A rural all-girls senior school in Oxfordshire with a family atmosphere where students achieve excellent results in GCSEs and A Levels.
It’s a predominantly boarding school – there are 250 boarders and 75 day girls. Tudor Hall is also a non-selective school where girls are “selected not just on their academic ability but also their personal strengths”, and the school’s curriculum and co-curriculum encourages students to develop interests and talents in a wide range of subjects.
Founded in 1850, Tudor Hall offers a nurturing, relaxed and close-knit environment for educating the next generation of female leaders, thinkers, influencers and change-makers. It’s a vision that is shared by Headmistress Julie Lodrick who is new to the school. Ms Lodrick joined the school in January 2022 when the previous head retired, and was previously head at Kent College, Pembury, and head at The Mount, York for six years.
Girls here are expected to aim high and work hard, while also getting involved in a wide range of activities ranging from local community service and the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award to involvement in the Young Enterprise Scheme, Model United Nations and European Youth Parliament.
Subject choices at both GCSE and A Level include both the academic and the creative (there are options including drama, music and food prep). Sixth Formers can opt to take the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) at A Level, and recent topics have been as varied as the degeneration of coral reefs, creating a photography exhibition, writing a book for KS2 pupils and the penal system.
All students broaden their horizons in the Aim Higher programme which include weekly lectures and discussion groups, and an annual Aim Higher Conference where departments are given the space and time to inspire students in their subject areas. All students complete a Tudor Diploma, which involves using research, public speaking and problem-solving skills in activities beyond the classroom that range from the adventurous to the academic.
The curriculum is further enriched with an annual Curriculum Enrichment Week, when students go off-timetable to take part in full schedule of trips, guest talks, Model United Nations and sports.
While Tudor Hall is not an academic hothouse, it performs well above average in both GCSE and A Levels. In 2021, 40.5% of A Level grades were A*; 73% were A*-A; 89% were A*-B; and 96% were A*-C. In the same year, 58% of GCSE grades were 9-8; 76% were 9-7; and 99% were 9-4.
It’s full boarding only here, which is offered to students from 11 years and above. Boarders live in one of the seven boarding houses, each one for a single year group and run by a house mistress and deputy, which really helps to create a close-knit boarding community. The Sixth Form house is like a “half-way house” between a family home and a university hall of residence, where girls are encouraged to live more independently.
Evenings and weekends are kept busy with a programme of activities for boarders and day girls including visits to museums, art galleries, theatres, paintballing, zorbing, bushcraft and cooking competitions.
Tudor Hall has a beautiful rural campus with a blend of the historical (a 17th century and 18th century manor) and the modern (a purpose-built boarding house for Sixth Formers and new facilities including science labs; designated modern languages department with a language laboratory; purpose-built drama studio, music school and sports complex; and an art studio and design technology workshop).
The school’s Teaching Centre is home to ceramics and textiles studios and a professional kitchen, while sports facilities include floodlit tennis and netball courts, a gym and AstroTurf hockey pitch, swimming pool, grass athletics track and pitches for lacrosse, rounders and cricket.
Scholarships are offered for academic, art, dance, drama, music, sport or textiles, and all scholars are assigned a mentor, and invited to concerts, dinners and trips, and as well as internal and external competitions.
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