Headmaster's Welcome

I am delighted to be able to offer a warm welcome to Charterhouse. I am personally very thrilled to be part of the School at this exciting time in its history.

Whether you join us aged 13 or 16, you will be developing throughout your time at Charterhouse. Some changes will be subtle – little things like having more confidence to make new friends or take on a responsibility. Others will be more striking: leaving the School with the proven ability to think in different ways and to study independently. You’ll also develop awareness of our set of core values – responsibility, open-mindedness, perseverance, moral courage and kindness. We believe these are key to being successful at this fantastic school and will be crucial for success in adult life, alongside all the skills and qualifications you will gain during your time with us.

Life at Charterhouse is always a partnership between the School and you, individually. We will make sure you are supported at every turn and that you feel comfortable, respected, safe and secure in your environment. In return we want you to take an active role in your own education, and take responsibility for it, not simply allowing others to educate you. From challenge and inspiration in the classroom to a vast range of different co-curricular activities, many of which are pupil led, there is a huge breadth of opportunity available to you here. Our role is to help you to navigate these options, to make the most of every day, and to have a lot of fun along the way.

Whether you are with us for five years or two in the Sixth Form, we want you to head out into the world ready to contribute something new to it.

I hope our website gives you a sense of what a busy, purposeful and ambitious school Charterhouse is, and an understanding of the values that we share, but it is no substitute for a visit. I do hope we see you here soon.

Dr Alex Peterken

Dr Alex Peterken biography

Born in 1974 in Guildford, Surrey, Alex Peterken was educated at The Prebendal School, Chichester from age 7 to 13. During this time, he was both Head Chorister and Head Boy. At 13 he moved onto Eton College where he was a Music Exhibitioner and academic prize winner in History and Theology.

Alex gained a BA in Theology from the University of Durham, during which time he was also a Choral Scholar at Durham Cathedral. He then went on to gain an MA in Educational Management (London) and a Doctorate in Education, specialising in School Leadership (Surrey).

Alex’s first teaching post was at Charterhouse where he spent 11 successful years. He held several senior posts, including Head of Theology and Head of Higher Education & Careers Guidance. His final six years at Charterhouse were spent as Housemaster of Saunderites. He joined Cheltenham College as Deputy Headmaster in 2008 and was Headmaster from September 2010 to December 2017.  During his tenure at Cheltenham College, the school grew from 550 to 700 pupils, three new boarding Houses were opened and there were record exam results at GCSE and A Level. Innovation in the curriculum was also a feature – from independent research projects in Year 9 to the new mini-MBA programme at Sixth Form and plans for a new BEHIVE [Business and Economics Hub for Innovation and Entrepreneurship].  He returned to Charterhouse as Headmaster in January 2018.

Alex is a devoted family man who is passionate about co-education and helping pupils achieve their academic best, whilst stretching their co-curricular talents and preparing them for life beyond school.  Alex is Vice-Chair of ISEB, a former Governor at Pinewood School and now Governor at both Brambletye School and Lambrook School and sits on the Guildford Diocesan Board of Education. Out of school, Alex enjoys his busy family life. He is married to Henny and has six children: Verity, Dorothea, Thomas, Poppy, William and Martha.

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