Thanks to donor generosity, even more young people can benefit.

Working to extend educational opportunity is central to our identity and values.  Donations help us to achieve our core aims by funding bursaries, supporting our Chrysalis Partnership Programme, and enhancing our buildings and educational environment.

1. Bursaries


At Highgate we want more young people to benefit from the academic, sporting, creative and social opportunities Highgate provides. We currently have around 80 pupils who receive bursaries (7% of our Senior School pupils).

In September 2022 we expanded our bursary programme to the Junior School, so that children aged 7 will be able to benefit from a Highgate education. Taking pupils in Year 3 will give us the time to have a greater and transformative educational impact.

We are grateful to the generosity of all our donors whose gifts increase the number and value of available bursaries. With your help, we want to increase the proportion of children who receive bursaries to at least 10% of our Senior School. We offer bursaries because we believe wholeheartedly that the first-class education our pupils experience can transform their lives, and greatly increase the opportunities available to them in adulthood.

Can you support our bursary fund? Donors support our bursary fund in various ways:

  • A gift of £684 or £57 a month (£855 including Gift Aid) would provide a year of instrumental music lessons for a bursary holder
  • A gift of £5,450 (£6,790 including Gift Aid), with two other supporters matching your gift, would provide one 100% bursary for one year
  • A gift of £16,300 (£20,375 including Gift Aid) would provide one 100% bursary for one year
  • A gift of £32,600 (£40,750 including Gift Aid) would provide one 100% Sixth Form bursary (supporting a pupil in both Years 12 and 13)
  • A gift of £112,000 (£140,000 including Gift Aid) would provide one 100% bursary for seven years, for a child entering in Year 7 and leaving at the end of Year 13

To find out more, or to have a confidential conversation, please email our Development Director


Find out more about how make a Bursary donation

Testimonial from a Bursary recipient

“I joined Highgate at 11+ in 2012 and am currently a 2nd year student studying economics at the University of Warwick. I come from a single parent household (my mum and young sister who is currently at Highgate) and went to a very normal primary school in Hornsey

When the conversation about private school came up with peers, I remember friends, and their parents, saying things like “people like us never end up in places like that”, or “you’re not going to fit in”.

Every child should have opportunity to achieve their full potential. If they have the academic intelligence (which many of my peers from primary school had and still didn’t try apply to places like Highgate purely because of these assumptions), your background doesn’t matter. This is why extending the bursary initiative to junior school pupils is so important because at that age, having fun and building friendships is what matters.

Highgate really pushes you to be the best you can be and in comparison to my peers at other schools, it became very clear to me that from an earlier age I was more driven to attain the best for myself.”

Charles, Class of 2019

We can be a springboard for social mobility. So let's roll up our sleeves and get on with it! -Adam Pettitt


of our senior school pupils are bursary funded

2. Chrysalis Partnership Programme


Highgate leads the UK in building partnerships between state and independent schools with our innovative Chrysalis Partnership Programme.

Chrysalis means we share Highgate’s expertise with other schools, whilst broadening our understanding of our community and playing a richer part in it. Through this, we reach more children across London and help them achieve their potential.

Chrysalis is a year-round programme involving more than 20 Highgate teachers working on projects with 48 partner schools across Haringey, Camden, Islington, Ealing, Newham, Brent and Barnet. All our partnership work encourages academic enrichment, university preparation, and careers and employability support.

In 2017, as an extension of our Chrysalis work, Highgate became primary educational sponsor of the London Academy of Excellence in Tottenham (LAET). LAET, an academically rigorous sixth form in a community where such opportunities are lacking, will see its first cohort complete their studies in summer 2019. Tottenham Hotspur Football Club is lead business sponsor.

Can you support our Chrysalis Partnership Programme? Donors support our partnership work in various ways:

  • Gifts from individual donors support a team of Maths teachers at Highgate working for the equivalent hours of two full-time teachers across Haringey, Camden, Islington, Brent and Enfield.
  • Funds donated at our 2017 Fundraising Gala Dinner supported mental health provision at LAET
  • Individual donors sponsor the salaries of LAET teachers
  • Gifts from over 50 donors enabled us to fund LAET’s library


Find out more about how make a Chrysalis donation



3. Capital projects


Our capital projects work aims to enhance our educational environment.

Very few Elizabethan schools remain on their original sites, as we do. Maintaining our nineteenth-century buildings, while enhancing our teaching and learning environment across all our buildings, is important and costly. In recent years, the addition of the Garner and Charter Buildings, and the conversion of School House into the Mills Centre for Art, Design Technology and Engineering, plus the transformation of Big School into our beautiful Sir Martin Gilbert Library, have all greatly enhanced our ability to fulfil our educational purpose.

The master plan for our site is based on realism and ambition: realism, in that we know that several of our buildings require serious investment, and ambition, in that we are convinced that short-term solutions will ultimately be money wasted, since we have the opportunity to do much more.

Can you support our capital projects? We have longer-term plans to transform Dyne House, the Richards Music Centre and the Mallinson Sports Centre.


Find out more about how make a Capital Projects donation


Contact the Development team


T. 0208 347 2101


A. Field House, 9 Bishopswood Rd, Highgate, London N6 4PD

Frequently asked questions about donating to Highgate


  • Why does Highgate need to raise funds?

    Founded in 1565, we were granted land and a title but no endowment to run our School. We are therefore not a wealthy school and 95% of our income comes from fees. Donations help us to achieve our charitable vision more quickly and to greater effect. Donations are already helping to fund means-tested bursaries, our partnership teaching programme, and enhance our educational environment.

  • Is Highgate a charity?

    Yes, Sir Roger Cholmeley’s School at Highgate is a registered charity, no. 312765.

  • What do you raise money for?

    Highgate raises money for various areas, all coming together under the umbrella of Highgate is Here, our fundraising campaign. At Highgate, our primary focus in bursaries: introducing means-tested fee assisted places in our Junior School for the first time, and increasing the number of these places we can offer in our senior school. Additionally, we raise money for mental health and wellbeing at Highgate and in our partner schools, as well as supporting our sibling school, the London Academy of Excellence Tottenham and our links with local state schools. To read more about the impact of this, please click here.

  • How much do people give?

    It depends very much on the individual’s wishes and circumstances. Gifts of any size really do make a difference.

    Collective participation makes a huge impact. For example, our recent crowdfunding campaign for hardship at our sibling school, LAE T, surpassed its target with a final total of nearly £80,000 – and the majority of gifts were between £20 and £200.

    Highgate’s charitable impact has also been greatly assisted by six- and seven-figure donations, which are helping to fund full- and part-bursary places for children at Highgate, as well as making a transformative impact at LAE Tottenham and our partner schools.

    Collective participation makes a huge impact. For example, our summer 2017 crowdfunding campaign for LAET’s library surpassed its target, with a final total of nearly £35,000 – and the majority of gifts were between £20 and £200.

    Highgate’s charitable ambitions have also been greatly assisted by major donations of £10,000 – £500,000, which are helping to fund full- and part-bursary places, sponsoring the salaries of partnership teachers, and enhancing our educational environment (such as assisting with our Pre-Prep refurbishment and new Junior School building).

  • How much of my donation will be allocated towards Highgate’s charitable projects?

    We allocate 100% of your donation towards the area which you wish to support. At Highgate no administrative or other costs are met through fundraising.

  • I would like my donation to support a particular area. Is this possible?

    Yes. When making your gift, choose your preferred area from the drop-down menu.

  • Does all bursary and partnership spending come from fundraising?

    No, we also commit around 3% of revenue each year to help fund bursaries and partnerships.

  • Can Highgate claim Gift Aid?

    Yes. Highgate is a registered charity, so we can claim Gift Aid on donations made out of UK taxed income.

  • I would like to make a regular monthly donation. How do I do this?

    Regular monthly donations can easily be set up online by direct debit here

  • I would like to leave a bequest to Highgate in my Will. Can you help?

    Yes. For more information about leaving a legacy to Highgate, please contact our Development Director on email:

  • Do you have a Donor’s Charter?

    Yes. Our Donor’s Charter is:

    • We will regularly publish information about our School’s activities and progress
    • Fundraising activity will be supported by a clear case for support
    • If you wish your donation to go towards a particular project, we will ensure this happens
    • If you request anonymity, we will treat your donation as confidential
    • We will acknowledge your donation appropriately, as soon as possible after we receive it
    • Donors’ rights to privacy and confidentiality will be respected, with all records kept securely, in compliance with the Data Protection Act 1998
    • Donors may request that their details be removed from our School’s development database or the number/type of solicitations limited, if so desired

  • Is there a link between donations and admissions?

    No. There is no link between donations and admissions; donors do not get preferential treatment in any area and this is explicitly stated, in writing, before a donation is accepted.

  • Do you have a review process before you accept donations?

    Yes. Great care is taken to ensure we do not accept donations that risks bringing the school into disrepute or breaches the law. For more information about this, please click here.

  • Does Highgate have an ethics committee?

    Yes, Highgate wants to ensure we are fundraising ethically. Highgate’s Ethics Committee is comprised of the Head, Bursar and Development Director, alongside members of the Governing Body; the Committee meets annually and reports to the full Governing Body. The committee tests policies and procedures, reviews and analyses developments in the charitable sector to stress-test Highgate’s policies and scrutinises the reporting of the Development Office, for internal and external audiences.

  • What difference would my £100 make?

    If you give…With…You could…

    (£15 per month
    £5 per month)

    1 other person
    (Just you!
    3 other people)
    Guarantee a laptop (each year) for a partner school pupil, ensuring they can continue to access a high-quality education, regardless of their circumstances.
    £10 per month

    £20 per month

    49 other people

    24 other people

    Expand the mental health provision at LAE Tottenham or any of our other partner schools by paying for an extra counsellor one day per week.
    £10 per month (£100)5 other people (6 other people)Provide a year of instrumental music lessons for a bursary holder.
    £100 per year
    £50 per month (£600 per year)
    71 other people
    13 other people
    Add a part-funded bursary place for one year in the Junior School

Find out more about how make a donation