Norwich School (educational institution)

Norwich School (educational institution)

Norwich School in Norwich, Norfolk, England, previously King Edward VI’s Grammar School, is one of the oldest schools in the world, with a traceable history as far back as 1096.

Today the school is an independent, co-educational. fee-paying school, with one of the best academic records in Norfolk, [ Guardian Unlimited 2006 GCSE and A-level results,,1985499,00.html ] with many of its leavers heading to top universities. In 2006, 2007 and 2008 the Daily Telegraph ranked Norwich School's A-Level results as 74th, 55th and 80th for Independent Schools. In each case, Norwich School was the highest ranked school from Norfolk or Suffolk.

The school has a long association with the Cathedral Church, and still uses the Cathedral for morning assemblies.

In 2007 it was announced that girls were to be admitted for the first time below the Sixth Form, starting in September 2008 when 47 girls were admitted at ages 7, 8, 11 and 13. There will be girls in every year group by September 2010. [,,-6923510,00.html Lord Nelson school to allow girls] Press Association article in "The Guardian", September 15, 2007 8:38 AM]

Ethos & Aims

The School's website states the following:


Learning and scholarship are at the heart of all that happens at Norwich School. Christian principles - notably love and compassion for one another - underpin our activities and relationships.


Norwich School is committed to:

developing independent thinkers and knowledgeable young people who have a love for learning that will last beyond school;

providing a rich, varied and broad education that develops the diverse talents of the pupils;

encouraging ambition and confidence allied to courtesy and graciousness;

producing compassionate young people who will actively make the world a better place;

and enriching physical health and spiritual awareness.


*1096 Bishop Herbert de Losinga establishes the Benedictine Priory at Norwich and, shortly afterwards, an Episcopal Grammar School.

*c.1100 The original Bishop’s Palace is built (now part of a Senior School classroom block).

*c.1240 Vincent of Scarning appears in a document as Master of the Episcopal School – the first in an unbroken and documented line of headmasters that continues to the present day.

*c.1285 First record of the Almonry School – a second school within close proximity of the Cathedral.

*1316 Chantry Chapel of St John the Evangelist (now the School Chapel) is founded by Bishop John Salmon.

*1421 A further Chantry Chapel, probably associated with Agincourt veterans, is founded in the Chapel Crypt by Henry V.

*c.1516 Amalgamation of the Episcopal School and the Almonry School.

*1540 King Henry VIII’s Grammar School is established, on the Cathedral foundation.

*1547 The School is refounded as King Edward VI’s Grammar School under the Great Hospital Charter, thus separating it from the Cathedral foundation and placing it under the control of the Mayor and Aldermen of Norwich.

*1551 The School moves into its current buildings – School House and the School Chapel (the former College and Chantry of St John the Evangelist, which has been dissolved in 1547).


The pastoral care of the Senior School is organised by Houses. Pupils are allocated to a House upon joining the school, and stay with that House as they move up through the year-groups.

The Housemasters are managed by the Principal Deputy Head, who is accountable to the Head Master for the day-to-day pastoral care and discipline of the school, as well as for much of the rest of the School’s non-academic activity.

The day-to-day care of the pupils is in the hands of the Tutors. Each year-group within a House is run by a Tutor; sixth-form groups, which are larger, have two Tutors. For example, the pupils in Repton House who are in the Lower Five year are together in one tutor-group, “Lower Five Repton”, looked after by one Tutor, who is managed by the Repton Housemaster. The Tutor sees everyone in the tutor-group daily, for registration, and weekly, for a longer tutor-period. The Tutor monitors the pupil’s academic progress, general welfare, extra-curricular involvement, and so on, and is the first point of contact for most matters of concern or enquiry.

In the first year of the Senior School, Lower Four, pupils are tutored in a Form, which is also their teaching set for most subjects. Lower Four pupils are also attached to a House, and join the rest of their House for special events like the Music Competition.

During the current period of school expansion through co-education, the Senior Mistress is leading a team of Tutors for Girls.

The list of Houses can be seen in the menu below.


In Lower Four (Year 7) the boys and girls study: English, Mathematics, French, Science (Biology, Chemistry and Physics taught), Geography, History, Latin, Religious Studies, IT, Creatives (Art, Design, Drama and Music taught separately), Meno, Games and Physical Education.

Meno is a broad course which takes in PSHE issues, Study Skills and a range of diverse subjects such as Philosophy, Mandarin, Hebrew, relaxation techniques, Field studies and organics. Regular trips out for cross-curricular purposes are also a feature of this programme.

In Upper Four and Lower Five (Years 8 and 9), a choice of German or Spanish is added to the above.

At the end of Upper Four the pupils wishing to study Music or Drama to GCSE opt for these; the rest do a foundation year in Art and Design. There are opportunities to switch Creatives and to take two to GCSE in consultation with the Director of Studies.

Middle Five and Upper Five (Years 10 and 11) are primarily focused on GCSE courses. The GCSE programme requires:

English (taken in January U5)

English Literature

Mathematics (IGCSE)

A Modern Language (French or German on four periods per week, or French and German on 2 periods a week each; Spanish is an option – see below)

Science (IGCSE; Biology, Chemistry, Physics are taught separately for the Dual Award. Each science has three periods per week)

Creative (Art, DT, Drama, Design or Music)

TWO Options (from Classical Civilisation, Geography, Greek, History, Latin, Religious Studies, Spanish)

A total of 9 or 10 GCSE subjects is studied by each pupil. All subject areas are studied for at least two years (L4-L5) before choices are made. Parents and pupils are consulted at option points. Other subjects such as PE, IT and Meno are not examined. Games form a substantial part of the curriculum in every year, as do the tutorial provision and assembly time.

Sixth Form

The qualification for the Sixth Form is 6 B grades and better in those areas chosen for study.

In the Lower Sixth, pupils take four or five AS levels including an optional Critical Thinking AS level. There is a choice from 26 subjects and each is allocated 7 periods a week. The exceptions to this are Critical Thinking which is given 2 periods per week and Further Mathematics which is taught to the more able mathematicians in a reduced time allocation. AS level exams are taken in the summer of the Lower Sixth. Thereafter most pupils cut to THREE subjects to study through to A2 taken at the end of Upper Six. At each stage the Advice Team helps with decision-making.

Subjects available: Art, Art History, Biology, Chemistry, Classical Civilisation, Critical Thinking*, 2D Design, 3D Design, Economics, English Literature, French, Geography, German, Greek, History, Latin, Mathematics, Further Mathematics, Music, Philosophy, Physics, Politics, Religious Studies, Spanish, Sports Science* and Theatre Studies.

Lower School

The Lower School is the base for Norwich School boys and girls between the ages of seven and eleven (Years 3-6). It is located in the Lower Close between the East End of the Cathedral and the River Wensum.

The vast majority of pupils from the Lower School progress to the Senior School at age eleven. Entry is based on the recommendation of the Master of the Lower School and there is usually no requirement to sit the formal entrance examination.

The Master of the Lower School is a member of IAPS – The Independent Association of Prep Schools.

Admission to the School

Main entry points are at 7+, 11+, 13+ and 16+, although places are sometimes available in other year groups. Scholarships and Bursaries are available from age 11.

chool terms

The school's year is divided into three terms: Michaelmas (early September to mid December), Lent (early January to the Easter holiday) and Trinity (the Easter holiday to early July). In the middle of each term there is a week-long half-term holiday. The academic year thus begins with the Michaelmas term and ends with the Trinity term.

chool sports

The major games are rugby, cricket and football for boys and hockey, netball and rounders for girls. Other sports offered include: swimming, netball, cross-country running, fencing, rowing, sailing, self-defence, hockey, shooting and badminton.

Extracurricular activities

Music and Drama

The School has various orchestras, ensembles, bands, choirs and groups. Performances at all levels and age groups regularly take place within the School, the Cathedral and in the wider community.

The drama facilities include the purpose-designed Blake Studio. The Senior Play traditionally is performed at the Maddermarket Theatre; other productions take place in the Puppet Theatre, the Lower School and the Cathedral.

The School produces a major musical every two years at the Norwich Playhouse.

Clubs and Societies

Recent activities include: Sports Clubs, Orienteering, 8th Norwich Sea Scouts, Warhammer, Juggling, Chess, Junior Strings, Christian Forum, Philosophy Society, Junior and Senior Debating, Magic, Writers’ Club, Maths and Science Clubs, Duke of Edinburgh’s Award and Amnesty International.

Overseas Visits

The Modern Languages Department runs exchanges to France, Germany and Liechtenstein. Recent cultural, sporting or adventurous trips have gone to Austria, Canada, China, Ecuador, Egypt, Greece, Holland, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Israel, Russia South Africa and Turkey.


For the Academic Year 2008/09:

"Senior School"
£10,518 (per annum)
£3,506 (per term)
"Lower School"
£9,882 (per annum
£3,294 (per term)

The School also charges fees for lunches and entries for public examinations.

Governing body

Council of Management

GHC Copeman CBE DL (Chairman) * Professor C Andrew MA, University of Cambridge

NP Blair, Worshipful Company of Dyers

CH Bradley Watson BSc MRICS * JR Chambers FCA, Worshipful Company of Dyers

NJ Fischl MA

Mrs AM Fry MA EJH Gould MA * TJ Gould MA (Vice Chairman) * Mrs AJC Green BSc The Reverend Canon JM Haselock BA BPhil MA, Dean and Chapter

Professor KJ Heywood BSc PhD, University of East Anglia

AD Jeakings FCMA * A Knowles MDes (RCA) RA Leuchars BSc, Worshipful Company of Dyers

Mrs E McLoughlin BArch RIBA PN Mirfield BCL MA BA, University of Oxford

Mrs MCG Phillips BA The Very Reverend GCM Smith BA, Dean and Chapter

PJE Smith MA FIA * EP Witton ACIB Miss T Yates BA

Notable Old Norvicensians

*The most famous ON is Horatio, Viscount Nelson.
*Lord Ashcroft
*Robert, Lord Blake
*Sir James Brooke, Rajah of Sarawak
*Sir Edward Coke
*Peter Kindersley
*John Lindley
*Becky Mantin
*Emma Pooley
*Humphry Repton
*Clive Radley
*Lt Col Derek Seagrim VC
*Major Hugh Seagrim GC
*D J Taylor
*Tim Westwood
*Henry Walpole

Notable Masters

*G. A. Williamson who was senior classics master at Norwich from 1922-1960 has translated many histories of Roman times.
*Theodore Acland, Head Master 1930 to 1943
*David N Farr, British Historian and currently Head of History and Director of Studies.


1. Guardian Unlimited 2006 GCSE and A-level results,,1985499,00.html

2. Daily Telegraph A-level results table

3. Norwich School website

ee also

*List of the oldest schools in the world

External links

* [ Norwich School website]

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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