St Thomas More Catholic School, Blaydon
|Motto||Regis Servus Dei Prius|
|Headteacher||Mr. Jonathan Parkinson|
|Deputy Heads||Mr. N Wood, Mrs. A Moore|
|Chair||Prof. Patrick Chinnery|
Tyne and Wear
|DfE URN||137851 Tables|
|Houses||St Bernadette, St Catherine Labouré, St John Fisher, St Theresa|
|Colours||Royal Blue (Years 7 to 11) and Black (Sixth Form)|
St Thomas More Catholic school is a voluntary aided Roman Catholic secondary school with academy status in Blaydon, Tyne and Wear, England, providing teaching to 11- to 19-year-olds. It is a well-regarded and over-subscribed school, performing well both regionally and nationally. In its last OFSTED inspection (2013) it was described as "an outstanding and inclusive school" and found to be outstanding in all major areas assessed. The school converted to academy status on 1 February 2012.
The current headteacher is Jonathan Parkinson, who took over after Michael Zarraga OBE retired in 2005. Its motto is "regis servus dei prius" which translates as, "I am the King's good servant, but God's first". This is a reference to St Thomas More, and his refusal to recognise Henry VIII as the Supreme Head of the Church following the King's split from the Vatican and Catholicism. There are strong ties to the two Catholic churches in Blaydon and Winlaton, St Joseph's and St Anne's, respectfully.
The school runs with a headteacher Mr Jonathan Parkinson and deputy heads Mrs. Annmarie Moore, and Mr. Nicholas Wood as well as assistant heads Mrs. Barbara Kamali, Mrs. Jillian Turner, & Mr. David Shield .
The school is divided into four houses which every pupil placed into one. Each of the houses are named after saints and are as follows:
- St Bernadette (Miss. M. McNeill)
- St Therese (Mrs. Deborah Ashdown)
- St John Fisher (Mr. William Burdon-Taylor)
- St Catherine Labouré (Mr. Richard Lennox)
Note: (Heads of houses)
The houses provide pastoral care for each pupil, as well as being the focus of rivalry during inter-house competitions at the start of the year. During the inter-house competitions the houses compete against one another in activities such as football, basketball, chess and scrabble. During the final week of the Autumn Term, a quiz is held, with students representing their houses. Around 230 pupils enter every year, and are placed into eight classes, two in each house. Members of staff assist across the years with pastoral duties, such as attendance, behavior, and grades.
Catering at St Thomas More Catholic School is provided by an in-house company, Bistro@STM. There is a dining hall and separate booth on the yard serving snacks and light meals to the lower school, whilst the sixth form has a bistro bar.
The school draws upon pupils from Year 13 to act as headboy and headgirl, with deputy positions. They plan and organise the prom at the end of each year, often at Beamish Hall. There are also House captains, one boy and one girl, also from Year 13.
The majority of pupils eventually proceed to sixth form, ran by Mr. J. Davis and Miss. P. Sanderson and then higher education, with a small minority of sixth form leavers achieving places at Oxbridge most years.
In October 2011, a new building phase was begun, to house new class rooms which replaced a temporary block. The new building was attached to the main part of the school from the I.C.T department to the English department, housing science labs and humanities classrooms. The building was completed for the beginning of the 2013/2014 academic year.
During 2015 the school began an extensive construction project that included building a third floor on top of existing maths classrooms and science labs, as well as refurbishing both the interior and exterior of the maths classrooms and science labs and the interior of the textiles technology classrooms. The new floor meant that a larger maths classroom could be built, along with extensive facilities for learning support and psychology as well as a new general classroom and a designated training room. Also a new area was constructed as an addition to the playground that consisted of tables and benches for students to use, replacing area left by the temporary structure.
The school became an academy in August 2012, joining Thorp Academy to become two of the north east's leading schools. A multi-academy trust was founded in 2014 with local primary schools, Sacred Heart in Byermoor, and St Matthews in Prudhoe.
There are active Music and Drama departments, who run several groups and performances throughout the year. There are three main concerts each year, as well as a musical during the Spring term. Notably, the Chamber Choir performed at the Albert Hall in 2013. Pupils are awarded for their commitment after participating for three years in clubs, sports and the performing arts alike, through Colours Awards.
|2011||Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat|
|2012||We Will Rock You|
|2016||The Lion King|
Notable former pupils
- Steve Mould, TV scientist and science blogger who discovered the Mould effect.
- Graham Onions, England and Durham cricketer 
- Nicky Deverdics Football League Footballer currently at Hartlepool United
- St Thomas More Roman Catholic Academy, North Shields, similarly named school in North Shields.