Boarding gives children the chance to grow in confidence and independence and develop their friendships and personal skills within a safe, nurturing environment.
At Sherborne Prep we offer a range of full, weekly, flexi and occasional boarding which gives a wide range of different choices to create the best option for you and your child, allowing them to get the most out of a private education.
Boarding at The Prep is great fun! We have two boarding houses, Acreman for the boys and Netherton for the girls. The House parents ensure boarding is enjoyable and there is a real family feel to both houses. All staff ensure that boarders are happy, confident and proud of being a boarder. We want their experience of boarding to be safe and enjoyable. Although we are situated in the Dorset town of Sherborne, the school has a taste of the countryside, with its twelve acres of grounds, and the boarders are encouraged to enjoy the grounds to the full, climbing trees, playing games, and revelling in conker battles!
Happy children do well at school and all the staff throughout the School are ready to help if there is an occasional wobble and things don't go quite as intended. There are lots of people to talk to, ready with advice and support to help.
Healthy eating is important and the school kitchens prepare and provide excellent food for breakfast, lunch and supper as well as appropriate choices. All our food is prepared on site and local suppliers are used where possible. Staff keep a watchful eye to encourage children to eat a balanced diet.
Click here to read our boarding mission statement
Brenda Ray - Houseparent, Netherton
Brenda is herself a mother, with considerable experience in the field of education, including qualifications as a Teaching Assistant, teaching English as a foreign language, in "Forest Skills", as a national level swimming coach, and in counselling. Brenda is a wonderfully energetic and caring person, and she brings a great deal of fun and enthusiasm to Netherton.
Lucy Wallington BA (Hons)(York), PGCE (MMU), Assistant Houseparent, Netherton
Lucy graduated with a BA Hons in English Language and Linguistics from the University of York and a PGCE in Primary Education, specialising in French, from Manchester Metropolitan University. She joined The Prep in 2010, and has been a Form teacher for Year 3 and Year 5, also teaching French to Years 5 and 6. Lucy has a musical family background and enjoys singing as well as playing the violin, 'cello, and piano.
Paul Shepherd MBA, TTC - Director Of Boarding & Houseparent Acreman
Paul joined Sherborne Prep in September 2009 as Head of Maths, initially as maternity cover for Hanna Crane. When Hanna returned Paul decided to stay and continues to teach in addition to his role as Director of Boarding. He is passing on his enthusiasm for rugby coaching the Under 8 rugby team. He was previously Deputy Head of King's School, Auckland and has two daughters who are currently living in Japan.
Frank Bridgeman-Sutton, BA(Hons) Dunelm; PGCE Exeter; CertNat Sci (Open), MCIEA - Assistant Housemaster, Acreman
After graduating in Anthropology and Archaeology, Frank Bridgeman-Sutton put his refined digging talents to use in northern Germany and across Salisbury Plain as an officer in The Green Howards. After a spell as house manager at a top drama school in London, he headed for the North Pennines to restore furniture and antiques, gaining some expertise in Chinese lacquer work and passing his spare time as a member of a mountain rescue team. Having discovered that few mountains needed rescue, he relocated to Dorset in 1998, where he beavered away happily in his shed until vocation called and he re-trained as a teacher. He began his career at a fine prep school in Sherborne where he spent seven years and acquired a slightly geeky interest in assessment data and developing the curriculum. A year working as director of studies in Qatar and another year at Knighton House provided a contrast before he came back here where children are allowed to be children, are allowed to make mistakes, are allowed to think for, and to be, themselves. Somewhere along the way he had the great good fortune to acquire two lovely children of his own.
Kate Fow - Matron
Kate joined The Prep from Sandroyd School where she was a houseparent in the Junior Boys House. She was a houseparent at Ranby House School in Nottingham for three years prior to that. Kate's passion is violin, which she studied at Trinity College of Music. She was highly influenced by her grandfather, the late Max Jaffa, who was also a violinist. Kate has played with many of the London Orchestras and performed much of the solo violin repertoire with many orchestras both in England and abroad, as well as being in the backing orchestra accompanying Elton John on tour. Kate has two sons, the youngest of whom is at The Prep.
Benjamin Aluwihare - Gap Assistant
Benjamin is a Graduate of the British School in Colombo, where he studied for an International Baccalaureate. A dual national of both the UK and Sri Lanka, Benjamin was born in London but moved to Sri Lanka at a young age, where he completed his schooling and feels very much at home in both countries. He loves working with children and greatly enjoys all aspects of learning. Currently on his gap year, Benjamin is greatly looking forward to the prospect of joining the student body of the University of Edinburgh this September, where he will study Philosophy and Politics.
Emma Brown - Gap Assistant
Emma comes from Masterton, a small New Zealand town about an hour and a half north of Wellington. Emma completed secondary school last year and her interests range from running and basketball to painting and drawing, something she wishes to pursue further as she plans to enroll for a Fine Arts Degree beginning when she returns home.
Henry Smit - Gap Assistant
Henry went to Christ's College in Christchurch, New Zealand and will (probably) be going to study Commerce at a University back in New Zealand in 2014. His hobbies include Tennis, Rugby, Cycling and Skiing (when he gets the chance)!
Ella Snedden - Gap Assistant
Ella joins us from her home country of New Zealand. Throughout her secondary school years, Ella not only pursued her love of netball and hip hop dance but got involved with other social sports such as badminton and basketball. Whilst studying at Samuel Marsden collegiate school in 2012, she developed a keen interest in History and English, which has encouraged her to pursue a Law Degree with a conjoined BA in Political Sciences back in New Zealand when she returns.
After prep the boarding family has supper together at 6.15pm. Afterwards the boarders have the opportunity to take part in various supervised games and activities including outdoor sports, board games and jewellery making. Toast and hot chocolate are enjoyed before bedtime. Lights out are at 8.30pm for Years 3 & 4, 8.50pm for Year 5 & 6 and 9pm for Years 7 & 8.
Saturday morning starts for the whole School with a choice of a large variety of activities followed by lunch and matches for those in teams. Boarders not involved in matches go out for a walk.
On Sundays boarders can stay in bed longer than normal and enjoy a relaxed breakfast followed by a chapel service, activities, Sunday lunch and then a visit to somewhere exciting. Recent visits have included a trip to a local adventure centre to build rafts, Cheddar Gorge Caves, Lazerage, Ten-Pin Bowling, Moors Valley Country Park, Splashdown, Monkeyworld, and fossil hunting at Lyme Regis. Some activities take place in the school grounds such as outdoor pursuits and pottery painting.
Exeat weekends take place twice a term and this means that school finishes at 4.30pm on a Friday and is closed until 6.30pm on Sunday. Boarders will need to spend these exeat weekends with their parents, grandparents, friends or guardians.
Thank goodness that the Prep, with all its foibles and idiosyncracies remains an island of calm and good sense in an uncertain world - or so we like to believe...