We understand that spending a few weeks in another country, away from home can be a nervous experience for the parents (often more so than for the students!). We've tried to answer as many questions as we can here – but if you have another queries, please contact us and we will always be happy to help.
Parent Information Frequently Asked Questions:
What happens at the airport?
Our transfer team is at the airport on arrival days to personally meet our new summer school students and to ensure they are transferred safely to Headington School. We run arrival coach transfer or taxi transfer services if required, as well as a Welcome Club at Heathrow Airport. If the student is travelling as an 'Unaccompanied Minor', you will need to speak to the airline about their procedures. For unaccompanied minors, the airline will usually require us to provide the name and contact number of the member of our staff who will be collecting your child (available on request).
What happens on arrival at the Headington School?
When the students arrive, they put their valuables straight into the school safe in the main office. Then they are shown to their rooms and given time to rest and eat. Once refreshed, they meet the other students and have a tour of the school.
How many other students attend?
We welcome a maximum of 175 students each week at the Headington Oxford Summer School each. All students are residential and there are approximately 40 different nationalities each summer. The maximum number of students in classes is 15, although the average is usually around 12.
What are the sleeping arrangements?
Girls and boys sleep in separate boarding areas and the rooms range from single and twin rooms to five bedded dormitories. All the rooms are bright and spacious, and we've found that the older students are better suited to single, twin or triple rooms while younger students prefer the larger dormitories. At least two members of staff are on duty in the girls' and the boys' boarding areas each night.
Is safety and welfare important?
It is more than important – it is our main priority at the Headington Oxford Summer School. We do everything possible to ensure the safety of students during every activity, excursion and trip. Our team is professional, qualified and dedicated, and they supervise children 24 hours per day.
Can I contact or visit my child?
Students have access to the Internet and email at approved times. They are also encouraged to phone home upon arrival and all students receive a UK SIM card to make it cheaper for parents to phone the UK. Friends and family are welcome to visit students or arrange to take them out for the day. 24 hours notice must be given in writing, prior to any visit to the summer school. If a student is to be taken out of the school or out of the care and responsibility of our staff during an excursion, the parent or guardian must provide written permission by signing an absence form.
Are all diets catered for?
The dining room at Headington School is well-presented and serves excellent food and the students are provided with packed lunches for day trips. The tuck shop is open three times a day, and every night before bed the students are given juice and biscuits. If your child has special dietary requirements, please inform us at the time of booking.
What do students need to bring?
A guidance list of casual clothing is sent to you after the booking has been completed. All students must bring a pair of non-marking trainers to use in the sports hall (without black soles). A free laundry service is provided (please mark all items of clothing with the student's name) and sheets and bed linen are provided by the school. Students must bring a towel as these are not provided by the school.
How much pocket money should a student bring?
As everything is included in the price, the only money students need is for sweets and drinks from the tuck shop and for presents and souvenirs. We would recommend around £50 per week. The students are able to collect pocket money from the office at specific times during the week.
Can the school look after valuables?
Yes. We will look after all passports, travel documents and pocket money. We would recommend that students bring as few valuables as possible. It is important to note that the bedrooms do not lock from the outside (this is nearly always the case in British Boarding Schools) for reasons of personal safety. We are only able to look after important documents (passports, money etc) in the school safe.
What happens on departure?
On the morning of departure the students will be given breakfast and then escorted to the airport, where they're checked in by our staff and looked after until they go to the departure lounge. If the student is travelling as an 'Unaccompanied Minor' they will be handed over to a representative of the airline. Parents collecting their children directly from Headington Oxford Summer School are asked to arrive at the school between 09.00 and 11.00 on the morning of the departure day.