Maxwelltown High School

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Maxwelltown High School
Crest of Maxwelltown High School
Motto Cognoscam (Know)
Established 1971
Type Secondary School
Headteacher Maureen Smith
Depute Headteacher R. Williams (Curriculum)
J. Taylor (Pupil Support)
Location Lochside Road
Coordinates: 55°05′06″N 3°38′46″W / 55.085°N 3.646°W / 55.085; -3.646
Local authority Dumfries and Galloway Council
Staff 40
Students 310
Gender Mixed
Colours      Black
     Royal Blue

Maxwelltown High School is a state funded, six-year comprehensive secondary school in the Lochside area of Dumfries, Scotland. Founded in 1971,[1] Maxwelltown High School is the most recently founded secondary school in Dumfries and Galloway. It had 311 pupils as of August 2012.[2] The roll of Maxwelltown High School has been steadily declining since 2002.[3]

Attainment throughout the school is generally lower than the national averages for equivalent qualifications although this has been improving in recent years and the school is known as being a leader in curriculum development.[4] The current head teacher is Maureen Smith.



The school is the most recently founded High School operating in Dumfries and Galloway, opening in 1971 to subsidize the rapid expansion of Dumfries's population in the 1970s, particularly affordable council developments in the Lochside and Lincluden areas where the school is located. The school was designed by architect Alexander Abercrombie Wilkie[5] who was at the time chief architect of Dumfries County Council Architect and Master of Works Department responsible for all council developments in the area known at the time as Dumfries County (later incorporated into Dumfries and Galloway), it was Wilkie's last major architectural design before his death in 1972.[6]

The school is within the town border of Dumfries but it is not contained within the bounds of Dumfriesshire, it is instead in the historic burgh of Maxwelltown in neighbouring Kirkcudbrightshire from which the school inherits its name. In 1983, with the closing of Cargenbridge Secondary School, the school's catchment area grew to include Cargenbridge Primary School and Shawhead Primary School bringing the total number of catchment primary schools to 6 where it stands today.[7]

Recent history[edit]

In recent years the school has focused a lot of attention on social development and community integration particularly in the areas surrounding the school which have a reputation being socially problematic, having high rates of crime antisocial behavior and problems with bullying inside the school.[8] The school tries to support pupils coming from disadvantaged backgrounds[2] and is highly regarded for its learning support department which provides additional support to pupils with special educational and behavioural needs.[4]

Notable former pupils[edit]


  1. ^ McLachlanh, Bruce (15 July 2012). "Some Dumfries Facts". A Visitors Guide To Dumfries. Retrieved 20 December 2012.
  2. ^ a b Maxwelltown High School Handbook. Dumfries and Galloway Council. 2012.
  3. ^ Number of Pupils in Primary and Secondary Schools in Dumfries and Galloway. Dumfries and Galloway Council. 2012.
  4. ^ a b Inspection Report. Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Education. 8 January 2008.
  5. ^ DSA Building/Design Report. Dictionary of Scottish Architects. 2008. Retrieved 21 December 2012.
  6. ^ DSA Architect Biography Report. Dictionary of Scottish Architects. 2008. Retrieved 21 December 2012.
  7. ^ Cluster Transition Policy. Maxwelltown High School. December 2012.
  8. ^ Consultation Draft. Neighbourhood Renewal Masterplan for Dumfries and Galloway. Dumfries and Galloway Council. May 2006.
  9. ^ Ted McMinn profile on "Queens legends" on the official Queen of the South FC website

External links[edit]