King Edward VI Camp Hill School for Boys

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This article is about the Boys school. For the girls school on the same campus, see King Edward VI Camp Hill School for Girls.
King Edward VI Camp Hill School for Boys
KE VI sch logo.jpg
Motto "Spartam nactus es, hanc exorna"
Established 1883 (1883)[1]
Type Grammar school;
Religion Non denominational[2]
Headteacher Martin Garrod
Chair of Governors (Foundation) B Matthews
Location Vicarage Road
Kings Heath, Birmingham
West Midlands
B14 7QJ
England Coordinates: 52°25′47″N 1°54′10″W / 52.42964°N 1.90289°W / 52.42964; -1.90289
DfE URN 137045 Tables
Ofsted Reports Pre-academy reports
Students 720
Gender Boys
Ages 11–18
Houses Beaufort (Red), Howard (Blue), Seymour (Gold), and Tudor (Green)
Website King Edward VI Camp Hill School For Boys

King Edward VI Camp Hill School for Boys is a Grammar School in the UK usage - which corresponds with a selective high school in the US usage. The name is retained from the previous location at Camp Hill in central Birmingham from where the school moved to the Vicarage Road in the suburb of Kings Heath in 1956, sharing a campus with its sister school, also formerly located in Camp Hill. It is a school which specializes in Science, Humanities, PSE, and Applied Learning. In 2006 the school was assessed by The Sunday Times as state school of the year.[3] A Year 9 student was 2011 winner of The Guardian Children’s Fiction Page[4] and the Gold Award in the British Physics Olympiad was won by a King Edward VI student in September 2011.[5]

Ofsted inspections in most years classify Camp Hill as an Outstanding Provider.[6]


As with the other grammar schools in Birmingham, including those of the King Edwards Foundation, admission is selective based on performance in the Eleven plus exam,[2] with around 1000 competing for around 90 to 96 places. This number often changes or varies according to the number of candidates who originally sit the 11+ examination.[7]

Shared features[edit]

The school shares a campus with King Edward VI Camp Hill School for Girls and some major music events such as concerts, occasional drama activities, plays and musicals, are jointly held. A two week timetable synchronises the two schools, allowing for shares lessons for A-level subjects of Music and German. The fields, tennis courts, schoolyards and the main school buildings are not shared. There is a shared swimming pool used separately by boys and girls. The sixth form block is a shared facility in which the top floor is occupied by girls, and the ground floor is used by the boys' school. A joint sports hall is used by both boys and girls with a separation barrier. The dining room has a folding dividing partition. A new food technology room is located between the Girl and Boys school.


The school has computer rooms, a library, several science labs, and art and design rooms.The old gym has been redeveloped to create the school library, the wing where the English department is placed, and a Sixth Form study area.

Sports Hall[edit]

In October 2006, a new sports hall was officially opened, and is shared by students attending both schools. The hall includes two gyms, a dance/drama studio and, on the second floor, there is a mini-cafeteria, two classrooms and a fitness room, because all of the pupils need fitness. The building includes a lift for the disabled, as does the library.


The school was founded in January 1883 and operated for two terms on the New Street site of King Edward's School.(This was the school location which JRR Tolkien thoroughly disliked, after the idyllic country life in Sarehole Mill (now a Birmingham suburb) It opened at its intended site at Camp Hill in Birmingham, near the city centre in September 1883, and moved to its current location, adjacent to Kings Heath Park, in 1956. Camp Hill Boys celebrated its 50-year jubilee in 2007 with a concert at Symphony Hall and the burial of a time capsule to be opened in another 50 years' time. It celebrated its House Centenary in 2007-8, with special events throughout the year that are not normally part of the house competition e.g. 5-a-side football. The events culminated in a House Festival, a day off from the regular academic timetable to allow every member of the school to participate in house events. Events at the House Festival also included non-sporting events such as drama, chess and music. The House Festival has since been repeated every 5 years, with the event occurring again in October 2012.

Specialist status[edit]

The school has been granted Specialist College status in three specialisms: Science (including Maths), Humanities and Applied Learning.


Students follow a curriculum of traditional core subjects, rather than the modern curriculum. From years 7 to 9, all students study and take exams in Maths, English, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, ICT, History, Geography, Design Technology, Music, Art, Religious Studies, PSHE and French, plus German, which is started from year 8. In year 9, students must pick four option blocks of either History, Geography, RS, Art, Music, DT(Systems Control or Resistant Materials), French and German, one of which must be a language. These four subjects are studied in addition to Maths, English, English Literature, Chemistry, Physics and Biology for GCSE, as well as non-exam PSHE, Careers and Philosophy and Ethics. Students also have the option to take ICT short course in year 9, and the long course in their own time during Key Stage 4. For A level, students select four subjects to take from the above. They also have the choice of Further Maths, Computing, Economics and Business Studies. General Studies is a compulsory A level for all sixth form students, and is taught for one hour a week. Critical Thinking is also offered as an AS level.


The sports played at Camp Hill are seasonal: rugby and hockey in the Winter term and Spring term; in the Summer term: Cricket and athletics are the main sports. Other sports include basketball, fitness, gymnastics, and tennis. Sixth form students may play football during games periods, and seniors (Years 11–13) especially the sixth form have the opportunity to play a wide variety of sports, including football, hockey, rugby, cricket, athletics, basketball, badminton, volleyball, table tennis, swimming, squash and tennis. All students are required to take part in certain house events (known as Standards), which include cross-country. Other off-curriculum sports include fencing, swimming, and rugby and cricket training after school.


The Pupil's Voice is a monthly newspaper founded in 2004. It contains general news, news from within the school, and interviews with teachers, which are usually featured as cover stories. It also includes puzzles and comics. KECHB: is a useful website set up by Pupil's Voice which tells a boy if it is Week A or B. The current updater remains anonymous on the site.[8]

School Song[edit]

At the end of each school term the school song (similar to the song at King Edward's School) is sung. It is also not unusual for the rugby teams to sing this song after a rugby match victory, especially if the win is over a rival school.


Four houses are named after families who fought in the Wars of the Roses, Beaufort (Red), Howard (Blue), Seymour (Yellow), and Tudor (Green). Students wear different ties corresponding to the house in which they are in. All students are required to be members of a house and a member of staff is head of a house. Events such as House Rugby, House Football, and others, enable students to earn points for their house.

There is also a house festival every 5 years.

House events are played in four age groups; juniors (years 7 and 8) play in individual years, and intermediates (years 9 and 10) and seniors (years 11-13) play as two groups. The house events begin in the Autumn with house rugby for all ages, rugby 7's for seniors, 11-a-side football for seniors, and house indoor 5-a-side football for all age groups. During the Autumn term, the house quiz also takes place, but with edited year groups, with juniors together and intermediates years 10 and 11. In early November, the house table tennis championship is held for all years, whilst cross country standards are run by boys from years 7 to 10. The house cross country finals are then held in December, along with house badminton for the seniors. Traditionally, house swimming standards are held in January, with the swimming finals after the winter A-Level exams. House chess is generally held in early spring, and house tennis at the end of spring. Both house cricket and house athletics are held in the summer, with Sports Day generally being held the week before the end of term.

In 2008, the school celebrated 100 years of the house system by hosting a day of house competitions in all subjects and extracurricular activities as well as additional competitions including scrabble, darts and film-making. The House Festival will be celebrated every 4 years, to enable all students to take part in at least one during their attendance at the school. The second House Festival occurred on October 3, 2012.

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ "The Schools of the King Edward the Sixth Foundation in Birmingham". King Edward VI Foundation. Retrieved 27 November 2011. 
  2. ^ a b "The Schools of the King Edward the Sixth Foundation in Birmingham". King Edward VI Foundation. Retrieved 27 November 2011. 
  3. ^ O'Reilly, Judith (19 November 2006). "The Sunday Times State Secondary School of the Year 2006". The Times (London). 
  4. ^ The Guardian, Saturday 12 November, Reviews: Stanton, Andy Mr Gum and the Secret Hideout,
  5. ^ "News". King Edward VI Camp Hill School For Boys. 2011. Retrieved 27 November 2011. 
  6. ^ "Outstanding Providers". Ofsted. 2014. 
  7. ^ "Admissions". King Edward VI Camp Hill School for Boys. 2011. Retrieved 27 November 2011. 
  8. ^ "KECHB:". KECHB: 
  9. ^ "Professor Andrew Crawford". University of Cambridge. 2011. Retrieved 27 November 2011. 
  10. ^ "Prof. F.D.R. Hobbs, General Practitioner". SHAPE. 2003. Retrieved 27 November 2011. 

External links[edit]