A message from the Head

Bootham is not a typical private school! That was one of the clear and positive messages to come from recent independent, in-depth research we carried out.


Not that it doesn’t present all the things that a really good private school should offer; far from it.


It offers excellent, knowledgeable and passionate teachers with the time and resources to teach their subjects; an emphasis on personalised, well resourced pastoral care and personal development; a proven record of the vast majority of its students winning a place on a chosen university course; a huge range of sporting, cultural, outdoors and leadership/service opportunities available to all; great public exam results; what you’d expect.


But it offers more than that…and some approaches that are different from the picture many people have in their heads of what a private school is like.


Arising from our Quaker foundation, practices and heritage, Bootham has a much clearer understanding of the ultimate purpose of the education that it offers than any school I’ve ever known. It goes about helping students to achieve lifelong success and flourishing in a different way, not by emphasising conformity or the primacy of exam-related endeavour, but rather the development of intrinsic motivation and individuality –‘that of God’ (or good) in Quaker language- in the context of a hugely supportive community that is founded on clear, enduring, well practised and well understood  values.


It’s an approach that produces students who leave the school comfortable in their own skin, confident in the unique combination of strengths and talents that they have been helped to discover, and aware of their responsibility to make the world they are going into a better, fairer and more peaceful place.


I firmly believe that all parents ultimately want their children to be good people even more that they want them to be successful people; doing both is what we specialise in!


Bootham has been called “York’s thinking parents’ school” [Good School’s Guide]. I hope that what you read and see on this website will intrigue you to think about the lifelong purpose of your child’s education and academic success. Furthermore, I hope that it will encourage you to think about coming to visit us to experience the school’s very special -and rather different- atmosphere for yourselves.


I look forward to meeting you!”

Chris Jeffery, BA


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