Discovery Summer intensive English language courses

Jane Merrick - Managing Director
Mary Shipley - Manager
Leo Child - Academic Manager
Nigel Heritage - Development Consultant

Jane Merrick

Managing Director

Mary Shipley


Leo Child

Academic Manager

Nigel Heritage


About Us

Discovery Summer is a family-owned company, founded in 2002. The owner, Jane Merrick, and her team have extensive experience in running summer schools. The Head Office team of six, together with three external Consultants with specialist knowledge in education, dedicate their time throughout the year to developing innovative programmes for children, teenagers and families.

In our July 2014 British Council inspection, Discovery Summer was awarded 13 strengths out of a possible 15. This makes us joint 5th in the ranking of all accredited English Language Schools in the UK and the top multi-centre summer school in the UK. As such, it is named by the EL Gazette as a Centre of Excellence. Click here to read our report

In 2016 we welcomed students of 69 different nationalities. Most students come by recommendation, either from family or friends, or from our network of international representatives. Many students return summer after summer.

Discovery Summer currently runs courses in eight centres; in six of the most outstanding independent boarding schools around the country and in two well-appointed teaching centres in Kensington, London. The student experience is hugely enhanced by living and studying in these outstanding campuses with excellent facilities.

We offer a wide range of courses to suit all ages and abilities. In addition to our highly popular English & Multi-Activity programmes offered at five centres, we also run a Sports/Dance Academy + English to appeal to those who want intensive, professional sports/dance coaching with English classes.

Every year we find students are arriving with more advanced levels of English. They therefore may need a different sort of challenge. On our Discovery Plus and Pre-College Experience programmes we are teaching subjects in English (CLIL). Whilst building on their English skills, these students benefit from learning new subjects in a way which is fun, interactive and stimulating.

In Kensington, our full and half day courses (Monday to Friday) are designed for families visiting London over the summer months. We accept children from as young as 5. As we also run courses for teenagers and adults, the whole family can study in the same building.

In 2016 over 60% of our summer staff had worked with us in previous years. This makes for continuity and fosters an environment new staff can quickly learn 'best practice' methods from their more experienced colleagues. On our residential courses, we offer an exceptional level of pastoral care with at least one staff member for every five students.

Discovery Summer first introduced the idea of resident 'English Student Hosts' in 2002. They now make up around 10% of all students at our residential students. The total involvement of these English children (the same age as the international students) enables English to be the natural language of communication throughout the day. Our international students learn 'colloquial' English from native speakers - as well as making lasting friendships.

Our short, intensive courses combine learning with a great 'British' experience. By learning new skills, trying new activities and enjoying new experiences - in English - our students discover talents they never thought they had! They get to know our culture, our country, make British friends and share this experience with new friends from many cultures around the world. But, most of all, they have lots of fun, gain enormous confidence and leave wanting to relive the whole experience again the next summer.

We look forward to welcoming you this summer.