Corelli College

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Corelli College
Motto "Learning together, enjoying success"
Established 1954
Type Academy
Headteacher Trisha Jaffe
Location Corelli Road
Shooters Hill Road

England Coordinates: 51°28′10″N 0°02′37″E / 51.46947°N 0.04353°E / 51.46947; 0.04353
Local authority Greenwich
DfE URN 100185
Ofsted Reports
Gender Coeducational
Ages 11–19
Houses Democracy, Equality, Independence, Solidarity, Trust and Sixth Form
Colours Purple and Black

Corelli College is a secondary school and sixth form with academy status located on Corelli road and near the Kidbrooke area of the Royal Borough of Greenwich. The school has a specialism in the Arts.

It first opened as Kidbrooke School opened in 1954 as one of the first purpose-built comprehensive schools in Britain.


Originally opened as a girls school, the school was a merging of failing local state girls schools including the Woolwich Polytechnic school for girls. Built on the site of aerodrome by the London County council who described it as 'the children of the heroes of the second world war'. Famously, the school colours were always based on the blue and grey uniform of the Royal Air Force. As the first purpose built comprehensive, Kidbrooke received many critics. Right-wing magazine, Time and Tide claimed the schools motto should be "all equal and all stupid". However, visits from Royals such as the Queen, Queen Mother and Princess Margaret helped steady the schools reputation. Current Head, Trisha Jaffe stated that founding Headteacher for 19 years, Dame Mary Green "was so proud of the fact that the local people called her pupils 'Smarties', thinking it was a reflection on their intelligence. In fact, the youngsters knew the nickname came from the different-coloured berets they had to wear outside school - a different colour for each of the eight houses. She was determined to ensure that all the pupils in her charge fulfilled their potential."[1]

Kidbrooke started admitting boys after 1982 as the school was competing with other comprehensives in the area. [2]

The building[edit]

When it opened, the huge range of modern facilities, including gyms with hot showers, boosted local morale. "The buildings were planned in 1949 and subsequently redesigned in 1951 to meet the cuts in the ministry's building programme. They were designed by the architect Charles Pike, and feature a dramatic curved ceiling in the school hall. Today, the building has not only stood the test of time but actually looks pretty groovy. Everywhere are icons of classic 1950s design - wooden panelling and parquet flooring, as well as an original clock in the main hall." [3]

Leading the food revolution[edit]

Kidbrooke School was the focus of TV chef Jamie Oliver's campaign to improve school dinners in Britain as part of his TV series Jamie's School Dinners. Jamie Oliver's campaign was particularly important at a school like Kidbrooke, where the majority of students receive free school dinners and thus rely on it as their main source of nutrition.[citation needed] Nora, the head cook, had success with her book "Nora's Dinners" and left the school on the 24 May 2007.

The present[edit]

A recent Ofsted inspection found Kidbrooke to be "one of the top schools in the borough" and rated it with 15 outstanding features including an "outstanding curriculum".[4]

This meant Kidbrooke School was eligible to become a Co-operative type 2 Academy, and was renamed Corelli College.

Arts and drama[edit]

From September 2005, the school was re-designated as a single Specialist Arts College specialising in Media, Drama and Art.

The schools drama department's production of "Romeo and Juliet" was performed at Riverside Studios, Hammersmith, in October 2009 following a sellout run at Greenwich Theatre.[citation needed] The last Kidbrooke School production to be performed at this venue was the largely successful "Hotel World" by Ali Smith, a performance which earned the title of Best Play in the Edinburgh Fringe Report Awards.[5] In August 2010, Romeo and Juliet ran for a successful week at the Edinburgh Fringe festival led by director L. Cuthbertson;[6] earning several four to five star reviews[citation needed]. The play was modernized to highlight issues of knife crime and social disorder prevalent in the Kidbrooke community, in association with the Jimmy Mizen foundation,[7] and this, as well as powerful representations of characters such as Tybalt, Juliet, and Nurse Angelica[8] were particular points of acclaim from Fringe critics.[9]

Though the specialist colleges programme has now ended, and the school has converted to academy status, Corelli College continues to maintain a specialism in the Arts.

Attack of student[edit]

On 24 January 1997 students from neighbouring school Thomas Tallis attacked and murdered one of the school's pupils, CJ Rickard, 14, with a 17-inch machete.[10]

Notable alumni[edit]

Jude Law - Actor

Fred Onyedinma - Footballer

Marilyn Neufville - Olympic athlete and World Record Holder 400 metres, 1970.>


External links[edit]