|Motto||Strenuis Ardua Cedunt ("Difficulties Yield To Diligence")|
|Chair of Governors||Nigel Cook|
|Founder||A. E. Brooks|
|Local authority||Windsor and Maidenhead|
|DfE URN||138856 Tables|
|Ofsted||Reports Pre-academy reports|
|Gender||Boys with mixed Sixth form|
|Houses||Dickens, Constable, Brunel and Elgar|
|Colours||Purple and Gold|
Desborough College is a secondary school with academy status located on Shoppenhangers Road, Maidenhead, Berkshire, England. Until 2009 it was an all-boys school, however, the Sixth form has since become co-educational. It was founded as Maidenhead County Grammar School in 1894 under its first Headmaster Mr A. E. Brooks. In the 1970s reform in the Royal Borough ensured all schools converted to the then new comprehensive schools system, which prompted the School's name change to Desborough School after Lord Desborough, a prominent Maidonian. For the second time in the School's history it changed status in 2012 becoming an academy school, and changed its name to Desborough College. As part of its academy status it is partnered with the independent Radley College, Microsoft and The John Lewis Partnership.
The school was founded as Maidenhead County Grammar School in 1894. In September 1973 it converted to comprehensive schooling. The school is the subject of a book, 100 and not out, written by David Evans, a long serving History teacher and former student, to celebrate the centenary of Desborough School.
During the 1990s Desborough School became a grant-maintained school providing it with increased funding and a greater degree of autonomy. The passing of the School Standards and Framework Act 1998 abolished grant-maintained schools and Desborough reverted to LEA control.
In 2003, the school won Language College status. Additional languages are offered as extra curricular subjects. Japanese is now taught on Tuesdays after school.
A major renovation of the historic main school building was completed in 2006. This upgrade saw a new library and staff room, more classrooms and the removal of the school reception to the old music house. A new music department has been built in the place of the old temporary buildings.
The school became an academy in October 2012 and changed to Desborough College.
There are four school houses in Desborough which relate to important figures in British history, each with its own colour:
On their arrival at Desborough, every new boy is placed into a house where they can compete in various areas such as sporting events or other extra curricular activities. At the end of every major term an end of term assembly is held where the houses' points are collated from competing in various areas such as chess, rugby, hockey, and so on and then the house with the highest amount of points is awarded with a trophy for the period of the next term. The colour of each house is displayed on the students tie with a series of stripes and on their house polo shirts as the primary colour.
Notable alumni include:
- Nick Hornby, best selling author whose novels have been adapted into film (About a Boy, High Fidelity)
- Countdown director Derek Hallworth
- John O'Farrell, author
- Mark Richardson, GB 400 m runner
- Guy Fletcher, Dire Straits keyboard player
- Charles Hart, lyricist (Aspects of Love, The Phantom of the Opera, Love Never Dies)
- Peter Jones, multi-millionaire entrepreneur who returned to the school in September 2008
- Toby Anstis, radio DJ for London's Heart FM. Recently Toby Anstis visited the school to take part in the BBC school report.
- John B, Drum and bass DJ and graduate of molecular biology
- A former pupil, Dicky Patounas, became one of the youngest ever Red Arrows in 1997 at the age of 27.
With its history of over 100 years, Desborough has seen many Headmasters with varying characteristics, styles, and quirks. The original Headmaster of Desborough School was A. E. Brooks, the namesake of the Brooks building which houses the Modern Foreign Language College and the Geography department.
Desborough's current Headmaster is Paul Frazer. Mr. Frazer succeeded Andrew Linnell after Mr. Linnell resigned in 2012. Mr. Linnell took over in 2005 from David Eyre, who moved to Brighton Hill Community College at Basingstoke.
Desborough school's sixth form is led by the head of Key Stage 5 education and two heads of year. The sixth form facilities include a private study section of the Library, accompanied by a large selection of specialist books, three private computer suites and a quiet study room. There is a strong community spirit between the Sixth Form, consolidated by the head boy and his four deputies who partake in community service, in and out of school and liaise between the sixth form, the staff and the rest of the school.
The school has joined The Consortium programme along with Altwood Church of England School, Cox Green, Newlands School and Furze Platt Senior School in 2003. The Consortium allows sixth form students to take a subject not offered at their school and study it at another participating school. Subjects such as Geology and Politics are among the subjects that Desborough offers to the other schools. Transport is provided between schools.
Desborough sixth form now offers full-time places to female students, thus making it a mixed sixth form. The idea was introduced after many females from The Consortium said that it would be a great place to learn.
Ties with The Berkshire College of Agriculture
As part of Desborough's commitment to offer its students an education that caters to their needs when choosing GCSE options in year nine, the College is partnered with the Berkshire College of Agriculture (BCA). This partnership allows Desborough students looking for a career in trade, sports coaching or public services the opportunity to study vocational courses. Students can study their chosen courses at BCA twice a week.
- Desborough School official website: School Aims
- Desborough School official website: Vacancies – Information for Candidates (updated May 2012)
- Desborough School official website: Sixth Form – Prospectus 2011
- "Toby Anstis Interview: Toby talking to old teacher Mr Lehain."
- "RAF Red Arrows Newsletter 1997"
- Maidenhead Advertiser 18 May 2012: "Desborough's new head vows to make school 'beacon of excellence'"
- Maidenhead Advertiser 3 May 2012: "Desborough's headteacher Andrew Linnell steps down"
- Brighton Hill Community College