Lady Dacre founded Emanuel School in 1594 with a vision to provide an education to children irrespective of family income. 

Today, nearly 430 years on, the headmaster and governors are committed to Lady Dacre’s vision of a place of learning where pupils can acquire important skills for later life and to providing an education that is available to children from all backgrounds. In 2019 we are launching our bursary appeal (assistance with fees), aiming to more than double the current bursary provision by the 430th anniversary of the school in 2024.  It is our belief that the educational experience of every single pupil is enhanced by studying alongside classmates from all backgrounds.

Throughout the centuries many children have received scholarships and bursaries (fee-assisted places) to study at Emanuel. For boys educated during the ‘grammar school’ years (1944-1976) Emanuel provided a free education for every pupil at the school, and so children came from diverse social and economic backgrounds. For the latter part of the 20th century, even when Emanuel became independent, the government’s assisted places scheme continued to give support to children whose parents had only a modest income. Since all state funding has ceased, we are now dependent on our own charitable resources if we are going to maintain any sense of this previous diversity, and this is why we desperately need your help.

Lady Anne Dacre wrote in her will that the aim of the foundation was: “towards the bringing up of twenty poor children in virtue and good laudable arts whereby they might the better live in time to come by their honest labour”. Today this means teaching our pupils vital skills which they can use to navigate a changing world – and this is still a key aim of the school.

We very much hope that you will support our ambition to provide more free places. Every donation, no matter how much, will open up opportunities and make a huge impact on a child’s life.

If you would like to know more about the bursary appeal or any aspect of development at Emanuel, please contact Jack Clark, development director, by emailing or telephoning 020 8875 6978.