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What says..

Unashamedly gentler on the grey matter than the local competition 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. Historically synonymous with rugby of the ‘guts and glory’ variety (is there any other kind?), but look a little closer and you’ll find that there are plenty of alternatives for boys less inclined to ‘drive for the line’...

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What the school says...

The Oratory is a unique school. Blessed John Henry Newman, its Founder, was a brilliant man, who synthesised two traditions: Christian pastoral care for the individual combined with academic excellence and intellectual growth. His personal motto became the schools Cor ad Cor Loquitur (Heart speaking to Heart) and this flows through the life of the school. He wanted to establish an all-round education that encouraged development of body, mind and spirit, so vital for success and happiness. Set in acres of exquisite Chiltern countryside, The Oratory is centred on a traditional English country house, giving it that family ethos for which the school has always been so well known.

A teacher: pupil ratio of 8:1 and a staff nearly all living on site or in the adjacent village reinforce this emphasis on individual attention. The Academic foundations of the school are centred around the needs of the pupil as an individual. The flexibility of our curriculum allows pupils to realise their talents and develop their interests within the framework of a sound academic base. The school maintains a rolling programme of boarding and classroom refurbishment to ensure that standards are maintained to the highest level.
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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 September 2016, Joe Smith BA PGCE MEd (40s), formerly head of Oratory Prep since 2010. Was ‘invited’ to take up current position following departure of Adrian Wyles who was in post for one year having taken over from the ‘very charismatic’ long term head, Clive Dytor. Educated at Catholic primary school and the local comp in King’s Lynn, then 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 set about pruning...

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Special Education Needs

A small team of specialist teachers withdraw pupils on a one-to-one basis mainly for specific learning difficulties.

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

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