St Mary Redcliffe and Temple School
|Motto||A Christian Community Committed To Excellence|
|Type||Secondary Voluntary aided|
|Religion||Church of England|
|Founder||Queen Elizabeth I|
|Local authority||Bristol City Council|
|DfE URN||109327 Tables|
|Houses||James, Canynges, Cartwright, Colston, Francombe|
St Mary Redcliffe and Temple School (informally referred to as 'St Mary Redcliffe', 'Redcliffe' or 'SMRT') is a Church of England voluntary aided school situated in the district of Redcliffe, Bristol, England. The school was formed by a merger of Redcliffe Boys School and Temple Colston school; the former of which was founded in 1571. It provides education for approximately 1,500 students aged 11 to 18. The school's Church is St Mary Redcliffe and it is the only Church of England School for the Diocese of Bristol. The headteacher is Elisabeth Gilpin and the Director of Sixth Form is Richard Wheeler.
St Mary Redcliffe school was founded as Queen Elizabeth's Free Grammar and Writing School by letters patent on 30 June 1571 when it was granted a Royal charter by Elizabeth I. The charter granted the parishioners of St Mary Redcliffe Church the Chapel of the Holy Ghost for the establishment of the school; the building had previously belonged to the Hospital of St John the Baptist, a religious foundation in Redcliffe but had been confiscated by the Crown during the Dissolution of the Monasteries. The building was located in the Churchyard of St Mary Redcliffe, near the south porch and being 56 feet by 26 feet. The charter made the provision for one master and one under-master, supervised by twelve governors and for the 'education, teaching and instruction of boys and youth in grammar and learning'. It received an endowment from John Whitson in 1627. In the 1760s the school building was torn down as it was felt it spoilt the view of the church, and with the acceptance of the Bishop of Bristol, Thomas Newton the school moved into the Lady Chapel in the east end of the church. The school was recorded in 1839 as possessing a statue its founder Elizabeth I.
The 1828 Charity Commission report inspected the school and found that there had been no free scholars on the schools foundation, and not more than one private scholar, since the appointment of the then current master in 1813; and conclude that the school had been of little benefit to the parish for over thirty years. They recommended that the school should be revived. The 1864 Schools Inquiry Commission, often known as the Taunton Report, inspected the school and reported that the Grammar School had ceased to have any visible existence, and the schools endowments from the Church and John Whitson were accumulating as there was no school or master for them to be given to. The report recommended that the funds allotted to the school instead be given to Bristol Grammar School.
In the latter half of the 19th century The Redcliffe Endowed Boys School occupied a site on east side of Redcliffe Hill in a mixture of individual buildings of varying age.
Colston's Free School in Temple street was founded by Arthur Bedford, the vicar of Temple Church in 1709. In 1711 Edward Colston endowed it with an annual fund of £80 for the education and clothing of forty boys of the parish and erected a schoolhouse. In an 1841 report of the Charity Commission the teaching provided is said to be in reading, writing, ciphering and the Church catechism. The school later opened to girls as well.
In Redcliffe Boys School merged with Temple Colston School in 1969, creating the co-educational St Mary Redcliffe and Temple school as a comprehensive voluntary aided school, and both moved to a new building at the current Somerset Square site.
In 2008, the school was awarded funding for a substantial rebuild of its main site, under the government's Building schools for the future programme. The construction company Skanska began work on 1 May 2009 and the new school was formally opened to students on 5 November 2010. Over the course of the 18 months much of the existing site was demolished, with new facilities being built to house science, mathematics, English, design technology, music, art photography and physical education.
The school's two mottos are "Steadfast in Faith" (historic) and "A Christian Community Committed To Excellence" (modern). Both reflect the partnership with St Mary Redcliffe Church, and also the official faith of the school. The earlier Redcliffe boys School used the motto "Prayer, Practice, Perseverance and Punctuality", known as the 4 P's.
Teaching and learning
GCSE and 'A' level examination results are generally above the national average. As well as achieving 'Specialist Humanities College' status, SMRT became a Beacon School in 2000, and has also been part of the 'Excellence in Cities' scheme, incorporating 'Gifted & Talented' programmes.
The table below shows the percentage of students achieving the government's target of 5 A*-C including English and Mathematics.
Until 2005 SMRT's sixth-form shared the main premises with the rest of the school. The Redcliffe Sixth Form Centre, first opened in 2004, and is based in separate facilities on Redcliffe Hill. However, some sixth-form lessons still take place in the main school, as this is where the main department rooms, such as the science labs, and design technology rooms are.
St Mary Redcliffe and Temple School has five houses. On entry to SMRT in Year 7, students join James House (white) (historically located at Boot Lane, in nearby Bedminster), which is composed solely of first year students; from year 8 they are placed in one of the main four houses: Canynges (yellow), Cartwright (blue), Colston (red) and Francombe (green). The house names refer to William Canynges, local politician and benefactor of St Mary Redcliffe Church; Edward Colston, merchant and founder of Temple Colston School; and J.T. Cartwright, a former headmaster of the school and Lord Mayor of Bristol.
The school requires school uniform for all pupils except those in the sixth form. The uniform is a black blazer, with the school logo, a redcliffe red jumper (With or without sleeves.), white shirt, black shoes, charcoal grey trousers and socks, and school tie (which displays the SMRT logo); girls are entitled to wear skirts or trousers. In summer, students are not required to wear the blazer or tie, but they must still wear a jumper.
Academic subjects are taught either in the Main school Building or the Temple Colston Building (opened 1987). SMRT's on-site sports facilities include an indoor swimming pool, a new sports hall, a gym, an outdoor astroturf 'arena' which can be used by years 8-11 at break and lunch, and a new basketball and tennis court outside, which can be used by year 7s at break and lunch. Double P.E. lessons used to be held at The Old Redcliffians fields in Brislington, where they were used for football, rugby, hockey and athletics. The school now used the South Bristol Sports Centre, in addition to holding some Double lessons at school, in one of the sports facilities.
Annual events include House Eucharists, beginning and end of term/year services, an Ascension Day Eucharist, the Redcliffe Community Summer Fete, a Christmas carol service, an Easter service and the annual Colston Day service; in which all students (invited to attend) are given the traditional Colston bun.
St Mary Redcliffe and Temple School is the only Church of England secondary school in the Diocese of Bristol. It is a comprehensive state school and therefore does not select on academic merit, it is unusual however in that entry is not restricted by catchment area; the school serves both the city and the outlying communities of Greater Bristol, for which there are no alternative Church of England schools. It selects students on a range of criteria including Church attendance, distance the student lives from school and if they have siblings who already attend the school. However, the school's administration also includes a small number of places for which no church link is required, which are intended for either those who are members of non-Christian religions, or who live within 500 metres of the school.
Notable former pupilsalumni
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