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What says..

Unashamedly gentle on the grey matter and results are a bit of a mixed bag – not surprising given the mixed ability intake. Head acknowledges middle ground school status (‘we know our niche’) but keen to up the academic ante and has appointed new academic deputy to make it happen, and some new young staff who, according to parents are ‘spicing things up’. He remains insistent, however, that he won’t alienate...

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What the school says...

The Oratory is an HMC independent day and boarding school for boys aged 11 to 18
Set in the beautiful Chiltern countryside, we offer the best of both worlds, with easily accessible routes to London, yet breathtaking surroundings. This allows us to provide fantastic sporting facilities such as 11 pitches, six cricket squares and 12 tennis courts.

Our teaching is second to none and we are celebrating another year of excellent exam results. At A Level 40% of results were A* - A grade; for a school with a broad intake and spread of ability these are results that we are immensely proud of. Our value added results place the school in the top 3% of schools nationally.

However our focus is on developing young people in a much broader and deeper sense than exam results alone can demonstrate. We are a genuine all-round school, we believe in nurturing our boys to achieve their very best in whatever it is they set out to do. Head Master, Joe Smith, is a great advocate of this ethos, ensuring that every boy fulfils his potential in and far beyond the classroom. This is why we have such varied co-curricular activities, with over 50 different clubs and societies available to help each boy realise his passion.

We are a Catholic school, and welcome boys of all faiths or none into our supportive community where boys from all backgrounds are inspired to learn and grow. We take time to make sure each and every boy is a known and valued member of the school. As our ISI report states, we are “highly successful in creating an atmosphere of friendship, cheerfulness and collegiality”.

Whether you’re looking for boarding, day, weekly or flexi options, we offer it all. We are happy to discuss any transport requirements and will work hard to cater to your individual needs.

Our admissions procedure is simple. Once you’ve filled out a registration form we maintain constant communication, aiming for a seamless and stress-free process. Your son will be invited to sit an 11+ or 13+ ISEB entrance exam in the upcoming months and we would look to offer places soon after. Should he have particular talents academically or in sport, art or drama, he may be eligible for one of our scholarships.

We’d be more than happy to show you around our wonderful school so do not hesitate to get in touch.
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What the parents say...

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2015 Good Schools Guide Awards

  • Best performance by Boys taking Art & Design at an English Independent School (GCE A level)
  • Best performance by Boys taking Art & Design at an English Independent School (GCE AS level)
  • Excellent performance by Boys taking Art & Design at an English Independent School (GCSE)

2016 Good Schools Guide Awards

  • Best performance by Boys taking Art & Design at an English Independent School (GCSE Full Course)

Curricula

Cambridge Pre-U - an alternative to A levels, with all exams at the end of the two-year course.

Sports

Rowing

Shooting

What The Good Schools Guide says

Head Master

Since 2016, Joe Smith BA PGCE MEd (40s), formerly head of Oratory Prep since 2010. Educated Liverpool University where he got a first in English, PGCE at Brunel, followed by his first teaching post at Colfe’s School then 12 years at Monkton Combe, Bath where he became head of English and housemaster.

Sees his role as ‘a huge honour and privilege’ and, armed with intimate knowledge of the perception of the so called Big O (thanks to candid parents at the prep), has pruned dead wood (‘who you put in front of boys in the classroom is crucial’) and formed a (mainly) young and dynamic senior leadership team – some existing staff, some newly appointed – with a strong focus on the senior part of the school, particularly the sixth...

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Independent schools frequently offer IGCSEs or other qualifications alongside or as an alternative to GCSE. The DfE does not record performance data for these exams so independent school GCSE data is frequently misleading; parents should check the results with the schools.

Who came from where

Who goes where

Special Education Needs

Pupils at The Oratory School with special educational and disability needs are inclusively educated in small nurturing classrooms. Teaching techniques and resources are differentiated within the classroom to ensure all pupils achieve their full potential. However, we do recognise that although the boys may be academically able, they may also require additional support because they have a learning difficulty. The Curriculum Support department at the school provides excellent provision for these pupils and consists of qualified, specialist teachers. The four broad ‘areas of need’ which are supported in the department are defined as: communication and interaction; cognition and learning; social, emotional and mental health difficulties; and sensory and physical needs. Support is personalised and targeted and there is a close relationship between Curriculum Support teachers and the subject teachers. We also work in partnership with a variety of support services including speech and language therapists and educational psychologists. The Oratory School provides high quality education for pupils with these requirements, ensuring that their educational needs are met and that they all reach their potential within a caring and supportive environment. There is an additional charge if extra provision is made.

Condition Provision for in school
ASD - Autistic Spectrum Disorder Y
Aspergers Y
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorders Y
CReSTeD registered for Dyslexia
Dyscalculia
Dysgraphia Y
Dyslexia
Dyspraxia
English as an additional language (EAL) Y
Genetic
Has an entry in the Autism Services Directory
Has SEN unit or class
HI - Hearing Impairment Y
Hospital School
Mental health Y
MLD - Moderate Learning Difficulty Y
MSI - Multi-Sensory Impairment Y
Natspec Specialist Colleges
OTH - Other Difficulty/Disability
Other SpLD - Specific Learning Difficulty
PD - Physical Disability Y
PMLD - Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulty Y
SEMH - Social, Emotional and Mental Health Y
SLCN - Speech, Language and Communication Y
SLD - Severe Learning Difficulty Y
Special facilities for Visually Impaired
SpLD - Specific Learning Difficulty Y
VI - Visual Impairment Y

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