Edit Content

Thigiri Hilltop, Thigiri
P.O. Box 43045-00100, Nairobi, Kenya

Tel: 0700-DURHAM (0700-387426)
Email: info@durhamkenya.com

About Us

  1. Home
  2. »
  3. About Us

A Durham Education​

A Durham education is one that inspires, nurtures and encourages students through the provision of the finest quality teaching coupled with extensive opportunities to enable our students to achieve. Our excellent teachers encourage students to think creatively, to apply knowledge and skills successfully and imaginatively, and to constantly challenge themselves whilst building ‘Confidence for Life’ in a positive and supportive environment.

Durham Kenya is committed to delivering an education that is engaging, challenging, motivating and fun. Using a holistic and rigorous approach to education, our students learn through stimulating and creative experiences, in the classroom and beyond, in lessons and co-curricular activities. We aim to ensure that every Durham student’s experience of school is positive and productive laying the foundation for academic success.

Educational Ethos

Our core values of Moral integrity, Ambition, Responsibility and Kindness are the MARK of a Durham education and underpin all our teaching and learning at Durham. We aim to develop a love of lifelong learning coupled with a culture of perseverance in the face of challenge so that students can flourish emotionally, socially, academically and physically. Children are encouraged to challenge themselves, think critically, explore different ways of doing things, reflect on their learning, collaborate and be a team player.

We believe this is fundamental in developing a child’s sense of well-being, nurturing their resilience, self-esteem, sense of respect for others and sense of social responsibility.

Our Mission

Our Mission is to provide students with a rounded education; one which inspires and nurtures a love of lifelong learning, an aspiration for achievement, respect for others, and ‘Confidence for Life’.

Our Aims

Within a community shaped by moral integrity and kindness, Durham Kenya aims to cultivate responsibility, respect and ambition to ensure that every student can thrive, be happy and make a positive mark in the world.

The three pillars of a Durham School which support this aim and shape the environment where students can learn and grow are:

Academic challenge: providing students a lifelong appetite for learning

Pastoral care: supporting students emotional, moral and spiritual strength

Co-curricular opportunities: providing opportunities to enrich and develop the individual, fostering collaboration, teamwork and leadership.

We do this by nurturing and supporting our students to become:

  • Thinkers who can research, evaluate, innovate, solve and create both collaboratively and independently
  • Individuals who are reflective, emotionally resilient, and effective communicators
  • Global citizens who act with responsibility and humility and are ready to make a positive contribution to society

Our Values

We believe that it is essential that children have a good grounding in the basics and we concentrate on the teaching of reading, including a daily phonics programme, developing writing skills and vocabulary and increasing familiarity and confidence with numbers.

At the end of the Early Years foundation Stage, pupils move seamlessly into Key Stage One (KS1) which comprises Year 1 and Year 2. Key Stage 1 is a two-year phase, covering the 5 to 7 years age range.

Principles of Learning

  • All children are capable of achieving positive early learning and developmental outcomes and there should be high expectations for all young children. Through ongoing formative assessment, teachers track each child’s learning and development and plan their next learning steps.
  • Children learn to be strong and independent through positive relationships. Teachers are supportive and responsive to each child’s needs, feelings and interests and diversity is valued and respected.
  • The learning environment plays a key role in supporting and extending children’s development and learning. Young children learn and develop through being active in the world around them. They explore, investigate, observe and experience their world through engagement with a variety of materials and interactions with both peers and adults. Teachers nurture the EYFS characteristics of effective learning: Playing and exploring, Active learning, Creating and thinking critically, through the continuous free-flow provision of learning experiences that spark curiosity and interest to enable children to use their emerging knowledge and skills in purposeful ways.
  • Children develop and learn in different ways and at different rates. Multiple learning activities and opportunities are offered to challenge, engage and meet each child’s individual readiness, learning style and interests.
  • Parents are partners. Parents are encouraged to be actively engaged with their child’s early education. Ongoing communication and an active partnership are encouraged to ensure positive outcomes.


All pupils of a Durham School automatically become members of the Old Dunelmian (OD) Society upon leaving the School, currently with over 5,000 members.

The Society exists for the benefit of ODs, who undoubtedly make firm, lifelong and lasting friendships while at Durham School. What many ODs have found is having returned or attended a function after a gap (sometimes of many years), how good it is to be reacquainted with former teachers and old friends.

The excellent reputation that the School enjoys is in no small part due to how successful its alumni are. Durham School produces confident individuals who are well-rounded, intelligent, innovative, and effective in their chosen professional fields. For a glimpse of the breadth of careers pupils from Durham School have excelled in, please see our ‘Confidence for Life’ publication.

Testimonial: Judge Peter Herbert OBE

“Resident now in Kenya, I am delighted to hear Durham will be establishing a school here in Nairobi and I am in no doubt that it will quickly become an asset for East Africa.

The pastoral care, sport and academic challenges that Durham School provided in my early days clearly prepared me for later life; becoming a human rights barrister, Vice Chair of the Metropolitan Police Authority, a part time Judge and receiving an OBE from the Queen.

Then under the Headship of Mr. Adamson, I have fond memories of Durham, playing tip and run cricket mixed with Latin and extensive homework, and successes on the athletics track resulting in my winning the Victor Ludorum: the cup with my name on should still be in the trophy cabinet!”

Peter Herbert Bio >

Our Mascots

The story behind the creation of our mascots is simple, but says a lot about Durham International.

Pupils at Durham School UK were challenged to come up with a design that showed its partnership with Durham International School in Nairobi. Whilst we received many excellent images from children of all ages, this delightful drawing from Charlotte Aiyenibe, a Year 10 student, was the favourite!

This competition illustrates the strong links between our two schools and demonstrates how Durham works to foster and promote the creativity of its pupils.

The mascots of Durham International School are a lion cub and an elephant calf, each holding a balloon (one with a Durham School crest and the other with a Durham International School crest).

Our mascots reflect the spirit of Kenya and the close ties between the Schools – referencing the lion within the School crest together with our first honorary enrollee, ‘Roho’, an orphan elephant calf rescued by the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust in Kenya and adopted by the School. Read more

The artwork has being recreated and is proudly displayed in the entrance foyer of Durham International School.

Floreat Dunelmia – Let Durham Flourish


Current Job Vacancies

We have the following exciting opportunities to become part of the Durham Kenya community.

Head of School

For a preliminary, confidential conversation about the role with Jean Sullivan, Head of International Search, or Keith Clark, Head of International Leadership Appointments, please contact jeansullivan@rsacademics.com.

Further, detailed information including the candidate brief and information on how to apply is available on https://www.rsacademics.com/current-vacancies/durham-kenya/ 

Key Stage 2 Teacher

If you are a dedicated professional, a good and supportive colleague, and possess excellent interpersonal skills, please complete the Application Form below and submit this together with a covering letter and a CV (optional – maximum 2 pages). 

It is ‘our people’ that make Durham International School so special. All our teachers are skilled and experienced practitioners, each with a passion for Durham Kenya.

If you are dedicated professional, a good and supportive colleague, and possess excellent inter-personal skills, please complete the Application Form below and submit this together with a covering letter:

All applications must be accompanied with a completed Application Form (download below), a covering letter (not exceeding 2 pages) and a CV (optional – maximum 2 pages).