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Thornton College Convent of Jesus and Mary
Thornton, MK17 0HJ, UK Milton Keynes
+44 (0)1280 812610


Welcome to the Thornton College web site. I hope you will find it easy to navigate and that it demonstrates the education we offer.

Thornton is a school which not only offers small class sizes, a commitment to academic excellence, and skilled and devoted teachers but also promotes pupils' spiritual, moral, cultural and physical development, preparing pupils for the challenges and complexity of life in the twenty-first century.

Thornton remains a small school because we value each child as an individual. We believe it is important for children to belong to a community where they are well known and have an opportunity to discover and develop their skills and talents.

A web site or prospectus can only give you a glimpse of our school life. No matter how impressive our grounds and facilities Thornton's real treasure is to be found in the people who belong to our community. I invite you to visit us so that you can experience what makes a Thornton education special.



Mission Statement

'To educate young people to meet the challenges of life courageously,
to use their talents to the full, and to live the values of Christ's Gospel.

Vision Statement

Thornton College is a Catholic independent day and boarding school, which provides a first rate all round education for pupils of all denominations from Nursery to General Certificate of Secondary Education.

Thornton College exists as a distinct community with Christ as its foundation and inspired by the teaching and example of Saint Claudine and the Religious of Jesus and Mary.

It is a special place where young people enrich their personalities by an education that is attentive to the individual, open to the world, based on the Gospel and communicating the experience of the goodness of God.

In partnership with the home and parish, the school provides a firm foundation for the young so that they may become life-long learners ready to give personal witness to Christ.

Thornton aims for excellence in all that is undertaken whether this is in the classroom, in extra-curricular activities, or in the growth of the individual to personal fulfilment within the Community.

Thornton provides a learning environment where all members of the community feel a sense of belonging, where they are welcomed regardless of race, culture or denomination and where there is a willingness for reconciliation and a readiness to forgive.


We recognise that parents are the child's first teachers. We work in partnership with parents to ensure that every child has the best possible start.

Imagination, exploration and discovery - our foundation programme allows children to explore the world within a creative and stimulating environment. The child's natural curiosity and creativity is nurtured through structured play and the curriculum is carefully planned to ensure that each one of the Early Years' Learning Goals is met.

Qualified teachers and nursery staff provide varied and stimulating activities, including art, cookery, dance, French, ICT, movement, and music.

A member of staff is allocated to each child in order to ensure that individual specific needs and capabilities are met.

The Nursery curriculum is carefully designed to develop early reading, writing and numeracy skills. Children are encouraged to become independent and grow in confidence as they participate in a wide range of activities and experience success.

Qualified teachers ensure that children follow a structured programme of play and pre-school learning, enabling them to develop their skills in language, numeracy, social awareness, self-expression and creativity.

Regular activities include fun with French, dance, ICT, music and movement, singing, stories, art and craft, cooking, dressing up, playing with water and sand and exploring the grounds.

The Nursery is housed in very attractive purpose built accommodation and also benefits from the use of main school facilities including the following:

• Assembly Hall
• Central Hall
• Chapel
• Dance Studio
• Dining Room
• Library
• Sports Hall

The Nursery playground provides a safe environment for the children. A climbing frame, bicycles, scooters and playground games encourage the development of motor skills and with twenty-five acres of parkland to explore there is always something new for the children to discover and enjoy.

Early Years' Learning Goals

• Personal, social and emotional development
• Communication, language and literacy
• Mathematical development
• Knowledge and understanding of the world
• Physical development
• Creative development


Extended day care from 8.00am - 6.00pm, 47 weeks per year.

Flexible hours.
Parents may choose any of the following sessions:

8.00am - 6.00pm
8.00am - 4.00pm
8.00am - 1.00pm
9.00am - 4.00pm
9.00am - 12.00pm
1.00pm - 6.00pm
1.00pm - 4.00pm

Minimum of three sessions.


The Junior School is an integral part of Thornton College. Pupils are taught in bright, well-equipped classrooms and use the superb facilities of the main buildings.

Outdoors, they enjoy Thornton's beautiful and extensive grounds, games facilities, tennis courts, the swimming pool and our youngest children have a dedicated play area with activity equipment.

Classes are small; pupils receive individual attention and encouragement and well qualified and dedicated teachers enable pupils to reach their full potential. Whilst keeping pace with the latest developments in primary education and the stipulations of the National Curriculum, the best of traditional methods are employed in teaching literacy and numeracy skills.

We strive to exceed National Curriculum Targets and develop a love of learning. The curriculum is further enhanced by the provision of specialist subject teachers and facilities.

The curriculum aims to stimulate and stretch all children, whatever their level of ability. Mastery of literacy and numeracy skills is seen as the foundation of all other learning and a means of gaining maximum benefit from the broad and varied curriculum on offer.

Pupils are provided with a wealth of opportunities to use their senses and imagination. Creative work in written expression, art, craft, music, dance and drama is encouraged at all levels. Science and Technology have an important place in the curriculum from the earliest years, as do the Humanities, French, Physical Education and Religious Education.

Classroom learning is supplemented and supported by educational visits, field trips and expeditions.


At the age of 11+ girls move into the Senior School. At this stage there is a large intake of pupils from other Junior schools who settle in quickly and happily.

Your daughter will benefit from the breadth and balance of the Senior curriculum, which provides scope for girls to discover and develop their gifts and talents. At Thornton we have an excellent reputation not only for developing the academic potential of all pupils but also providing a rich variety of opportunities in Drama, Music and Sport.

Our pupils leave us prepared to meet future challenges and confident that they can make a difference to the world in which we live.

In the first three years all girls follow a broad curriculum aimed at giving a good grounding in the Arts, Science, Technology, Modern Languages and practical subjects. The subjects studied are English, Religious Studies, History, Geography, French, Art, Design and Technology, Music, Mathematics, Science, Information and Communication Technology and Physical Education.

In Year 9 all girls begin Spanish, and they are taught Biology, Chemistry and Physics as separate subjects.

The process of choosing GCSE option subjects is carried out in the Spring Term of Year 9. There is close consultation involving the girls, their parents, Subject Teachers, Form Tutors, the Headmistress and the Deputy Head. Pupils are encouraged and guided towards a balanced choice, which reflects their individual strengths, interests and aspirations.

Careers Education & Guidance

Careers advice is provided throughout the Senior School. Delivered by our own careers staff and professional advisors, it is both up-to-date and informed. The Careers Library is well resourced and girls are encouraged to make full use of its facilities. Guest speakers are invited to talk to the girls about a wide variety of further education and careers options.

Time is set aside for group and individual counselling as girls prepare for GCSE options in Year 9 and for choice of sixth forms and further education courses in Year 11. Thornton girls are invariably offered the sixth form courses for which they apply, and each year a number obtain Scholarships or Exhibitions.

Duke of Edinburgh
Extended Day
Pastoral Care
Religious Education
Work Experience


Girls are accepted as boarders from eight years of age. Living in a relaxed, family atmosphere girls benefit from the constant companionship of other young people and the firm structure for study which boarding provides.

Each boarding area has its own resident matron who looks after the welfare of the girls in her care, taking a personal interest in each one.

Weekly and occasional boarding are popular options and GCSE pupils enjoy the privilege of individual study-bedrooms.

A full and varied programme of weekend outings and activities, supervised by resident and teaching staff, is provided for our termly boarders.

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