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This decision will lead to a fully co-educational school across two sites in Monmouth, bringing together Years 7 – 11, which are currently the only year groups who remain single sex.
The merger will create an outstanding school in which boys and girls learn together, providing equal opportunities for all while recognising their different needs. We will ensure that teaching continues to be outstanding and that our students gain not only the grades they need to move on from Monmouth successfully but also skills to be life-long learners who contribute positively to society and become leaders in driving change. It is our ambition to create a school that offers something different from neighbouring schools, providing excellent teaching and wide-ranging opportunities in a caring and supportive environment.
The move to become fully co-educational is a process that has already begun.
From September 2024:
- Years 7, 8, 9 and 10 will become fully co-educational, and will be based on the current Monmouth School for Boys site at Almshouse Street.
- Years 12 and 13, boys and girls, will be based on the west side of the Monmouth Girls’ School site on the Hereford Road.
- Year 11 students, who will be midway through their GCSEs, will remain in single sex classes on the Monmouth School for Boys site, at Almshouse Street, to minimise any disruption.
- The Prep School will move to the east side of the Girls’ School site.
From September 2025, Monmouth School will be fully co-educational in every year group.
We have carefully considered all aspects of this change. Both sites are large enough for the number of students who will be based there, and we have the time and the funding to create the additional infrastructure, including a wider variety of study areas and a superb Sixth Form Centre, with six times more space than is currently available.
We plan to make space for other new facilities by optimising our use of the existing buildings. This optimisation will include converting the squash courts on the Boys’ School site into a new dance studio, while the dining hall will be extended to become School’s first carbon neutral building. Some boarding houses will be refurbished, with more recreational spaces and improved access to outdoor areas, and some rearrangements made to housing for boarders – though the boarding structure will remain the same. And as with all of the changes made to the estate over the coming months, we aim to carry out all major projects with minimal disruption, with much of the work undertaken during school holidays when most pupils are absent. These redevelopments present a valuable opportunity for us to place sustainability at the heart of the way in which the school operates. So far this focus has already led to a 20% reduction in gas usage this winter and as work continues across the estate there will be many more economies as we strive for net zero.
This development is greatly helped by the William Jones Endowment and the support of the Haberdashers’ Company. The move to full co-education improves the school’s financial position and provides the necessary confidence for the Trustees of the William Jones Endowment to release funds to further improve the facilities and opportunities for all our pupils.
Simon Dorman, current Head of Monmouth School for Boys, has been appointed as Head of the new co-educational school from September 2024, and Rachel Rees as Deputy Head of Pastoral. Meanwhile, he leads an Executive Team which includes the new Deputy Head (Pastoral), Heads of the Girls’ School and Prep School, the Senior Deputy Head (Academic) and Bursar, to oversee the transition. They are being supported by a number of Working Groups who make recommendations and parents, pupils and alumni will be kept informed of decisions.
The next 18 months will be an exciting time and we are determined to seize the opportunities it presents. Students will be able to familiarise themselves with the newly developed site with a programme of social events, shared lectures, academic activities and structured events that will start in the Summer term of 2023 and enable new classmates to get to know each other. Activities will now include boys and girls wherever practically possible to develop friendships before being based together full-time.
If you have questions, you can write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will provide as much information as we can. Details of the transition are still evolving, but please do get in touch if there is anything you would like to find out more about or if you have any queries about the immediate impact this announcement might have that are not addressed on our Frequently Asked Questions page.
Latest updates – 3 March 2023
Rachel Rees has been appointed as Deputy Head of the newly merged school from September 2024. Rachel has taught at Monmouth Girls’ for fourteen years, knows our pupils and the schools, and will work closely with Simon Dorman over the next few months delivering the vision for the merged schools. Rachel will also be Acting Headmistress of Monmouth School for Girls from the start of the Summer term 2023 until August 2024.
Nicola (Bish) Muir will begin as Director of External Relations after Easter. This role brings together marketing, communications, admissions and development into a single department with all the synergies that will involve. Bish has over 25 years of extensive marketing experience and has been Head of Marketing and Communications at West Buckland School in Devon for the last seven years.
Nikki Cunningham-Smith has accepted the Haberdashers’ funded role of Aspire Manager, coordinating the new Aspire Programme being piloted at Monmouth working with our sixth formers. Nikki will join us from The Forest High School, Gloucester where she is an Assistant Headteacher, and from September 2024 she will be based in the new Sixth Form building.