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At St Swithun’s we are proud of our academic excellence but also believe in the concept of being ‘appropriately academic’ which means encouraging the girls to work hard in class but then also providing them with the opportunities to do something else.

The ‘something else’ is as important as academic lessons and sometimes more so. We expect the girls to try new things, to make mistakes and learn from them, to develop commitment, perseverance, teamwork and organisational skills.

We accept that some girls will naturally want to take part in many activities and that others will need some gentle persuasion. We would be failing in our duty to the latter if we did not emphasise the importance of balancing academic work with other activities. After all, the girls will never again have so many opportunities to try such a wide range of activities.

Weekly Co-Curricular Programme

In addition to music, drama and sports activities the school’s regular after-school programme includes drop-in sessions and societies across a varied range of subjects such as biology, maths, chemistry, linguistics and debating. Polo club, scuba diving, karate and fencing are part of the weekly sporting programme as well as the opportunity to take part in training with Winchester and District Athletics Club. We run three choirs, three bands, an orchestra and instrument ensemble groups which reflect the girls’ interests at the time. Our most recent addition is a bassoon ensemble. Pupils commit to an after-school activity for one term. Form tutors help to ensure that the girls have a good balance of co-curricular activities and that they honour any priority sport, music or drama activities for which they are required.

Weekend Activity Programme for Boarders

In addition, at St Swithun’s we offer a full and varied programme of cultural, social and recreational activities at weekends to suit all boarders. We believe the weekend is a time when girls should have the opportunity of some ‘downtime’, to try out new experiences, to learn how to organise their time appropriately and effectively. The organised weekend activities are different each week. They could include, for example, an art workshop, golf, a takeaway and movie night and a roller disco social with a local boys’ school. Typically there are two or three activities on Friday evenings, and anything between seven and ten options on both Saturday and Sunday. There are regular opportunities to develop a skill across the term, but there are also many one-off activities, so each weekend is different and there are many new experiences to try.

Our Weekend and Co-Curricular Activities Booklet and Co-Curricular Activities Poster are here for your perusal.

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