City schools in surprise new merger

Jul 5, 2012 Full story: Ripon Gazette 52

Ripon's cash-strapped Cathedral Choir School is to leave its home in the city merge with nearby Cundall Manor.

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Pride before a fall

Selby, UK

#42 Jul 23, 2012
This is not some sort of smash and grab raid.
Some parents believe that a small group is out to wreck this final last opportunity and would rather have no school at all. It is not just about choristers. There are now children needing an education and staff needing a livelihood.
Stop carping on about how you hate this or that, or who needs a school anyway and the choir can exist without a parent school.
This is an offer to all parents that would provide their children with a good education for no more than they are paying now. God I understand free uniform and buses are even included. There are staff that will be made redundant.
Can you not understand there are no realistic opportunities left but this one? Why go down the "I hate QE" route? They know how to run an independent school successfully and their Charitable Foundation clearly has the money available to help.
May be that is the problem -- someone actually knows what to do and can make it happen.
Talk about "looking a gift horse in the mouth" and "pride before a fall"!!
It is enough to make the blood boil. No wonder Cundall pulled out!!!
Concerned of Ripon

Glasgow, UK

#43 Jul 23, 2012
I have very serious doubts that you are a Choir School Parent. Far more likely that you are part of the rapid response QE marketing team.

QE is nothing like the Choir School, offers very little that would attract Choir School parents (or their children), is not in the same league academically, and would not be able to offer a suitable home for the choristers. Additionally, their offer and the way it has been managed is insulting to those who really do know and understand the Choir School.

Parents will push on and explore every avenue in order to seek a future for RCCS. If none can found, so be it; children and staff will have to move on. But a rabid call to join with QE as if in one magical stroke, it will solve everyone's problems, is utter nonsense and shows a high degree of ignorance of what is important and precious about RCCS.

Well done to those who are investing their time and energy in seeking a future for this gem of a school - and the best of luck to you. You deserve it.
Children and staff matter

Selby, UK

#44 Jul 23, 2012
Your posts reminded us of someone else who goes onto the web to knock QE quite regularly. So we have you pegged as someone from another independent school - but no matter whether you are or you are not.

Your emotive negativity holds no sway with us.

No I am not part of QE, just a parent looking to do the best for my children.

When we all read your words

"so be it; children and staff will have to move on"

you patently have no understanding that with no Choir School we have to find another school, with no Choir School, staff are made redundant.

To simply say, so be it we all have to move on, shows you are not a parent with a child at our school nor a member of staff about to be made redundant.

Obviously QE is not like the Choir School, who would suppose it is. Academcially they are actually rather good. No one believes there is a magic bullet and I am sure QE doesn't believe it either.

What is the offer?- to ensure that all parents pay no more than they are paying now, that staff keep their jobs, that the Choir can carry on.

Pretty straight forward really. Knock it all you want. Carry on with your negative comments about QE all you want BUT for the rest of us we are now looking for another school and hoping to god it doesn't cost us more than we are paying now.

Whether you like it or not, several parents have signed up to QE, many more are now making enquiries and in EVERY case I am aware of, QE have offered Scholarships and Special Bursaries so no one is out of pocket. Be cynical if you wish, but for some of us it is a godsend.
odd times


#45 Jul 23, 2012
I think people miss the point - at the meeting last night, not one person saw merger as the way they wanted to save the school, because it won't save the school. Yes, it will give the pupils somewhere to go, but that will not be the choir school or anywhere like it!

I seriously doubt that there is space for all the choir school staff at QE.

In answer to the person who said that the staff and children will have to move on, sadly, yes they will. The children's parents will have to find them new schools and the staff have a matter of weeks to find new jobs at a time of year when there are very, very few teaching jobs.

Those of you who love the choir school love it's family ethos, the way it celebrates every child, the way that confidence is developed and excellence is encouraged. The group of parents who are working together right now are doing so to save all the bits that are so wonderful about the school. If there is to be any hope for the future of the school, people need to
work together, not against each other
Concerned of Ripon

Glasgow, UK

#46 Jul 23, 2012
Fact 1: QE day fees are cheaper than RCCS fees anyway (but I do understand that this may not be so if a child has a chorister award). However, as you said, not everyone is a chorister!

Fact 2: Most RCCS staff (almost all) would have been made redundant if the merger with Cundall had gone ahead. Most staff, would be in the same situation if a merger with QE took place.

Fact 3: All RCCS teaching staff have been working through their holiday to help parents make decisions about future schooling. The teaching staff, having lived with the threat of redundancy for two or three years, still give of their own time to help parents and children. And many (if not all) of the staff - domestic and teaching - are much more committed to a 'new' RCCS than to any deal with QE.

Fact 4: At a meeting of staff, parents and friends at RCCS last night, there was NO support for a merger. There was, however, overwhelming support for an attempt to find a future for an independent RCCS.

Face the Facts!
well said


#47 Jul 23, 2012
Concerned.....brilliant post :-)
I agree

Selby, UK

#48 Jul 23, 2012
To "Concerned" - for once I actually agree with most of what you say!

QE day fees ARE cheaper than RCCS and where they are not, because a Chorister gets between a 20% and 50% Award, QE are offering Special Choral Scholarships to make sure they still remain cheaper, even for Choristers. AND they are offering Free Uniform on top as well.

All this I know for a fact, as they have offered this to me and tell me they will offer it to the others.

I believe therefore QE is likely to be the school chosen by quite a few other RCCS parents as it makes financial sense. Several of my friends have already signed up and others are now making enquiries at QE. Time is short and we do need to make decisions now.

If there was a merger QE tell me they would take on 1 full time member of RCCS staff for every 9 pupils who transfered. I think that is fair.

As for a future for an independent RCCS, well I wish everyone well. It is a steep hill to climb and myself and many other parents believe it will come to nothing, so there is no point hanging on in the hope of this.

The most important point I want to stress is now is not a time for recriminations, accusations or negatives. I think we all agree on that at least.


#49 Jul 23, 2012
I won't be touching QE - it isn't the school for my children. I am afraid I do not like the things I hear about them.

However, each to their own. Good luck to you all, your children and the staff. May the ethos of RCCS live on in us all.

Sheffield, UK

#50 Jul 23, 2012
Is RCCS for sale? Which school transfer agent is it for sale with?

Sheffield, UK

#51 Jul 24, 2012
Rccs won't be sold or made insolvent until land sold as church want ALL their money back! Unfortunately all at rccs have been terribly let down by poor management, irresponsible lending and a blatant attempt to cover up what has been a failing school for years. I truly hope all the children are re schooled and left unharmed by this shambolic course of events. As for cundall ... Their true colours have shone through- impulsive, greedy and completely unprofessional with no regard to the welfare of the children caught up in the middle.

Since: Sep 11

Location hidden

#52 Jul 24, 2012
If they got to merge they got to merge.
Hear hear

York, UK

#53 Jul 25, 2012
Well said 'reality' I agree entirely.

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