Richmond Council plans to relocate Strathmore School on three sites across the borough in order to improve, enhance and make more accessible the borough's provision for children with complex learning difficulties which include Autistic Spectrum Disorders (ASD) or physical and sensory disabilities. Two sites have been agreed - Russell Primary School and Grey Court School and it is proposed that the third site be Clifden Road accommodating up to 50 pupils. There is already a special unit, The George Tancred Centre, providing for the needs of children with ASD at one of our sister Catholic schools in the borough, St James's Catholic Primary School.

Those who attended our Open Day last October will know that the College is committed to removing barriers to learning for children with disabilities or other special needs that affect their ability to learn to allow each child to fulfil his or her potential. At the Open Day, Mr Cole, chairman of the governing body, also stated that governors and the leadership team will work with the Diocese and the local authority to try to provide suitable facilities for any designated group.

The Church places great emphasis on doing what she can to help those in our community who are disadvantaged and need extra help. This is part of our mission and pastoral duty and the Diocese of Westminster is committed to doing what it can to help children with special needs and the governing body and the Diocese is in discussion with the local authority and Strathmore School about the possibility of accommodating part of Strathmore on the Clifden Road site. The discussions are at an early stage; there is much to consider and there will be extensive consultation and involvement with parents, governors and staff of both institutions before any decisions are taken. Factors will include the capacity of the site, the logistics of having Strathmore pupils on the same site as SRRCC pupils, funding, shared facilities and so forth. For agreement to be reached, there must be benefits to both institutions.

The inclusion of part of Strathmore School on the Clifden Road site could provide wonderful opportunities for both St Richard Reynolds and Strathmore. Should the proposal be approved, it will not be until at least 2017 before they become a reality so there is time to examine and consider the proposal properly and our College community will be consulted and involved in any decisions.

As a Catholic school community we have a duty to consider and support the needs of those who need special help and to be open to working with the local authority to explore opportunities to do so. One of the benefits of the proposal is that the special units will be located at mainstream schools and the children can feel part of the wider community. For our pupils, it provides an opportunity to understand and care about children who have these difficulties. 

The College will post updates on the proposals as they emerge.


StEQuizAround 100 parents and friends of St Richard Reynolds took part in a quiz night at St Edmund's in Whitton on Saturday 8 June. Local quizmaster Sean Carey provided the questions and teams also took part in reverse bingo and heads and tails. Raffle prizes were donated by St Edmund's Parents' Association and Andrew Cole. After eight fiercely contested rounds the eventual winners (pictured left) were declared with the top four teams separated by only a few marks. The amount raised has yet to be finalised but it looks to be in the region of £1,200 all of which will go to the St Richard Reynolds Building Fund.

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The children of St Edmund's, Whitton took part in Helping Hands Week during the half-term holiday. In return for a donation the children completed helpful jobs for their friends and family. Funds are still coming in but the total raised so far is £800. The money will be used to purchase a statue for the St Richard Reynolds Catholic College. The College is extremely grateful to the St Edmund's community for this very gesture and for all their hrd work.

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MM GroupAndrew Cole, Chairman of the Governing Body, visited St Mary Magdalen's Catholic Primary School to receive a cheque for £1,000 for the College Building Fund from PTA chair Geraldine Barker and head teacher, Helen Frostick. He was also presented with a beautiful statues of Our Lady from Year 4 pupils Emily O'Connell and George Goddard and Year 6 pupil Mildred Akapabio-Klementowska who will transfer to St Richard Reynolds High School in September. Each of the six Catholic primary schools in the Borough of Richmond has raised money to donate a statue for the College. They will be blessed by Archbishop Vincent Nichols when he comes to Twickenham in September to officially open the school. The statues will be placed in the new classrooms. The College is extremely grateful for this kind and thoughtful gesture from the St Mary Magdelen's school community.

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The governing body has made a number of exciting appointments to the College staff who are already working hard planning and preparing both the high school and the primary school to welcome our first Reception and Year 7 pupils this September. All highly experienced, they have been selected from a very high calibre field of candidates to form a team of professionals who will seek to create a world-class Catholic College in Twickenham.

Emma O'Byrne BA MA

Emma OB 0198 loEmma O'Byrne has been appointed to lead the Early Years Foundation Stage in the Primary School and Key Stage One as the school expands. Emma joins the College from St James's Catholic Primary School in Twickenham where she has worked for the past six years. Emma's talent and experience was recognised when she was appointed as the Early Years Foundation Stage Lead Teacher for the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames. Mrs O'Byrne attended Sacred Heart High School in Hammersmith before graduating from St Mary's University College, Strawberry Hill.

 

Gemma Conway BA - Subject Leader for English 

Gemma ConwayGemma Conway has over ten years of experience teaching in local Catholic schools and is excited about the prospect of joining St Richard Reynolds School and creating an English curriculum that is innovative, engaging and rigorous. She is passionate about her subject and aims to instil a lifelong love of literature in our pupils. A former pupil at St Mark's, Hounslow, Gemma studied at St Mary's University College and Brunel University.

 

 

Matt Whitfield BA - Director of Sport and Physical Education

Matt WhitfieldMatt Whitfield is currently head of PE at The Saleisan School in Chertsey where he began his teaching career after graduating from St Mary's University College in 2001. Matt is a keen rubgy man and has represented England at under 16 level and is a county-level tennis and table-tennis player. Matt has a clear vision for the department and is excited at the prospect of leading Sport and PE at the College and creating a wide and enaging curriculum. He also aims to develop sports teams that will rival the best in the area.


Janet Byrne BA - PE teacher

Janet ByrneJanet Byrne is originally from Ireland but moved to London in 2006 to study Physical Education at St Mary's University College before completing her teacher training at Brunel University. Since 2010, Ms Byrne has worked at Harris Academy Morden where she developed several girls' basketball teams who competed in the Surrey Cup for their first time. Ms Byrne is a keen basketball player herself and currently plays for Twickenham Tigers and is eager to set up basketball teams at St Richard Reynolds to compete in local and borough leagues. Jan enjoys playing a range of sports and attending the gym and is excited by inspiring young people to be active and healthy and to enjoy playing sport whether recreationally or competitively.

Duncan Skelton BSc MA - Subject Leader Design Technology

Duncan SkeltonDuncan Skelton is joining St Richard Reynolds after 7 years at The Douay Martyrs School, Ickenham as Head of Resistant Materials and Assistant Head of Year 7. He also brings previous experience as Head of Department in Dubai and a number of years teaching in the North of England. He is very passionate about his teaching; ensuring children leave class as passionate about DT as he is. This is demonstrated through the receipt of the Jack Petchy Award for his services towards education. He has a keen interest in new technologies and incorporates these into his teaching. In 2010 Duncan completed an MA in Education at St Mary’s University College, undertaking his first degree at Nottingham Trent University and his teaching qualification at Sunderland University. Duncan has various sporting interests, and looks forward to working with the school sports teams. He is a keen footballer and cricket player and has represented Great Britain at Under 16 level in Kayaking.

Richard McPaul BA - Subject Leader Art

Richard McPaulRichard McPaul studied Graphic Design and New Media at The Surrey Institute of Art before joining Christ's School in Richmond where he curently runs the Art Department and is Head of House. Richard is an inspirational teacher who understands that Art plays a vital role in a rounded curriculum that enables young people to express themselves creatively in and beyond the classroom. A recent Ofsted report judged his department to be outstanding. A keen cyclist, Richard enjoys rehabilitating vintage bicyles!

 

 

 

Anna Fisher BA ACA FCA - Business Manager

Anna Fisher loAnna Fisher is a Chartered Accountant with experience in financial reporting, internal and external audit, project management and HR. She has worked mainly in media but started her career in public sector audit, specialising in charities and education. Anna attended Gumley House Convent and The Cardinal Vaughan Memorial Schools before studing History at Durham University. She is very excited about being given the opportunity to work in a school that means so much to her personally. Anna's expertise and experience will be vital in developing the College as it expands over the coming years.

 Vanessa Bentham LLCE (Licence en Langues et Civilisations Etrangères) - Modern Foreign and Classical Languages


VanessaVanessa is French with an Italian background; she brought up in a bilingual environment in which she developed a love for language from a young age. She aims to share this passion with her students and show them that a language is something valuable for your life outside and indeed beyond the classroom. She believes that languages, whether classical or modern, broaden horizons and expand the mind with different cultures and this is what she seeks to convey to her students. Vanessa will teach French and Latin at the College.