The school is divided into five Houses – a junior house and four senior houses. The houses are all either recently built or completely modernised. Each is in the charge of a resident Housemaster and several Assistant Housemasters and a majority of house staff are married. In this way we ensure that all boys are housed in comfortable, modern accommodation, with an extremely good staff / pupil ratio.
The accommodation ranges from small, comfortable dormitories which afford a considerable degree of privacy and well-equipped study bedrooms for the great majority of older boys. The school is small enough to make it possible for the Head Master to know all the boys, who have an absolute right of access to him. The Housemaster is, however, the person mainly responsible to the parents and to the Head Master for all aspects of a boy’s development. We take great care to place each boy in a House which is particularly suited to his interests and talents.
The Housemaster and his assistants work to develop a boy’s strength in every sphere of his life at school, in cooperation with the Head Master, the Chaplain and the teaching staff. Above all, it is the aim of the Housemaster to ensure that all boys entrusted to his care are happy and secure so that they can fulfil their potential. To this end, the Housemaster works in the closest conjunction with the boys, personal academic tutor and their parents.
Every House has its own Housemother. This continues the tradition of a female presence established by Cardinal Newman when he founded the School. Her main aim is the pastoral care of your son, and the emotional welfare of the boys goes hand in hand with routine domestic matters and provides equilibrium and a sense of wellbeing that is a special feature of life at The Oratory.
The Housemothers work closely with the respective Housemaster and his team and are on duty each weekday. Their roles can vary from house to house but their main aim is to support the boys and their parents. The Housemothers consider themselves to be both surrogate mums and friends to the boys and are often seen supporting them at events such as plays, music concerts and sports days.
Other areas that comprise their role include helping the boys with their day to day life e.g. washing and mending of clothes, issuing of keys and pocket money. The nurturing and training elements involve listening and talking through problems of all types and helping them through their bad days and laughing with them on their good ones. Housemothers try to support the boys wherever needed during their school life.
When required they also take them to the doctor’s, dentist’s, hospital, physiotherapy and optician’s appointments. However small a parent’s worry is, Housemothers are always there to help. If a Housemother knows what the problem is, she will be only too pleased to listen and to try to help. The emotional welfare of the boys goes hand in hand with routine domestic matters and provides equilibrium and a sense of wellbeing that is a special feature of life at The Oratory School.
If you had any questions or worries about your son, no matter how trivial, please feel free to telephone your son’s Housemother, she is there to help you (contact details to be found within each house detailed page).