• How are the bursary recipients selected?

St Swithun’s School is an inclusive community that encourages girls from a diverse range of backgrounds. The School offers full means-tested bursaries to the school for those entering at Lower 4, Lower 5 or Lower Sixth. There are two main methods: candidates can apply directly to the school to be assessed for a means-tested bursary OR candidates can be recommended by partnership organizations (for example, The SpringBoard Bursary Foundation).

Candidates applying directly to the school for a bursary follow the same entrance procedure as all other applicants and sit the Common Entrance examinations. A report from a girl’s current head teacher is also required; the report must demonstrate the candidate has the ability to contribute to and thrive in the St Swithun’s environment, and would benefit from the all-round education that the school offers. In addition, an application form must be completed by parents detailing their financial circumstances, supported by documentary evidence, including capital assets. St Swithun’s requires a formal visit to be made to the family home of all applicants for bursary assistance before the initial offer of financial support can be made. A means-tested bursary is intended to be for the duration of a girl’s time at the school but every bursary award is subject to satisfactory educational progress, behaviour and to an annual financial review. 

  • What does a full means-tested bursary mean?

The Bramston Bursary Fund is designed to provide the advantages of a St Swithun’s all-round education to girls from financially disadvantaged background who are eager to make the most of the genuinely life transforming opportunities that such an education offers. To obtain such a bursary, the parents must give details of their financial position and the bursary is awarded after a ‘means test’ of the family income. The 110% bursary award covers 100% fee remission, as well as fundraising for an additional 10% to be managed by the Bursar to ensure the recipient has all the equipment and clothing that they need, and that they can play a full part in school life.  

  • What does The SpringBoard Bursary Foundation do?

St Swithun’s is an accredited SpringBoard School.  SpringBoard works with accredited schools and community-based partner organisations to introduce genuinely disadvantaged pupils from low income backgrounds that would best benefit from a boarding environment. SpringBoard works to ensure each SpringBoard pupil is matched to the right school and each pupil receives high quality help and support throughout the process.  

SpringBoard encourages the pupils to spread the benefit they have enjoyed, by passing on their experiences to their home communities.  Working with the school, the partner and SpringBoard, the SpringBoard pupils are expected to inspire, motivate and even provide informal mentoring for those in their community.  

In summary, The SpringBoard Bursary Foundation aims to increase social mobility by widening educational opportunities – a philanthropic philosophy shared by St Swithun’s.

  • What is the difference between a bursary and a scholarship?

Quite simply the difference between these two awards is financial need versus performance.
A bursary is awarded on if an applicant requires financial assistance, up to 100% fee remission, to attend St Swithun’s.  As described above, the candidate for an assisted place follow the same entrance procedure as all other applicants with the addition of an independent assessment of the family’s financial situation and pastoral need.  

Whereas a scholarship is an award to a talented pupil on the basis of academic, musical, and/or sporting achievement and promise.  An individual may apply for both a bursary and scholarship if they meet both sets of criteria.  

  • How are donors acknowledged?

We are enormously grateful to each and every member of the St Swithun’s community who supports the Bramston Bursary Fund. The school will respect the wishes of those who want their plans to remain confidential, but in other cases we would like to acknowledge people's generosity.
Many of our supporters donate monthly to the Bramston Bursary Fund – every single gift is greatly appreciated.

In the case of major donations that will fund a bursary for the foreseeable future, the possibility exists of naming this bursary after the donor or his/her family.

All donors receive exclusive Bramston Bursary Fund updates from the headmistress and invitations to school events. And any donor who has made a bequest to St Swithun’s will become a member of the 1884 Society and be invited to an annual event in recognition of their support. 

  • Can I give money to the school?

Designating a gift to the ‘Area of Greatest Need’ allows St Swithun’s flexibility to use your donation where the needs are greatest and where it will have the largest impact. Gifts to this area will support bursaries, school refurbishments, projects that enrich the girls’ experiences and much more.

  • Can I donate electronically now?

You are able to transfer your gift directly into the Bramston Bursary Fund (via the St Swithun’s Appeal Fund, sort code 55-81-26, account number 75063328, National Westminster Bank plc, 105 High Street, Winchester, SO23 9AW).  Please use your name as the reference and inform the Development Office.  Or you can give by clicking the logo below to make an online donation.