Borden Grammar School

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Borden Grammar School
Motto Nitere Porro
(To strive forward)
Established 1878
Type Grammar school, Academy
Headteacher Jonathan Hopkins
Location Avenue of Remembrance
ME10 4DB
51°20′15″N 0°44′05″E / 51.3374°N 0.7348°E / 51.3374; 0.7348Coordinates: 51°20′15″N 0°44′05″E / 51.3374°N 0.7348°E / 51.3374; 0.7348
Local authority Kent
DfE number 886/4527
DfE URN 118837 Tables
Ofsted Reports
Staff c.75
Students 781
Gender Boys
Ages 11–18
Houses Twickenham, Wembley, Wimbledon and Lords
Colours Navy blue and gold          
Publication Borden Informer[permanent dead link]
Website Borden Grammar School

Borden Grammar School is a selective boys grammar school with academy status situated in the centre of Sittingbourne, Kent, England, which educates students aged 11–18. Whilst the school mainly admits boys, a small number girls have been educated at the school within the Sixth Form. The school holds specialist status in both Sports and Modern Foreign Languages. The school has a Latin motto, nitere porro which translates as "to strive forward".


The old Borden Grammar School now Sittingbourne Adult Education College

The school was originally built in Borden on College Road, funded with a bequest from the estate of a local farmer, William Barrow, and opened in October 1878. The school's name was not fixed in its early years, variously being called The Barrow Boys' Grammar School and Barrow's School, Borden, but was known as Borden Grammar School by the early Twentieth Century.

In 1928, the School moved to its present site in Avenue of Remembrance, Sittingbourne, the new building being opened by George, Lord Harris, but retained its name despite no longer being in Borden.[1] The old school building is now an Adult Education Centre.[2]


In common with many secondary schools in England, Borden had a house system from its earliest days; however this traditional system was ended by headmaster Stephen Wright in 2002. The original houses were 'Borden', 'Swale', 'Barrow' and 'School'. Aside from the references to the school's location and benefactor, the etymology of 'Swale' can be explained by reference to the local stretch of water, The Swale, which runs between Sittingbourne and the Isle of Sheppey and also lends its name to the local Borough Council.

A house system was reinstated at the start of the school year beginning September 2007. The house names are Lords, Wimbledon, Wembley and Twickenham, named after the homes of cricket, tennis, football and rugby in England. With the loss of Barrow House, there is no longer any reference to the school's benefactor, William Barrow.[3]

Modern School[edit]

On 1 September 2006 the school was awarded Specialist status for Sports and Modern Foreign Languages. With this status and an associated increase in funding, the school has built many new facilities including a multi use games area (MUGA), a new library and a new private study area. In 2011 the school also received a sports bursary, with which it used to construct a climbing wall in the gym.[4]

Borden became an academy in 2012, which changed the flexibility of the curriculum able to be taught at the school as well as increased funding.[5]

The school, along with other Sittingbourne-based Secondary schools, Fulston Manor School and Highsted Grammar School for Girls, maintain a close community and share teaching responsibilities of specialised subject at A-Level, with Borden teaching Economics, Sociology and Psychology.

Borden Grammar School uses a mailing system to keep parents up to date, that is called ParentMail. ParentMail enables the school to send out letters and messages direct to parents by email. Over half of the parents have now signed up to this service and are receiving letters and other news via email.

Old Bordenian Association[edit]

The Old Bordenian Association (OBA) was established in 1912, re-established in 1925, and membership is open to all former pupils and staff of Borden Grammar School. The OBA's annual journal, The Maroon, was first published in 1937, but was replaced by a website in 2007. The OBA holds an annual reunion dinner, formerly held inside the Old Hall but now in the nearby premises of UK Paper Leisure Club. The OBA also organises a Remembrance Service on the Saturday closest to Remembrance Sunday, honouring all those old boys who have lost their lives in the armed conflicts of the Twentieth Century. Apart from these annual events, the OBA's activities include the Old Bordenian Hockey Club and Old Bordenian Football Club. The OBA also strives to support the present activities of the school wherever possible, and in recent years has provided a minibus and contributed toward the fundraising appeal for the refurbished Library.


  • 1878 - 1893: Rev. William Henry Bond, MA (Cantab.) - Left to become headmaster of Churcher's College, Petersfield.
  • 1893 - 1906: James Williamson Thurnham, MA (Cantab.) - Left to become headmaster of New College, Herne Bay.
  • 1906 - 1936: William Murdock, MA (Oxon.), BSc (London) - Retired.
  • 1936 - 1941: William Arthur Claydon, MA (Oxon.) Left to become headmaster of Maidstone Grammar School. Appointed CBE, 1956.
  • 1941 - 1968: George Ernest Hardy, BSc (Hons.) (Birmingham) - Retired. Appointed OBE, 1969.
  • 1968 - 1998: Bryan Richard Short, MA (Oxon.) - Retired.
  • 1998 - 2004: Stephen Neill Wright, MA (Cantab.) - Left to become headmaster of Merchant Taylor's School, Northwood.
  • 2004 - 2013: Harold Sofronios Vafeas, MA (Cantab.) - Retired.
  • 2013 to date: Jonathan R. Hopkins, BA (Hons.) (unknown university), NPQH

Notable former pupils[edit]


  1. ^ "About Borden Grammar School". Borden Grammar School. Retrieved 12 January 2017. Borden Grammar School moved to its current site in 1928. 
  2. ^ Short, Bryan. "Borden Grammar School - the early years part 1". The Old Bordenian Association. Retrieved 26 August 2015. 
  3. ^ "House Information". Borden Grammar School. Retrieved 26 August 2015. Lords, Twickenham, Wembley and Wimbledon 
  4. ^ "About Us". Borden Grammar School. Retrieved 26 August 2015. 
  5. ^ "Borden Grammar School, Sittingbourne". Kent-Teach. Retrieved 26 August 2015. 
  6. ^
  7. ^ School Archive

External links[edit]