FROM THE HEAD MASTER
At Harrow, we believe that success should be measured not by grades, but by one's influence on the world. The willingness and ability to learn, to lead and to serve are what enable a life to be both well-lived and worthwhile. Our Purpose is to develop these qualities in Harrovians during their five years with us, by focusing on five key areas.
Scholarship - Encouraging intellectual curiosity, independent thought and effective learning habits.
In the process of educating adolescents, more than half the battle is won if they awaken looking forward to the day ahead. Employing inspiring Beaks is crucial, as is a stimulating academic diet. Harrow's Super-Curriculum promotes research, reflection and debate through habitual reading, extended projects, over 80 clubs and societies, lectures from subject experts almost every day, and a non-examined Electives programme. These intellectual pursuits develop the freedom and confidence to think and speak independently, and mature our pupils into the candidates that leading universities look for.
Opportunity - Ensuring boys perform to their potential, thereby increasing their educational and career opportunities.
Achieving good results in public examinations increases one's options in life. Virtually all of our boys take up places at the best universities. Our Universities Team includes subject and regional specialists and gives specific guidance to those heading towards Oxbridge, Ivy League and other very competitive institutions. In sport and the arts, some of the country's leading coaches and mentors help boys to capitalise on their talents, leading in many cases to professional careers.
Character - Developing and maturing the individual, enabling boys to uncover the talents, skills and values to be of good influence beyond Harrow.
Not all Harrovians can be Winston Churchill but each, in their own fashion, can make a positive contribution. To develop a strong character, boys are encouraged to adopt a robust moral code and to embrace wholeheartedly all that Harrow has to offer. Our busy, structured and purposeful environment produces young men who are confident, creative and better team players - be it in the form room or the board room, these are things that really count.
People - Admitting boys who will thrive and contribute at Harrow, and recruiting and nurturing staff who facilitate excellence.
While Harrow is oversubscribed and selective, we do not focus simply on academic performance when it comes to admissions. Harrovians have a range of talents, but all share a willingness to contribute and the ability to thrive in our full-boarding environment. Maintaining this optimal composition of our pupil body is vital, as is the recruitment and development of those we employ.
Operations - Providing environments, infrastructure and functions that set us apart.
While Harrow is, ostensibly, a traditional place, at its heart is a hunger for innovation. As our pupils' needs develop, so too does the organisation that surrounds them. On the horizon are major building plans, including a new state-of-the-art sports hall, biology and chemistry laboratories, and some significant landscaping that will enhance our outdoor space.
These priorities are underpinned by our Values, which inspire all of us to try harder as individuals, so that collectively we thrive. Outwardly, they give a sense of the distinctive quality of Harrow School – a wonderful place in which it is a delight to work and which I hope you will wish to learn more about.
Alastair Land, Head Master, attended Manchester Grammar School where he was School Vice-Captain. He first got to understand the positive power of boarding in his gap year teaching at Budhanilkantha School north of Kathmandu. Alastair took a First in Natural Sciences at Trinity College, Cambridge, where he was President of the College's Student Union. After completing his PGCE at Cambridge, he began his career at Eton as a teacher of Biology. There he became a Deputy House Master and held several extra-curricular responsibilities, including command of the CCF. Alastair then spent nine years at Winchester, where he was Master in College and a member of the Senior Management Team. Alastair was Deputy Head Master at Harrow for nearly four years, from 2012, before he moved to Repton as Headmaster. He returned to Harrow as Head Master in April 2019. He has retained his interests in outdoor activity and is Contingent Commander of the Harrow Rifle Corps. He remains committed to scholarship, teaching electives on Human Evolution and Consciousness. He delivers a number of academic talks including on Harrow’s Giants of Old. Alastair is developing a process of strategic development of boys boarding in the 21st century and access to it for boys of all backgrounds and integrated working with local partners. He is a governor at Aysgarth, Orley Farm, Dulwich Prep London (and a regular prep school visitor) and a member of Park High School, and has acted as an independent reviewer in the appraisal process of senior school headteachers. He is currently the Secretary for HMC London Division.