Scholarships & Bursaries : Durham School: independent day and boarding school in the North East of England for boys and girls
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Scholarships & Bursaries

Scholarships are awarded to candidates who show outstanding talent, based on ability and potential.

Scholarships and Bursaries

The Governing Body of Durham School is committed to widening access to the benefits of a Durham School education through the provision of financial assistance with fees. This assistance comes in the form of scholarships and or bursaries outlined below.

Academic Scholarships:

Headmaster’s Scholarship

Each year we award a Headmaster’s Scholarship, worth 100% of school fees, to one outstanding boy or girl on entry at 11+. The award is based on talent across a number of areas, including academic ability, and is a recognition of the importance the school places on an all-round contribution. The award is assessed in the same way as a King's Scholarship, plus an interview with the Headmaster.

King's Scholarships

These academic awards are available for candidates at 11+ and 13+ entering Year 7 and 9. At 11+ scholarships are awarded on the basis of performance in the entrance assessments plus an interview with the Headmaster. At 13+ there is a separate scholarship examination in English and mathematics, followed by an interview. This is offered to candidates who perform well in the 13+ entrance assessments. These scholarships are available for the entirety of a pupil’s education and are worth up to 50% of the day fee, subject to appropriate means testing.

Burkitt Scholarships

A number of Burkitt Scholarships are awarded to candidates at 16+ entering Year 12. Candidates must sit tests in English, mathematics and critical thinking and attend an interview. Burkitt awards are not a fixed amount but are funded by the Burkitt Trust and can range from £1000 up to 100% of fees subject to means testing. Burkitt scholars are also eligible for support worth up to £1000 per annum if successful in gaining entry to either Oxford or Cambridge Universities.

Peter Lee Scholarships

This scholarship, funded by a bequest from Peter Lee OD, are ONLY available for academically and musically elite pupils of Chinese ancestry. Up to 100% funding is available for the top performing candidate. Bursary awards, up to the value of 30% reduction in fees, may also be offered to top performing candidates achieving outstanding results in the examination. A GCSE tariff of 6 A* and A grades is set as a condition of the award. Candidates NOT following this curriculum must be able to offer an equivalent qualification(s). Elite musical talent must be demonstrated with a minimum of Grade 7 on their principal instrument with preferably a Merit or Distinction level. Ability on a second instrument is desirable but not essential. 

Other Scholarships & Awards:

In addition to Academic Scholarships we also offer a limited number of awards at 11+, 13+ and 16+ in a range of other disciplines:


•Design Technology




All these prestigious awards provide financial assistance up to 50% of the fees, subject to means testing. In addition, Music Scholarships offer free music tuition on two instruments (voice included). Pupils in receipt of Art, Design Technology, Drama and Music awards are expected to continue their studies in those disciplines to GCSE, and in sport to play an active role in the school’s games programmes and fixture list. Those not continuing study to A Level must continue to offer a role in the life of the school in that discipline. Each discipline will have a set of expectations that each scholar is required to fulfil which will form part of the annual review process. Where a candidate has been successful in gaining more than one award, second and subsequent awards are honorary and do not generate any discount againt fees.

Further financial assistance

If required, financial assistance in the form of a Governors' Bursary may be available at any point in your child's school career, including on admission. This is discretionary and is granted only after the assessement of parents' financial circumstances. Any financial assistance granted is reviewed on a regular basis and subject to satisfactory performance and conduct on the part of the pupil. A Confidential Financial Circumstances Form can be obtained from the Finance Office at the Senior School.

For admissions and scholarship information please contact our Admissions Office on 0191 731 9270 or 

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