Guide to Independent Schools

School details


Albyn School, 17/23 Queens Road, Aberdeen AB15 4PB

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T:  01224 322408

Co-ed, 1-18 , Day
Pupils: 676. Upper sixth 31
Fees: £1424-£3740 per term
Affiliation: GSA, ASCL


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School details


What it's like

Founded in 1867, it was privately owned until 1949 when it passed to the charitable trust and company which now control it. It comprises four large, handsome, granite houses in the residential west end of Aberdeen which lie in pleasant grounds. There is a purpose-built games facility on the edge of the city. It combines nursery and preparatory departmentsand has recently opened a new primary school. There have been substantial additions to the main buildings recently, including new laboratories, computer facilities and a business education centre. The school is well equipped. Founded as a girls' s school, it is in the process of becoming co-educational: it accepted boys throughout the lower school in 2005 and expects boys to be represented throughout the school within five years. Academic standards are high and examination results are very good. There is good provision for music and art. A range of individual sports and team games is available and good standards are achieved; several representatives at national and district level and many medals won. Clubs and activities are well catered for and the school participates in the Duke of Edinburgh's Award Scheme.

Pupils & entrance

Pupils: Total age range 3 months-18 years; 676 day pupils. Senior department 12-18, 258 girls. Boys currently in the school to age 12. Entrance: Main entry ages 12 and 16; entry to primary school at any age. Own entrance exam, interview and reports used; for sixth-form entry, usually grade 1-3 in S-grades in subjects taking on to Higher. No special skills or religious requirements.

Scholarships & bursaries

6 pa (academic, music, art, PE) scholarships at 12, value 20% of fees. Parents expected to buy textbooks; other extras variable.

Head & staff

Headmaster: Dr Ian Long, in post since 2008. Educated at Kingís College School, Wimbledon and Kingís College, London. Previously Deputy Head at City of London Freemenís School. Teaching staff: 34 full time, 9 part time. Annual turnover 2-4%.

Exam results

S-grade: On average, 34 in Fourth, all passing (with grade 1-3) in 5-8 subjects. Highers: 34 in Fifth. 97% gained A-C. Advanced highers: 27 in Sixth, 100% passed.

Pupils' destinations

94% of sixth form leavers go on to a degree course. 30% take courses in science, 48% in humanities, social sciences and law, 11% in business studies, 11% in other subjects.


S-grade, Intermediate 1 + 2, Highers and Advanced Highers. Special provision: Some special arrangements for dyslexic pupils. Languages: French (taught from age 8) and German offered from age 11 to S-grade, Higher and Advanced Higher, Spanish in Sixth. Often European pupils whose parents are working in Aberdeen. ICT: Taught both as a discrete subject and across the curriculum. 25 computers for pupil use (12 hours a day), all networked and with email and internet access. Pupils take the ECDL in the sixth year.

The arts

Music: Instrumental exams can be taken. Musical groups including orchestra, choir, wind band, recorder groups. Drama: Majority of pupils are involved in school productions. Pupils frequently participate in productions coming to Aberdeen. Art and design: On average, 16 take S-grade, 9 Higher, 1 Advanced higher.

Sports & activities

Sport: Gymnastics, dance, swimming, hockey, basketball, netball, tennis, athletics, volleyball, badminton, fitness compulsory at certain ages. Optional: aerobics, trampolining and dance. S-grade exams may be taken. National representatives at swimming, rowing, athletics, equestrianism; district representatives in hockey, swimming, netball. Recent national championship medals in swimming, athletics, equestrianism, rowing. Activities: Pupils take bronze, silver and gold Duke of Edinburgh's Award. Community service optional. Clubs include debating, musical, photography, chess, Young Enterprise, Scripture Union and sports.

School life

Uniform: School uniform worn throughout. Houses and prefects: Competitive houses (clans). Prefects, head girl, deputy head girl, clan leaders and sisters - elected by the pupils and staff. School Council. Social: Debates with other schools, locally and nationally. Some organised trips in UK and abroad. Meals self-service.


Pupils failing to produce homework might expect a reminder or warning and parents informed plus detention; any pupil caught in possession of illegal drugs should expect exclusion.

Association of former pupils

is run by Mrs Trish Holdsworth, c/o the school.