Parent Guide - EF Academy Oxford


Dear Parents,

Congratulations on your child’s admittance to EF Academy Oxford. It is with great pleasure that we welcome you into the EF Academy parent community!

Sending your child to an international boarding school is a big decision for any family to make. You obviously realize what opportunities await your child after an education at EF Academy and we commend you for opening this door for your child. Naturally, it may also be difficult to let your child go on and explore the world on their own.

We assure you that your child is in good hands. You can trust that both you and your child will be supported by EF Academy throughout their time with us. This page outlines the most important information you need to know before your child arrives on campus and throughout their international high school education. You can rest assured that we will do our best to support your child in their personal and academic progression.

Should you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Thank you

Mark Fletcher-Single, Head of School, EF Academy Oxford

EF Academy community

EF Academy opens a world of opportunities for high school students by providing them with a superior education abroad, thorough preparation for university and a future that knows no borders.

Expectations of students

We expect our students to be academically focused, attend all classes, and be ambitious, engaged, independent, compassionate, enthusiastic, responsible and proud. We also expect them to respect their fellow classmates and show appreciation for the differences in values and cultures that they will experience.

Expectations of parents

We expect parents to be supportive, provide encouragement and be an active and participatory presence. At the same time, you should give your child room to grow and become an independent, mature individual. Be respectful, patient and calm when you work with our staff to solve any issue that might come up and ensure that you read the Parental Consent and Code of Conduct with your child before they leave for EF Academy – make sure that your child knows what you and EF Academy expect.

What you can expect from us

There will always be someone available for your child whenever they need support and they will live and study in a secure and safe environment. We are dedicated to helping your child reach their goals and preparing them for an international future. You can expect that we will do our utmost to see your child succeed. Our mission is to open your child’s world and give them access to a future that knows no borders.


Prepare your child for the new adventure on which they are about to embark. Talk together about how you plan to handle being away from each other and review all the material you have received from EF Academy in order to make sure you are equally informed about your child’s time in school with us.

Code of Conduct

As every family has rules, EF Academy has its own rules and guidelines that we expect our students and parents to follow. Read the Parental Consent and Code of Conduct together to make sure both you and your child are fully aware of what is expected from our school. Be sure to read through the Student Handbook, which you will receive from the school in August, so you and your child are both familiar with how we manage situations when rules are not followed.

Final transcripts

Final transcripts should be submitted before students depart. All students are conditionally accepted based on final transcripts. These transcripts will be needed for all students when applying to universities. Please send the final original and translated transcripts to your child’s Pathway Manager by 1 July (for students departing in September).

Health certificate

The Medical Declaration must be completed, signed and returned to your local admissions office by 1 July (for students departing in September). If your child has a pre-existing health condition this must be communicated in English prior to arrival. The report should give details of their illness or condition, any medicines they are taking and any future treatment they need. Please note that any misstated or omitted information regarding your son’s/daughter’s medical/psychological history may affect his or her acceptance to or continued participation in the program.


Please ensure you meet all the payment deadlines as this guarantees your child’s place in the school. These deadlines represent the date when we expect the payments to be in our accounts, so please make the deposits at an appropriate time in advance. The balance of the full course fee should be paid no later than 60 days before departure. You will find payment instructions on the invoice.

Important: Please clearly mark your payment with the student number shown on the invoice and your child’s name. It is vital that we can identify your payment in order to register the transfer and to avoid delays or unnecessary payment reminders. Please also add your bank’s transfer fees, as these are not included in the price.

Connect on social media

Encourage your child to join our pre-departure Facebook and Instagram groups. Students can take the opportunity to chat with future classmates and begin the process of bonding before departure. Contact your local admissions office to receive the links to these groups.


Apply for your child’s visa as soon as possible, if they will require one. Processing is often a lengthy procedure and starting early will avoid delays. You will have help and guidance from the EF Academy team, but it’s important for you to learn about the requirements yourself as well. There is additional paperwork necessary for the UK Student Visa application. Contact your local admissions office for any questions.


This time is often emotional for both students and parents. If your child is traveling alone, please make sure they have all the necessary documents, transportation tickets, visa (if necessary), and the school’s telephone number in case of delays or any other issues that might arise.

Travel information

You must plan for your child to arrive in school on the specified arrival date. For new students joining us at the beginning of the academic year, they should arrive on the date specified on the Academic Calendar. For Oxford, students should arrive on August 31- September 1, 2023. All new students have a school-organised airport transfer and they must use this service, unless you are travelling with them and have informed the school. Please send us all of your child’s travel information (flight numbers, departure and arrival times, arrival terminal) no later than one month prior to departure. Please note that transfers are only organized from the airport to the school on the designated arrival date.

On-call Phone: +44 7908479976

School Phone: +44 1865 759667

Pocket money

You should plan to provide your child with sufficient pocket money for each month. Most students spend around £300 (GBP) per month on basic needs such as laundry, toiletries, cell phone, transport, leisure activities and snacks. Parents should ensure that students have access to this minimum amount every month.

Students should not keep large amounts of money on them or in their rooms, and although bringing some cash for the first few weeks is encouraged, students can set up a bank account after they arrive. More information will be communicated about this during the Welcome Days.

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Rules and disciplinary action

Your child has already signed EF Academy’s Code of Conduct to ensure both you and your child are fully informed of the rules and regulations. The Code of Conduct is in place in order to help students live together in a harmonious learning environment within a larger international community.

Students are expected to respect all members of the community, respect the local and national laws and respect the school’s property.

The established rules and regulations govern attendance, illness, curfew, visitors, employment, drugs and alcohol, discrimination, bullying, pornography, gambling and local laws.

Please read the Parental Consent and Code of Conduct, along with your child’s Student Handbook (which you will receive in August) to familiarize yourself with the school’s rules and the country’s laws.

You will be informed if your child breaks any rules or laws and you will receive copies of the warnings. These warnings should be taken seriously. If a student does not make the necessary improvements or breaks another major program rule, he or she will be dismissed from the program and will be sent home.

A student will be immediately expelled if they break a major program or school rule or a national law. No prior warnings are necessary in these cases. It’s important to keep in mind that an expulsion means the student will lose their visa to study in the country and will not likely be able to receive a new visa with EF Academy or any other school in that country. In the event of expulsion, no refund will be given.

Students are responsible for any damage caused by them to school property. You will be notified by the school should this happen. EF Academy will reimburse the security deposit less any potential deductions within 90 days after a student has finished their program or, for any other reason, has left EF Academy.


Pathway Managers

Your main point of contact is currently the EF Academy Admissions Office through which you have applied. However, once enrolled, each student will be assigned a Pathway Manager (PM) who will be the person responsible for communication between you and the school. The Pathway Manager will establish a relationship with your child from the very beginning and will be the person that will follow up on all aspects of your child’s life, both in and out of the classroom.

Our aim is to make sure that your child is well taken care of, and the Pathway Managers are at the core of ensuring your child feels safe and secure. Pathway Managers will always be available to guide and advise your child and they focus on building trust and mutual respect in order to facilitate your child’s success and well-being while in our care. When you want to get in touch with the school about your child, the Pathway Managers will be the best person for you to email or call.

You will receive the contact details of your child’s Pathway Manager after they have enrolled as part of the EF Academy Pathway Journey, which connects students with key school staff and supports students in their preparation for departure. If you do not speak English, we will locate a staff member who can assist you. If your language is not represented at our school, your local admissions representative will be able to assist with translation or will communicate with the school on your behalf.

Healthcare and insurance

Erika Travel Insurance Coverage

All EF Academy students are insured with Erika Travel Insurance (except US residents). Our school staff are familiar with this insurance and can assist you in the event of an emergency

The Erika group policy is tailor-made for EF Academy and Erika covers health, theft, travel and liability-related claims. It meets all requirements and there is additional limited coverage for non-accidental dental treatments, mental or psychological health disorders, and for pre-existing conditions that deteriorate during your child’s time away from home. Erika insurance also includes a rider that covers up to $1,000 in behavioral health/mental health counselling or treatment. In the US, the cost for an appointment with a psychiatrist can be as high as $400, and a session with a social worker $200. Hospitalization or intensive treatment services can be as much as $2,000 a day.

Erika has 24-hour emergency assistance service. All contact details can be found on the insurance guide and in the general conditions booklet. In the US, you can visit a network doctor (900,000 doctors and hospitals are part of the network) and you do not have to pay the bill upfront. The doctor will send the invoice straight to Erika’s US claims agent. Otherwise, there is a larger deductible for doctor’s visits outside of the network. Students are covered by this insurance from the time they depart until their return home. Students are not covered if and when they return to their home country during the course of the program. US residents are required to provide evidence of personal insurance by sending a copy of the insurance coverage to the admissions office. EF Academy requires a policy covering the equivalent of GBP 320,000/USD 500,000 third party liability insurance.

For more information about Erika Insurance, visit:

Supplementary costs

Details of what is covered in the program fee can be found in the terms and conditions. Please take note of the following list of costs that are not included in the program fee:

Non-mandatory school trips outside of the scheduled agenda*

Extra tutoring for English or subject-specific courses**

Costs of retaking exams or subject credits

Peripatetic music lessons

* Extra costs incurred from co-curricular activities will require parental consent and will therefore not arise unexpectedly.

** Costs for tutoring will not be applied before you are notified.


If a student wants to change classes after school starts, they should meet with their Course Co-cordinator to discuss the best course of action. Students may adjust courses within the first two weeks of the Academic Year, but most students do not need to do this as they will have had an Academic Pathway Meeting before arriving on campus.

Being away from home for the first time, getting to know a new country and environment, meeting new people and settling in is challenging for many students. It takes time to adjust, and our staff members – particularly Residence Team – are available to assist all students with concerns that might come up. We always try our best to make the start of the school year as smooth and successful as possible. From our experience, most issues get resolved in the first couple of months and we will be available to help with any issues, making sure we have tried everything to solve the issue before we make any permanent changes.

Yes, we have dedicated EAL teachers in school to assist students included in the cost of tuition. Where significant extra intervention is needed we can provide extra lessons for your child after school or during the weekends at an extra cost.

The Pathway Manager is the person you should reach out to in the first instance. They will be able to support with any questions you may have about your child. There is a large network of support for your child in school and this is not limited to the Pathway Managers, but also includes House parents, tutors, teachers, medical staff and Assistant Heads.

In case of illness or injury, the on-site school nurse will take care of your child and make sure they get appropriate medication or medical attention. It is very important that the Medical Declaration (UK) is filled out in detail, with all relevant information included, in order for us to give your child the help they need.

Additionally, it is vital that the Parental Consent Form is filled out completely with signatures in all applicable spaces so that we have the authority to administer medication if necessary. We understand that it might be difficult to learn that your child is ill or injured while being so far away from home, but please be assured that we will do our best to care for your child in your absence.

If you would like to visit your child during the academic year, we suggest that the weekend is the best time to do this. Please contact your child’s Pathway Manager in advance so that we can make the necessary arrangements.

All of our academic programs are demanding and require students to attend classes and to follow the scheduled school hours throughout the school year. In addition to the need for students to stay on top of their academic requirements, there are strict limits to excused absences. As an EF Academy student, your child is required to stay in school while classes are in session. The academic year has long vacations between each term and this would be the best time to gather the family for a vacation. We encourage taking a break where the academic year allows, but please ensure that your child arrives back on campus in time for the first day of classes. Unexcused absences, which apply to school days missed because of extended vacations between terms, can jeopardize visa status; additionally, there is a strong statistical correlation between attendance and academic attainment. Please see the academic calendar at the end of this handbook for official term dates.

No. school is closed during the winter break and all students need to leave campus.

We encourage all our students to leave campus during spring break. This is a good opportunity for the students to take some time away from school. If for some reason your child cannot leave during this time, you can pay a spring break supplement and your child can remain on campus. Please note that your child may need to change accommodation during this time. There are no formal lessons or activities during this period and any student remaining during this period must still abide by curfew and all school rules and regulations.

For Year 2 students, we have a revision week during the first half of the Spring break.

You will receive a link to the Parent Portal at the beginning of the school term. You can use this link to access information about your child’s schedule, attendance (average and breakdown per subject), grades and assessments, as well as what clubs and activities they are part of. You can also keep track of progress meetings your child has in school with various members of staff, such as their Pathway Manager. We highly recommend that you check the Parent Portal regularly to keep track of your child’s progress.

We are here to support your child on their academic journey with multiple resources and tools they can take advantage of to be more successful. This includes after-school supervised study, additional support from teachers outside of lesson time and private subject-specific tutoring (note – there is an extra fee for private tutoring). It is important that your child ask for help when things are not going so well, and that you encourage your child to say something to an adult in school. Your child is expected to meet with their teachers and/or Pathway Manager when requested to do so and at any time they should speak up and say if they are struggling so that extra support can be arranged. Asking for help is an essential first step. Your child’s progress is monitored and assessed at regular intervals throughout the academic year. This is reported to you through the Parent Portal. You should access the Parent Portal on a regular basis for feedback on your child’s progress.

For students enrolled in the A-Level program, re-sits are only available the following year during the regular exam period in May/June. Any wish to re-sit a subject should be discussed with the student’s advisors and teachers after the grade has been set. As with all re-sits, there will be an extra cost involved.

IB students can re-sit exams during one of the two yearly official IB examination sessions. They are in November and May. Exams are priced per unit and there may be extra costs involved with exam re-sits.

We will always do our best to support our students achieve their goals and improve their grades if necessary. Please know that our counselors and advisors are here to help you and are willing to give guidance and assistance when needed.

*** Please be aware that we cannot guarantee that your child will pass all the courses/exams required to graduate.

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