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The Road to United Learning


1883

By the end of the 19th century, the dearth of high-quality academic education for girls had been recognised as a major social issue. Our founders leapt into action, and the Church Schools Company was formed by a committee which included the Archbishop of Canterbury. 
1883
1883

1884

We began with Surbiton High School in January 1884, and appointed our first Headmistress, Miss Mary Amelia Bennett, to oversee it. By 1885, the Company had 10 schools with 653 pupils between them. In 1887, the first ever Headmistresses Conference was held at Surbiton.
1884
1884

1888

In 1888, the Company acquired Guildford High School, and in 1890 opened Hull High School - a predecessor to Hull Collegiate School.
1888
1888

1900

A joint school prize giving is held in Newcastle - in many ways a precursor to our annual Best in Everyone Awards.
1900
1900

1918

By 1918, the Group was educating 1,253 pupils at its schools. In 1926, Atherley School opened, a predecessor to Hampshire Collegiate School.
1918
1918

1927

Guildford High School's library is opened. Head Girl Thalassa Cruso commented "soon a generation will grow up that takes a silent workroom for granted, but... [we] regard the library as the greatest boon the school has ever had".
1927
1927

1939

During the Second World War, Atherley School was evacuated to Winchester, and Hull HIgh School to Scarborough. The London office was bombed, and so work was temporarily moved to Surbiton.
1939
1939

1944

Tranby Croft, a Victorian country house, is purchased for Hull High School for £13,250. Hull Collegiate School students still use this building today.
1944
1944

1958

Between 1958 and 1985 a lot of building development took place, including science laboratories being fitted and computer facilities created to keep up with the ever-changing technological landscape.
1958
1958

1983

In 1983, the Church Schools Company celebrated its centenary at York Minster and Winchester Cathedral. A centenary mug was given to every pupil.
1983
1983

2003

As the Millennium approached, our Trustees reflected on the future and asked themselves: ‘What would our founders have done had they been alive today?’ The answer was to respond to the key education issue of the day by raising the aspirations and life chances of young people living in some of the most deprived parts of the country. In 2003, Manchester Academy opened after trustees accepted the government's invitation to develop new academies. They established a new, linked charity to do so.
2003
2003

2012

Between 2003 and 2012, 20 academies were opened or joined the Group, along with 6 independent schools. In 2012, it was agreed that the two linked charities should come together as a Group to form 'United Learning'. It was seen as a fresh opportunity to establish ourselves as a single, nationally recognised force in the education sector.
2012
2012

Today

Today we educate over 40,000 students across over 60 schools, as well as employing around 7,000 members of staff including over 3,500 teachers. We are uniquely united across state and independent sectors, and committed to bringing out 'the best in everyone'.
Today
Today
United Learning