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Theale Green School

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Theale Green School
, ,

Coordinates51°26′12″N 1°05′11″W / 51.43654°N 1.08625°W / 51.43654; -1.08625
FounderKen Shield
Department for Education URN139938 Tables
Chair of Theale Green TrustDr. John Gate
HeadteacherJo Halliday
Age11 to 18
HousesBenyon, Hunt, Piper and Scott

Theale Green School is a coeducational secondary school and sixth form with academy status, located in the village of Theale, Berkshire, England.

The school has 500+ pupils on roll,[1] including the sixth form.


The school was founded as Theale Grammar School in 1963[2] by Ken J V Shield,[3] a graduate of Northampton Grammar School and the University of Cambridge.[2] He had previously taught at Leeds Modern School and Hulme Grammar School, and been deputy head at Thomas Bennett Community College in Crawley.[2]

Upon opening, the school was designed to provide education for 870 pupils.[2] It was extensively expanded throughout the following decade, with the addition of the gymnasium, music department, the sixth form area, and numerous classrooms.[4] A 1971 estimate predicted that the school roll would rise to 1,250 by the middle of the decade.[2] In the early 1970s, the school became a comprehensive and was renamed Theale Green.[3]

In 1985 Chris Gittins was appointed as headteacher. A graduate of Leighton Park School and Cambridge University, he had previously taught at Swanley School, Thomas Bennett School and Longsands Academy in Cambridgeshire. The school pioneered local management of schools prior to the Education Reform Act 1988 with the appointment of the first bursar in Berkshire, Richard Smith and, in 1987 was renamed Theale Green Community School, becoming the first Community School in the county by strengthening the house system, opening a sports centre, and amalgamating the Youth and Adult Education Provision with daytime schooling. The school grew to 1350 students with an expanded sixth form.

In 1992 the school designed and developed the first Learning Support Unit (LSU) in England.[citation needed]

In 1993 the school won a national competition to achieve funding under the governments Technology Schools Initiative (the precursor to Specialist Schools) and one year later, when the Specialist schools programme began, the school was designated as an Arts college, one of the first four in England, developing an outstanding reputation for technology and arts education recognised in subsequent OFSTED Reports.[citation needed]

In 2002 Gittins became the government's lead advisor on improving behaviour and attendance in schools and Sue Marshall was appointed headteacher, moving from the neighbouring Clere School in Hampshire.

In 2010, a planning application was submitted to West Berkshire Council seeking permission to rebuild the sixth form complex.[5] Building work began in late 2010 and the new Sixth Form Centre was opened in November 2011, comprising classrooms, computer facilities, study rooms and a new common room.

In October 2011 the school was given a Notice to Improve by Ofsted. The report stated: "The proportion gaining five or more A* to C grades at GCSE including English and mathematics has now fallen to below the national average and progress for average ability students across the school, particularly in mathematics and science, was inadequate."[6] The follow-up visit, made in October 2012 and published in December 2012, found that the school had not made sufficient improvement on the previous report. As a result of this, the school was placed in special measures, and the head—Sue Marshall—announced her resignation to coincide with the Christmas holiday.[7] She was succeeded by David Bromfield, former principal of Manchester Academy.[8][9] In September 2013, the school converted to academy status and was renamed, dropping the word "community" from its name, returning to "Theale Green School".

After 19 months as the headteacher,[10] Bromfield left the school in August 2014. A statement from the school's governing body announced that "it [had] been agreed between David Bromfield and the governors that this would be a natural juncture" for him to leave the school.[11] He was replaced by Sally Beeson, a former assistant headteacher at nearby Bradfield College.[11]

In July 2017, following a damning Ofsted report, Dr Sally Beeson made the announcement that she was stepping down as head teacher, and leaving Theale to return to her family home. Theale Green received a 'requires improvement' rating from Ofsted in May 2017, while the Sixth Form programme was found to be a strength of the school. Julie Turner, the current deputy head, was announced as interim head from September 2017.

In September 2018 Theale Green School welcomed its third head teacher in as many years following the appointment of Joanna Halliday. Ms Halliday was previously in charge at King Alfred's Academy in Wantage. The school is also hoping to accelerate progress by becoming part of the Activate Learning Education Trust (ALET).[citation needed]

The school received a 100 per cent pass rate in the most recent set[when?]of A-Level results and has recently become part of a multi academy trust.

House system

The school operates a house system. There are four houses, which each have a Head of House, Pastoral Mentor, and a team of tutors. House prefects are appointed by the Head of House.[12] The four houses are:

  •   Benyon
  •   Hunt
  •   Piper
  •   Scott

Benyon house is named after the Benyon family who own the nearby Englefield estate[4] and the land on which the school was built.[13] The house's mascot is a lion.[13]

Hunt house is named after John Hunt, Baron Hunt (1910–1998), the leader of the 1953 British Everest Expedition.[4] The house's mascot is a tiger, which represents strength and determination.[14]

Piper house is named after John Piper (1903–1992) who donated a number of his prints to the school.[15] Piper was introduced to the school by Geoffrey Eastop, whose wife was the head of the art department.[16] The house's mascot is a dragon named Spike.[16]

Scott house is named after Peter Scott (1909–1989).[4] The house's mascot is a duck. The duck was chosen as the mascot due to Scott's conservation efforts.

There are many competitions between these four houses, including rugby, football, netball and hockey tournaments, as well as the annual sports day.

Notable former pupils



  1. ^ Ofsted (2012)
  2. ^ a b c d e North (1972, p. 1)
  3. ^ a b Dunford, Bennett & Fawcett (2000, p. 118)
  4. ^ a b c d French (2002a)
  5. ^ West Berkshire Council (2010)
  6. ^ "Theale Green's shock 'inadequate' rating from Ofsted". Reading Chronicle. 11 November 2011. Retrieved 3 December 2011.
  7. ^ Fort, Linda (5 December 2012). "Theale Green School placed in special measures". Get Reading. Retrieved 10 December 2012.
  8. ^ "Former TV presenter appointed to lead Theale Green school". Get Reading. 12 December 2012. Retrieved 12 December 2012.
  9. ^ "The Morning Show: Presenters Profiles". BBC Online. Retrieved 12 December 2012.
  10. ^ Ford, Linda (21 August 2014). "High-flying head moves on from Theale Green Academy". GetReading. Retrieved 23 August 2014.
  11. ^ a b "Parents in shock as Theale Green School headteacher David Bromfield steps down on eve of GCSE results". Reading Chronicle. 21 August 2014. Retrieved 23 August 2014.
  12. ^ Theale Green Community School (2010, p. 40)
  13. ^ a b Benyon House (2007)
  14. ^ Hunt House (2007)
  15. ^ Spalding (2009, p. 396)
  16. ^ a b Piper House (2007)


  • Benyon House (2007), About Benyon House, Theale, Berkshire: Theale Green Community School
  • Dunford, John R; Bennett, David; Fawcett, Richard (2000), School leadership: National and International Perspectives, Abingdon, Oxfordshire: Routledge, ISBN 0-7494-3384-1
  • French, Peter (2002), General Studies, Theale Green in the 70s
  • Hunt House (2007), About Hunt House, Theale, Berkshire: Theale Green Community School
  • North, Leslie (3 February 1972), Education in the Seventies: Theale Green School, Reading, Berkshire: Berkshire Mercury
  • Ofsted (2010), Theale Green Community School, London: Office for Standards in Education, Children's Services and Skills, retrieved 13 September 2010
  • Piper House (2007), About Piper House, Theale, Berkshire: Theale Green Community School
  • Spalding, Frances (2009), John Piper, Myfanwy Piper: Lives in Art, Oxford: Oxford University Press, ISBN 978-0-19-956761-4
  • Theale Green Community School (2010), Staff Handbook 2010/11, Theale, Berkshire
  • West Berkshire Council (2010), "Application Details (10/01399/FUL)", Planning and Building, Newbury, Berkshire, retrieved 14 September 2010

External links

This page was last edited on 31 January 2021, at 12:36
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