Rainey Endowed School

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Coordinates: 54°45′25″N 6°36′43″W / 54.757°N 6.612°W / 54.757; -6.612

Rainey Endowed School
Motto Sal Sapit Omnia (Salt Savours All)
Established 1713
Type Voluntary Grammar School
Headmaster Mark McCullough
Founder Hugh Rainey
Location 79 Rainey Street
County Londonderry
BT45 5DB
Northern Ireland
Students 700 (approx)
Gender Mixed
Ages 11–18
Colours Black & Red          
Website www.raineyendowed.com

Rainey Endowed School,known colloquially as "The Rainey", is a voluntary grammar school in Magherafelt, County Londonderry, Northern Ireland. The school was founded in 1707 and has an enrolment of approximately 700 pupils. The school borders three counties and draws its students from each of County Londonderry, County Antrim and County Tyrone. It offers the Northern Ireland curricula up to the age of 16 and a range of AS and A2 courses at post 16. The school is also a member of a local inter-school program which shares it's A-level classes with other schools in the local area



Rainey Endowed School was founded by Hugh Rainey, an iron smelter and wealthy merchant in the Magherafelt district . He was an elder in the Presbyterian Congregation of Castledawson, which at that time included Magherafelt. As a result of a vow made to God for his protection and favour he, by his will dated 11 April 1707, devoted one half of his estate to fund a charity school for 24 boys: "sons of parents who were of good report and reduced to poverty". After three years instruction the boys were to be given a suit of clothes, £2.50 for an apprentice fee.

In his Will, Hugh Rainey wrote "that what I have left may not only be for a generation or two, but that it may be for many not yet born ", and so 'The Rainey' was founded.


Hugh Rainey died in 1707 and the task of building the school fell to his only child, Elizabeth, and her husband. The school was built in 1713 on land leased from the Salters' Company, and is still on that site today.

In 1863 negotiations with the Salters' Company resulted in the development of a new building. On 21 January 1863 the Lord Chancellor of Ireland, confirmed a new scheme of management. In 1864 the Salters' Company built a teachers' residence and a single schoolroom in Rainey Street Magherafelt. Girls were permitted into the school at the end of the 19th century.

The school motto, taken from the Salters Company, is Sal Sapit Omnia, translated as Salt savours all .


As of the academic year 2008-2009 pupils on roll were marked at 697 with four classes in each year. Teachers were numbered at male 21 and female 27. More than 20 subjects at Key Stage 4. Over-subscribed, with 1.4 applications per place.

Heavy emphasis on extra-curricular activity, including drama, public-speaking, choirs, orchestras, Scripture Union. Sport is a dominant feature, especially rugby, hockey, tennis, and athletics; 1st XV won subsidiary bowl of Schools' Cup; winners of North Easter seven-a-side rugby competition. The Rainey Under 14 hockey team won the Junior Cup beating Friends School, Lisburn in the final 2008/09.

Strong musical traditions, with choirs and orchestras; also traditional Irish musical groups and encouragement of solo performance; drama productions. More than 100 pupils take part in Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme; 25 raised £35,000 for Gold Expedition in Kenya, with half of the money given to charitable organisation that funds primary education in Nairobi. Recent emphasis by sixth form on charity fundraising; large amounts raised for tsunami appeal, Leukaemia Research, and Cystic Fibrosis Trust.

Plans were announced in April 2004 for a new £14.3 million school to be built.

The Sunday Times Parent Power selected the school to be Secondary School of the year 2016 for Northern Ireland.

Notable former pupils[edit]

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