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SCHOOL LIFE AT KING'S ELY

The boy choristers are all pupils at King's Ely Junior, which educates around 360 children in Years 3 to 8 (ages 7 to 13). The most recent ISI inspection in 2014 described the opportunities for learning and personal development as "outstanding", and gave the same rating to the school's pastoral care. A short walk from the Cathedral, King's Ely Junior has extensive modern facilities, and as well as a rich academic curriculum it offers a wide range of sport, music and trips. Nearly all pupils from King's Ely Junior move up to King's Ely Senior in Year 9, and a whole-school approach to teaching and pastoral care ensures a smooth transition and excellent results at GCSE and A-Level.

School Life

The boys participate fully in school life as most of their singing duties fall outside the school day. They follow the full academic curriculum, go on regular trips and excursions, and many are in school sports teams and music ensembles.

Boarding

All of the choristers from Year 4 upwards are boarders in Choir House, a charming building next door to the Cathedral. Choir House is just for the choristers, so the experienced staff get to know the boys and their routine very well. The boarding house staff and Cathedral musicians work closely as a team to ensure that the boys are happy and well cared for.

The boys have plenty of free time in the evening and at weekends to let off steam: they can play games or outdoor sports or relax in the common room, as well as enjoying trips into town with staff for swimming and shopping.

Younger boys settle into boarding gradually, going home every weekend: there are also opportunities to go home during the week. We know that choristers like to have time with their families, so all the boys can usually choose to spend Friday and/or Saturday night at home if they wish. You can read more about this in our FAQs.

The boys quickly grow to love the family feel and nurturing environment, and think of Choir House as a second home. In fact, our choristers enjoy it so much that they often choose to be boarders at Senior School, even though many live near enough to be day pupils.

Fees

All choristers in Years 4 to 8 receive a 50% fee award while they sing in the choir. The current termly boarding fee for a chorister starting in Year 4 is £3,437, once this reduction is applied. Junior probationers in Year 3 receive an award of 20% of the school's day fees.

From Year 4 when boarding becomes the norm, the choristership award is equivalent to 50% of the full boarding fee while a boy sings. More than that, we strive to ensure that no boy is prevented from taking up a choristership solely for financial reasons and it is sometimes possible, with means testing, for us to approach full funding.

We hope that choristers will move up to King's Ely Senior when they are 13. They are eligible to receive an award of 33% of the day or boarding fee in Years 9 to 13 (age 13 - 18) subject to them maintaining a significant musical contribution and progressing well academically.


Read our Chorister FAQs