Boarding at Bootham is often described as providing a “home away from home.” The School provides a warm and friendly environment, run on sensible lines with normal family common sense applied.

Each house has two resident staff, with other day staff and resident graduate assistants working alongside them.

Bootham recognises that an active relationship between staff, students, parents and guardians lies at the heart of a positive boarding experience, and therefore welcomes communication from students’ families.

Sixth form boarding is increasingly popular at Bootham. Parents are happy that their child is becoming more independent before entering the world of higher education or employment, whilst students value the extra time they can spend on studies or with friends.

The international nature of boarding also brings benefits. Children learn to understand different peoples and different cultures and by living in a thriving community based on mutual respect, they gain the necessary global outlook needed to succeed in today’s world.

Boarding Ethos

The boarding ethos is guided by the Quaker testimonies of Equality, Peace, Simplicity, Stewardship and Truth. Boarding at Bootham aims to be:
A nurturing community where each person has the opportunity to develop physically, socially, intellectually and spiritually.

• An open community with honesty and trust
• A safe community where disagreements are resolved peacefully.
• An inclusive community where no-one is discriminated against unfairly.
• A confident community where the unique contribution of each individual is celebrated.
• A thoughtful and forgiving community where we everyone takes responsibility for themselves and others.


The school has three boarding houses, each of which provides homely and comfortable accommodation in elegant Georgian buildings. Each house has its own common room, kitchen facilities for making snacks, a student laundry and Wi-Fi.

The School has an onsite health centre which meets the needs of students who require medical attention, health education or simply a quiet place to rest when respite is required. GP surgery sessions are held in school on Tuesday and Friday mornings for students registered with the school doctor. Boarding students may wish to see the school doctor on a personal basis and this can be arranged through the Health Centre or by contacting the Doctor’s surgery direct.

Boarding Options

Full Boarding and Weekly Boarding

Our full and weekly boarders, who stay at School for between 4 and 7 nights per week, make the houses their home. Friends who are day students may stay over and every day student may have two nights free sleepover per term at a time agreed with the house staff. This is always popular therefore advanced booking with the relevant housemaster/housemistress is essential!

Flexi Boarding

Students can also choose to board for two or three nights every week.

Comments below are from the Independent Schools Inspectorate report on Bootham School, January 2014

“The quality of boarding is excellent. Outcomes for boarders are excellent and are highly effective in enhancing the boarders’ personal development. The school has engendered a powerful sense of community and there is a high emphasis upon contributing to society. The boarding experience is wholly underpinned by the school’s Quaker ethos with its emphasis on respecting the rights of others and on equality. Standards of behaviour, based on mutual respect and concern for others, are high. Boarders are poised, confident and outgoing, engaging readily with one another, their teachers and visitors. Overseas boarders are seamlessly assimilated into the school community. Boarders exhibit great loyalty to the school, and are happy and feel well looked after. Relationships with boarding staff are excellent, and boarders are confident that they have someone they can speak to if they have any concerns. Boarders also value the friendships they make with one another, and actively seek to live in harmony together. Boarders have ready access to information about events in the world outside the school and to local facilities, as appropriate to their age. Boarders contribute to the boarding community both formally and informally, including being able to make known their views about their boarding experience. They report that there is a strong informal support system within each house, with older pupils actively setting out to be role models for younger pupils.

Occasional Boarding for Day Pupils

Day pupils may stay for 2 nights per term free of charge subject to availability in the boarding house. Up to 8 further nights can be arranged through the relevant housemistress or housemaster for which a charge will be added to the bill. For more information, please email the Bursar Gavin.Blackstone@boothamschool.com.

Studying in York

Bootham School is situated in the beautiful and historic city of York. This wonderful location provides easy access to world-class cultural attractions, beautiful countryside and stunning coastline.

Additional Information

View additional information regarding Boarding at Bootham, including information on:

  • Housing
  • Activities
  • Meals
  • Guardians
  • Travel arrangements

News and stories

Pre-season training

PMA - Positive Mental Attitude Pre-season training this year was a fantastic success.  A great turnout and a positive attitude makes for a great start to the year!

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A letter from the Prime Minister

In the summer term our senior and junior school students wrote to our local MP Rachael Maskell to ask her to raise the issue of the shortfalls in resources and opportunities in global education with Theresa May. The links below take you to the resulting correspondence...

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History Revisited

Year 3 travelled back in time and experienced what it would be like to go to school during Victorian times. The teacher was very strict but they had fun at playtime!

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