|Type||Preparatory day and boarding school and Pre-Prep school|
|Motto||Latin: Arduus ad Solem|
("Reach for the Sun")
|Religious affiliation(s)||Church of England|
|Founder||A. E. Clarke|
|Department for Education URN||123288 Tables|
|Head||Emma Goldsmith (Prep); Annie McNeile (Pre-Prep)|
|Age||4 to 13|
|Colour(s)||Navy and yellow|
|Former pupils||Old Dragons|
The Dragon School is one school on two sites in Oxford, England. The Dragon Pre-Prep (children aged 4–7) and Prep School (children aged 8–13) are both co-educational schools. The Dragon Prep School was founded in 1877 as the Oxford Preparatory School. It takes day pupils and boarders.
Originally established for boys, the Dragon School also accepted a small number of day girls with a close connection to the school, first admitting girls as boarders in 1994. The Dragon School is a feeder school to many independent schools, including Winchester College, Eton College, Shrewsbury School, Oundle School, Cheltenham Ladies' College, Harrow School, Radley College, Rugby School, Marlborough College, Wellington College, Canford School, St Edward's School, Oxford, Stowe School and Abingdon School.
The Dragon educates children from aged 4 to 13 in two sites in North Oxford: Bardwell Road and Richards Lane. Boarding starts at 8 and there are 10 boarding houses, including one weekly-boarding house.
Teaching started in September 1877 at rooms in Balliol Hall, located in St Giles', central Oxford, under A. E. Clarke. The school expanded and moved within two years to 17 Crick Road, which became known as "School House". Charles Cotterill Lynam (known as the "Skipper") took over as headmaster in 1886.
In 1894, Lynam took out a lease on land at the current site at Bardwell Road in central North Oxford, just to the west of the River Cherwell. £4,000 was raised through subscriptions from local parents for the erection of new school buildings and the move was completed within a year. The school was known as Oxford Preparatory School and also Lynam's, but gradually its current name was adopted.
The Dragon School became the second school to take part in the Harrow History Prize in 1895, and many of its pupils have won this over the years, an early winner being Kit Lynam. The school was run for many years by the Lynam family.
The school has become notable for its large number of eminent alumni.
The following have been Heads of the school, several from the Lynam family:
- A. E. Clarke 1877–1886
- C. C. Lynam ("Skipper") 1886–1920
- A. E. Lynam ("Hum") 1920–1942
- J. H. R. Lynam ("Joc") 1942–1965
- R. K. Ingram ("Inky") 1965–1989
- M. W. A. Gover ("Guv") 1972–1989 (head of day pupils, co-headmaster with "Inky")
- N. P. V. Richardson 1989–1992
- H. E. P. Woodcock 1992–1993
- Roger S. Trafford 1993–2002
- John R. Baugh 2002–2017
- Crispin Hyde-Dunn 2017–2021
- Emma Goldsmith 2021–present
Former pupils of the Dragon School are referred to as Old Dragons. The following people were pupils at one time:
- Poppy Adams, writer
- Hatti Archer, long-distance runner
- Alexander Aris (born 1973), elder son of Nobel Prize-winning democracy and human rights campaigner Aung San Suu Kyi and Michael Aris
- Baron Armstrong of Ilminster (1927–2020), civil servant
- Henry Barratt (born 1983), rugby union player
- Sir Gawain Bell (1909–1995), colonial administrator, Governor of Northern Nigeria
- Michael Beloff (born 1942), barrister, President of Trinity College, Oxford
- Sir John Betjeman (1906–1984), poet, Poet Laureate from 1972
- Sir Lennox Berkeley (1903–1989), composer
- Christopher Booker (1937–2019), journalist and author
- Alain de Botton (born 1969), writer and television producer
- Arthur Bowen (born 1998), supporting actor in the Harry Potter movie series
- Humphry Bowen (1929–2002), chemist and botanist
- Jonathan Bowen (born 1956), computer scientist
- Julian Brazier (born 1953), politician
- Henry Brett (born 1974), polo player, captain England polo team 2003–06
- Lord Sebastian Ulick Browne (born 1964) 12th Marquess of Sligo
- James Bruce Lockhart (1941–2018) diplomat, intelligence officer, author, and artist
- Lord Bruce-Lockhart (1942–2008), politician
- Sir Giles Bullard (1926–1992), diplomat
- Sir Julian Bullard (1928–2006), diplomat
- John Campbell (born 1958), economist
- Humphrey Carpenter (1946–2005), journalist, author, and musician
- Tristram Cary (1925–2008), composer
- Simon Cawkwell (born 1946), stock market commentator
- Hal Cazalet, musician
- Christopher Cazenove (1943–2010), actor
- Jonathan Cecil (1939–2011), actor
- Leonard Cheshire (1917–1992), World War II RAF pilot and activist for the disabled
- Colin Clark (1905–1989), economist
- Sebastian Croft (born 2001), actor
- Hugh Dancy (born 1975), actor
- Jack Davenport (born 1973), actor
- Quentin Davies, politician
- Ralph Henry Carless Davis (1918–1991), historian
- Dame Cressida Dick (born 1960), Commissioner (head of) Metropolitan Police London
- Oliver Dimsdale (born 1972), actor
- David Fasken (1932–2006), English cricketer and businessman
- Rick Fenn (born 1953) rock guitarist, member of 10cc
- Lady Antonia Fraser (born 1932, née Pakenham), historical author
- Bernard Gadney, (1909–2000), rugby player and educator
- Douglas Gairdner, (1910–1979), pediatrician
- Hugh Gaitskell (1906–1963), politician, leader of the Labour Party from 1955 to 1963
- Lord Geidt, Private Secretary to Queen Elizabeth II
- Michael Gough (1916–1973), archaeologist
- J. B. S. Haldane (1892–1964), geneticist and evolutionary biologist
- Air Chief Marshal Sir Donald Hardman
- Tim Henman (born 1974), tennis player
- Tom Hiddleston (born 1981), actor
- Sir Tony Hoare (born 1934), computer scientist
- Brent Hoberman, co-founder of lastminute.com
- Tom Hollander (born 1967), actor
- Peter Hopkirk (born 1930), journalist, author
- Air Marshal Sir Peter Horsley (1921–2001), Royal Air Force commander
- Frances Houghton (born 1980), rower and Olympic silver medallist
- Lord Hunt (born 1942), leading authority on turbulence modelling
- Sir Tim Hunt, biochemist and Nobel laureate
- Edward Impey (born 1962), historian, archaeologist, museum curator, Master of the Armouries and Director General of the Royal Armouries
- Brian Inglis (1916–1993), journalist and historian
- Max Irons (born 1985), actor
- Pico Iyer (born 1957), journalist and author
- Peter Jay (born 1937), television journalist, and former BBC economics editor
- Patrick Jenkin PC (Lord Jenkin of Roding, born 1926), politician
- David Jessel, journalist
- Stephen Jessel, journalist
- C. E. M. Joad, philosopher
- Dom Joly (born 1968), comedian
- Sir John Kendrew (1917–1997), molecular biologist and Nobel Laureate
- Andrew Lack (born 1953), biologist and botanist
- Ben Lamb, actor
- Hugh Laurie (born 1959), comedian, musician and actor
- Alan Macfarlane, anthropologist and historian
- Lancelot Mallalieu, politician
- Henry Marsh, (born 1950), neurosurgeon and author
- Oliver Milburn, actor
- Hugh Miles (born 1977), journalist and author
- Naomi Mitchison (née Haldane, 1897–1999), novelist and poet
- Philip Moore, Baron Moore of Wolvercote (1921–2009), civil servant and personal private secretary to the Queen
- Sir John Mortimer (1923–2009), playwright, barrister and novelist
- Sir Peter Newsam (born 1928), educator (also staff)
- Sir Roger Norrington (born 1934), musician and conductor
- Naji Abu Nowar
- Ed O'Brien (born 1968), musician (member of Radiohead)
- Rageh Omaar (born 1967), journalist and writer
- Julian Opie (born 1958), artist
- Stephen Oppenheimer (born 1947), genetic researcher and author
- Tom Penny (born 1977), skateboarder
- Ronnie Poulton-Palmer (born c.1890), killed in the First World War, rugby player
- Jonathan Pugh (born 1962), cartoonist
- William Pye (born 1938), sculptor
- Sir Timothy Raison (1929–2011), politician, journalist and author
- Jack Randle (1917–1944), distinguished serviceman, T/Captain, 2nd Bn. The Royal Norfolk Regiment
- Adrian Rawlins (born 1958), film and television actor
- Hugo Rittson-Thomas, photographer
- William Leefe Robinson (1895–1918), lieutenant, 39 Squadron, Royal Flying Corps
- Aubrey de Sélincourt (1894–1962), writer
- Nicholas Shakespeare (born 1957), journalist and novelist
- David Shukman
- Henry Shukman, poet
- Nevil Shute (1899–1960), novelist
- Sir John Slessor, Marshal of the Royal Air Force
- Sir John Smyth, serviceman, lieutenant, 15th Ludhiana Sikhs, Indian Army
- Richard Sorabji (born 1934), academic and historian of classical philosophy
- Timothy Sprigge (1932–2007), philosopher
- Jon Stallworthy (born 1935), academic and poet
- Robin Stevens (born 1988), children's author
- Rory Stewart (born 1973), politician, author and diplomat
- Galen Strawson (born 1952), philosopher and literary critic
- Christopher Tolkien (1924–2020), son of J. R. R. Tolkien
- Simon Tolkien (born 1959), novelist and son of Christopher Tolkien
- Basil Tuma (born 2005) Reading FC striker. (Inspired and mentored by the Gaps of 2017)
- Peter Tranchell (1922–1993), musician, composer, and teacher
- The 3rd Baron Tweedsmuir (1916–2008), politician, novelist and poet
- Sir Reginald Tyrwhitt, Royal Navy admiral
- Sam Waley-Cohen (born 1982), jockey and businessman
- Tom Ward (born 1971), actor
- Paul Watkins (born 1963), Booker Prize-nominated author
- Emma Watson (born 1990), actor
- Nicholas Wheeler (born 1965), businessman, founder of Charles Tyrwhitt
- Admiral Sir Hugo White (born 1939), Royal Navy admiral, Commander-in-Chief Fleet 1992–95
- Jack Whitehall (born 1988), comedian
- Benjamin Whitrow (1937–2017), actor
- Conrad Wolfram (born 1970), technologist
- Stephen Wolfram (born 1959), scientist and technology entrepreneur
- John Woodcock (1926–2021), cricket writer
- Rupert Wyatt (born 1972), writer and film maker
- Shaun Wylie (1913–2009), mathematician and World War II codebreaker
- Wayne Che Yip (born 1981), director
- Baroness Young (1926–2002), politician
- Bill Carritt, Communist revolutionary, Carritt family member, college lecturer, humanitarian aid organiser, campaigner for the Scottsboro Boys
- Noel Carritt, Communist revolutionary, Carritt family member, International Brigadier, head of biology at Dr Challoner's Grammar School
- Wychwood School, located at the opposite end of Bardwell Road
- "School web-site". Retrieved 8 November 2019.
- Jaques, C. H. (1977). "I: Beginnings". A Dragon Century: 1877 – 1977. Blackwell's. pp. 1–7.
- Jaques, C. H. (1977). "II: The Crick Road Era". A Dragon Century: 1877 – 1977. Blackwell's. pp. 7–21.
- Jaques, C. H. (1977). "III: To Bardwell Road". A Dragon Century: 1877 – 1977. Blackwell's. pp. 22–35.
- Jaques, C. H. (1977). "A Table showing the Dragon descendants, boys and staff, of Charles Lynam of Stock-on-Trent". A Dragon Century: 1877 – 1977. Blackwell's. pp. 10–11.
- Ramaswamy, Chitra (28 March 2016). "Welcome to Dragon School – the lair of the British acting elite". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 16 October 2017. Retrieved 16 October 2017.
- "Keith Ingram — Long-serving Dragon prep school headmaster who won the respect and affection of staff and pupils (obituary)". The Times. 12 February 2007.
- "Former Dragon School headmaster (obituary)". The Oxford Times. 15 February 2007.
- RKI — An appreciation of the life of Keith Ingram. Dragon School Trust. 2009. Archived from the original on 7 April 2014. Retrieved 21 August 2012.
- Hodgson, Godfrey (14 May 2005). "Michael Gover — Headmaster of the Dragon School and a guardian of its founding tradition (obituary)". The Independent.
- "Michael Gover (obituary)". The Times. 8 June 2005.
- "Dragon's new head inspired by Harry Potter icon". Oxford Times. 21 September 2017. p. 7.
- "Eminent Dragons". Dragon School. Archived from the original on 11 January 2018. Retrieved 11 January 2018.
- Stanford, Peter (22 June 2012). "The pain of Aung Sun Suu Kyi's sons, parted from their mother for 25 years". The Daily Telegraph. Archived from the original on 26 May 2014. Retrieved 21 April 2014.
- "Obituaries". Dragon School. Archived from the original on 13 October 2012. Retrieved 24 June 2012.
- "Rupert Lloyd • Producer, Noor Pictures".
- James Bruce Lockhart, Alan Macfarlane, Dragon Days: The Dragon School, Oxford, 1949–1955 (CreateSpace Independent Publishing, 2013, ISBN 978-1492129400)