Fareham school extends its age range and offers a free scholarship place

Isla Ransom, nine, and Terry Gapa, 10, during a science lesson in a day of Stem - science, technology, engineering and maths - sessions at Boundary Oak School in Fareham. Old 35mm film cases were filled with water and Alka-Seltzer until they popped and jumped in the air.

Picture: Paul Jacobs (160009-2)
Isla Ransom, nine, and Terry Gapa, 10, during a science lesson in a day of Stem - science, technology, engineering and maths - sessions at Boundary Oak School in Fareham. Old 35mm film cases were filled with water and Alka-Seltzer until they popped and jumped in the air. Picture: Paul Jacobs (160009-2)
Charlie Dickie at the Havant Sixth Form campus of HSDC Picture: Habibur Rahman (171065-43)

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BIG changes are under way at a Fareham school as it looks to expand and to create a senior school for the first time in its 98-year history.

Boundary Oak School, in Wickham Road, Fareham, will be extending its age range from two to 13 years to two to 16 years for both day and boarding pupils, starting this September.

To mark the occasion, the independent school will also be offering a free scholarship place to a pupil who is currently in a state school.

Headmistress Hazel Kellett said there was big excitement about the plans, which will provide education up to GCSE level. She said: ‘We are delighted to be opening up a senior school in September, when we will have our first Year 9 intake. This is just the beginning; as you can imagine, it has been an extremely exciting but busy time and there is much more still to do.’

The school has seen a surge in demand over the past 18 months, especially since fellow private school Wykeham House in Fareham closed in the autumn.

Proprietor Aaron Stewart said: ‘After significant upgrading of facilities, additional staff and school marketing, we have seen a great improvement in almost every area of school life at Boundary Oak.

‘Pupil numbers have increased by 81 per cent in just 18 months, which is fantastic.’

As well as launching the new senior school, further developments, including building additional classroom blocks and a senior common room, are set to take place.

The outdoor swimming pool is also set for an upgrade, with the school building an indoor facility with changing rooms.

Mr Stewart thanked parents for their support.

He said: ‘This would not have been possible without the support of new and existing parents, pupils and staff, which has been overwhelming.’

Mrs Kellett said existing Year 8 pupils will be joined by new starters between now and September, and this group will become the first Year 10 in 2017, graduating in 2018 with GCSEs as the school celebrates its 100th year.

She said: ‘We are all very excited about what the future holds and the additional opportunities we can now offer our pupils.

‘When a child leaves us, they will be well-prepared for the world, self-confident, sociable and articulate – and now they can look forward to achieving excellent GCSE results at Boundary Oak too.’

For more information or to apply for a scholarship email registrar@boundaryoak.co.uk or call 01329 280955.