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Boarding and House Life

Boarding and House Life

A 'home away from home' is what Sixth Form boarding students need to achieve their best and at Clayesmore that is what we deliver.

Our three boys' Houses and two girls' Houses are warm, 'family' environments where our boarders can socialise, work and have fun while being supported by experienced Houseparents, a strong pastoral team and academic staff who can help weather the storms of 'growing up' and support successful study. This pastoral care is further underpinned by exemplary medical care delivered by qualified nurses should boarders fall ill or require medical support.

Boarding at Clayesmore is about forging strong friendships, taking responsibility, accepting challenges and becoming independent. We want our boarders to leave the school with a good set of values and the foundations of confidence that will last a lifetime.
On Saturdays, boarders and day pupils participate in LEX and form part of sporting and games teams in the afternoon. Sundays offer a wide range of trips and experiences too - but there is plenty of time to also unwind, rest and prepare for the week ahead in cosy dorms and common rooms. Exeats ( non-school weekends) also provide the opportunity for our international and overseas boarders to go on weekend trips with the school which are planned ahead and may include destinations such as London, Edinburgh or Paris.

Socialising within Houses and between Houses is important and many formal and informal events and dinners are planned for boarders throughout the year.

In Sixth Form, our boarders really start to develop a sense of independence and personal responsibility which sets them in good stead for life away from home, at university or in work.

Belonging to a House

All Clayesmore pupils, whether day or boarding, form part of each House community which ensures their friendships in the school are broad and diverse. Sixth Form students enjoy having responsibility for, and mentoring, younger pupils and all our students learn to treat others with compassion, kindness and respect in their 'home' at school. 

Sixth Form day students use the House common rooms where they can relax and socialise with their friends and have a personal locker space to use during the day.

Gate House - Boys

Gate House is conveniently located in the heart of the school campus, within easy reach of the teaching rooms, sports pitches and the sports centres. It is a super house with wide corridors, large common rooms and a fabulous courtyard which the boys can use. Mr Pender, is the Housemaster and lives in the building with his family.

There are beds for 48 boarders and there are a similar number of day pupils attached to the House.

Boarders have access to two large common rooms and have use of the table tennis tables, pizza oven and outside tables in the courtyard. 

  Mr Ben Pender, Gate Housemaster

From the Head of House

I’m honored to represent Gate as Head of House, as I believe that it is the best and most friendly house in the school! Gate is the best because we have the most academic, sporty, and musical boys in the school: winning the house cup, house music, and virtually every house sports competition we have played in so far. These are only a few of the achievements which come to mind when I think about Gate. 

Gate house is a unique, exciting house which is great to be a part of! A day in the life of a gate boarder consists of waking us up at 7:15am… and, for the lazy among us… again at 7:30am! Once we are showered and looking our best, we drift over to breakfast and then school generally starts by 8:30am. The morning is not always easy, particularly during the dark, cold winter months and we often need a ‘pick me up’ by mid morning. If we are lucky enough, the house staff fry up tons of bacon in our courtyard at break time - usually enough to feed the whole house twice! This lifts the atmosphere significantly within the house, which helps us get to the end of the week! Perhaps the biggest highlight of the year is our December Hog Roast. Last year, we took down a whole pig in one sitting and we don’t intend on anything less this year!

What I also love about it is the friendly atmosphere which comes with being part of the Gate community. Since the first day of Year 9, everyone, especially all the House staff, have been so easy to talk to, making me feel at home from day one.

This is why I love Gate and why I’m so proud to be Head of House.

Josh P.

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Clayesmore School, Iwerne Minster, Blandford, Dorset. DT11 8LL.

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