Welcome from Ed Goodwin, Principal of St Christopher’s School
From its modest beginnings in a villa in 1961, St Christopher’s has grown into a large, internationally renowned, non-profit making school with over 2100 students from more than sixty nations. These children and young people, from three to eighteen years of age, benefit from the excellence, dedication and hard work of our teachers and support staff who together form a team dedicated to the creation and maintenance of an environment in which each student can learn effectively.
In our school, we encourage the notion that personal improvement and development is always possible – no matter how high the current level of achievement and success. In line with this philosophy, our teachers use innovative as well as traditional methods; over recent years we have implemented aspects of practice drawn from Accelerated Learning concepts and the Building Learning Power framework developed by Guy Claxton. We have also refined our whole approach to assessment through the use of what is known as Assessment for Learning. Through these initiaitives, and other Learning to Learn approaches, we seek to ensure that our students become “autonomous learners” fully prepared and competent to meet head-on the challenges and vagaries of life in the rapidly changing world we share.
The values and concepts that guide a school such as ours are not easy to summarise briefly, but we believe that the constituent words of what we call the St Christophers ‘S’ – Caring, Learning, Communicating – say a lot about what we are, especially when considered together with our Five Pillars of Learning, that we have adapted and expanded from ideas to be found in the four aspects of learning described in a report to UNESCO by Jacques Delors. Our Mission Statement helps to complete the picture!
To assist teachers and support staff in their goal of helping your children to learn at an optimal rate, we provide excellent facilities and resources; but these too are constantly developing and expanding. Over recent years we opened, in 2005, a magnificent new school to house our Junior students. A year later our Infant students moved into their own wonderful facilities in the same complex as the Junior School. These developments allowed the Seniors to expand into buildings previously used by the Junior School. In the future there will come a time when the Senior School will leave the current site to its own, world-class premises – this probably can’t happen until around 2015.
Aside from teachers and other classroom-based staff we are also fortunate to have very many excellent people handing all of the day-to-day logistics and operations required in a large school. Altogether St Chris employs nearly 300 people – and this doesn’t include contracted cleaners and some categories of maintenance staff. On the educational management side, Each of the Schools (Infant, Junior and Senior) has a Headteacher and a Senior Management Team. A Board of Governors attends to the longer term direction and to major policy matters. The Board delegates the running of the School to the Principal and the Heads report to the Principal. The Heads and Principal together are termed the Leadership and Management Team (LMT). I have had the honour and privilege to hold the position of Principal since the Spring of 1995.
Finally, beyond the most quoted measure of a school – its first class examination results – we pride ourselves on maintaining a warm and caring atmosphere which we know to be essential to a happy and productive learning environment – and that we hope comes across in our web-site. A computer screen is, however, no substitute for the real thing! Please come to visit us; we will be delighted to welcome you.