Whoever you are… Whoever you want to be… Be a Downe House girl.
What does it mean to be a Downe House girl?
The answer is in the key characteristics known as the Downe House DNA:
- Outward looking
In the classroom, on the playing field, on stage and everywhere in between, these core values are the hope, aim and challenge for every girl. Beyond that, there is no ‘typical Downe House girl’. At Downe House every girl is treated as an individual and whether she is an artist, a scientist, an actress, an athlete, a musician, or all of these, she will be valued, supported and challenged.
“Downe House has achieved something which many parents dream for their child, to help them discover their gifts and passion for life.” – Downe House parent
Downe House in a sentence
Downe House is a traditional girls’ boarding school with a modern twist, offering family-friendly boarding balanced with an exceptional range of opportunities.
“There are many new and exciting things going on at this Berkshire power-house.” – Tatler Schools Guide, 2019
Established in 1907, Downe House is an independent boarding school for girls aged 11-18. It has a sharp focus on the future, having been a Microsoft Showcase School since 2018. Working with girls, parents, staff and alumnae, Downe House has a continuous rolling Ten Year Vision, with evolving and exciting plans for the future. In recent years, this has led to new boarding Houses, a new School uniform and the new state-of-the-art Murray Centre: the vibrant heart of the School campus, an inspirational space for learning performing and connecting – it’s a great place to meet, for girls, parents and staff.
Academically, Downe House encourages ambition, ignites a love of learning and is underpinned by a nurturing and supportive community. Girls are supported and encouraged to turn their aspirations for the future into reality and it is always the personal triumphs and individual achievements of the girls that are most celebrated. However, the statistics provide plenty of evidence of the academic success that our girls achieve.
In 2019, at I/GCSE 85% of grades were 9-7 with 63% of grades being at grade 9-8. A remarkable 1 in 4 of the girls achieved 9 grades 9-8 or more. At A Level 86% of girls achieved A* to B grades and girls take up places at some of the world’s top universities.
“The pupils’ spirited approach to learning and participation contributes significantly to their successes and personal development.” – Independent Schools Inspectorate report, 2017.
“The overwhelming feeling was that of kindness and partnership.” – New parent, 2019
Downe House was founded as ‘a school where each individual within the community matters’, and this has not changed. For both boarding and day pupils, Downe House works in partnership with parents to ensure that every girl is known, valued and supported. There is an unwavering commitment to ensure that every young woman at Downe House leaves with a lifelong intellectual curiosity, a self-belief that she is able to embrace the challenges of life beyond School, and the knowledge that she is part of a lively school community.
Downe House boasts an exceptional programme to nurture global citizens. Every girl in the Lower Fourth (Year 8) spends a term at our school in France experiencing French life. Older girls can take part in the Global Schools’ Exchange Programme, studying abroad in one of 16 partner schools across 6 continents. There is also a new Global Internship Programme and DH LINKS, the School’s comprehensive career network.
Downe House offers families a boarding model well-suited to the needs of a busy modern family. Offering both boarding and day places, Downe House provides every girl with the gift of time and space for extra-curricular activities balanced with important family time.
An easy drive from London takes you directly to the beautiful school campus of Downe House right in the heart of rural West Berkshire. The School is set on a stunning 110-acre woodland estate, overlooking the historic Berkshire Downs.
Girls enjoy the close proximity to other schools for match fixtures and enrichment events, as well as hosting and attending socials with local prep schools and independent schools such as Eton, Radley, Bradfield College and Harrow.
With easy access to the M4 motorway, Heathrow Airport and convenient rail links, it’s easy to get to Downe House by road, rail and air.
Be a Downe House girl
As one Sixth Form leaver eloquently summed up the unique Downe House experience, ‘I left Downe House with the feeling there was nothing I couldn’t achieve.’