- March 21, 2011
A rich history and a stunning setting on the South Downs aren’t the only attractions of a school like Lancing College – it also offers a bright future for all its pupils, be it in acedemia, the arts, music or sports
Lancing College offers an outstanding, wide-ranging, contemporary education. It is a co-educational boarding and day school, with a great historic past, in an incomparable setting on the South Downs.On 21 March, Lancing celebrates the bicentenary of its founder, the Revd Nathaniel Woodard, who recognised the importance of excellent education for all sectors of society. He began to realise this vision when he purchased 500 acres of land and started to build Lancing College, and the foundations of its famous Chapel in 1868. This was the first of the Woodard Schools, which reflect his aim “to provide a good and complete education… of sound principle and sound knowledge, firmly grounded in the Christian faith”. Lancing College is one of the UK’s leading independent schools. Ofsted’s two latest boarding reports have rated it as ‘Outstanding’.
Their January 2011 report states “The overall quality rating is outstanding…The school ethos fully embraces boarding, which is seen
as a vital and vibrant element of the school… Boarders felt living at the school was ‘brilliant… like living in one big happy family’”. As the school makes no distinction between boarders and day pupils, other than in accommodation needs, this positive report applies to all students.
The academic results are consistently good: students achieve excellent examination results and a high level of entry to their first choice universities. For the past seven years, Lancing’s percentage of A-B grades at A Level has been above 80 per cent. But a Lancing education is about much more than academic achievement. Pupils enjoy an exciting range of opportunities beyond the national curriculum and are encouraged to embrace new interests, in the spirit of self discovery.The standard of music at Lancing is very high, with 20 to 30 music scholars in the school at any time. Ella Taylor, aged 16, an A Level student, is currently BBC Radio 2’s young female chorister of the year. She is a dedicated member of the Lancing College Chapel Choir, which sings in services in the Chapel every week, and tours to major churches and cathedrals including Westminster Abbey and St George’s Chapel, Windsor.
One of the youngest music scholars at Lancing, William Rowland, recently won the Choir Schools’ Composition Prize for his anthem Give Me, Lord, A Full Faith. His prize was a performance of his piece by the world-famous Choir of Westminster Abbey, and it was recently performed again, by Lancing College Choir, in the Chapel.While tuition provided by the music school creates an environment in which students of exceptional ability aim for the highest standards, all pupils are encouraged to make music. There are opportunities across every discipline: classical instrumental, jazz, swing, rock, contemporary music and composition. On Friday 6 May, musicians from Lancing College will perform with Chris Barber and the Big Chris Barber Band at Worthing Pavilion in a Celebration of Light Music. The performing arts are enhanced by a flourishing drama department and recent productions have included My Fair Lady, Amadeus and Blood Wedding.
Lancing’s art department, which stages public exhibitions, has an impressive record of producing students who become designers, photographers, architects, art historians and painters. The new art school is an energy efficient, contemporary building, with excellent facilities for painting, drawing, photography, pottery, sculpture, print-making and set design. The finest work produced by current A Level and GCSE students is on exhibition at the DMH Stallard headquarters in Crawley until 18 March.
Lancing has a very successful sports department. The cross country team won all their races last term, beating competitors from many other leading schools. In football, Elliott Taylor was recently selected for the Sussex county U16 Team. His brother, Joe, has made the county team at U15 level, and has started a trial with Portsmouth FC. Pupils of all abilities are encouraged to participate in a wide range of sporting activities from football to fencing, ballet to badminton.
Students are also given opportunities to work on the college farm and to participate in the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme and CCF.
Parents and prospective pupils can book private visits to the school.