Gravesend Grammar School

Gravesend Grammar School

Infobox UK school
name = Gravesend Grammar School

size =
latitude =
longitude =
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motto = "Consule Cunctis"
motto_pl =
established = 1893
approx =
closed =
c_approx =
type = Grammar secondary
religion =
president =
head_label = Head teacher
head = Mr. G. Wybar
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chair_label =
chair =
founder =
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specialist =
street = Milton
city = Gravesend
county = Kent
country = England
postcode =
ofsted = 118936 [ [ Launceston College ] ]
staff =
enrollment = 1013
gender = Boys (11+)
Co-educational (16+)
lower_age = 11
upper_age = 18
houses = 5
colours =
publication = The Miltonian
free_label_1 =
free_1 =
free_label_2 =
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free_label_3 =
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website =
website_name =

Gravesend Grammar School is a selective secondary school located in Gravesend, Kent, England. The school accepts boys at age 11 by examination and boys and girls at 16, based on their GCSE results.

The School

Gravesend Grammar School was opened on 19 July 1893 in a lavish ceremony by Princess Beatrice of Battenberg, the youngest daughter of Queen Victoria. The school was originally based in Darnley Street, Gravesend and later moved to the site of Milton Hall, the former home of G. M. Arnold, a former Mayor of Gravesend, and one of the founders of the school. The original building is currently used as an Adult Education Centre. The replacement building is still in use although many alterations and additions have been made to it since it was originally constructed, including being rebuilt after being bombed during World War II.

A second school building, known as the 'Centenary Building', was built in 1993, to commemorate the School's 100th year, and currently houses cutting-edge facilities including multiple computer facilities and chemistry labs. There are a number of mobile classrooms around the school site, used for various subjects, although these are beginning to be replaced by more permanent buildings.

Overall, there are 57 classrooms, including six Computer Rooms, a growing number of which contain Interactive Whiteboards, as well as a library, a sports hall, several small music practice rooms, and a canteen available to all staff and pupils.

In 2004 the School gained specialist status as a Maths and Computing Specialist School. This in itself guarantees the School extra government funding in order to continue the running and expansion of its high-class facilities.

The Chair of the Governing Body is Mr Graham Ralph BA (Hons).

The Headteacher is Mr Geoffrey S. Wybar BA.

The Deputy Headteachers are Mr Brian Simpson BA MA (Curriculum) and Dr Jo L Seymour (Teaching and Learning).

The Assistant Headteachers are Mr Chris Morgan BA (Senior Tutor) and Mr T M Allen BSc (Director of Specialist School).

The Director of Support Services is Mr Mike Fall BEng.

Names of the School

:1890 - 1898 The Gravesend Municipal Technical School:1898 - 1904 The Gravesend Municipal Day School:1904 - 1914 The Gravesend County Day School:1914 - 1946 The County School for Boys, Gravesend:1946 - 1967 The Gravesend Grammar School for Boys:1967 - 1982 The Gravesend School for Boys:1982 - 1999 Gravesend Grammar School for Boys:1999 - present Gravesend Grammar School

House system

In 1926 the present House system was introduced replacing the former houses of Goths, Vikings and Saxons. Originally the pupils in each year group were divided into four houses reflecting where they lived. This distinction no longer applies with the choice of house now often linked to family connections:

:Cliff (blue House tie) - derived from the Overcliffe, for boys from the west of the Borough:Downs (yellow House tie) - reflecting the North Downs, for boys from the south of the Borough:Hill (green House tie) - from Windmill Hill, for boys from the east of the Borough:Town (red House tie) - as the name implies, boys drawn from the town area In 1993 to reflect the growing size of the school a fifth house was introduced::School (purple House tie)

Head boy team and prefects

Each year, a Head Boy and a team of five deputies are elected from the Lower Sixth (Year 12). Several weeks before the Easter Holiday, any student wishing to stand for the position must submit a manifesto to the Head of Year. Once these have been accumulated, a husting is held, in which the candidates put forwards their ideas and reasons for being elected. Following this, the Year 12 group and Staff vote for their choices for Head Boy and Deputies. The candidates that have the most votes then go on to an interview with the headmaster, and the choices are announced just before the term ends. Despite the school's tradition of appointing a Head Boy, now that there are girls in the sixth form, the position is not exclusive, and indeed, the current team is a mixed group. The schools current head boy is Kayne Shepherd.

There are a large number of prefects in the school, ranging from subject prefects to pastoral ones in charge of areas of the school such as the Library or the Canteen. There is a dedicated team of about fifteen students to ensure appropriate use of ICT facilities at Break and Lunchtimes. All members of the Prefect and Head Boy teams are issued a blue, shield shaped badge with the appropriate position emblazoned across it.

Sixth form

The Sixth Form currently contains approximately 300 students, studying A Levels in a variety of subjects. Each week there is a "General Education" session for the Lower Sixth, in which various speakers such as the local MP or representatives from Israeli and Palestinian Support Charities. The school also provide free "Driveability" sessions for the Year 12 students, that outline the various risks and responsibilities of learning to drive. There are several extracurricular clubs specifically for the sixth form, including an A+ computing course, and a Film Club. Harri Cizmic, a Year 13 student at the school, has also organised an exchange with a Croatian school in Dubrovnik next year, furthering the school's international links.


Pupils begin to prepare for career choices in Year 9, where they start to have one lesson a fortnight being taught various aspects of careers, including interview techniques and how to write CVs. These lessons continue until the end of year 11. In addition, all year 11 pupils have a week's work experience in a variety of locations, from local prep schools to companies in London. They also have group careers interviews with a Connexions advisor, with one on one sessions if requested. The school has a Careers Library that any student can use, that contains prospectuses and information from various Universities, as well as information about possible careers paths.


Sport plays a very big part of life at the school, to the extent that for the last two years, all GCSE students take Physical Education short courses. There are a number of specialist PE teachers (who take the title 'Master-in-Charge') who coach a variety of teams, including Badminton, Rugby, and Hockey, as well as facilities for Basketball, Table Tennis and Athletics.

Drama and music

The school GCSE and A Level groups have recently staged productions such as "Grease", The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui, West Side Story, The Royal Hunt of the Sun, Animal Farm, The Madness of King George, Grimm Tales, The Crucible and The Threepenny Opera. The most recent being Year 10's Grimm Tales. It went extremely well, and all of the staff were very pleased at the dedication and commitment of the Year 10 boys.There are a number of Musical organisations in the School, including Guitar and Recorder Clubs, a Chamber Orchestra and a Choir.


Recent years have seen educational visits to France, Italy, and Germany, including various exchanges, as well as slightly less adventurous trips to places such as The Globe Theatre and The British Museum. Groups of senior students have recently been to Peru on a World Challenge Expedition and an expedition to Mongolia was carried out in July of 2007. The School also hold more recreational visits, such as recent Rugby Tours to Canada and South Africa, and the Annual Ski Trip to Italy. The school has also taken pupils to canoe down the Ardeche and has taken pupils scuba diving in Gozo. In spring of 2008 pupils are going to Spain for caving.

Motto and school song

The school motto, Consule Cunctis, was adopted in 1925, and whilst originally translated as "Do thou take thought for the good of all men", is now taken to mean "take thought for everyone". Originally, the school song was "Forty Years On", the school song for Harrow School, but in 1926 two friends of the Headmaster wrote a new song, also called "Consule Cunctis". "Forty Years On" continued to be sung along with the new song at important dates in the school calendar, such as Speech Day, until the late Forties. Due to the ever increasing student body of the School and the inclusion of female students within the sixth form, the words have changed from "four hundred fellows" to "one thousand students", reflecting the ever-increasing numbers and diversity of the school body:.

:Consule Cunctis: We readily grant it:Who will not hearten the song as we chant it:Some 1000 students assembled in hall?:For the splendour of life shall illumine our faces:While boyhood's a game that delights us and graces:Our "Play for the side with your face to the ball".

:Consule Cunctis: When school days are ending:There's none shall escape from the duties attending:All 1000 students assembled in hall,:Though the ground to our feet may ring flintily, dustily:Forget not the chorus but sing it right lustily.:"Play for the side with your face to the ball".

:Consule Cunctis: in fair or rough weather:We'll play to the whistle, stand fast all together:We 1000 students assembled in hall.:Consule Cunctis: the world stands before us:And we'll yet make it join in our full-throated chorus:Of "Play for the side with your face to the ball".

:Headboy: School! Selah! C'est a dire!

:All reply: Alors! Oui, bon. Oh, aye. Oh, aye, aye.

:Zen, Zen, Zen!


Head Masters

:1893 - 1898 J.T. Dalladay AMC:1898 - 1924 H.F.A. Wigley BA FCS:1924 - 1946 Rev Samuel Lister MSc:1946 - 1963 William H.E. Stevens BSc:1963 - 1968 H. Peter Arnold-Craft MA:1968 - 1974 Roy Cooke MA:1974 - 1977 James A. Brogden MA :1978 - 1985 Peter T. Sanderson DLC:1985 - 2000 Peter J. Read BSc MPhil MA:2000 - present Geoffrey S. Wybar BA

Deputy Head Masters

:1893 - 1898 S.A. Sworn MA:1898 - 1907 J.T. Dalladay AMC:1907 - 1931 D. Foster:1931 - 1936 H. Law:1936 - 1958 A. Richards:1958 - 1964 Les C. Furley:1964 - 1973 E.W. Walker:1973 - 1977 Peter T. Sanderson DLC:1979 - 1986 John E. Edwards:1986 - 1990 R.H. Curtis:1990 - present Brian Simpson BA MA:2004 - present Dr Joanne L. Seymour

Old Gravesendians

*Squadron Leader Robert Anthony Maurice Palmer VC DFC & Bar (1920-1944).
*Sir Richard Southwood Kt DL FRS (1931–2005), Professor of Zoology and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Oxford, 1989-1993.
*Professor Brian Newbould, Professor of Music, Hull University, 1979-2001.
*Jonathan Martin OBE, former Head of BBC Sport, 1982-2000.
*David Nicholls (1943-2008), Kent cricketer.
*Peter Jones (1944- ), Chairman of the Horserace Totaliser Board (the Tote), 1997- present. Former President of the Racehorse Owners' Association, 1990-1993 and Dorset Police Authority, 1997-2003.
*Rt Rev Tony Porter (1952- ), Bishop of Sherwood, 2006- present.
*Richard T. Russell (1952- ), author of the BBC BASIC for Windows programming language.
*Dr Mike Woodin (1965-2004), Principal Speaker of the Green Party of England and Wales.


*The school has recently set up a radio station, Radio Logic, that is to be run by pupils, with broadcasts at break and lunchtimes over the school computer systems. []
*At the end of each academic year (depending on the punctuality of the editorial team), a school magazine, "The Miltonian" is published. Generally it includes Valedictories to leaving staff members, reviews of sporting seasons and drama productions, accounts of school trips and other events that took place during the previous year.
*It has been reported that the character of Inspector Morse was based on the former Headmaster James A Brogden (1974-1977) who was an Oxford contemporary of the author Colin Dexter


External links

* [ Gravesend Grammar School website]
* [ Ofsted Report]

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