Discovering Downside 

This week, the Sixth Form Media Prefects spoke to a number of pupils to ask about their experience of ‘Discovering Downside’…

How did you first hear about Downside School?

“My grandfather came to this school, and my brother also came here”, explains Olivia. Pupils come to Downside through a variety of sources. Many have existing family connections, some boys and girls have fathers, uncles and brothers who attended before the school turned ‘co-ed’, welcoming girls as pupils, in 2005.  Others might come for a shorter period before committing, or simply to join Sixth Form from another school, “I was at a day school before so I had no idea what boarding was going to be like. I also came from a girls’ school so I didn’t know what to expect but I was excited about the prospect of change”, explained Isabella. 

What did you think of the A Level Subject Fair? 

“It was good, it helped me to decide which A Levels I wanted to do and narrow down my choices.” says Chessie, currently in the Lower Sixth. “I’m excited about going to this year’s Subject Fair because it will give me a chance to decide which A Levels will be best for me and explore new options”, explained Lucy who is currently in the Fifth Form.

What did you think on the first impression?

“I thought that the Abbey was really impressive and I liked the old features of the Main Hall and Refectory” says Isabella. Chessie agrees, “I like how it is all in one building, and the Abbey is beautiful”. The friendly atmosphere and welcoming approach is often commented upon by pupils and families, “Everyone was really nice and friendly and it was really easy to get to know everyone” says Chessie. “They are all very welcoming and nice, they all make an effort with the new pupils to make sure that they settle in”, agreed Olivia. 

“The Head Master, when I started, was Fr Leo. He was extremely welcoming and was a bright and cheerful face in the corridors; it was lovely to see him gardening outside in his spare time. Since Dr Whitehead has taken over he has fitted into the role perfectly and has adapted the school for the better”, the pupils agreed. “I also loved the homeliness of the boarding houses. The sports facilities and the theatre were particularly impressive too, I thought”, explained Lucy.

Would you recommend Downside Sixth Form to a friend? 

“You are guaranteed a good time, you will undoubtedly find friends because it is such a welcoming community” says Isabella. The others agree, “It is really fun because you have the JCR (Junior Common Room) where everyone can meet and socialise. You have a lot more freedom and the teachers treat you like adults” says Chessie, “From what I’ve heard from friends, Downside allows its Sixth Form to show their potential in roles of responsibility and the staff here treat Sixth Form like adults, not children”, explains Isabella.

“Academically the A Level results are really strong, and also the co-curricular activities in school enhance your time spent in Sixth Form”, says Lucy. “I have made really close friends and I do not feel the need to change schools, I love the atmosphere at Downside…I do not think other schools have this unique quality.”

Discover Downside Sixth Form

If you’re interested in coming to Downside for Sixth Form, drop our Admissions team a call today on 01761 235100 to register for a visit. We’d love to welcome you to our school.