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Stantonbury International School

  (Redirected from Stantonbury Campus)

Stantonbury International School (formerly known as Stantonbury Campus) is a secondary foundation school located in north Milton Keynes, England, established in 1974. It is the second largest secondary comprehensive school in the United Kingdom with more than 1,800 school students aged 11–18 (Years 7-13 / US Grades 6-12). It is built as part of a community site, including shared facilities including a leisure centre, theatre, health centre and church.

Stantonbury International School
Stantonbury International School - Logo.png

MK14 6BN

Coordinates52°03′40″N 0°46′22″W / 52.061°N 0.7727°W / 52.061; -0.7727Coordinates: 52°03′40″N 0°46′22″W / 52.061°N 0.7727°W / 52.061; -0.7727
MottoSapere Aude - Dare to Know
Established1974; 45 years ago (1974)
FounderGeoff Cooksey
Local authorityMilton Keynes Council
TrustGriffin Schools Trust
Department for Education URN143134 Tables
HeadteacherMrs Michelle Newman [1]
Staff341 (2017)
Age11 to 19
  • Cooksey (post-16)
  • Dansteed
  • Grafton
  • Portway
  • Saxon

Originally established as two schools (Bridgewater Hall and Brindley Hall),[3] during the late 1980s it was restructured into four halls plus a shared sixth form, and eventually merged into one school. The campus held Arts College status as its specialism under the now discontinued specialist schools programme.



The concept for the school developed in the early 1970s with Geoff Cooksey appointed by Buckinghamshire County Council in 1971, where he worked with Tim Brighouse to create the first new secondary school of Milton Keynes.[4] When the school opened in 1974, it introduced a first name policy which means students call staff by their first name rather than the convention used in other schools of using teachers' surnames.

Stantonbury Campus was the first secondary school in the country to not require a uniform,[5] but 38 years later the school introduced a uniform for years 7-9 for the September 2012 term following pressure from governors, from Ofsted and growing discipline issues.[6][7]

Original Stantonbury Campus logo
The Campus logo from 2012 to 2018.

The school has a unique ethos which are guiding principles in the management and the day-to-day life of the school.[8] These are based upon equal value for all members of the school community (regardless of whether they are pupils or staff) and determined optimism for all. It has a history of educational innovation and has successfully defended the principles of comprehensive education in a climate which has sometimes been hostile to its inclusive and learner-centred ethos.[9][10]

As part of its original concept as a "community school", open to the public as well as the students, the Campus has good facilities such as an athletics track with all athletic sport equipment, a leisure centre complete with a swimming pool, a drama theatre, and science labs. The Leisure Centre and Theatre are now managed by a separate charitable incorporated organisation (CIO) - Stantonbury Art and Leisure Trust, established in 2014.[citation needed]

The Stantonbury timetable was significantly different to other secondary schools, incorporating long 1​14 hr and 2​12 hr sessions, and during the 1970s and 1980s, suspending normal timetables every fortnight (later every month) for "Day 10", a day of extra curricular activity which was selected by the student.[11] At the end of each school year, the timetable was suspended for a week for "Week 10".

Stantonbury International is the second largest comprehensive school in the country by pupil numbers (Nottingham Academy is the largest since 2009).[12] Having been a 12-to-18 school from its inception, it admitted students in Year 7 from September 2006, following reorganisation of secondary education in Milton Keynes.


The campus is a large site with multiple buildings. In addition to the Hall buildings, others are used for specific curriculum areas whilst others are facilities buildings (such as The Diner or the Leisure Centre).

Some of the many buildings include:

  • Dansteed 1 and Dansteed 2 (Art and Maths)
  • Grafton 1 (English and Humanities)
  • Grafton 2
  • Portway
  • Saxon
  • Activities Block (Science, ICT and ADT)
  • Upper Level (Science, ICT, Performing Arts and ADT)
  • Leisure Centre
  • Ashurst (Sports hall)
  • Cooksey (Post-16 + Library)
  • Cooksey 2 (Post-16)
  • Cooksey 3 (Music block)
  • Theatre

Sixth formEdit

The sixth form is based in its own hall in the centre of the campus; with a library, computer network, and a suite of tutorial and teaching rooms. The sixth-form curriculum and range of activities for students are broad: providing a wide range of academic courses leading to A level and AS level qualifications, along with vocational courses.

Achievement and standardsEdit

Students at Stantonbury International School are known in particular for their achievement in the Arts and Sports.[13] The school has a wide range of sporting and Arts facilities which are used to ensure students are able to fulfil their potential. The school's commercial theatre is used by students for performances throughout the year, in conjunction with a range of national and international theatre companies. Students excelling at sports also do well at Stantonbury International School including many who participate in regional and national sporting competitions.[14][15] The school's athletics track and swimming pool support students in their sporting pursuits. Beyond sports and arts, students have access to excellent teaching in a range of traditional academic subjects including Maths and English and are encouraged to excel not only within the classroom but beyond as part of a holistic approach to education with an emphasis on educating the whole child.[16]

The artsEdit

Stantonbury Campus has been a specialist Arts College since 1998 and holds the Artsmark Gold mark from the Arts Council of England.[17]


  1. ^ "Stantonbury Campus". Stantonbury Campus Official Site. 2017. Retrieved 29 March 2017.
  2. ^ "Stantonbury Campus". Department of Education. 9 June 2014. Retrieved 13 June 2014.
  3. ^ "Domesday Reloaded: Stantonbury Campus". BBC. 1986. Retrieved 8 January 2013.
  4. ^ "Geoff Cooksey obituary". The Guardian. 9 April 2012. Retrieved 14 January 2014.
  5. ^ "Stantonbury Campus uniform plans". BBC News. 27 June 2012. Retrieved 16 June 2017.
  6. ^ "Unconventional school which lets children call teachers by first name forced to consider uniform code as parents reject relaxed rules". Daily Mail. 27 June 2012. Retrieved 14 January 2014.
  7. ^ "Stantonbury Campus gives the go-ahead for uniforms". MK News. 29 June 2012. Retrieved 7 January 2013.
  8. ^ "Stantonbury Campus School Prospectus" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2007-09-27. Retrieved 2006-09-08.
  9. ^ Moon, B. (ed.) (1983) ,Comprehensive Schools: challenge and change, Windsor: NFER-Nelson
  10. ^ Famously, Stantonbury was among the first schools to use the "opt out" (of LEA control) option introduced by the Thatcher Government to free itself of control by the Conservative-led Buckinghamshire County Council.
  11. ^ FIELDING, Michael. "Alex Bloom, Pioneer of Radical State Education" (PDF). Mantle of the Expert. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2012-03-31. Retrieved 5 March 2014.
  12. ^ "Largest school in UK to teach 3,520". The Guardian. 15 September 2008. Retrieved 7 January 2013.
  13. ^ "Ofsted Report" (PDF). 27 August 2018.
  14. ^ "Stantonbury Campus - Our Badminton Superstars". 14 May 2018.
  15. ^ "Milton Keynes - International Sporting City" (PDF).
  16. ^ "Ofsted Report 2015" (PDF).
  17. ^ "Stantonbury Campus - Artsmark Gold". 27 August 2018.

External linksEdit