The Perse School

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The Perse School
Perse school crest.svg
The school crest
Motto Latin: Qui facit per alium facit per se

He who does things for others does them for himself
Established 1615 (1615)
Type Independent day school
Religion Nondenominational Christian
Head Mr Edward Elliott
Senior Deputy Head Mr Daniel Cross
Chairman of the Governing Body Sir David Wright
Founder Dr Stephen Perse
Location Hills Road
England England Coordinates: 52°10′51″N 0°08′19″E / 52.180833°N 00.138611°E / 52.180833; 00.138611
DfE number 873/6010
DfE URN 110923 Tables
Staff 138 teaching, 117 support staff, 26 peripatetics
Capacity 1610 including Prep and Pre-prep
Students 1494 including Prep and Pre-prep
Gender Coeducational
Ages 11–18
Houses 8
Colours Purple and Black
Publication OP News Magazine
Alumni Old Perseans

The Perse Upper School is an independent secondary co-educational day school in Cambridge, England.


The school was founded in 1615 by Stephen Perse,[1] a Fellow of Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, and has been housed on several different sites in the city before its present site on Hills Road. In 1881 a girls' school (Perse Girls) was founded and this is now part of the Stephen Perse Foundation.

The Perse Foundation[edit]

There are also preparatory and pre-preparatory schools related to The Perse School. Boys and girls aged 3 to 7 attend 'The Pelican' pre-preparatory school, located on Glebe Road, Cambridge. The Perse Preparatory School is located on Trumpington Road, Cambridge, and is for boys and girls aged 7 – 11.


The school motto is Qui facit per alium facit per se, usually taken to mean "He who does things for others does them for himself". This is an example of a rebus motto, the Latin sentence ending in a word play on the founder's name "per se" and his benefaction. A blue plaque dedicated to the school's founder, Dr Stephen Perse, can be found in Free School Lane, Cambridge.[2]


In 2005, the Perse under-14 hockey team became National Champions, beating Millfield. In 2006 the Perse under-16 indoor hockey team reached the National Indoor Finals, and the following year the same age group won the competition.

The Perse school U16s then won the National Indoor hockey competition again the year after that, making the U16s back to back National Indoor Champions. Two members of that Hockey Team, Adam Miller and Michael Franklin, then went on to achieve national selection and subsequently represented England in several tournaments across Europe.

In the Michaelmas Term 2005 the rugby First XV became the most successful team in 14 years after their win against The Leys School, again one member of this team achieved notable individual sporting success - Owen Giles now has a professional contract with Northampton Saints RUFC[citation needed].


The Perse has a senior orchestra, string orchestra, full choir, chorale group, 3 wind bands, swing band and jazz band. There are also about 35 smaller groups meeting weekly for rehearsal. In 2006, the String Orchestra toured to Paris and the Senior Wind Band toured to Iceland. Each year concerts take place at the West Road Concert Hall, Emmanuel United Reformed Church and Our Lady and the English Martyrs Church.


The school is divided into three sections: the Lower School, Middle School and Sixth Form. The Lower School contains the Year 7 and Year 8 pupils (ages 11–13), the Middle School consists of the Year 9 to Year 11 students (ages 14–16) and focuses principally on IGCSEs taken at the end of Year 11. Most IGCSE courses begin officially in Year 10, although some longer courses (such as Biology and Geography) are started in Year 9. Pupils in the top two sets for Mathematics, have the option to take this IGCSE at the end of Year 10, and then use Year 11 to take an Additional Mathematics stand-alone qualification. In years 12 and 13 pupils study for A Levels. There are plans to expand to over 1000 pupils over the next ten years.

There are 8 houses: Northwold Yales, Pendeen Dragons, Gonville Griffins, Mecklenburgh Unicorns, Lithburn Eagles, Bateman Bulls, Glebe Falcons and Langdale Lions.

The classrooms at the Perse are named numerically, e.g. 1, 2, 3, with specialist classrooms such as science labs and music rooms being denoted by a prefix to their number; for example: P1 for Physics or A2 for Art.


The Perse School began accepting girls at 11+ and 13+ in September 2010 and became fully co-educational in September 2012.






Film and Theatre[edit]










  • George Griffith, MA - died 1686
  • Frederick Heppenstall, MA - 1864 to 1874
  • Dr W. H. D. Rouse, MA, LittD (Cantab) - 1902 to 1928 (formerly a fellow of Christ's College, Cambridge)
  • H. A. Wootton - 1928 to 1945
  • Stanley Stubbs, MA - 1945 to 1969 (formerly a housemaster at Gresham's School)
  • A. E. Melville - 1969 to 1987
  • Dr Martin Stephen - 1987 to 1994 (subsequently High Master of The Manchester Grammar School and then St Paul's School)
  • Dr Nigel P. V. Richardson, - 1994 to 2008 (formerly headmaster of Dragon School)
  • Mr Edward C. Elliott, MA - 2008 onwards (formerly deputy head at the Perse School)

Notable staff[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ The Perse School - History[dead link]
  2. ^ Cambridge Blue Plaques
  3. ^ Muhammad Aurang Zeb Mughal (2013) "Bloch, Maurice". Reece Jon McGee and Richard L. Warms (eds), Theory in Social and Cultural Anthropology: An Encyclopedia, Vol. 1. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage, pp. 77-88.
  4. ^ "DVD is a memorial to Sir Arthur". Retrieved 2008-01-14. 
  5. ^ "Olympic boost for Kirkman". Cambridge Evening News. 2008-02-11. Retrieved 2008-02-15. 

External links[edit]