Promoted by Gordonstoun School

Gordonstoun: A broader curriculum that broadens minds

At Gordonstoun, there is no shortage of experiences that broaden minds. Here, you’ll find pupils volunteering for one of the school’s nine community and rescue services. They respond to emergencies as supervised members of the Coastguard. They let their imaginations run free on canvases. They fend for themselves while camping in the woodlands.

The best part? They enjoy these mentally, physically, and emotionally stimulating activities from the comfort of a place they are proud to call their “second home” — on the beautiful Moray Coast in the North of Scotland, where Gordonstoun is located.

Here, heads, hands, and hearts are connected to ensure when young learners graduate, they aren’t just ready to soar academically, but personally as well. This is the driving force behind Gordonstoun’s efforts to help every child achieve their full potential.

It is also why three generations of the British royal family have walked its halls as students; why it has been described as “Outstanding” and “Sector leading” by HM Inspectors in 2019; and why over 500 students love every day here.

Yet there is a lot to look forward to as a Gordonstoun graduate. Many go on to some of the best universities in the world, the likes of Oxford, Cambridge, Central Saint Martins, MIT, and the Northern School of Music.

These are the outcomes a Gordonstoun education guarantees. Its signature approach to education ensures students develop qualities of compassion, honesty, initiative, a thirst for adventure, and an enduring urge to transform their own lives by bettering those of others.

In fact, every senior student assists in one of the school’s nine community and rescue services. Giving back the Gordonstoun way even takes pupils as far as Kenya, Romania, and Thailand, where students have helped communities while embracing new cultures.

“By the time I worked out what I wanted to do in the field of humanitarian aid and development, the whole ‘community service’ ethos of Gordonstoun started to seem very relevant,” enthuses graduate Matthew Hollingworth, who now serves as the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) Country Director in Sudan. “I couldn’t do the job I do now without relishing a challenge and enjoying working in and relying on close-knit teams.”

The Gordonstoun motto is “Plus Est En Vous – There Is More In You.” It is as relevant today as it was when Kurt Hahn, founder of Gordonstoun, created it. Almost a century after its founding, the school maintains its horizon-broadening approach beyond just academic potential.

With a ratio of just seven students per teacher, pupils follow the English GCSE and A Level curricula. Their goal is to reach the pinnacle of their academic potential.

When students are ready to put their textbooks aside, their bodies go to work. Life outside the classroom is a never-ending adventure here.

On its beautiful and safe 200-acre woodland campus in the heart of the Moray countryside, facilities are numerous. These include a state-of-the-art Sports Centre and a Performing Arts department, home to a studio theatre, drama rehearsal spaces and dance studios. On its doorstep lies the Scottish landscape in all its majesty.

It’s the perfect setting to gain life skills through exploration and collaboration. Imagine kayaking, mountain biking, orienteering or skiing here. Or picture an 80-foot yacht sailing from Scotland to Spitsbergen — crewed by a group of flushed faces that are both engaged and in charge.

“Our founder described the sea as his best schoolmaster and today we continue to see the benefits that students accrue from living and working together in challenging ocean conditions,” Principal Lisa Kerr shares.

All of this is part of Gordonstoun’s uniquely broad curriculum. “We want young people to discover who they are, to be comfortable with who they are, and eventually to go beyond who they are.” With Gordonstoun, you’ll go far.

Follow Gordonstoun on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube