Voluntaries take place after school on Tuesdays and Thursdays. It is a time when younger pupils are encouraged to commit to activities and also a time when teachers offer support for learning.
Teachers from all departments lead Electives that reflect their own leisure interests or skills outside the classroom. Several Electives are run by senior pupils. Electives are an opportunity for pupils to broaden academic horizons, and explore artistic, literary, cultural or sporting activities without having to be tested on the experience. They offer a chance for pupils to delve deeper into things that really interest them, such as dissection and photography, as well as a chance to have a go at something that they have never done before, such as bridge or shooting. Above all, they are designed to be fun.
Pupils are encouraged to sign up for different nine-week courses from a choice of about 50 that run over the first two terms. Some of the courses are more academic, such as Junior Psychology, History of Art and Linguistics. Others introduce new skills, such as crochet, making books and playing cards. For pupils who like to keep active, there is coaching in fives, tennis, waterpolo and squash, while for those who prefer quiet time at the end of a busy day, there are sessions for mindfulness and reading.
Academic surgeries offer time for one-on-one help with teachers to make sure that pupils are making progress that is in line with their academic ability.
As on any other afternoon, there is also time for music ensembles or individual instrumentalists to practise.