Founder’s Awards

Excellence without Exclusivity

Founder’s Awards is the name that we have introduced for the overall St Paul’s bursary programme to reposition the scheme and allow recipients to feel confident about their part in the school community.

John Colet founded St Paul’s School in 1509 with a generous endowment for 153 boys “of all nacions and countres indifferently” to be educated. Today, we are a school of over 1500 pupils with a strong connection to our founder’s philosophy to champion excellence without exclusivity, widening access to a St Paul’s education for bright boys, regardless of financial or personal background.

Supporting talented children to study at St Paul’s serves our wider community, enriching the education of all of our pupils through a greater breadth of life experiences, beliefs and ideas, in addition to often raising aspirations beyond the St Paul’s community.

We are proud to currently support 132 pupils through our Founder’s Awards (our bursary programme), enabling ambitious and bright boys to attend St Paul’s. Strictly means-tested, our bursaries target lower-income families, ranging from 5-100% of fees, in addition to extras that ensure the full St Paul’s experience. Since the inception of the Shaping Our Future campaign in 2019, the programme has already supported over 200 families, with 1 in 11 pupils currently being bursary recipients.

We have set ourselves a target of fundraising £7m over the next two years, which would allow us to grow our bursary offering to support 10% (approximately 151) of our pupil cohort on bursaries each year. Unlike many schools that benefit from an endowment, St Paul’s is dependent on philanthropic support.

Bursary Statistics


pupils hold a Founder’s Award in 2023-24

£ 0 .7 M

spent on Founder’s Awards in 2022-23


pupils are in receipt of a 75%> bursary in 2023-24


pupils are in receipt of a 100%> bursary in 2023-24

Different types of Founder’s Awards

Within the general bursary fund, we have several opportunities for our community to come together to show their support, which can be found below. Should you choose to direct your gift to one of these specific funds, more information can be found on our Ways to Give page.

Colet Foundation Bursary
Thomas Gresham Bursary
Oliver Sacks Bursary

Named Bursaries

Whilst all boys applying for a bursary are assessed on academic merit, over the years we have introduced several named bursaries, thanks to the generous benefaction of individuals and trusts within our community. These are awarded either for specific areas of excellence that the donors wish to see amplified or to highlight and attract pupils across the broad range of the curriculum at St Paul’s. Two good examples of this are given below. We have ambition in the longer term to set up bursaries that encourage pupils to apply to St Paul’s who have specific interests in areas such as the Humanities and History. To find out more about how you can support in this way, please contact Ellie Sleeman, Director of Development and Engagement, at


Gissing Family Founder’s Award
South Square Trust Bursary

Meet Our Bursary Ambassadors

Roma Rodriguez OP (2013-18)

When I arrived, I was very aware of how fortunate I was to have the opportunity to spend my next five years in one of the finest academic institutions in the world...
Roma Rodriguez

Ethan Chan OP (2013-14)

I am living proof that when bright boys from disadvantaged backgrounds come to St Paul’s they will thrive and maximise their potential. I was fortunate to...
Ethan Chan

Peter Kraushar OP (1947-53)

Without the education at St Paul’s, my life would have been very different. As a five-year-old boy my family and I were evacuated from our native Poland when...
Peter Kraushar

Peter Causton OP (1983-88)

I will never forget the way the school helped me out when my parents split up just before I started A levels. Without a bursary I would not have been able to...
Peter Causton