The plural, "schools", refers to the school's "diamond structure." In effect, Dame Allan's consists of 4 different schools: the co-educational Junior School for years 4 to 6; the single sex boys' and girls' schools for years 7 to 11; and the co-educational sixth form (years 12 to 13).
2006 has seen the refurbishment of the English classrooms, bringing the rooms up to a modern standard with integrated facilities for the use of ICT. In 2007 refurbishment of existing buildings continued with a new library, Computer Resource Centre and ICT teaching rooms. These rooms are now spacious modern teaching areas, which are available to students during break, lunch and after school. 2008 so far has seen the opening of the all weather pitch and new tennis courts which have been constructed on the existing areas on the Fowberry Crescent site.
All schools are private, and potential candidates must pass written exams and an interview. The fees are currently (September 2008) around £2,894 per term in the Main Schools and £2,277 per term in the Junior Department. These fees include books and external examination entry fees, but do not include meals. Scholarships of up to 50% are available on the basis of academic merit, and bursaries of up to 100% are available on the basis of academic merit and financial need.
Being a private school, Dame Allan's does not strictly adhere to the national curriculum. It does enter all its students in public examinations such as GCSEs and A-levels, so the subjects taught are closely tied in to their national counterparts. All students must study English, mathematics, and the natural sciences to GCSE level, and it is strongly recommended that at least one foreign language be studied to this level. Sixth form students have a much wider range of study, with no mandatory subjects and the introduction of many new subjects in year 12, including business studies and theatre studies. Dame Allan's is an Anglican school.
In 2005 the school recorded its best ever set of exam results, including a handful of Top 5 results in several subjects, notably GCSE languages. Furthermore, two pupils were awarded 6 grade As at A-level. The school consistently performs to an extremely high standard in public examinations, with the girls' school often slightly outscoring the boy's school at GCSE level. The school has not yet been inspected by OFSTED but received a positive report from the Independent Schools Inspectorate in 2000.
A recent inspection summarised the schools as "a civilised and civilising community ... [which provides] a well-rounded education for pupils from the age of 8 to 18, based on a broad academic curriculum and supported by a modest range of extracurricular activities".