Graveney School

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Graveney School
Welham Road

, ,
SW17 9BU

Coordinates51°25′25″N 0°09′04″W / 51.4235°N 0.151°W / 51.4235; -0.151Coordinates: 51°25′25″N 0°09′04″W / 51.4235°N 0.151°W / 51.4235; -0.151
Motto"Committed to Excellence"
Department for Education URN137005 Tables
Chair of the GovernorsDr J. Oppenheimer
PrincipalGraham Stapleton
Staffc. 200
Age11 to 18
Enrolmentc. 2000
HousesSt. John's, Rosa Bassett, Ensham, Furzedown, Battersea
Colour(s)Black, gold and blue             
School feesrange between years
Heads of HouseSt John's - Mr P McCrudden

Furzedown - Ms J Howe Browne

Rosa Bassett - Mr J Kearney

Ensham - Mr A Shackleton

Battersea - Ms R Fisher

Graveney School is a secondary school and sixth form with academy status in the Furzedown area of Tooting, southwest London, England. The school has a partially selective admissions policy. At the beginning of 2015 Graveney was assessed in an Ofsted inspection report as outstanding.[1]


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), it was even once an orphanage

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,[2][3] 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[4] and also moved to a partially selective admissions policy in September of that year.[5][6] 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,[7] increased to 30% in 2001[8] and reduced back to 25% in 2004,[9] where it remains in 2008.[4] Graveney School converted to become an academy on 1 August 2011.[10]

Years 7 to 11[edit]

When students begin their life at Graveney in Year 7, they are placed into sets depending on their Year 6 SATs, their Wandsworth test result and the recommendation letter of their previous teacher. Students can either be put into Extension (4 classes), Enrichment (3 classes) or Endeavour (3 classes). Students can be moved across sets depending on their ability. However, most remain in their assigned stream. Students in one Endeavour class receive personal mentoring by the school, with their tutor often being a member of the special needs department.

Years 7 to 9[edit]

Extension and Enrichment study one Modern Foreign Language; these could either be French or Spanish. From Year 8 onwards, there is an opportunity to do twilight classes, which means students can study an additional Modern Foreign Language e.g. German, or French and Spanish.

Years 10 to 11[edit]

After Christmas of year 9, usually February or March, students pick their GCSE options. English Language and Literature, Maths, Science, PE, and a Modern Foreign Language are compulsory for the two years. Up to three additional subjects are usually chosen, with the option to do 'Twilight' Drama, or Astronomy as an extra out of school GCSE.

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

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

The Sixth Form[edit]

Graveney School also has a large sixth form college (the largest single site in the country), 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, Further Mathematics, Philosophy, Photography and Psychology, though some of these subjects will only run if a substantial number of students apply to it. 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.

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

Site and buildings[edit]

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;[11] the larger area to the north of the road is the former Furzedown Training College (a teacher training college), which was opened in 1915.[12] The buildings surround a tree-lined campus and include Furzedown House, a Grade II-listed[13] Georgian house, built in 1794.[12][14]

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 subjects.

  • Red House - English, Economics and Business Studies, Media Studies, Film Studies, and Drama
  • 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, Citizenship and Government & Politics
  • Lower Science - Biology, Chemistry and Physics
  • Upper Science - Biology, Chemistry and Physics
  • Atkins Technology Centre - Electronics, Resistant Materials and Graphics
  • Technology Block - Food, Textiles and Media Studies
  • Sixth Form Study Centre - Study area for Sixth Form students only which doubles as an assembly hall
  • Bradford House - Psychology, Sociology, Maths 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 used by Graveney during school hours for Sports Studies and PE lessons; the area consists of a small running track, an astro turf pitch, 2 tennis courts which can be converted into another pitch and a cricket area.

Headteachers and principals[edit]

  • 1986–1989 John A. Phillips, BA (Oxon)[15]
  • 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 most recent headteacher was Keith Barbrook, who left in 2017.[4]

House system[edit]

Graveney's traditional three houses wre St. John's, Rosa Basset and Ensham. However, after the Summer of 2018, two new houses have been added: Furzedown and Battersea.

  • 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.[16] 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.
  • Ensham – named after Ensham school. Motto: Per Ardua Ad Alta.

Year forms[edit]

Years 7 to 9 consist of ten forms, whilst years 10 and 11 consist of nine forms; the forms break down into: 3/4 extension band forms, 3 Enrichment band forms and 3 Endeavour band forms.

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ Karmock-Golds, Lynton (2015). "Graveney School Inspection Report". Ofsted. Retrieved 25 February 2017.
  2. ^ |archiveurl= missing title (help). Parliamentary Debates (Hansard). House of Commons. 13 May 1991. col. 13–14. Archived from the original on 16 July 2011.
  3. ^ |archiveurl= missing title (help). Parliamentary Debates (Hansard). House of Commons. 16 December 1991. col. 28–29. Archived from the original on 5 June 2011.
  4. ^ a b c Graveney School [Prospectus] for September 2008. Graveney School. 2007. Retrieved 2007-12-08.[permanent dead link]
  5. ^ R v. Peter Downes, ex parte Wandsworth London Borough Council, CO/4114/99. London: Queen's Bench Division. 2000. Archived from the original (RTF) on 2006-12-29. Retrieved 2008-01-20.
  6. ^ |archiveurl= missing title (help). Parliamentary Debates (Hansard). House of Commons. 11 June 1996. col. 126. Archived from the original on 16 July 2011.
  7. ^ Downes, Peter (1999). Determination, Case Reference(s): ADA/00048 and ADA/00018. Office of the Schools Adjudicator. Archived from the original (DOC) on 2009-03-24. Retrieved 2008-01-20.
  8. ^ Webster, Tony (2000). Determination, Case reference: ADA00140 & ADA00145. Office of the Schools Adjudicator. Archived from the original (DOC) on 2009-03-24. Retrieved 2008-01-20.
  9. ^ Newton, David (2004). Determination, Case reference: ADA/000359; ADA/000360; ADA/000362. Office of the Schools Adjudicator. Archived from the original (DOC) on 2007-08-24. Retrieved 2008-01-20.
  10. ^, Ofsted Communications Team. (5 July 2018). "Find an inspection report and registered childcare".
  11. ^ "From the Balham & Tooting News and Borough of Wandsworth Chronicle, August 21, 1917". The Old Grammarian. 8 (3): 7–8. November 1979. Archived from the original on December 5, 2006. Retrieved November 18, 2007.
  12. ^ a b Gower, Graham. "A History of Suburban Streatham". Ideal Homes: Suburbia in Focus. University of Greenwich. Archived from the original on 2007-11-30. Retrieved 2008-01-20.
  13. ^ "Listing Reference LB/235". Wandsworth Borough Council. Retrieved 2008-01-20.
  14. ^ Conservation and Design Group, Borough Planner's Service (2005). Conservation area character statements, 26: Streatham Park (PDF). Wandsworth Borough Council. p. 1. Retrieved 2008-01-20.
  15. ^ Poffley, M. F. (2002). "Old Grammarians' Association; A summary history of the Association". Old Grammarians' Association. Archived from the original on 2006-12-05. Retrieved 2007-12-06.
  16. ^ Poffley, M. F. (2002). "BGS Heraldry". Old Grammarians' Association. Archived from the original on 2006-12-05. Retrieved 2007-11-25.
  17. ^ Josh Halliday "Amol Rajan appointed as Independent editor",, 17 June 2013
  18. ^ "BMX World Championship title triumph amazing - Quillan Isidore".
  19. ^ "Talented Graveney School biker set to contest BBC Young SPOTY". Wandsworth Guardian.
  20. ^ "Josef Craig wins BBC Young Sports Personality of the Year". BBC Sport. 16 December 2012 – via
  21. ^ "Team pursuit gold and silver for Great Britain at track world championships".
  22. ^ "Hamilton sets new Oliviers record". BBC News. 6 March 2018 – via
  23. ^

External links[edit]