King’s Ely International, Ely, Cambridgeshire


British Independent schools offer the best start in life a student can hope for, providing a first-class education as well as a wealth of opportunity in all other extra-curricular areas. Our aim at King’s Ely International is to ensure a smooth and successful transition into this new and exciting environment for international students from all over the world.

Not surprisingly, when students first arrive in Britain, they are often unsure of what to expect from an independent school. By the time they leave King’s Ely International, they are extremely well-equipped and fully prepared for what we believe will be the most rewarding and enjoyable time of their lives.

King’s Ely International is very special and very different in that we can offer students from overseas the most effective support academically combined with integration into the genuine UK Boarding School experience. Set in the tranquil city of Ely, small in comparison to its near neighbour of Cambridge, King’s Ely provides a perfect environment for study and development, for making new friends and understanding a new culture. Our historic school buildings are situated beside Ely Cathedral and the River Ouse for rowing is just minutes away from the school.

King’s Ely International students engage constantly with fellow students from King’s Ely Senior on the games field, in the concert hall, on the stage and in the Art School, and our aim is to support, educate and nurture these students from overseas, leaving their families and native countries to face the challenge of life in the UK.

Boarding Accommodation at King’s Ely International (“It’s just like a big family here.”)

Students live in their own attractive buildings close to King’s Ely itself and to the magnificent Cathedral in this small, quiet country town just north of Cambridge. Boys and girls live in separate boarding houses. Bedrooms may be single, double or multi-bedded and each student has his or her own workstation. Shared rooms are shared with students of similar ages and different nationalities, wherever possible. Bathrooms with showers and toilets are adjacent to the bedrooms.

All our King’s Ely International students enjoy comfortable common rooms where students can relax out of working hours and meet up with friends, either from King’s Ely International or King’s Ely Senior. Students may wish to make use of the kitchen facilities although, naturally, students are provided with three meals a day in the impressive Monastic Barn.

King’s Ely International boys board in St Dunstan’s House in St Mary’s Street, just a step away from the Cathedral, and less than a five minute walk from the Dining Hall and classrooms. King’s Ely International Girls are soon to have the privilege of boarding in the wonderful surroundings of the Old Palace, the recently refurbished medieval palace, historic home to the Bishops of Ely, with beautiful grounds to enjoy and light, airy and modern dormitories.

Study at King’s Ely International

Also see our Summer School programme

The Pre-GCSE Course

Equivalent to Year 10, this course is aimed at international students between the ages of 14 and 15 years of age who need support in their English. Whilst students study a full curriculum, more emphasis is given to English to develop the student’s confidence in the four skills of speaking, listening, reading and writing. The Pre-GCSE course is an excellent preparation for the intensive 1 Year GCSE programme. It is also a ‘stand-alone’ course and may be seen as a sabbatical year for European students whose intention is to return to their home countries, after a year abroad improving their English.

Most students begin in September and stay for the full year however, subject to availability, students may also study for one or two terms, commencing in January or April. This is a particularly popular option for students from countries whose school year finishes earlier than the British academic year.

The Pre-GCSE Curriculum contains 9 core subjects: English, Maths, Geography, History and Culture, ICT (computer studies), Physics, Chemistry, Biology and P.S.H.E. (Personal, Social and Health Education). Students also have sports lessons which take place on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons.

GCSEs in just one year

GCSEs (General Certificate of Secondary Education)are academic qualifications taken in the UK for entry onto further education, such as A levels (GCE Advanced Levels) or the IB (International Baccalaureate). Students would normally complete the course in 2-3 years. King’s International offers an intensive one year GCSE programme in which students study 6 GCSEs (but can study up to 9 depending on ability and interest). These are IGCSEs which are the International version of the GCSE qualification and recognised all over the world.

More and more international students are choosing this course as a sound preparation for their further studies in the UK, whether A level or IB.

  • For 15 to 17 year-old students with an upper intermediate to advanced level of English.
  • All students study core GCSE subjects of English, mathematics and business studies.
  • Additional options include physics, biology, chemistry, geography, ICT, art
  • and mother tongue (where offered).
  • Up to nine GCSEs may be taken in one year.

In addition to the above, for able students, Additional Maths is offered on the 1 year GCSE programme:

At King’s Ely International, students are an integral part of the whole school, and they are actively encouraged to take part in any activity which allows them to integrate fully into the life at King’s Ely. Students are invited to take part in the very rich programme of music, sport, drama and art. For some, this means singing in the choirs, taking part in the school drama productions, playing in the school bands, being members of the various school sports’ teams, whilst for others it means taking an active role in the various clubs and action groups such as the school council, the charity action group and the food committee.

School fees for King’s Ely International in 2017 – 2018 are:
Fees for 2017 - 2018 not yet known
2016 - 2017 fees were £ 27,627 including boarding

Annual fees are customarily payable in three equal installments, each of which is payable seven days before the first day of term.

The school fees include breakfast, lunch and evening meal. The tuition fee also includes Sunday excursions (but not the residential trips), text books and an issue of basic stationery; IGCSE examination entry fees; music and drama and any other individual lesson will be charged in addition

to the tuition fees as well as any charges from requests for re-marks, appeals or late changes in entries requested by students.

Music and Individual Lessons

Individual lessons are delivered by visiting teachers at the rate of £ 36,26 per hour (£ 22,36 per 37 minute lesson). This is invoiced by the teacher concerned and payable to the teacher in advance.

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