King Edward VII School, Sheffield
|Motto||fac recte, nil time
(Do right, fear nothing)
|Chair of Governors||Barbara Walsh|
|Local authority||Sheffield City Council|
|DfE URN||107140 Tables|
KES, named after the reigning monarch, was formed in 1905 when Wesley College was merged with Sheffield Royal Grammar School (SRGS) on the site of the former on Glossop Road. The former buildings of Wesley College, now King Edward VII Upper School, designed and built by the Sheffield architect, William Flockton in 1838, were Grade II* listed in 1973. The school's history is far older than its regal name suggests. It can be traced directly to a Royal Charter granted in 1604 for the "Free School of King James", the result of a legacy of Thomas Smith who had died the previous year. However, there are traces of the school as far back as the thirteenth century, like a number in other towns of mediaeval England (see Old Edwardians website for more details).
The School supported a Junior School until the advent of the 11-plus examination entry that was a consequence of the Education Act 1944. The last boys left the Junior School in 1947 and the 1948 entry was the first entirely from the 11 plus examination. The School has been particularly successful in preparing boys for entry to the University of Oxford and the University of Cambridge. These reached a peak in 1961 (28 Oxbridge entries) and 1962 (26 Oxbridge entries) although after the latter, the headmaster N L Clapton in his 1962 Speech Day address observed that the figure was unlikely to be attained again. At the time the school had about 750 pupils, all boys, of whom around 250 were in the three-year sixth form. Comprehensive and accurate details of the school's academic successes in those years are to be found in the complete collection of Speechday Leaflets on the Old Edwardian's website. By 1962 the school's alumni society at Oxford University, the Seventh Club (see Old Edwardian archives) had 82 members, about one percent of the university's male junior members. It is questionable whether even schools such as Eton or Manchester Grammar, despite being twice the size, could equal that. In particular, many boys went to the Queen's College, Oxford as the School was one of 20 Schools in Yorkshire, Westmoreland and Cumberland that were eligible for the Hastings Scholarships at that College. As recently as 2014 the school was successful in sending seven students to Oxford and Cambridge.
The final 11-plus examination entry was in 1968 and the School steadily became a co-educational Comprehensive School from September 1969, as each year group of grammar school entries gradually matured and left. Girls were admitted in 1969 to Crosspool Secondary Modern School which became the Lower School for King Edward VII School. In 2005, the school celebrated its 100th anniversary. During 2011-12 a major building programme of extension and refurbishment was undertaken.
Further details about the school's history are to be found on the Old Edwardians Website (see references below, Archive). This comprehensive site includes about 1150 relevant articles and photographs, with documents such as School magazines, Speechday Leaflets and official form photographs, plus a list of approximately 400 Old Edwardians. That list includes many in the "golden era" of admissions during the Clapton era, especially 1952-59, not included in the less widely based Alumni list below, and concentrates on those it has been possible to trace of significant achievement after they left the school. Surprisingly, the school itself maintains no such records. The OE list reveals that a noteworthy proportion of Old Edwardians went on to become professors at universities around the world. Remarkably, there were substantially more Old Edwardian British ambassadors than Old Edwardian members of parliament. The school's historian has picked up on the fact that in 2000, the British ambassadors to Ukraine, Colombia and NATO were all Old Edwardians; all three of them had been 'soldiers' in a school performance of Shakespeare's Julius Caesar in March 1956. As befits an industrial and engineering city such as Sheffield, the school also produced more than its fair share of prominent industrialists and world-class engineers.
The school today
The school is on two sites: The Lower School (KS3) on Darwin Lane, and the Upper School (KS4, Sixth Form and Language College).
Of the 6th form roughly 50% originate from the Lower School, the remainder coming from other schools in the Sheffield region (many of which are 11–16).
The Chair of Governors is Barbara Walsh and the Headteacher is Mrs Beverley Jackson.
The Upper School was recently refurbished, with the addition of a sports hall and science block, as part of the BSF (Building Schools for the Future) programme; work began in July 2010 and finished in May 2012.
Headteachers of King Edward VII School
- 1905–1926 J. H. Hichens MA, LLD (Hons)
- 1926–1928 S. R. K. Gurner, MC, MA
- 1928–1938 R. B. Graham, MA
- 1938–1950 A. W. Barton, MA, PhD
- 1950–1965 N. L. Clapton, MA
- 1966–1988 R. Sharrock, MSc
- 1988–2008 M. H. A. Lewis, MA
- 2008–present Mrs B Jackson, MA
Notable former pupils of King Edward VII School
Notable former staff of King Edward VII School
- Henry John Chaytor, 1905–08, Second Master, became Master of St Catharine's College, Cambridge
- Francis Ernest Brown, 1905–12, Second Master after Chaytor's departure, became Headmaster of Geelong School in Australia
- Horace Brearley, 1937–46 (father of Mike Brearley, England cricketer)
- E F Watling, 1924–60, Classics master and translator of Sophocles
- "Images of England". Images of England. Retrieved 2011-01-24.
- The Headmaster's address; SPEECH DAY 22nd NOVEMBER, 1962
- 2006 OFSTED report for KES
- Detailed plans of the refurbishment, 2010 – 2012
- Mr J H HICHENS, Head 1905-26
- Mr R. B. Graham, Head 1928-38
- Russell Sharrock, Headmaster
- Michael Lewis MA, Headteacher
- "Mrs Beverley Jackson". Oldedwardians.org.uk. Retrieved 2011-01-24.
- Cornwell, John (2005). King Ted's. King Edward VII School, Sheffield. ISBN 0-9526484-1-5 .
- Various (1995). Tha'll never gerr in theer... King Edward VII School, Sheffield. ISBN 0-9526484-0-7.
- MacBeth, George (1987). A Child of the War. Jonathan Cape Ltd. ISBN 0-224-02436-1.
- King Edward VII School and Language College
- Archive of school photos,magazines and list of Old Edwardians
- LinkedIn Group
- About King Edward VII School
- BBC News – King Edward VII School – League Tables
- OFSTED report 2002
- 2005 GCSE results for Sheffield LEA
- 2005 A-level results for Sheffield LEA
- DCSF Achievement and Attainment levels 2007