Bishops embodies a rich history and tradition which has made it one of the leading independent schools in Southern Africa. Our boys are individuals who belong to an international community and we welcome them from throughout South Africa, Africa and the
world, enriching diversity and widening our perspective.
We are proud of the rich heritage formed by our young men in their
adult lives; of their exceptional contributions to academic, artistic,
scientific, sporting, political and public life. Many have risen to
become prominent politicians, legendary sportsmen, corporate
executives, acclaimed scientists and inspiring professionals - even an
astronaut is among the ODs!
We are confident of the brightness of the future because we believe in
our students’ happiness and strength. We want them to go forward
with a sense of purpose, convinced of their own value and ready to
meet challenges without fear. This brochure will provide you with a
glimpse of life at Bishops but what it cannot do is adequately portray
a particular strength of Bishops: the Bishops family and the good
relationship that exists between staff, pupils, parents and ODs.
At the foot of Table Mountain is without question South Africa's most beautiful city, Cape Town and a boys' school founded in 1849 by an Anglican Bishop concerned with the state of public education. Bishops Robert Gray's vision entailed an educational
environment that would promote independent thinking, to create
brave leaders and informed followers. It is in pursuit of these goals
that Diocesan College (better known as Bishops) has continued to
grow and develop over the last century and a half.
A Bishops education is a privilege for any young man and our
pupils are constantly reminded of their place in the broader South
Africa. Understanding the meaning of abundance and scarcity are
as much part of their education as history and mathematics. It is
this acknowledgement of one's place and role in broader society
that helps make Bishops' graduates leaders of the future. Equipped
with a world-class academic background, students are excellently
prepared for progressing into tertiary education.
Music, art and drama are a vital part of Bishops life. Boys are
encourage to sing in the choir, play an instrument and generally
extend their cultural aptitude in a variety of different ways. As a
well established centre of excellence we have facilities including a
fully operational theatre, a professional recording studio and a
highly acclaimed music department.
Bishops offers more than 22 sports from individual to team sports
so as to best suit the needs of each student. These include rugby,
hockey, cricket, swimming, athletics, basketball, fencing, golf,
rowing, squash, tennis, waterpolo and much more. Sport is
compulsory, with team sports developing a sense of camaraderie
among the boys in addition to enhancing their ability to work
together toward a common goal.
Bishops offers weekly and full time boarding from prep to college.
The fun, camaraderie and excitement that go along with staying
full-time at the school all adds to the Bishops experience. Often it
is the moments in the boarding houses that provide the most
enduring memories. Day-boys, too, have a home base at school in
the form of their House. When each boy begins Grade 8 he is
allocated to a House that remains his base for the remainder of his
school career. This develops a family structure that enhances the
friendships that Bishops boys make with each other for life.
FOUNDED: 1849 by Bishop Grey
CURRENT PUPILS: Approximately 1260
BOARDERS: 220 at College and 42 at Prep
CURRENT PUPILS FROM: Belgium, Botswana, Canada, France,
Germany, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Kuwait, Liechtenstein,
Mozambique, Namibia, Russia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, UAE,
Uganda, UK, USA, Zambia and Zimbabwe
ACADEMIC STAFF: Approximately 115 teachers
MAX CLASS SIZE: 24 pupils
GROUNDS: 56 hectares
• Bishops has 10 rugby & 10 cricket fields, 4 major sports
pavilions, 4 boarding houses, 8 day boy houses and 2 chapels
• Mark Shuttleworth was Head boy in 1991 and was the first
Afronaut in Space on 2 April 2002
• Bishops is one only of four schools in the world that awards
the Rhodes Scholarship
• More than 153 Bishops boys have played international sport
• Post Matric classes were introduced in 1921 and Girls were
first admitted in 1976
• Bishops has produced 9 International Champion speakers
and debaters in the last 10 years
• 2003 Rugby World Cup, Bishops had four players representing
four different countries
• The Springbok rugby jersey evolved from the OD Rugby jersey
•Xhosa was introduced in 1975 and is compulsory at Prep from
Grade 3 to Grade 7
IS BISHOPS A COLLEGE ONLY?
Bishops also has a Pre Preparatory, Preparatory school and Post
Matric. A boy can start at the beginning of his school career in the
year he turns 6 and remain at Bishops until Grade 12 or Post Matric.
IS BISHOPS FOR BOYS ONLY?
Yes but girls can be admitted to Post Matric.
IS BISHOPS THE MOST EXPENSIVE SCHOOL IN SA?
No, according to the Independent Schools in South Africa
(ISASA) Directory 2005 we are the 14th most expensive
independent school in South Africa.
AT WHAT AGE CAN A BOY START AT BISHOPS?
Entry points to Bishops are Grade R and Grade 8. It is very
difficult to get a boy into Bishops in between these times so we
encourage early and timeous application.
WHAT AGE DOES BOARDING START FROM?
Boys can start full boarding at Prep from Grade 3.
IS CHAPEL COMPULSORY?
The school welcomes and accepts boys of all denominations who are
happy to attend Anglican Christian worship in the chapel. Where
designated, Chapel services will be compulsory for all boys, and staff
will be encouraged to participate in chapel as they fulfil their tasks
as role models.
IS SPORT COMPULSORY?
We are one of the leading sports schools in South Africa and we
compete globally. To maintain our standards of excellence, all boys
must play an official school sport in both summer & winter. We
believe that sport is essential to develop life skills.
WILL MY SON BE ABLE TO STUDY OVERSEAS WITH HIS MATRIC EXEMPTION?
Yes, we offer the FET because we believe it is a first class
examination. Bishops boys have been writing University entrance to
local and international universities on the strength of the Senior
Certificate most successfully. More than 98% of Bishops boys
graduate on to tertiary education.
WHAT ABOUT AS LEVELS?
We offer a year's course of Cambridge AS levels to boys and girls in