Royal High School GDST
Catchment Area, Reviews and Key Information

Primary & Secondary
Post 16
School Guide Rating

This school has 1 parent review

Lansdown Road
01225 313877
3 - 19
Girls only
Other independent school
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5+ GCSEs grade 9-4 (standard pass or above) including English and maths
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School Description

A dynamic and friendly community that celebrates individuality and nurtures intellectual and creative ambition. Students have access to wonderful facilities and enthusiastic and gifted teachers. With excellent results at GCSE, A levels and the IB, RHS students take up places at leading universities in the UK and abroad. As part of the GDST we offer outstanding affordability and real 'added value'.

Royal High School GDST Reviews

Average Rating:


“Good teaching”
"> The school offers a broad selection of subjects at IGCSE level and beyond, among which Mandarin, design technology and advanced maths for the most able students. The teachers are professional and motivated. While teaching standards are good, in my opinion the daily management of the school is not up to par and there is lack of control and oversight. The facilities (especially the toilets for the students) are run-down and the compulsory lunches are low quality.
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School Noticeboard

News & events from Royal High School GDST

Last update: 25 February 2020


To arrange a visit of Royal High School and to have the opportunity to talk to teachers and the girls about how exciting life is at our school, please call us on 01225 422931 or email [email protected] 

Taster Days and Weekend Workshops also available for girls. 

For Junior School and Nursery enquiries, please contact: [email protected] or call 01225 422931.

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Meet the Head: Jo Duncan

Jo Duncan joined the Royal High School in April 2015

Who/what inspired you to become a teacher?

I have always been interested in teaching. In the sixth form I did community service in a local primary school and loved it. I also had an inspirational RS teacher. When I was trying to work out what to study at university she said to me: ‘Jo, every year at least one of my girls becomes an RS teacher and this year I think it is going to be you.’

I went on to study English and Theology at St. Andrew’s and one summer I had the opportunity to go to Romania to teach English as a Foreign Language. I absolutely adored being in the classroom. I worked in a school with very few resources but the kids were really eager to learn. It was a case of sink or swim but I loved every minute and it really confirmed my career choice. I knew in my heart of hearts that teaching was for me.

What achievement are you most proud of as Head?

I take pride in knowing every girl in the school: her likes, her dislikes, her family. To me this is extremely important. I was Head at Princess Helena College in Hertfordshire before I joined the Royal High School in April [2015]. It was a smaller school and I knew every single girl but I am making this a key priority in my new role. It is extremely important to me. I am a visual learner so I have been meeting with girls in small groups. They come for biscuits and juice and I learn their names. I take away something about what makes each girl an individual. I have all their pictures at home and my daughter, who is 8, loves testing me!

What does a successful school look like to you?

Ultimately it’s a school full of happy girls who love their school life. For me, a successful school is a dynamic and engaging community that is offering outstanding teaching and learning as well as a whole range of opportunities outside the classroom. It must have an unwavering commitment to enable pupils to fulfill their potential. It’s inside the classroom; it’s outside of the classroom. It’s about the whole person.

What is the most important quality you want every child to have when they leave your school? And why?

That is an interesting question. It’s hard to pick one. Confidence is very important and of course being happy. I suppose if I had to choose one, it would be self-respect because if they have that grounding, it will lead to confidence and happiness. If you respect yourself, you can respect others and make really good relationships. They can make the most of the opportunities that are open to them.

What I say to prospective parents is that school is about being well educated, well rounded and well balanced. Those three aspects together are really important. It’s great to see girls develop academically but academic achievement can’t be the only thing they take away from school. Yes, qualifications open doors but we all know that really successful people are about more than a string of A*s. Helping them develop as a person is key.

Please give 5 words to describe the ethos of your school.


The Royal High is a part of the Girls Day School Trust (GDST) and that is significant for me coming from a headship at a standalone school. I really value being part of a group of schools and benefiting from a great sense of collaboration and support.

High achieving

Yes, academically but also in terms of wealth of opportunity and everything that is on offer here. We have high expectations of ourselves as teachers and staff, and high expectations of the girls.


Being forward thinking and dynamic and always looking to the future. Yes, we have a great history – we are celebrating 150 years this year – but where are we going? Where are these girls going? We are preparing them for their futures. The world is changing rapidly and none of us know what the future will look like. So we have to prepare them to be successful in their lives whatever direction it takes.

Grit and grace

This is a lovely phrase. I have been discussing with staff a lot about who we are as a school, why we exist, what our core values are, and we keep coming back to this phrase: grit and grace. It’s about the idea of resilience and the ability to cope with life whatever it throws at you. It’s about having a go and taking risks coupled with this lovely idea of being open and having a sense of humour and an ease about who you are. I really like that combination.


We are a boarding school, which is unique within the GDST. I really appreciate the international aspect that boarding brings to the school. There is a strong sense of community among the girls but also between staff, the parents, the alumni and Bath itself. We are proud to be a part of this fantastic city.

Interviewed by: Victoria Bond, May 2015

To find out more about Royal High School GDST, visit their website or call 01225 313877.

Royal High School GDST Catchment Area Map

This school is independently managed and its admission criteria may be selective. There is no set catchment area as pupils are admitted from a wide variety of postcodes and, in the case of boarding schools, from outside the UK. Contact the school directly or visit their website for more information on Admissions Policy and Procedures.

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