St Clare’s, Oxford was founded by Anne Dreydel OBE and Pamela Morris in 1953. The college grew out of a scheme to establish links between British and European students after the Second World War. Our original name was The Oxford English Centre for Foreign Students. This later became St Clare’s Hall, and then St Clare’s, Oxford. In the mid-50s, students came from more than 12 Western European countries. Over time, the college began to attract a wide range of nationalities. Nowadays there are over 40 nationalities on the IB Diploma alone.
The college began extending its offering to include university-level and pre-university study. As well as longer academic courses, short Summer courses became a central feature of the college. Links with USA universities were established in the 1960’s. This collaboration enabled US students to gain credit towards their degree. By the 1970’s US students were coming to St Clare’s for their study abroad programme. This replaced the University of London external degrees which had previously been taught.
In 1977, St Clare's introduced the International Baccalaureate Diploma for pre-university students, and gradually phased out A Levels. They are one of the longest running IB schools in the world and the first established IB World School in England; only 13 other institutions have taught the IB for longer. St Clare's Oxford also delivers the IB Teacher Training Workshops in cooperation with the IBO, which began in 2002.
St. Clare's may well be the most incredible school in the world... Where students from a multitude of countries and cultures are given the stimuli and the space to grow, guided by most dedicated and talented teachers, who support, challenge and provoke the eager young minds of tomorrow, thus helping them to settle and find out who they really want to become. All of this set in Oxford - the one city, which breathes nothing but history of intellect and adventure. I will always look back at my time at St. Clare's with gratitude. I feel privileged to have spent the most formative years of my life there.
I went there many years ago, from 12 until 18 years old (now I am 34) to attend summer courses.
It was a great experience and every year I was excited to go there and meet my old friends and to know some new people.
Having graduated from St Clare's in May 2012, I firmly believe that the school and the IB diploma programme put me in a wonderful position to start university: classes are taught by experienced staff who often go out of their way to help students, there is a strong community feel, the campus is located in a beautiful area of Oxford, and the wide range of extra-curricular activities and opportunities provide students with valuable experience. The friendships and memories that I have of St Clare's will, I am sure, stay with me for life.
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