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Dragon School

Dragon School

Bardwell Road, Oxford, OX2 6SS, Oxfordshire

01865 315405



Dragon School
School type Co-educational Day & Boarding Preparatory
Founded 1877
Head Emma Goldsmith
Date Appointed 2002
Co-ed Age Range 4-13 years
Number of pupils 798
Day fees per annum £7,473 per term
Boarding fees per annum £10,931 per term
Pre-Prep (Year 3) £5,573 per term
Pre-Prep (Years 1-2) £4,851 per term
Pre-Prep (Reception) £4,239 per term
Average Class Size 19
Teacher/Pupil ratio 1:19
Associations BSA, IAPS, ISC

Dragon School in Oxford is one of the leading Prep schools in the UK educating boys and girls from 4-13 years old. It is a vibrant, happy and aspirational school; fuelling excellence by promoting a love of learning, inclusivity, opportunity and a strong sense of community and fun. The Dragon’s reputation as a School where every child can find, explore and develop their talents has been well earned over many generations. ‘Old Dragons’ go on to be successful in many different fields - Sir John Betjeman, Dame Cressida Dick, Tom Hiddleston, Tim Henman and Emma Watson are just a few of the famous alumni.

The Dragon was originally founded in 1877 to educate the sons of Oxford University dons and is now a School on two sites, positioned on the edge of the university city of Oxford. Sitting proudly amid stunning open playing fields and along the banks of the River Cherwell, the Prep School’s original buildings retain traditional features with a contemporary design twist. Impressive new facilities have been added with highlights such as a 25 metre indoor swimming pool, an Olympic sized astro, Art and Design Technology studios, a climbing wall and six Science labs. The Pre-Prep is just off the Woodstock Road and provides a wonderfully nurturing environment and excellent teaching for curious young Dragons from Reception to Year 3. There are age-appropriate play areas, a library and gym and healthy, nutritious food is prepared on site.

Dr Crispin Hyde-Dunn, the Headmaster, is keen that the Dragon remains at the forefront of educational distinction and innovation whilst ensuring the welfare and happiness of children comes first. The launch of DragonQUEST - an exciting and varied enrichment programme on Saturday mornings - is testament to this forward-looking approach. Pupils can choose from modules as varied as paddle boarding, bicycle mechanics, film making and cultural visits in Oxford and there will be a different selection of deep dives on offer each term.

Modern families have busy lives and the Dragon has responded by increasing its range of boarding options. Day children can take advantage of flexi-boarding, staying in one of the Boarding Houses on set nights each week or booking in for an ad hoc ‘sleepover’. This gives the children a taste of the camaraderie and activities enjoyed by boarders as well as helping parents with family logistics. Saturday attendance is no longer compulsory enabling a rise in weekly boarding with a Dragon Bus returning from London on Sunday evenings.

The Dragon has a dedicated Future Schools department who have excellent relationships with a wide range of top Senior Schools. They work closely with families from Year 4 onwards to offer bespoke advice which ensures that boys and girls aim for a school where they will thrive. This year, 55 leavers were successful in gaining academic and/or specialist scholarships at schools including Eton, Marlborough College, Cheltenham Ladies’, Oundle, Headington, Magdalen College School and St. Edward’s.

Heads Philosophy:

It is important to harness the vitality, imagination and natural curiosity of young people to develop the mindset of 'why not?'. If this culture of questioning is embedded at an early age it will encourage an enthusiasm to lead a lifetime of learning. Ardus ad solum 'reach for the sun' is the School's motto and is as relevant today as it was when the school was founded. We want all of our children to become resilient and ambitious, ready to take on the challenges of being a global citizen of the 21st Century. The Dragon has a well-earned reputation of providing a community which will nurture these characteristics with the values of kindness, courage and respect underpinning all that we do.

The Admissions team would love to help your child to become a Dragon.

Families are encouraged to call or email our Registrar - Kate Heath, browse the website, attend an open morning or come for an individual tour to Discover the Dragon!