Brighton College's metamorphosis into one of the top UK schools in the country has been recognised after its management scooped the Outstanding Senior Leadership Team of the Year gong at the Independent School Awards 2014 in Nottingham.
The team has brought about an amazing transformation at the Eastern Road school and is instrumental in its steady rise. In 2006 the school's UK academic ranking was 147th. In 2014, it was 12th.
The College has been twice crowned independent school of the year in the last four years (by the Sunday Times and by Independent School Awards executive) and has received a slew of accolades.
The senior leadership team is responsible for:
- Making the College the first school to introduce compulsory Mandarin lessons for all ages
- Making history lessons compulsory in the sixth form in a bid to improve young adults' knowledge of the world and how it works
- Creating the Story of Our Land course that explains chronologically what happened in the British Isles since the beginning of time to the Georgian era from a historical, geographical, scientific and religious perspective.
- Outstanding academic results. In 2014, 94% of A levels taken were graded A*-B and 89.5% of GCSEs taken were graded A*/A
But the award also recognises the team's determination that the school's pupils should be engaged in their community and socially aware. One result of this - regular Make A Difference Days which see every single pupil leave school and go and help in one way in the community, from dredging rubbish from park ponds to helping in care homes.
A spokesman for the awards said: "Brighton College's SLT has led an extraordinary transformation. In 2006, it was ranked 147th in the Sunday Times league of schools. This year, it was named England's top co-educational school, and was placed twelfth overall, the only school to have improved its ranking in each of the last seven years. The SLT has also helped start three new schools since 2011, including a free school in East London for underprivileged children.
Head Master Richard Cairns said: "The SMT is an incredibly talented and committed body of people and to my mind this recognition is richly deserved."