George Watson’s College is renowned as a large, inclusive and vibrant co-educational school offering all-through education for children from 3-18. Despite its size, everyone remarks that it has a small-school ‘feel’: the close-knit and friendly relationships amongst all its constituents are a hallmark of the School. Its motto – Ex Corde Caritas (Love from the Heart) – is central to its values as it seeks to sustain what is described as ‘The Watson’s Family’.
This tangible sense of togetherness is significantly enhanced by everyone being on one purpose-built site, which is located in the attractive residential district of Morningside, to the South West of the centre of Edinburgh. Edinburgh itself is the second strongest city economy in the UK, outside of London, with the highest percentage of graduates and professionally qualified adults in the UK and over 25% of school age children attending fee-paying schools. Watson’s is proud of its independent status and, whilst remaining true to its Scottish roots, seeks to sustain and develop an international perspective. The curriculum is adapting to the innovations inherent in Scotland’s new Curriculum for Excellence and the new Scottish National Qualifications. In addition, the School offers its older pupils the opportunity to take the International Baccalaureate Diploma programme. Watson’s is the only school to offer this alternative alongside Scottish qualifications.
The School welcomes a wide range of academic ability, and has very high academic standards, with 90% of pupils going on to Higher Education and a large proportion of pupils achieving outstanding success. Watson’s also has excellent facilities, and offers a huge range of courses as well as extra-curricular activities. In addition, it has particular strengths in Sport, Music, Drama, Outdoor Education, Technology and in Support for Learning. The School is very well resourced with a campus-wide IT network.
The current Principal, Mr Melvyn Roffe took up his post in August 2014. He is a member of the Headmasters’ and Headmistresses’ Conference (HMC).