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St Mary's School Shaftesbury

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Type Day-Boarding

Age range 9–18

School head Mr Richard James


St Mary’s School Shaftesbury is a Roman Catholic boarding school for girls founded on the principles of Mary Ward. The school welcomes day pupils and girls from all other Christian denominations. There are 310 pupils, approximately two-thirds boarders, one third day.

The School Mission Statement contains the phrase: “We are concerned with all that a girl is and could become”. The girls are stretched academically and the majority go onto to the top UK universities with Oxbridge successes every year. The school is concerned with the whole person and aims to give girls as broad an education as possible thus enabling each girl to realise her own strengths and build upon them. The philosophy at St Mary’s is a simple one: to create a safe, happy learning environment and central to the school’s aims is the formation of the individual.

The school has its own Entrance Examination, held in January for 9+, 11+ and 13+ entry. 16+ entry is by testimonial, interview and based on GCSE results.

A recent ISI report states: “The educational experience for girls at St Mary’s is entirely consistent with the school’s stated aims and philosophy to promote worthwhile values, to enhance learning and to develop girls’ talents and is firmly rooted in the school’s strong and secure Catholic tradition and ethos”.

Address Shaftesbury, Shaftesbury, Dorset, SP7 9LP

Phone 01747 852416

Fax 01747 851557