EDUCATION – Advice on choosing a school

Royal  Grammar School Guildford

Royal Grammar School Guildford in the centre of Guildford

Article from FOCUS Magazine – Autumn 12 issue.


Located in the centre of the historic town of Guildford, the RGS is an independent day school for boys aged 11 to 18. The School dates its foundation from 1509 and as a flagship for boys’ education has a national reputation for academic excellence but also prides itself on its traditional values of decency and respect, supported by outstanding pastoral care.

The RGS has a long-standing tradition of providing the very best education for boys and the School’s educational philosophy is geared to achieving this aim. Accomplished members of staff tailor their teaching to provide a stimulating, inspiring education which fulfils boys’ need for pace, variety and healthy competition. Boys are given the space and opportunity to mature and develop at their own pace and, most importantly, they enjoy a happy and challenging education in a supportive, positive environment.

Academic excellence is at the very heart of the School’s philosophy. The RGS aims to encourage the growth of intellectual curiosity and creativity and to inculcate a life-long love of learning in the boys. The RGS is consistently one of the top five boys’ schools in the country at both A Level and GCSE: in 2011, 82% of all grades at A Level were achieved at grades A*/A with 41% of grades at the A*; 94.6% of all GCSE results were passed at A*/A. The School is extremely proud of its Oxbridge record. In the last six years 200 offers have been achieved at Oxford and Cambridge including 33 offers in the recent round of admissions for 2012 entry.

RGS boys have the opportunity to experience the widest range of enriching activities providing them with a broad and balanced education. Sport, music, drama, art and outdoor pursuits, as integral parts of each boy’s development, are thriving in the School. As well as the major sports of rugby, hockey and cricket, a diverse range of options are available from fencing to judo. RGS boys have achieved national and international honours in a wide variety of sports recently including rugby, shooting and sailing.

There are three standard admissions points to the School: First Form (Year 7, 11+), Third Form (Year 9, 13+) and Sixth Form (Year 12, 16+). The School aims to make the education offered as widely available as possible. Generous means-tested bursaries, up to 100% remission, are available as well as academic, music and art scholarships.

The annual Open Day takes place on Saturday 6 October 2012 from 10.00am to 12.30pm. Prospective pupils and their parents are warmly invited to meet the Headmaster and enjoy a tour by a current pupil, providing an insight into the rich diversity of the School. No advance booking is required.

High Street, Guildford, Surrey GU1 3BB
T: 01483 880600

Aldro School

Not many schools offer a lake with an island which can only be reached by rowing boat or an Indiana Jones style rope bridge.

Article from FOCUS Magazine – Autumn 12 issue.

Aldro is a small, day and boarding school for 220 boys aged 7-13. It is set in 35 acres of stunning, secluded Surrey countryside. Aldro strives to ensure that the boys are happy. It encourages them to value and be supportive of each other; making the boys part of a caring, happy extended family is a key reason for Aldro’s success.

“Bringing out the best in boys” is the school’s forte. It offers an outstanding education which combines academic excellence with a breadth of opportunities outside the classroom. The scholarship boards speak for themselves – boys go on to all the top public senior schools – and this year they won 6 music and 9 academic scholarships. The boys’ considerable achievements in areas such as sport, music, chess, art and drama are equally valued.

One significant advantage of providing an all-boy environment up to the age of 13 is that no activities are regarded as ‘un-cool’ for boys: cooking, reading, singing, art and drama are all embraced. Aldro has three choirs, 181 instrumental lessons a week and 9 instrumental groups, including Jazz and Blues Bands. The boys take Lamda exams and many visitors to the school comment on the exceptional quality of the art.

Headmaster David Aston firmly believes in providing activities which boys really enjoy but, sadly, have limited opportunity to take part in these days: den-making in the woods, shooting, fishing, rowing, cubs, scouts, gardening and model railway. He believes in preserving the childhood of boys in an age when modern society squeezes it out of children far too quickly. Even the older boys at Aldro happily hunt for conkers in the autumn and a trophy is awarded to the school conker champion. The exceptional range of extra-curricular activities means boys will always find something that they can thrive at, which in turn builds their self-confidence.

Bringing out the best in your son is Aldro’s goal: providing him with a happy, productive education and preparing him effectively for the next stage in his life.

Aldro has dedicated morning buses covering routes from Woking, Guildford, Farnham, Haslemere, Bramley and Cranleigh. If you would like to come to an Open Morning or organise a personal tour with the Headmaster please contact Mrs Sandy Spall on 01483 409020 or email:

Lombard Street, Shackleford, Godalming, Surrey, GU8 6AS
T: 01483 409020