A brief history of the school
When a number of parents found themselves without a school for their children they started to look at what was on offer for their children in the Cambridgeshire area. There were, and are, lots of good schools in Cambridgeshire, but none of them offered the vision of a creative education with the level of pastoral care, inclusivity and breadth of experience that the group dreamed of for their children.
So, the idea of creating a school was born and the hard work began!
Having discussed the idea with a few potential key staff members, the group began looking at locations and venues for the new school. After a great deal of searching, the Old Rectory in Fulbourn was decided on; the building and location were both ideal. The decision to make the new school a charity was also initiated.
At the beginning of January, Mary Greer, an experienced Registrar, came on board as a founder and began work on the recruitment of pupils for the school. This was challenging, as at this point the group was not yet in possession of the building and had no Head, teachers or equipment. However, parents were loyal and trusting of the team they knew and began to enrol. Despite the sale not being complete, the current owners of the Rectory were extremely supportive of the cause and a number of informational events were held in the building for prospective parents.
By the summer of 2016 nearly forty families had signed up and the founders were able to offer roles for teachers. Had they had a genie they could not have been more successful with attracting the teachers they had wished for! A superb team, with Paula Elliott as Head, was assembled and work on the school timetable (by the incredible Sue Hilton-Taylor), curriculum, lesson plans and employment of all the peripatetic staff began.
During the summer planning permission to allow the Rectory to be used as a school was awarded and the school had its first Ofsted inspection. The school passed with flying colours – following many hours of preparation of policies, researching safety standards and looking at risk assessments!
The school was then awarded its D of E number and was registered to open in September. The rest of the summer was an incredibly busy time. Over the months since the decision to open a school was made, Mary assembled a team of volunteers (staff, parents and pupils) to paint the inside of the building and, despite the heat wave, the entire building was painted by mid-August. More volunteers spent hours weeding and clearing the grounds and furniture was delivered. The place was beginning to look like a school! A computer network and suite was built and installed by two of the Trustees and bookcases and shelves were assembled. Wall displays were put in place and coat pegs put up – hot lunches ordered – we were ready to go!
On Tuesday 6th September the 40 new pupils, their parents and the staff assembled for a welcome breakfast and their first school day. The sense of community and achievement was truly heart-warming!