School Overview

Abingdon is a leading independent day and boarding school for boys aged 11-18. Abingdon Prep School is a day school for boys aged 4 to 13. The two schools together make up the Abingdon Foundation. Abingdon offers full and weekly boarding from the age of 13 and is situated in 35 acres in the centre of Abingdon, just south of Oxford. There are around 1000 boys at Abingdon and a further 250 boys at the Prep School, which is based just a few miles away at Frilford. Abingdon combines the very best in academic standards, music, sport and the arts. The School combines over 750 years of history and tradition with a modern outlook. As well as encouraging academic achievement, with impressive results at GCSE, A Level and Oxbridge and university entrance, the School provides extensive extra-curricular opportunities, encouraging pupils to try something new, to develop existing talents and to ‘give something back’.

Our aim is to ensure each boy thrives at Abingdon and, through challenge and opportunity, achieves the most from his potential. Our pupils come from a wide range of social and geographic backgrounds, creating a lively and tolerant mix of cultures. Boys of all faiths are welcome. The Chapel and its services provide a focus for exploration of the spiritual dimension within a Christian context: each year-group comes together in the Chapel once a week to share in an inter-denominational act of worship.

The majority of our pupils are dayboys although boarding plays an important part in the character of the School. Close ties with the nearby girls’ school of St Helen and St Katharine add a co-educational feel, especially to our Sixth Form, where some subjects are taught jointly and there is much collaboration with drama productions, musical activities and, of course, socially.


Abingdon is divided into the Lower School (aged 11-13), Middle School (aged 13-16) and Upper School or Sixth Form (aged 16-18). Pupils spend two years in Lower School, three years in middle School and two years in the Sixth Form. Entry to the Lower School is mainly from maintained primary schools and independent schools which finish at the age of eleven, while the Middle School intake is predominantly from preparatory schools taking the Common Entrance Examination. In the Upper School there is a further intake of boys from the maintained and independent sectors.

The School day starts at 8.35am, lessons finish at 3.40pm and school buses depart at 5.20pm. Homework is set each day and the amount gradually increases as pupils move up the school. Wednesday afternoons, lunchtimes and 3.40pm to 5.20pm each day are devoted to 'Other Half' activities. Every boy has his own individual timetable of work and activities which are supervised by his tutor.