Independent schools: A-E

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• View the full fees table for independent schools in Scotland here (opens as a PDF)

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• View the full school-by-school results table for Higher Grade and A Level here (opens as a PDF)

Aberdeen Waldorf School

Craigton Road, Cults, Aberdeen AB15 9QD

Tel: 01224 868366



Type: Steiner Waldorf, independent (ages 3-16)

Boarding: No

Roll: 112

Uniform: Dress code, no uniform

Average class size: 14

Fees (per annum): 4,790-7,180

Bursaries: We attempt to accommodate families whatever their income. Reductions can be applied for based on parents' financial situation.

Main extra-curricular activities: Art, crafts, games, eurythmy, drama and music are an integral part of the Waldorf curriculum. All classes have their own trips and outings involving various activities such as sailing, climbing, horse riding and learning survival skills – as appropriate for age of children taking part. Pupils also go on trips linked to the Waldorf Curriculum, visiting places of interest in the world of work or culture.

What qualities do you try to instil in pupils to take beyond school?

"Our highest endeavour must be to develop free human beings, who are able of themselves to impart purpose and direction to their lives." Rudolf Steiner's words set a worthy goal.

What do you hope to achieve in 2008?

We have been enjoying a year of celebrations to mark Aberdeen Waldorf School's 30th birthday. Events included an exhibition in the Cowdray Hall, bringing a picture of the rich and varied life of our school to the heart of Aberdeen city. We also held an end-of-term festival celebrating a diverse range of work and play involving all our classes, from music, dance and poetry to an Abba tribute band, skipping games and delicious cakes, baked by Class 7 pupils, and enjoyed by all our guests and participants.

Famous past pupils: We are looking to set up an alumni association in the near future.

Albyn School

17-23 Queen's Road, Aberdeen AB15 4PB

Tel: 01224 322408



Type: Co-educational

Boarding: No

Roll: 644

Uniform: Yes – green blazer, kilt (girls), trousers (boys, but kilt optional).

Average class size: 12

Fees (per annum): Primary – 5,200 Secondary – 8,550

Bursaries: Scholarships are offered for senior school (academic, music, art, PE); means-tested bursaries are also offered for entry to the senior school.

Main extra-curricular activities: Sport (hockey, football, rugby, swimming, athletics, tennis and more), music (3 orchestras, 3 choirs, chamber ensembles), drama, Duke of Edinburgh, enterprise, literary and debating societies.

Community links: We spend considerable developing a sense of responsibility to the community at all levels, and have two annual prizes for pupils who demonstrate the highest level of community service. We have a charities committee, with reps from each class who coordinate fundraising each year. Every class has to organise at least one charity project per year and we have at least two whole school charity events a year. In 2006-2007, the school raised 25,000 for a number of local, national and international charities. At whole school/staff level, there are other links. Each year, several staff are involved as SQA examination markers and each year we help universities train a number of student teachers. We have set up a mutually supportive link with a local authority school in relation to our respective emergency recovery and business continuity plans. Pupils are encouraged to help in community-based organisations in their own time. In addition the head gives S6 pupils the opportunity during the school day to be involved in community service. For example: groups help with Riding for the Disabled, on a weekly basis in the local Red Cross offices, or as class assistants at a local school for children with special needs. The Parents' Association is also part of this ethos and donates a proportion of the money raised to charity each year: in 2007, 2000 went to Voluntary Services Aberdeen.

What qualities do you try to instil in pupils to take beyond school?

The world our current pupils will be retiring from will be very different from what it is now. We therefore try to instil consistent values and transferable skills. In a nutshell: rigour without roughness, excellence without elitism and flexibility without feebleness. Albyn pupils should be able to leave school armed with a disciplined mind that is able to acquire knowledge in all forms and a synthesising mind able to analyse and prioritise the vast amount of information and knowledge available to us. In addition, they should be creative to foster innovation and a spirit of enterprise and have a highly-developed sense of respect towards others in their local, national and global communities and the willingness to 'get involved'. Finally, and by no means least, they should have a well-tuned ethical mind that has reflected on those core values that will enable them to withstand the storms and temptations of later life. In the words of George Fox, the founder of the Quakers we urge them to: "Let your Lives Speak!"

What do you hope to achieve in 2008?

We are in the middle of a process of moving towards full co-education. Now the primary school is fully co-ed, boys will enter S1 for the first time in August 2008. They will remain the oldest co-ed year group as they move through the secondary school until we are fully co-ed in 2013. In 2008 our challenge is to ensure the curriculum, range of extra-curricular activities, accommodation and guidance support will enable the transition in August to be seamless and complete. We will also plan the next stage in the development of the physical environment in terms of classroom areas and sports facilities. Finally, we hope to have happy, fulfilled pupils who enjoy being at school.

Famous past pupils: Prof Hilda Brown MA DLitt (professor of German at the University of Oxford and Vice-Principal of St Hilda's College, Oxford); Audrey Margaret Geddes (first woman to be admitted as a member of the Stock Exchange in 1973); Prof Tessa Holyoake (Professor of Experimental Haematology, Glasgow University; Scotland's leading pioneer in stem cell research in chronic myeloid leukaemia patients, and to be Director of the new Leukaemia Research Centre at Glasgow's Gartnavel Hospital); Fiona Kennedy (singer/broadcaster); Prof Rona MacKie, Professor of Dermatology at University of Glasgow. Awarded CBE in 1998 for services to Dermatology and Melanoma Research. She is currently a senior research fellow in Glasgow University working only on melanoma); Perpetua Pope, landscape artist.

Beaconhurst School

52 Kenilworth Road, Bridge of Allan, Stirling, FK9 4RR

Tel: 01786 832146



Type: Co-educational

Boarding: No

Roll: 404

Uniform: Yes – dark grey and navy.

Average class size: 17

Fees (per annum): Nursery – 2,700 J6-S6 – 8,235

Bursaries: Yes – means tested and scholarships for academic, the arts and sporting achievements.

Main extra-curricular activities: Choirs, junior and senior orchestra, jazz group, art club, science club, computer club, craft club, model club, drama club, ballet, country dancing, bookshop, ultimate frisbee, judo, squash, junior workout, senior fitness, skiing, table tennis, fencing, Scouts/Brownies, boxercise, golf, tennis, canoeing and main team sports – hockey, football and athletics.

Community links: Bridge of Allan Community Council, Bridge of Allan war memorial renovation project, various local and national charities, use of school facilities for local sporting groups, use of school's facilities for local brownies and scout troupes, Young Enterprise.

What qualities do you try to instil in pupils to take beyond school?

We are interested in the development of the whole child and so look at social and emotional skills as well as academic achievement. To this extent, we hope that our pupils leave Beaconhurst with self-confidence, the ability to think independently, a regard for others and a flexibility of intellect and approach that will allow them to continue the process of lifelong learning.

What do you hope to achieve in 2008?

Following an extremely positive inspection by HMIe, 2008 will continue to consolidate the school's position as a first class provider of all-through education. This will involve continuing to review our curriculum and extra-curricular provision to provide further opportunities for pupils to enjoy a stimulating and challenging all-round school experience.

Famous past pupils: Author William Sutton; director of The Mighty Boosh Paul King; woman's slalom water-skiing world champion Nicole Arthur.

Belmont House School

Sandringham Avenue, Newton Mearns, Glasgow, G77 5DU

Tel: 0141 639 2922



Type: Independent co-educational day school from nursery through to Senior 6

Boarding: No

Roll: 360

Uniform: Yes, purple blazer.

Average class size: 15 in S3, eight in S4, six in S5-S6.

Fees (per annum): 4,518 – 8,556

Bursaries: Available from August 2008.

Main extra-curricular activities: Rugby, netball, cricket, athletics, tennis, volleyball, badminton, judo, choir, orchestra, drama and theatre studies, debating/public speaking, chess, Duke of Edinburgh Award, enterprise group, eco activity club, Fairtrade tuck shop, raggy doll club.

Community links: Extensive charity fundraising, eco-schools, nursery partnership with East Renfrewshire Council, Fairtrade activities, sporting links with other schools, open days for prospective parents and general public, 'rag bag' recycling initiative, guest speakers on a variety of topics.

What qualities do you try to instil in pupils to take beyond school?

Our School motto translates as 'Strong but Fair', a sound philosophy applicable at any point in a person's life. The motto also forms the basis for our school values, which are centred on respect, reliability, commitment and responsibility. We recognise that each pupil's school experience will help equip them for whatever they choose to do throughout the rest of their lives, so great emphasis is placed on building self-confidence and nurturing individual talents, whatever these may be, so pupils are not afraid to pursue their personal ambitions.

What do you hope to achieve in 2008?

In April, we are launching a new brand for the school, incorporating a new logo, and in May we are officially opening a new 1464-sq metre extension building housing four science laboratories, IT suites, a music and drama studio, gym hall and general classrooms, which replaces a former single-storey wooden structure. All rooms will contain state-of-the-art equipment, including flat-screen PCs and smartboards on the walls. To celebrate the opening, we are hosting a garden party-type event at the school on Saturday, 10 May with stalls, refreshments, entertainment and tours of the new building. On 31 May, we are also holding a celebration ball at the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, with four-course dinner, dancing to live music and a fundraising auction conducted by Andy Cameron, a former parent of the school. We will furthermore be announcing plans to build a new junior school on-site and launching a new bursary scheme in August.

Famous past pupils: Biffy Clyro (pop band); Sandy Carmichael (Scottish rugby player).

Clifton Hall School (incorporating St Serf's School)

Newbridge, Edinburgh, EH28 8LQ

Tel: 0131 333 1359



Type: All-through day school 3-18 from August 2008

Boarding: No

Roll: 235 from August 2008

Uniform: Yes

Average class size: 16

Fees (per annum): 7,875 (all inclusive)

Bursaries: 10-75 per cent based entirely on financial need.

Main extra-curricular activities: Swimming, judo, chess, drama, dance, ballet, football.

Community links: Our facilities are used by several local groups (football clubs, swimming clubs etc); charity raising by pupils goes to small, locally-based charities; link with Dalmahoy Parish Church; link with the police at South Queensferry; sports fixtures against local schools/clubs (eg cricket vs Livingston).

What qualities do you try to instil in pupils to take beyond school?

Confidence without arrogance, compassion for others, effective contributors to society.

What do you hope to achieve in 2008?

The successful move from primary/nursery to an all-through school of excellence.

Famous past pupils: F1 Motor Racing World Champion Jim Clark, impressionist and satirist Rory Bremner, chairman of SCIS and former judge in the European Courts Professor Sir David Edward.

Craigholme School

72 St Andrew's Drive, Pollokshields, Glasgow G41 4HS

Tel: 0141 427 0375



Type: All Girls' Independent Day School & Co-educational Nursery

Boarding: No

Roll: 514

Uniform: Red blazer with smart red, navy and yellow check kilt (senior).

Average class size: 15

Fees (per annum): Senior – 8,238

Bursaries: Limited number of means-tested bursaries to girls seeking entry at S1, although applications for other secondary stages may be considered. The children of parents applying for a means-tested bursary are expected to: demonstrate ability and potential in English and Mathematics tests; have an excellent all-round report from their previous school; and show commitment to the ethos of Craigholme.

Main extra-curricular activities: Sports include hockey, athletics, cross-country, tennis, badminton, volleyball, swimming, salsa dancing, indoor climbing, skiing, self-defence, judo and football. Excellent coaching has resulted in significant representation in district and national squads. As well as a Young Enterprise and Junior Enterprise Club, pupils have the opportunity to take bronze, silver and gold Duke of Edinburgh Awards. Community service is optional for one year at age 16-plus. Other popular clubs include country dancing, public speaking, engineering, chemistry, biology, mathematics, felt-making, junior philosophy, eco-group, wildlife and many more.

Community links: Pupils take part in a variety of community-related initiatives including Common Purpose and Your Turn programmes. Throughout the academic session, pupils undertake outreach work through performances, community service and their participation in the Duke of Edinburgh Award. In addition, the charities committee actively support and raise funds for a variety of short and long-term community projects.

What qualities do you try to instil in pupils to take beyond their school years?

We instil leadership, integrity and the instinct to achieve. Craigholme pupils are encouraged to be reflective lifelong learners who can contribute to society and are determined to succeed in all that they do.

What do you hope to achieve in 2008?

To continue to build an inclusive, child-centred school community that celebrates personal bests and aims to realise the potential of all our pupils. A forward-thinking school, rooted in the best of traditions, we will continue to build on our successes of 2008 to provide a well-resourced and inspirational learning environment based on positive relationships.

Famous past pupils: Kate Heavenor, TV presenter; Amanda Harvie, CEO Scottish Financial Enterprise; Annabelle Ewing, former MP; Amanda Scott, writer/novelist; Claire Grant, editor, Scottish Field.

Dollar Academy

Dollar, Clackmannanshire, FK14 7DU

Tel: 01259 742511



Type: HMC Independent Day and Boarding, 5 – 18

Boarding: 80 places

Roll: 1,238

Uniform: Blazer and kilt for junior and senior girls; blazer and dark trousers for junior and senior boys.

Average class size: Our staff-pupil ratio throughout the whole 5-18 school is 1:10.4. The average class size in Forms l to II is 21; in Forms II to IV it is 18; and the classes in Forms V and VI vary according to subject.

Fees (per annum): Day – 8,586 Boarding – 19,593

Bursaries: 100 per cent bursaries available – details on website. Additional support is available to assist with uniform costs, school meals and school activities.

Main extra-curricular activities: We call them co-curricular. The usual (music, pipe-band, rugby, hockey, debating, drama etc.); others such as ballroom dancing, fishing, Japanese, Greenpower Challenge (pupils are currently building an eco kit-car), musical production, rock-climbing and sub-aqua.

Community links: Our pupil-run charities committee works with local residents and organisations. Regular events include hosting coffee mornings for Dollar's senior citizens and a 13-mile whole-school sponsored walk; more than 100 pupils participate in the Duke of Edinburgh Award – community involvement as part of this involves pupils helping in organisations such as hospitals, nurseries and Riding for the Disabled. Also, 27 external organisations use the Dollar Academy buildings.

What qualities do you try to instil in pupils to take beyond their school years?

We hope to instil a spirit of independence, curiosity, good humour and self-belief. Classroom interactions are founded on these principles: relationships between staff and pupils are based on mutual respect. Dollar pupils should be comfortable in their skins.

What do you hope to achieve in 2008?

Planning permission for all of our intended new buildings.

Famous past pupils: George Reid, ex-Presiding Officer of the Scottish Parliament; Fraser Nelson, political editor of The Spectator, formerly of The Scotsman; Molly Izzard, adventurer and writer; John Barclay, Graeme Morrison, Rory Lawson, capped this season for Scotland's rugby team; Hamish Brown, mountaineer and writer; Neil Munro, Olympic skier; Alan Johnston, BBC Gaza correspondent; Lord Brodie, judge; Dr Andrew Cubie, chaired Scotland's independent inquiry into tuition fees in 2000; Caroline Flanagan, first female President of the Law Society of Scotland; Sir James Dewar, inventor of the vacuum flask; Alfred Gardyne de Chastelain, secret agent; Sara Mendes da Costa, voice of the Speaking Clock; George Henry Paulin, sculptor; Tom Kitchin, Michelin star chef, youngest winner of Scottish Chef of the Year Award.

The Edinburgh Academy

42 Henderson Row, Edinburgh, EH3 5BL

Tel: 0131 556 4603



Type: Co-educational, age 2 to 18.

Boarding: No

Roll: 835

Uniform: Yes. Boys – blazer, white shirt, school tie, Academy sweater, grey trousers; girls – fitted blazer, white shirt, Academy sweater, grey skirt.

Average class size: 21 in P7-S4; 13 in S5-S6.

Fees (per annum): Senior 10,080

Bursaries: Means-tested bursaries are available from P6 to S6. Applicants are required to complete a financial statement. Full bursaries may be available. The school's bursary funds have recently been boosted significantly. One in nine senior school pupils receive some form of financial support.

Main extra-curricular activities: Art, drama, minority sports, enterprise, charity fundraising.

Community links: For more than ten years, a number of local groups have used our assembly spaces and classrooms. The sports grounds are used for a range of activities from archery to football. The Academy Sports Centre has a youth development outreach programme for encouraging sporting activities.

What qualities do you try to instil in pupils to take beyond school?

Pride in achieving their highest potential; purpose for later years; respect for others and their needs.

What do you hope to achieve in 2008?

Maintaining a reputation a small school with an ethos of care for the individual; the successful launch of the first year of full co-education, building on the 110 girls already enrolled for August 2008; the completion of a new 2.8m nursery and after-school facility at our junior school campus in Arboretum Road; the completion of a new performing arts facility in the north wing of the senior school's original 1824 building; achieving a target of 20,000 charity fund raising for McMillan Cancer Trust, Sport Aid and the world Land Trust.

Famous past pupils: Nicky Campbell BBC Five Live/TV presenter; Guy Berriman, Coldplay; Mike Blair, Scotland's rugby captain; Magnus Magnusson; Robert Louis Stevenson; James Clerk Maxwell; Dr Joseph Bell, inspiration behind Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's character Sherlock Holmes.

Edinburgh Rudolf Steiner School

60/64 Spylaw Road, Edinburgh, EH10 5BR

Tel: 0131 337 3410



Type: Independent school for pupils aged 3 – 18 years. The education is based on the philosophies of Rudolf Steiner and emphasises personal responsibility and social awareness alongside academic success.

Boarding: Although the school does not have a formal boarding house, pupils can be accommodated with host parent families if required.

Roll: 360

Uniform: No

Average class size: 15

Fees (per annum): Primary – 3,213 – 5,931 Senior – 6,336

Bursaries: Yes

Main extra-curricular activities: The school probably puts on more drama shows than any other in Edinburgh; hockey; choir.

Community links: We are dedicated to helping charity projects both in the local community and abroad. After appointing a schools charity coordinator towards the end of last year, we have been able to continue to help raise funds for projects close to the school's heart. These can be both local and international. Most recently, we have sent over 130 back packs to Malawi as part of the work Scottish International Relief do. The lower school classes also fund raise for things like school trips, and a proportion of each class fund is regularly donated to local charities.

What qualities do you try to instil in pupils to take beyond school?

Steiner education has been liked with creative intelligence, so we allow our pupils to leave with a greater sense of independence, an entrepreneurial spirit, and a confident sense of who they are, as well as a strong sense of moral responsibility and a respect for the whole community.

What do you hope to achieve in 2008?

We are undergoing major renovations: an improvement fund of 200,000 will enable us to build new classrooms, update public spaces and modernise the physics laboratory. We are also hoping to create a new lower school library.

Famous past pupils: Albert Watson, A-list celebrity photographer with acclaimed exhibitions, movie posters including The Da Vinci Code and several books to his name.