Graveney School

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Graveney School is a secondary school and sixth form with academy status, located in the Furzedown area of Tooting, south west London, England. The school has a partially selective admissions policy. At the beginning of 2011 Graveney was assessed in an Ofsted inspection report as outstanding.<ref name="ofsted">Template:Cite web</ref> The school became an academy on 1 August 2011.


Whilst Graveney School can trace its origins back to a school founded in the late 1660s by Sir Walter St John, 3rd Baronet, in Battersea, the modern Graveney was established in 1986 as an amalgamation of Ensham School (for girls) and Furzedown Secondary School (mixed). Furzedown was itself formed in 1977 as an amalgamation of Battersea Grammar School (for boys) and Rosa Bassett School (for girls).

Created as a standard comprehensive school under the control of the local education authority (initially the ILEA, later Wandsworth), a significant change occurred in 1991 when Graveney became a grant-maintained school,<ref name="hansardmay91">Template:Cite hansard</ref><ref name="hansarddec91">Template:Cite hansard</ref> giving far greater control to the school governors. Following the changes resulting from the School Standards and Framework Act 1998, which abolished grant-maintained status, the school preserved a degree of independence by electing to become a foundation school.

The school achieved Technology College status in 1995<ref name="prospectus">Template:Cite book</ref> and also moved to a partially selective admissions policy in September of that year.<ref name="judicialreview">Template:Cite book</ref><ref name="hansardjun95">Template:Cite hansard</ref> From the introduction of selection the school was permitted to choose up to 50% of pupils by ability, however this was reduced to 25% in 2000,<ref name="osa1">Template:Cite book</ref> increased to 30% in 2001<ref name="osa2">Template:Cite book</ref> and reduced back to 25% in 2004,<ref name="osa3">Template:Cite book</ref> where it remains in 2008.<ref name="prospectus"/>

Years 7 to 11

When students begin their life at Graveney in Year 7, they are placed into sets depending on their Year 6 SATs. Students can either be put into Extension (3 classes), Upper (3 classes), Middle (2 classes), or Support (1 class). Students are often moved across sets depending on their ability. The workload is ever so slightly higher in Upper than in Middle. Students in the Support class receive personal mentoring by the school.

Years 7 to 9

The Extension classes study two Modern Foreign Languages as opposed to a single language in the other sets for these 3 years.

Years 10 to 11

At the end of Year 9, students pick their GCSE options. English Language and Literature, Maths, Science, PE, and a MFL are compulsory for the two years. Two additional subjects are usually chosen, with the option to do 'Twilight' Drama, Dance or Latin as an extra out of school GCSE.

With regards to Science, the majority of people do the Triple Science award - a GCSE for Biology, Chemistry and Physics, whereas some do the Double award. There are a number of students who instead do BTEC Science.

The results of the Year 9 exams determines what sets the students will be in.

The Sixth Form

Graveney School also has a large sixth form college, offering a wide range of subjects to study at A-level. The sixth form is open for application to both internal students (students that studied at Graveney School), and external candidates (students that received their secondary education elsewhere).

The sixth form offers a range of subjects that were not available to take at GCSE level, such as Archaeology, Critical Thinking, Film Studies, Government & Politics, Law, Further Mathematics, Media Studies, Philosophy, Photography and Psychology. Students can also retake GCSEs, or follow Open University enrichment courses. The sixth form has minimum entry requirements of 5 A*-Cs at GCSE level for internal students, and 7 A*-Cs for external applicants. For a student to graduate from year 12 to year 13, they must have attained minimum grades of two Es at AS level.

Graveney sixth form does not have a uniform policy, however students must wear their ID card visibly at all times.

Site and buildings

Graveney initially operated on both the former Furzedown and Ensham sites, however the Ensham building was soon closed and the school now occupies what was Furzedown Secondary School on either side of Welham Road in Tooting, south west London.

The part of the site on the southern side of Welham Road is the former Rosa Bassett School, the main building of which was opened in 1913.<ref name="Chronicle1917">Template:Cite journal</ref> The larger area to the north of the road is the former Furzedown Training College (a teacher training college), which was opened in 1915.<ref name="Streatham">Template:Cite web</ref> The buildings surround a tree-lined campus and include Furzedown House, a Grade II-listed<ref name="listing">Template:Cite web</ref> Georgian house, built in 1794.<ref name="Streatham"/><ref name="planning">Template:Cite book</ref>

The other buildings include: Red House, College House, Lower School, Upper Science, Lower Science, Atkins Technology Centre, the Tech block, an independent study centre, a sports hall and a multigym.

Each building is dedicated to two or more subject.

  • Red House - English, Economics and Business Studies, Media Studies, Film Studies, Drama and Government & Politics
  • Furzedown House - Art, Music, Drama and English
  • Theatre - Drama and English
  • College House - Maths, Geography, IT, Sports Studies, Citizenship and PSHE
  • Lower School - Languages, History, Religious Studies, IT, Sociology, Archaeology, Critical Thinking, Philosophy, PSHE and Citizenship
  • Lower Science - Biology, Chemistry and Physics
  • Upper Science - Biology, Chemistry and Physics
  • Atkins Technology Centre - Electronics, Resistant Materials and Graphics
  • Technology Block - Food and Textiles
  • Sixth Form Study Centre - For Sixth Form students only
  • Sports Hall - Sports Studies and PE
  • Multigym - Sports Studies and PE

On the north side of Welham Road, there is also a recreation area which is owned by Wandsworth Council but is on the site of Graveney. The area consists of a small running track, an astro turf pitch, 2 tennis courts and a cricket area.

Headteachers and Principals

  • 1986–1989 John A. Phillips, BA (Oxon)<ref name="OGA">Template:Cite web</ref>
  • 1989– Graham Stapleton, MA (Cantab) (now Principal)

John Phillips had been headmaster of both Battersea Grammar and Furzedown Secondary Schools prior to his appointment at Graveney.

Graveney now has a separate Principal and Headteacher (First Vice-Principal); the current headteacher is Keith Barbrook.<ref name="prospectus"/>

House system

Graveney operates a system in years 7 to 9 whereby the students are divided into houses for inter-house competitions and other similar activities. The house names are linked to the three original schools that merged to form Graveney:

  • St. John's (pronounced "Sinjun's") – named after Sir Walter St John, 3rd Baronet, who founded the school that became Battersea Grammar School; the house emblem, a gold falcon, is derived from the crest on Sir Walter's coat of arms.<ref name="falcon">Template:Cite web</ref> Motto: Gloria Brevis, Honor Longus.
  • Rosa Bassett – named after Rosa Bassett, the first headmistress of County Secondary School Streatham, which became Rosa Bassett School. The house's motto, Honesta Obtinete, and the scarlet pimpernel emblem are both taken from those of Rosa Bassett School. They adopted Mr Bassett as their temporary mascot, and came last in the interhouse competitions in the academic year 2011/2012
  • Ensham – named after Ensham school. Motto: Per Ardua Ad Alta.

Year forms

Years 7 to 11 consist of nine forms. The forms break down into: 3 extension band forms, 3 upper band forms, 2 middle band forms and 1 support form.

Notable alumni

  • Naga Munchetty, newsreader on BBC News and TV presenter
  • Amol Rajan, journalist and editor of The Independent newspaper.
  • Otto Farrant, The White Queen actor
  • Ramona Marquez, Outnumbered actress
  • Quillan Isidore, Team GB BMX cyclist



External links

Template:Schools and colleges in Wandsworth