Welcome to Oakham School, a co-educational day and boarding school for 10-18 year olds, offering the IB Diploma and A-levels, in the heart of rural England. Our location, close to Rutland Water, gives us the best of both worlds, an idyllic countryside setting that is easily accessible to London.
We offer a spectacularly wide range of academic and extra-curricular opportunities, within an exceptionally caring and vibrant school community.
This year we are celebrating our 50th anniversary of co-education, providing the best education and support to girls since 1971. We are proud of the contributions and achievements that our young women have made, and continue to make, in our commitment to academic, artistic and athletic excellence.
Boarding at Oakham School provides a true home-from-home family environment to the School’s 500-strong boarding community. Children travel from the local area, from further afield in the UK, and overseas to benefit from all the opportunities on offer during the week and at the weekend. Weekly-boarding is also a popular option for several pupils, suiting modern family life well.
But don’t just take our word for it; listen to the testimonials and read our Boarding Bios below. Request a prospectus for more information or book an open morning to take a tour of the campus, speak to our expert academics and meet our current pupils.
Why Choose Oakham School? Our answer is quite simply ‘Experience’.
We offer multiple opportunities for our pupils to experience inside and outside the classroom.
We possess a wealth of experience in educating and caring for young people.
We want our pupils’ overall Oakham School experience to be joyous, informative and memorable.
Boarding at Oakham
Each of our Boarding Houses is home to the Housemaster or Housemistress and their families, so the pupils are very much part of their extended family. Our excellent pastoral care team ensures that pupils feel safe and well looked-after throughout their time at the School.
But don’t just take our word for it; listen to what our parents and pupils have to say. Request a prospectus for more information or book an open morning to take a tour of the campus, speak to our expert academics and meet our current pupils.
Finding the benefit of having more time at School for his prep and friends, Form 6 (Year 12) pupil Samuel shares his story on his transition from day pupil to flexi-boarder.
After joining the School in Form 3 (Year 9) as a day pupil, Samuel spent one year travelling to and from School each day before realising the boarding lifestyle was better suited to him.
Samuel found that flexi-boarding allowed him to do more at School.
“I felt that as a day pupil, I was getting home quite late in the evening because my family live near Market Harborough, so I wasn’t getting much time to do my prep work.”
“Also, by going home each evening I knew there were loads of exciting activities still happening at the School which I didn’t get to be a part of, so there was the social, fun element to consider as well.”
“When I weighed up what I was missing out on academically and socially, I knew that being a boarder was the right thing for me so had a discussion with my parents and luckily here I am now!”
Before coming to Oakham, Samuel didn’t know much about boarding at all.
“I was actually quite nervous about sleeping at School because the thought of it was quite daunting to me.”
“However, when I saw how close some of my friends were and how much of a good time they had, I knew it was something I wanted to try as it definitely made me want to join in with them.”
Now Samuel is a boarder, he has really close friendships with a lot of his peers.
“My friends are definitely the best part about boarding. You all get to really know and understand one another because of the time you spend together and we’re a really close year group.”
“You can talk to anyone if you have a problem and you always know that someone is around to listen, so whilst we all have a lot of fun, our friendships run really deep.”
Samuel soon settled into the boarding lifestyle.
“It was quite strange on the first few nights of boarding because you’re sleeping at School and you don’t have your family around you anymore.”
“I found that after a couple of days it was quite easy to settle into boarding life because the routine we have is very similar to what I would have at home and there are so many people around you that you feel comfortable really quickly.”
Samuel likes the flexibility of being able to go home at the weekends.
“I don’t think there’s a reason in particular I don’t fully board, as I’m sure it would be fine if I did, but it is really nice to go home at the weekends and have that time with my family.”
“I think the flexibility in our House is really good because there will be odd occasions when there are events happening and we can request to stay over all weekend as well, but it’s nice having a good balance of School and home life.”
Whilst there are many enjoyable things about Oakham, Sport is still a favourite for Samuel.
“I particularly enjoy doing sport at Oakham. I think the facilities are really good and the coaching is great.”
“My favourite sport is hockey but I also enjoy rugby and cricket. There’s lots of opportunities here for sport because you can do sport during the School day as well as during your free time.”
“There are also quite a few opportunities to do other activities and for my Service option I do CCF which is really cool. As part of this, we do RAF training and I’m really interested in flying and aircraft.”
“I also really enjoy the independence you get at the School as you move up the year groups. You get the freedom to get on with your own work but can still go to your tutors or teachers if you’re struggling.”
Alongside sport… the food at Oakham is also a big hit.
“Because of the amount of sport I do… there’s a lot of eating that goes alongside it.”
“The food in the Barraclough Dining Hall is really good. The go-to for me is always the pasta bar, because even there there’s so many options to choose from.”
“But to be honest, I just like all of the meals – it’s quite good and I was very surprised by the variety.”
Find out more about Boarding at Oakham School.
For Form 5 (Year 11) pupil Ella, boarding had always been something she’d wanted to do. Having joined Oakham two years ago as a seasoned flexi-boarder, she was excited to get stuck in to the busy and welcoming community of the School and hasn’t looked back since.
In the latest instalment of The Boarding Bios series, Ella shares her experience of why boarding works for her and how she’s got on since joining.
Ella’s family live in Suffolk but she believes she couldn’t have found a better home away from home at Oakham.
“Moving to Oakham was quite a big jump at first, being two hours away from home, but my House is the friendliest place I could possibly be.”
“It’s genuinely become a home away from home for me and I have made such good friendships that I know will last a lifetime.”
Being an experienced boarder meant that Ella settled into Oakham really quickly.
“I did transitional boarding at my old School so by the time I came here I was quite used to being away from home. My previous school was only half an hour away though so I always knew my parents could come and pick me up, whereas now I’m two hours away it’s not as easy.”
“I really like being a full boarder now and I’m definitely more used to being away from home. It just makes it even more special when I do get to go and see my family because we really make the most of our time together.”
She chose Oakham due to its welcoming and friendly atmosphere.
“I wanted to move to Oakham because I really liked the idea of being at a co-educational boarding school and a few of my friends have come here so it was nice to join with people I knew already.”
“I’ve always been at a co-ed school and I really didn’t want to go to an all-girls school. There’s no real reason behind it but I just prefer being around both boys and girls and it’s what I’ve always been used to.”
“Everyone at Oakham was so friendly and welcoming from day one that it makes it hard not to fall in love with the place.”
“Even when I had my tour just looking around the School I thought it was really nice that it was the pupils who showed me around rather than just the staff.”
Ella is particularly passionate about English and Art.
“I really like the Art Department. I think the facilities are amazing and I spend quite a lot of time in there.”
“English is also great and I think the teachers are just amazing. I think all of the teachers are to be fair – I haven’t really had any teachers that I honestly haven’t liked. They’re all so dedicated, especially with things like supported studies and helping you with your work.”
Ella had always wanted to board.
“I think it was something that I’d always wanted to do, and my older siblings had all boarded in some form so I’d heard a lot about it before I started.”
“When I looked at Oakham, one thing that stood out to me was the emphasis on pastoral care so I knew it would be a good place to be a boarder.”
“As I’d tried boarding in the past and had a good experience with it, I knew it would be a good option for me as I got older as it has allowed me to focus my time on my studies whilst making really close friendships in my House.”
Tutoring in House is also a big benefit for Ella.
“Our Tutors in House are also really helpful because they all teach different subjects so you can go to them if you’re struggling with something in particular and you always feel like there is someone to support you.”
“It’s really helpful having structured prep time in House because if I was a day pupil, I don’t think I would be able to stick to this routine as easily. However, when you’re a boarder and all of your friends are in the same boat it makes it a lot easier.”
As part of her Activity time, Ella takes part in the School’s Voluntary Action programme.
“I really enjoy Voluntary Action because we get to do lots of amazing things for the community and it’s really important work which you get a lot out of yourself.”
“It’s really fulfilling work and so nice to know that you are genuinely helping people so it’s great that we can do this during the School day.”
Ella has shared some wise words of advice for anyone who is looking at becoming a boarder.
“I think the best thing a new boarding pupil can do is talk to their Housemistress or Housemaster before joining the School so they can recommend you fellow pupils who you can make friends with that have similar interests to you.”
“I think once you’re settled in it’s really easy to find your ‘people’ and find your friendship group and that’s a really important part of what makes boarding so special.”
“Another good thing about the size of Oakham is that once you make friends with one person, you can then make friends in their friendship group and so on, so you all end up forming large friendship groups with people from all Houses and of all interests.”
Find out more about Boarding at Oakham School.