start to develop the skills they’ll need after their Bootham education ends. Students are also encouraged to take part in volunteering opportunities and be actively engaged with their community. Where possible, students can find their own volunteering opportunities related to their own individual interests, or can make use of the school’s extensive contact list.
There is lots of support available to A-Level students to support them with their plans for life after school. Careers guidance and UCAS support are available to help give each student the best chance of success with their post-school aspirations.About sixth form study
Hear more about Bootham School
Bootham School is a place where both day and boarding students develop themselves into thoughtful, engaging young people with the skills they need to make a positive change in the world.
Take a look at what the teachers, students and parents have got to say about Bootham School.
“The teaching style here is probably quite unique. The teachers are very engaged, and they really try exceptionally hard to spark that imagination within the students.”
“We don’t shout. We don’t put out rank orders of results. We talk to people as individual human beings that we care for very much.”
“For day students, boarding means that the school never closes.”
“We live nearby, so it’s very easy for [my children] to come home. They don’t seem to want to actually!”
There are a fantastic range of extra-curricular activities for both day and boarding students at Bootham School. Students regularly undertake the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme at bronze, silver and gold level, and in recent years their sporting facilities have been the educational basis or Olympic swimmers and cyclists, international fencers, and district and county netball, hockey, cricket and football players.
As well as sport, music, drama and art are highly recommended at Bootham. All students have the opportunity to immerse themselves in creative study and get the chance to perform or display their hard work. The music department has 12 teaching rooms, most of which have their own piano, rehearsal space, offices, library, and storage space. The drama department isn’t just for students with an interest in performance; there are many opportunities for designers, technical support, stage management, front-of-house, and publicity
Bootham offers a wide variety of leisure activities for all students that take place between 4:30 and 5:30, Monday to Friday. These vary from term to term, but often include things like graphics, hip hop, life-saving, and horse-riding. Workshops and lecture series are held weekly for sixth form students to enhance their learning and help them become more involved in the world outside school.
Students are also encouraged to get involved with voluntary work to help them get involved with the local and global community. Bootham students have previously won the Lord Mayor of York Young Volunteers Award in recognition for all the hard work they’ve carried out.
Outdoor education also forms a vital part of a student’s time at Bootham School. They have their own Forest School for junior students to attend as part of their studies to give them outdoor skills and an interest in the natural world. They teach children to be risk aware, not risk averse in their outdoor lessons, and use the natural world to reinforce the subjects being taught inside the classroom.
There are also lots of trips and visits that students can join over the school year to help enhance their learning. These range from visiting local attractions and museums, to residential excursions overseas to places like South America, Italy, Greece and Turkey.
Bootham School offers students the chance to attend as full-boarders, part-time boarders or as day students. The school seeks to be a home-away-from-home to its pupils, with a friendly environments and space for each student to call their own.
Full boarding (7 nights a week), weekly boarding (4 nights a week) and flexi boarding (2-3 nights a week) is offered by the school. For day pupils who want to spend the night with their boarding classmates are entitled to 2 nights on site per term free of charge. These sleep overs can be arranged by the housemistress or housemaster in charge of the accommodation. A further 8 nights per term can be arranged for a fee.
Caring for boarders
Each boarding house has two resident house wardens that are supported by other day staff and resident graduate assistants. Students have access to support 24 hours a day should they need it and the school welcomes communications from the students’ family at any time. They know that a successful boarding experience is dependent on a great relationship between the student, school and family.
The school has three boarding houses, each with comfortable accommodation and communal spaces for all students. There’s a common room, kitchen facility for making snacks, and laundry facilities in each house. Students can also make use of the onsite health centre if they ever need medical attention.
Boarding is incredibly popular with sixth form students who are becoming increasingly independent from their family lives as they prepare for higher education or employment. It’s a space they can develop themselves and spend time studying and socialising with their friends.
Bootham School aims to support the needs of all the students in their care and have rigorous procedures in place to identify and meet the requirements of students with special educational needs.
While all teaching staff are equipped with the skills they need to help their students achieve, additional support is provided by the Special Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO) and Learning Support Assistants.
Parents and teachers will have great relationship throughout the student’s time at Bootham. If there are ever any concerns about academic or personal progress in school, parents will be consulted and individual development plans will be amended together. Additionally, if any parent or guardian has any concerns, they are invited to get in touch. Early intervention can help prevent the escalation of problems.
Health and wellbeing is of paramount importance in Bootham School. They have an excellent support network of highly trained staff to promote the health and happiness of all students. Bootham have first-class medical facilities onsite and their caterers work closely with nutritionists to maintain the health and development of students of all ages.
All prospective students to the school are invited to spend a day with us, working alongside their future classmates. This lets the student and teacher get to know each other a little and to help the school give each individual the best possible education for them.
Bootham School don’t typically ask potential students below year 5 to take a test for entry, they simply need to join in on a taster day. Seniors are given an entrance exam to make sure the school can give the right advice about each student.
For sixth form entry, the student needs to have 7 GCSES grade C or higher (or 6 GCSEs, 3 of which must be B or higher) including maths and English language. Places can be offered on the basis of predicted grades and confirmed after results are announced. A report from the previous school will be requested too, and you’ll have the chance to meet with the Head to discuss how the school can best offer support.
Bootham School Fees
Parents or guardians are required to pay for their children to study. At Bootham School, fees are reviewed annually each spring, and the changes normally are reflected in the payment needed for the autumn term.
Before joining the school, there will be a registration fee of £75 for the first child, then £50 for each subsequent child. Once you accept the placement, there will be an additional fee of £350. Both of these charges are non-refundable.
Bootham School have separate fees for their day and boarding students which cover the costs of their lessons and lots of extra-curricular activities, meals, school equipment and personal accident insurance. For boarders, it also covers the cost of their accommodation, facilities use, laundry and minor clothes repairs.
Scholarships & Bursaries
Scholarships and bursaries are available to students whose family income is not sufficient to cover the costs of all Bootham School fees. Bursaries are considered on a case by case basis and are intended for low income families who are living a modest life.
Scholarships are available to students once they’ve been enrolled in the school and are based on individual student performance. Academic scholarships are awarded annually and are subject to regualr reviews to continually reward students who are highest achieving. Scholarships are also awarded to students aged 16+ who gain a minimum of 8 A/A* grades at GCSE.
Music scholarships are worth up to 50% fee remission and are awarded on the basis of academic tests and music audition and music scholars are expected to contribute to the musical life of the school.
Arrange a visit
If you’re considering Bootham School, it’s recommended that you attend one of their open days to get a sense of the school and to make sure it’s the right fit for your family. You’ll get to explore the school, meet the current staff and students, and see the excellent facilities on site.