We are passionate about widening access to St John's and creating life-changing opportunities for young people. We want to open doors and unlock potential so that as many promising young people as possible, regardless of their background or ability to pay fees, are able to benefit from everything that a St John’s education offers. With that goal in mind, our current focus is on raising funds to extend our bursary provision and to enable us to widen access still further for children from low-income families, including the children of clergy with limited means through our Foundationers places.
St John's was founded to provide a free education to some of the poorest members of society and ever since, with help from our donors, we have continued to provide this support. It is central to our ethos and an important part of what we do. A St John’s education, our excellent teaching and state-of-the-art facilities open doors and create possibilities for young people. We encourage our pupils to be active and engaged citizens, leaders of tomorrow. Enabling children from different backgrounds to come to St John's can really make an impact. It enriches our school, creating a diverse and inspiring pupil community.
Today, nearly one in ten pupils at St John's receives some kind of help with fees. Over the next few years we will be significantly increasing the amount of money the School allocates to providing this support. At St John’s this is a team effort – we do not have major endowed funds to draw upon so we need the support of the St John’s community to enable us to raise the funds that will make a transformational difference to the lives of boys and girls today and in the future.
In 2017-18, thanks to the generosity from donors, we were able to support 18 Foundationers and six fully funded Awards for non-clergy children. But we are always approached by more pupils than those we are able to help and we want to be able to provide more.
"I came to St John’s in the Fourth Form as a result of a Foundationer place. I am so grateful for all the opportunities I have had, it has been truly amazing. Whilst I worked hard to get a really good set of exam results, I have also done all sorts of other things I thought I would never have a chance to do... I wouldn’t be where I am today without the generosity of St John’s – doors have been opened and the impossible has become the possible.” Edmund Bishop, a Foundationer who left the School recently.
In addition to the funding of bursary places, we have a hardship bursary fund which exists to support current a pupil if their family becomes unable to continue to pay fees owing to serious illness or dealing with death within the family. It is of great importance that a school with the sense of community and belonging we enjoy at St John’s, is able to support families in genuine times of need, to ensure that a child does not have to leave St John's in the middle of studying for important exams because of unforeseen circumstances.