More than just boarding

More than just boarding

Left to right: Mollie, Brittany, ImanCheltenham College is known for being one of the leading co-educational boarding schools in the country, but did you know that around 20% of our students are day pupils? We hear from ​three day girls on what it is like to be a day pupil in a predominantly boarding environment…

Why did you choose to be a day girl in a boarding school?
  • Mollie – A boarding school is open 24/7 with friends and teachers at hand, which is great when you need support academically and socially. I like having the option of going home after a busy day but most nights I’ll stay late, whether it is for homework or societies.
  • Brittany – Actually, I used to be in a day school but I chose to come to a boarding school in Sixth Form because there are more opportunities available for leadership, activities, and sport.
  • Iman – I also joined in Sixth Form and I wanted to come to a school like Cheltenham College because it offers a lot more support and a wider range of subjects and clubs. Variety is quite important to me, I don’t want my school to just be lessons and homework. People really care about you here, you are not just a student. You get the care and opportunities on offer at a boarding school but you also have the independence of being a day pupil.
What are the advantages of being a day girl?
  • Mollie – I genuinely think we get the best of both worlds, you can dip in and out of activities if you want and both the boys’ and girls’ day houses have dorms where we can stay over if we need to.
  • Brittany – Although days are long in a boarding school, I prefer to work in a school environment than at home, so it helps me to be able to stay late if I need to. I like focusing on my family when I’m at home and concentrating on my work when I’m at school. Being a day girl also allows me to see more of my friends outside of school.
  • Iman – The advantage of being a day girl is to draw a line on a busy day by going home and having a life beyond school. Some days you stay late and give a lot but other days you just want to go home early and relax, and it’s nice to have this option.
Do you feel integrated as a day girl in a boarding school?
  • Mollie – Absolutely! I definitely feel like part of the College community. Integration is not about where you sleep but about how involved you are and how you interact with others when you’re present.
  • Brittany – I agree, you definitely get what you give. Classes are mixed and we all meet in the Dining Hall for lunch. Tutor groups are mixed in Sixth Form too, so you are amongst boarders all the time. Your day is pretty much the same as them, but you go home in the evening.
What is your favourite thing about College and your day house?
  • Brittany – My favourite thing about College is the friendship and inclusion across year groups. In house, we have families that involve all year groups and we often meet up for some silly garden games or a pizza night. It’s relaxed and there’s no hierarchy.
  • Iman – My favourite thing in house is the respect we have for one another. We don’t have any pressure to fit a mould, we are individuals who like each other’s differences. My favourite thing in College is the Art department, there is all the space and materials you can possibly dream of, it’s great. You are allowed to explore your own creativity, you’re stretched and respected for your own ideas and flair. It is really balanced. Individuality is 100% encouraged and I love that.

Almost 50% of Cheltenham College pupils are from Gloucestershire. Whilst the majority board, there are plenty of local children who opt for day places and take advantage of daily bus services transporting pupils en route from Broadway, Moreton-in-Marsh, Burford, Nailsworth, Ashton Keynes, Quedgeley, and Nailsworth.

Pupils flourish under the guidance of dedicated teachers who are leaders in their subject fields. This, combined with small class sizes and academic rigour, is reflected in the 2017 exam results with 82% of A Levels graded A* - B, 1 in 3 pupils gaining at least one A* grade, and 58% of GCSE grades were A* - A.

Want to find out more?

Book a personal tour of the school by emailing or by calling 01242 265 600.

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