Discover Cokethorpe

A co-educational through school on a single, stunning parkland estate that provides a liberal education with exceptional breadth and an individual focus.

Exceptional Breadth | Individual Focus

An independent, co-educational day school, encompassing the Prep and Senior Schools on a single site, set in 150 acres of glorious West Oxfordshire parkland, nestled on the edge of the Cotswolds’ renowned serenity and a stone’s throw from metropolitan Oxford.

What you will discover when you visit Cokethorpe is more than a stunning vista. It goes deeper than the mix of traditional and modern buildings that make up the physical fabric of the School, it is in the energy and dynamism of our teachers and the grounded innovations of our academic approach. It is evident in the spirit and welcome of our pupils whose warmth, strengths and confidence are exemplar of the School’s ethos and intents.

We expect a lot from our pupils, but we support them to achieve those levels and inspire them to reach beyond. They are provided with an exceptional breadth of opportunity, whether in the array of subjects or academic enrichment activities, or the wealth of AOB (our Clubs, Societies and Activities programme) options they can benefit from, challenge themselves through, and find enjoyment in.

They are supported across this breadth with a truly individual focus. Small class sizes allow for a tailored educational experience to best support each pupil’s learning. This is reinforced and furthered by the strong tutoring system, which provides academic and pastoral support to pupils each day.

We embrace the diversity of children’s talents, ideas and experiences, and our ethos demonstrates this by focusing on providing the right environment for them all to excel. This is reflected in our strategic development actions and intents: promoting academic excellence; providing a nurturing environment; delivering opportunity to every pupil; extending the impact of our outreach; creating a community for life; preparing pupils for the future as global citizens. Read our Strategy 2021-2026 and Strategy Update 2022 documents for further details.

A welcome from our:

Head of Prep School

Nicky Black - Head of Cokethorpe Prep School - A co-educational through school

Mrs Nicky Black

Head of Sixth Form

Edward Tolputt - Cokethorpe Staff Profile - An Independent Day School

Mr Ed Tolputt

Leadership and Liberal Education

The Leadership Programme and Liberal Education are fundamental to the School’s values and ethos. A liberal education allows children the freedom to explore, to contemplate and to respond. In the Prep School, the Creative Curriculum mirrors this approach, bedding in those learning practices. In keeping with the School’s Leadership Programme, Cokethorpe values integrity, courage, empathy, judgement, ambition and responsibility, allowing children to live productive and fulfilling lives in a dramatically changing world.

Discover more about Leadership and Liberal Education at Cokethorpe below.


Leadership is about much more than holding positions of responsibility, whether as a Prefect, Sports Captain, CEO or Prime Minister. To be successful, a leader must hold the traits and characteristics that inspire others to follow.

At Cokethorpe, we believe in developing these characteristics in our pupils. This will enable them to more readily succeed in all facets of life after school. By embodying these characteristics, they will possess the attributes of great leadership. We identify these as:

Integrity Doing what you know to be the right thing
Courage Sometimes choosing the difficult option
Empathy Understanding that others’ views might be different from your own
Judgement Knowing when, and when not to act
Ambition Challenging yourself to be better
Responsibility Being relied upon to do the right thing

Qualities of leadership are intrinsic to Cokethorpe’s approach and are evident throughout the School. In the Prep School, they take the form of the Cokethorpe Characters, a means by which our youngest pupils are introduced to morals, ethics and broader approaches to learning, that will become the framework on which the Senior School’s Leadership Programme is pinned.

There is no better indication of the integration of leadership into our approach than the Senior School’s merit system of ‘Recommendations’ being awarded on the basis of the Leadership characteristics, as they are on the Cokethorpe Characters in the Prep. And in Sixth Form, the Leadership Grants programme sits alongside but distinct to the Scholars Programme, and is awarded to those students who demonstrate leadership through their contributions to all aspects of School life.

Liberal Education

Education, and especially ‘liberal education’, is what makes civil society possible. A liberal education is one that includes literature, history, and appreciation of the arts, and gives them equal weight with scientific and practical subjects. Education in these pursuits opens the possibility for us to live more reflectively and knowledgably, especially about the range of human experience and feeling, as it exists now and in the past.

That, in turn, makes us better understand the interests, needs and desires of others, so that we can treat them with respect and sympathy, however different the choices they make or the experiences that have shaped their lives; this educational model informs the School’s values.

When can my child start?

Use our Admissions Process Calculator to discover the processes and entry requirements for your child to join Cokethorpe.

Two Schools. One stunning Oxfordshire estate

As a through school, Prep and Senior, Cokethorpe is in rarefied company. Couple that with the Prep and Senior Schools being on a single site, and in a rural, day school setting, and Cokethorpe is almost unique.

The Prep School was opened as the ‘Junior Department’ in 1994, with the Reception Class being added in 2007. Since then, the Prep School has flourished and is now home to about 130 pupils.

The youngest years in the Prep School, Reception and Year 1, have a new, dedicated and tailored space, helping them to adapt to the pace of school life. Years 2 to 6 are located across the Lower Quad, occupying the sumptuous Queen Anne Mansion House.

The Senior School classrooms are based around the purpose-built Middle and Upper Quads, with approximately 500 pupils across our First Form to Upper Sixth.

The Prep School benefits from access to many of the Senior School’s facilities, however, the dedicated Sixth Form Centre was completed in 2009. This allows our Sixth Form students space to focus on their studies, to discuss, hold events and to socialise.

All of our pupils, from Reception to Upper Sixth benefit from the School’s glorious setting and the exceptional breadth of opportunities it allows the School to provide.

Welcome from the Head of Prep School

I am passionate that children should enjoy childhood and I truly believe that high academic standards and deeper understanding across all subjects are best met through creative learning, memorable experiences and a little bit of freedom to explore. To this end, Prep School teachers value our small class sizes in which they can get to know children well and apply a bespoke approach to each child’s learning. By ensuring we build strong relationships for the best possible pastoral care, we are able to pitch our teaching to give each child the academic challenge that is just right for them.

Prep School education is about so much more than the taught curriculum, whether in a Maths lesson, on the sports field, in the woods, or on the stage. Outdoor education is important to us, and Cokethorpe affords wonderful opportunities for children to learn and play in an ideal environment.

I chose Cokethorpe for my own children because of its excellent balance of pastoral care and academic aims. It is a welcoming place, where kindness, care and respect for one another are held in high regard. I offer you a warm invitation to come and visit to experience this for yourself.




Mrs Nicky Black
Head of Prep School

Sixth Form Life

The culmination of a child’s time at Cokethorpe, and the business end of their education, Sixth Form is a time for applying knowledge and skills accumulated to the rigours of examination. It is also a moment to embrace responsibility, opportunity, and challenge, and make the most of them all.

Making Sixth Form Count

The Sixth Form at Cokethorpe serves as a springboard to life beyond School, whether it be college, university, or the workplace. We support students to become independent-minded, purposeful, and, above all, happy young adults, equipped with the skills, intellect, and attitude to thrive.

We encourage students in the Sixth Form:

  • To be curious. To be inspired to ask meaningful questions, and not to be limited by the scope of the textbook or the exam board’s specification.
  • To be organised. To make best use of every hour in the working day to successfully navigate academic study, sporting and cultural commitments, and the university/college application process. To appreciate the importance of a to-do list.
  • To be ambitious. Not to aim high, but to plan high. Not to wait to find out if something is achievable, but to make it achievable.
  • To be creative. To find time in the day to pursue hobbies and passions. To remain grounded and mindful.
  • To be hard working. To be motivated by the positives, and to learn to enjoy working hard and making progress.
  • To be thoughtful. To look after and support each other. To take responsibility for making the School a better place for all, and to lead by example. To remember there is a world beyond Cokethorpe.
Academic Life

Academic life in the Sixth Form is different from lower down the School. Students are taught in smaller groups, study fewer subjects, and are expected to spend a larger proportion of the day studying independently – every hour spent in class should be matched by an hour of out-of-class study (working on class assignments, consolidating content and reading beyond the syllabus). When not in lessons, students study in the Sixth Form Centre (which serves as an academic, administrative and social hub). Academic study is supported by an ongoing programme of Learning Character Education, and a ‘Pre A’ course in the first term of the Lower Sixth.

Through the AOB Programme, the Extended Project, the Enlightenment Lecture Series (read about the Series here), the Lower Sixth Electives course, and a peppering of one-off super-curricular opportunities, Sixth Form students are inspired to think beyond their subjects, and to see the bigger picture; to understand the context of and connections between all that they learn in lessons, and to develop life-long interests and passions. And, of course, they are encouraged to take full advantage of the School’s co-curricular offering – sport, music, drama, outdoor pursuits, and so much more.

The Sixth Form is a sociable, kind, and supportive community, which gives students the freedom to discover who they are, and to follow their own discrete path. We encourage students to be ambitious, both academically and beyond, and, as importantly, give students the necessary support and nurture to achieve those ambitions. We celebrate students who work hard, who are mindful of others, and who make the most of all that Cokethorpe has to offer.

Please get in touch if you would like to know more, or if you would like to visit the Sixth Form Centre and meet some of the students.

Mr Ed Tolputt
Head of Sixth Form

Where next?

Digital Learning

At Cokethorpe, we are proud of the way we embrace modern technology, utilising it to support and augment teaching and learning, both in the classroom and beyond.

Cokethorpe publications and films-where next-02 - An independent day school
Publications and Films

Discover Cokethorpe through the medium of film or read from among the colourful and varied array of publications produced throughout the School year, including those produced by our pupils.

Pastoral at Cokethorpe
Pastoral Life

The pastoral provision at Cokethorpe is one of the great strengths of the School and has directly evolved from its ethos of being community and family focused.

Book your tour today

Come and visit Cokethorpe, whether for an Open Morning or a personal Tour, and Discover Your Cokethorpe.