Downside School is one of England's oldest and most distinguished Catholic independent boarding schools. It became co-educational in 2005 and educates pupils from 11-18.
Downside School was founded in 1606 and in 2014 will celebrate the Bicentenary of being in its current location. Situated in Somerset Downside is close to the historic City of Bath, which pupils can visit at the weekends. In Summer 2014 Downside will welcome a new Head Master, the first Lay Head of this Benedictine school. Dr James Whitehead, currently Deputy Head at Worth, will be taking Downside in to a new era but keeping very much to the Benedictine ethos. In January 2013 Downside's ISI report was published and showed a real appreciation of Downside's special character as a Catholic and Benedictine School. All pupils participate in competitive sports with numerous successes at County, Regional and National level. There are many extra curricular activities on offer including a strong CCF, drama and music. The pursuit of academic excellence is tempered by the aim to instil a love of learning for its own sake in all pupils. Academic societies, Oxbridge classes and study trips encourage all pupils at every level.