Leweston Schoolupcoming open day (click for details)
Leweston is a leading independent day and boarding school, co-educational in the Nursery and Prep, and transitioning to a coeducational diamond model in the Senior School and Sixth Form. Leweston’s values are based upon a supportive Catholic ethos, underpinned by the Christian principles of opportunity, respect and community. The school is set in 46 acres of beautiful parkland near Sherborne, Dorset and welcomes pupils of all denominations and of none. Each pupil is cared for and challenged within a strong community and encouraged to aspire to excellence across school life.
The Senior School is among the top academic girls’ schools in the South-West with an A Level pass rate of 100% and consistently high results at GCSE. The school has also topped the DfE Performance Tables (for schools in Dorset and Somerset) for UCAS points achieved per candidate, twice in recent years. Leweston’s policy of commitment and dedication to the individual student is also reflected in the very high ‘value-added’ scores awarded to the school. These ‘value added’ calculations (up to GCSE) by Durham University consistently place Leweston in the top 5% of schools nationally. Between 5 and 10% of pupils win places at Oxford and Cambridge annually, and over 50% go on to attend Russell Group Universities. The school has also enjoyed a remarkable success rate with its medical school applications in recent years (90%).
Leweston’s distinguished reputation for music, drama and sport is due to the excellence of its teachers and its facilities (including an all-weather pitch and an indoor swimming pool). The school regularly enjoys success at county, regional and national and international level across a diverse range of sporting activities. The school is a Pentathlon GB Academy and one of only eight in the country. In this capacity, Leweston offers dedicated training days, programmes and camps throughout the year and also hosts a number of popular multisport events. Leweston pupils have seen a great deal of success in the ‘athlon’ sports in recent years, including wins at both the world and European championships as representatives of both the school and Team GB.
Boarding at Leweston is popular, with boarding packages available for pupils from Year 3. Wide-ranging extracurricular activities are on offer, and the school regularly takes advantage of its close ties with other schools in the South West, encouraging pupils to socialise within their own peer groups.
Expectations are high; pupils are challenged in their studies to achieve the best possible academic success. Leweston pupils are well-balanced young people who take their place in the world with confidence, going on to contribute to society in many different ways, reflecting the many and varied opportunities placed before them at the school.
Gifted & Talented
Leweston School is committed to providing every student with the best possible opportunity to flourish and maximise their gifts and talents. There is an acknowledgement that some students possess particular talents or gifts that allow them to excel through the school curriculum and we are dedicated to ensuring that these students are provided the necessary support to make the best use of these skills.
Through an extensive extracurricular timetable, Leweston School is also able to ensure that pupils with talents in areas other than the curriculum are able to select and pursue their chosen activity. A large range of activities are on offer such as public speaking, cookery, sailing, and Duke of Edinburgh. In all areas the students are nurtured to reach their full potential and when required individual arrangements are made.
Due to the very broad nature of the curriculum, each subject has developed specific processes for supporting the gifted and talented pupils. Each has a provision for challenging and extending every pupil. This is monitored and adjusted throughout the year and reacts to the strengths and weaknesses of the student body. This provision is critical to enhancing every student’s learning experience and provides the foundation for selecting and encouraging our more able students. With targeted criteria in each department, the more able are selected for further support and given direction in order to pursue their talent.
Leweston accepts pupils with specific learning difficulties and they are assessed prior to entry to ensure that we can support their individual needs. A range of one-to-one support and tuition is available as determined by the relevant assessments. Pupils with individual needs will have a personalised programme of study and support organised to allow them to gain the best possible access to the normal curriculum.
A number of the pupils at Leweston come to us from overseas and whilst these girls are fully integrated into school life (learning and socialising in English), they may opt for extra tuition in the English language, following a course that includes an introduction to British life, customs and culture.
Leweston has over fifty years’ experience of teaching EAL and the Department is staffed by experienced, specialist teachers who work with the girls on the skills of speaking, listening, reading and writing from beginner to advanced levels. Those pupils who wish to can be prepared for public examinations in EAL.
Bursaries & Scholarships
Leweston offers scholarships for entrance at 11+ and 13+ for Academic Excellence, Music, Sport (including equestrian) and pentathlon. Art and Design and Drama 13+ only. For entrance into Sixth Form, scholarships are offered in the same subjects. Download our Scholarship guidelines 2018 and view scholarship dates
Bursaries are means tested and awarded in the case of financial hardship. Bursaries may be applied for at the same time as a scholarship by completing a separate bursary application form.
Leweston has had many years’ experience in catering for the needs of Forces families and offers a 20% discount on the day fees as well as the full CEA allowance for boarding children of military families.