St Albans School 圣奥尔本斯学校，圣奥尔本斯中学, Abbey Gateway,
St Albans, Hertfordshire AL3 4HB
Tel: 01727 855521 Fax: 01727 843447
• BOYS, MIXED SIXTH, Boys 11–18, Girls 16–18, Day
• Pupils 730, Upper sixth 110
• Termly fees £3331
• Enquiries/application to the Headmaster
What it’s like
Its origins date to the pre-Norman monastic school which, by 1100, occupied
buildings near its present site and was controlled by the Abbot of St Albans. In
c.1570 Elizabeth I granted it a charter and late in the 19th century it moved
into the Abbey Gateway. It is urban and the buildings are on the same site, but
extensive playing fields and a pavilion recently opened on a 45-acre site on the
outskirts of the town. Architecturally, it comprises a very interesting mixture
of buildings dating from the late Middle Ages to the 1990s. Very well equipped
with modern facilities, its main aim is to develop talent and responsibility and
it retains close links with the Abbey. Girls have been accepted in the sixth
form since 1991. Academic standards are high and examination results very good.
It has flourishing music, art and drama departments, a good range of sport and
games and a thriving CCF. A good deal of use is made of its field study centre
in South Wales. A big commitment to local community services, and an outstanding
record in the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Scheme.
Pupils & entrance
Pupils: Age range 11–18; 730 day pupils, 700 boys; approx 30
Entrance: Main entry ages 11, 13 and 16. Common Entrance and own exam
used; for sixth-form entry, 6 GCSEs at least grade B (A in sixth-form subjects).
No special skills or religious requirements. Significant state school entry at
11 and 16, few at 13. Pupils are drawn from a range of schools at all entry
Scholarships, bursaries & extras 16+ pa scholarships, value 10%–50%
fees: 12 academic, 2+ music and 2+ art (4 at 11, 8 at 13 and 4+ at 16). Approx
10 pa bursaries. Parents not expected to buy textbooks; £25 maximum extras.
Head & staff
Headmaster: Andrew Grant, in post since 1993. Educated at Southend High
School and Cambridge University (English). Previously Second Master at Royal
Grammar, Guildford, and Head of English at Whitgift.
Teaching staff: 68 full time, 4 part time. Annual turnover 10%. Average
GCSE: On average, 120 pupils in fifth, of whom 98% gain at least grade C
in 8+ subjects. Average GCSE score 61 (58 over 5 years).
A-levels: 110 in upper sixth, 99% pass in 3+ subjects. Average final
point score achieved by upper sixth formers 406.
University & college entrance 99% of 2003 sixth-form leavers went on
to a degree course (38% after a gap year), 6% took courses in medicine,
dentistry & veterinary science, 16% in science & engineering, 4% in law, 55% in
humanities & social sciences, 4% in art & design, 15% other subjects (eg sports
science, film and TV, business studies). The remainder typically go into
management training in the financial sector.
Curriculum GCSE, AS and A-levels. 24 AS-level subjects, 22 A-level.
Sixth form: Most sixth formers take 4 subjects at AS-level, 3 at A-level;
in addition, all take AS-level general studies, A-level optional. 42% take
science A-levels; 45% arts/humanities;
13% both. Key skills integrated into courses.
Vocational: Work experience available.
Special provision: for mild dyslexia.
Languages: French, German and Spanish offered to GCSE and A-level (French
compulsory to GCSE); Italian as non-examined subject. Regular exchanges; work
experience in France. Satellite TV in all classrooms.
ICT: Taught both as a discrete subject (2 lessons a week Years 7–8) and
across the curriculum. 80 computers for pupil use (9 hours a day) all networked
and with internet access.
Music: 30% of pupils learn a musical instrument; instrumental exams can
be taken. Some 10 musical groups including wind bands, string groups, rock
bands, jazz bands, choir, chamber orchestra.
Drama & dance: Both offered. GCSE and A-level drama may be taken. Large
number of pupils involved in all productions. Recent major rock musical, written
and produced in-house.
Art & design: On average, 30 take GCSE, 10 A-level. Design, photography,
printmaking including etching also offered.
Sport & activities
Sport: Compulsory sports (at various stages): rugby, hockey, cricket,
athletics, tennis, badminton, gymnastics, basketball, football, volleyball,
cross-country, softball, health-related fitness, table tennis. Optional: golf,
mountaineering, sailing, squash, swimming, karate, aerobics and netball. Regular
national representatives in cross-country; regional reps in cricket and rugby;
county reps in rugby, football, hockey, cricket, athletics, tennis, badminton,
golf, swimming, cross-country. Major rugby, cross-country, cricket and hockey
Activities: Pupils must choose one of 4 options for 2 years at age 15:
Duke of Edinburgh’s Award (silver and gold), CCF, community service,
conservation. Up to 18 clubs, eg orienteering, choral society, bridge, chess,
debating, table tennis, skiing, basketball, drama, jazz.
Uniform: School uniform worn, except sixth formers who wear smart
Houses & prefects: Competitive houses. Prefects, head of school –
appointed by the Headmaster after consultation with staff and sixth form.
Religion: Compulsory services in Abbey, unless parents request otherwise.
Social: Joint theatrical productions, oratorios, general studies,
community service camp, fêtes etc with other local schools. Skiing trips;
mountaineering trips; exchanges to France, Germany and the USA; classics trips
to Italy and Greece; sports tours to eg Holland, West Indies, Argentina. Pupils
allowed to bring own bike to school (no parking on site for those who drive
their cars or motorbikes). Meals self-service. School shop. No tobacco or
Discipline Pupils caught smoking cannabis on the premises could
Former pupils Professor Lord Renfrew; Professor S Hawking; Tim Rice;
Nicholas Breakspeare (Pope Adrian IV); James Shirley (playwright); Mike Newell
(film producer: Four Weddings and a Funeral).