Charitable status has been dependent on public benefit since 1601. Until now the Advancement of Education has been presumed to be charitable without evidence of public benefit. With the advent of the Charities Bill this presumption is removed and there is likely to be a requirement for independent schools to demonstrate that they provide public benefit to remain eligible for charitable status.
We aim to foster a ‘culture’ of social responsibility and thoughtfulness of others. We encourage groups as well as individuals to be enterprising and to think how best we can help. Our whole community is often involved, whether it is the pupils, teaching or non-teaching staff or families who come up with new ideas.
Our Charity Committee of boys and staff meets regularly to help with the selection of charities to support. This group is very much involved in the planning, organising and promoting of events. We also have an ongoing educational programme with visiting speakers.
Helping the Community
Various community groups come to the school for events: local Church and Scout groups as well as local primary schools use our facilities free of charge and the Burnham Beeches Half Marathon starts and ends in our grounds. Over the years our staff have provided academic support to the local schools in Design Technology, Science and Latin and the Junior School love having these local friends over to join them in their lessons. Sometimes at weekends a group of local pensioners comes over for tea, sandwiches and cakes with the occasional sing-song.
We have close social links with children from Abour Vale School www.arbourvale.slough.sch.uk who come to play and whose school the boys visit, as well as South Bucks Riding for the Disabled Association www.soutbucksrda.org for whom we bought a lovely New Forest bay mare in 2014.
Among regular charities we support we give food boxes to local homeless charities at Harvest Festival, we donate gifts from each boy to Home-Start www.hsslough.co.uk each Christmas and the boys select worthy charities to help at our annual summer fête. The Caldicott Caribbean Cricket initiative helps to finance coaching in schools and the boys send their used bats (with handles recovered by our boys!) to children in the West Indies.
Recently we have also raised funds by holding swimathons, sponsored walks, bake sales, climbing mountains, running, performing in concerts and hosting charitable sporting tournaments. Boys have also donated books and helped with the packaging to School-Aid www.school-aid.org for African schools, sent boxes to the troops in Afghanistan, as well as sports equipment and kit to a number of worthy charities wherever they may be needed.