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Headmaster Shares Princethorpe's Vision For the Future

15 Mar

Yesterday evening, Thursday 14 March, Headmaster, Ed Hester, shared the College's vision for the future for the next five to ten years with a 150-strong audience drawn from across the Princethorpe Foundation family. 

Attendees included current parents from Princethorpe, Crackley Hall and the Crescent, along with parents of children who will be joining us in September, and past pupils, friends of the College, staff and trustees.

In his presentation Mr Hester gave feedback on the recent pupil and parent Questionnaires, highlighting responses to key questions including levels of happiness and progress amongst the pupils, satisfaction with the leadership and organisation of the school and parents likelihood to recommend the College to friends and family. 

Overall the questionnaires painted a very positive picture with the average satisfaction level across 50 questions being a very high 87%, and the pastoral care related questions over 95% satisfaction.

Mr Hester, said,"Whilst we are really pleased with the overall results, we will use all the feedback and the individual comments to help us further develop and improve the school."

Mr Hester commented on areas that had improved significantly since the last parental questionnaire in 2017, such as e-safety education, the school's policy on mobile phones and support and advice available for parents, and the measures that had been taken to improve these areas.

He outlined curriculum changes and the latest public examinations results and added-value measures, in which Princethorpe scores well above average for pupil's progress from GCSE to A-level.

One area that scored most highly in the questionnaire was the College's co-curricular provision, which was deemed very good or good by 94% of the respondents, recognising the wealth and breadth of opportunities provided to pupils, from clubs to trips and DofE to house competitions.

He touched on five areas that the parent questionnaire highlighted as needing further attention, food, Sixth Form girl's uniform, parents' evenings, transport and communications and outlined the next steps for each of the areas, including a Parental Focus Group to look at catering, a review of the Sixth Form Dress Code and the imminent launch of both a new website and parent portal for the Foundation.

Mr Hester then took the audience on a visual look back over the last ten years in terms of campus developments at the College, including ongoing maintenance, improvements to the drive, the Roundhouse, Switzerland, the Chapel, the Clarkson Theatre, the Limes, the Quad and other academic departments, before talking through the College and Foundation finances, mergers with Abbostford and the Crescent School and the growth to the school's current optimum pupil numbers, to put the next major project, the new Science Centre, into context.

Using visuals of floor plans of the current buildings he outlined the beneficial impact on the whole school of the new Science building, which will enable the relocation of departments such as Art, Geography and Economics and Business and the provision of much increased seated dining facilities for the school, improvements for extended day and additional Sixth Form private study areas.

Ed Hester, added, "Not only will our plans give us cutting-edge Science facilities, but it will revolutionise our pupils' dining experience and hugely impact the Art, Economics and Business and Geography departments too."

Moving on to parking and transport he indicated that extra parking, improved access to the College were all being looked at and that improvements to the bus service and incentives such as sibling discount to encourage more pupils onto the buses were under discussion.

He then handed over to Alex Darkes, Assistant Head - Development and Rachel Hadley-Leonard, Development Director to talk through the Vision for Science in more detail.

Alex Darkes outlined the scale of the project which will offer cutting edge, state-of-the-art Science facilities and help inspire future generations of Princethorpe scientists, engineers, researchers, chemists, marine biologists and doctors. He then invited the audience to take a look round the new building courtesy of an exciting two-minute digital walk-through video, before handing over to Rachel Hadley-Leonard to outline how the whole Princethorpe community can get involved to make the building a reality through a menu of giving and fundraising ideas, from naming the Science Centre to commemorative stones and placing a lego brick in a model of the new building. She invited the audience to register their interest in supporting this important project and leaving their mark on Princethorpe’s future.

Mr Hester rounded off the evening by explaining that the College is committed to this new build through careful management of fee income, bank borrowing and fundraising, with the latter being a significant factor in determining the timescale of the build, which it is hoped will open its doors to pupils in September 2022.

All members of the Foundation will receive a copy of the Capital Campaign - A Vision for Science brochure in the post.

To take a walk through the new Science Building click here.

For a copy of the presentation please see below.

To download the Capital Campaign - A Vision for Science Brochure please see below.