Ely College

Ely College
Ely College
Ely College students in their new uniform, 2011
Type Academy, Secondary & Sixth Form College
Principal Catherine Jenkinson-Dix
Location Downham Road
DfE URN 110883
Ofsted Reports
Students around 1250
Gender Coeducational
Ages 11–18
Website elycollege.com

Coordinates: 52°24′26″N 0°15′28″E / 52.4071°N 0.2577°E / 52.4071; 0.2577

Ely College is a fully comprehensive community secondary school, located in Ely, Cambridgeshire.[1] [2]



In 1962, St Audrey's School and Ely High School were moved out of the centre of Ely to an extensive site on Downham Road. Shortly after this, a donation from the Catherine Needham Foundation, a local charitable trust set up in memory of Lady Catherine Needham, enabled the establishment of the Needham's County Secondary School. It was renamed in the mid 1970s to City of Ely College, and then subsequently to City of Ely Community College. In 2011 it was renamed Ely College.[3]

In 2009, the College's governors adopted Foundation status, and in 2011, they applied to the Secretary of State to change to Academy status,[4][5] proposing to join the CfBT Schools Trust, an Academies Trust formed by CfBT, one of the UK's leading educational charities.

Zero Tolerance Controversy

In April 2011 the Daily Express dubbed Ely College "Britain's strictest school"[6]. In a newsletter to parents that month, Headteacher Catherine Jenkinson-Dix had issued a warning about the introduction of a zero-tolerance policy for the school, rigidly enforcing existing policies on school uniforms and discipline, plus restricting the use of mobile phones and iPods. Defending the action, she stated: "This is fundamental in preparing them for their future careers, where they certainly would not get away with being rude, dressing inappropriately and chewing gum."[7]

The school came under scrutiny in the national press when the Daily Mail claimed teachers had handed out a total of 717 detentions over a period of four days.[8] The Daily Mirror reported that on one day, one-fifth of the schools pupils were put in detention for "a crackdown on school behaviour".[9] Some parents claimed in the national press that they would be removing their children from the school[10], but others were supportive[11] and by the following month Catherine Jenkinson-Dix was claiming the policy to have been a success, saying that it had enabled teachers to spend more time teaching as they are dealing with fewer distractions in the classroom.[12]

Most recent Ofsted report

2010 Ofsted Inspection Report Link label


  1. ^ "Ely College wesbite". http://www.elycollege.com/index.php. 
  2. ^ "Cambridgeshire County Council academies". http://www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk/education/schools/academies. 
  3. ^ "Ely Weekly News feature". http://www.cambridge-news.co.uk/Ely/School-completes-academy-switch-11102011.htm. 
  4. ^ "Cambridgeshire County Council academies". http://www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk/education/schools/academies. 
  5. ^ "Ely College Academy conversion proposals". http://www.elycollege.com/news/newsarticle.php?id=252. 
  6. ^ "Ely People 'Zero Tolerance feature". http://www.elypeople.co.uk/news/ELY-SCHOOL-ZERO-TOLERANCE-POLICY/story-10935117-detail/story.html?22084378=142708224. 
  7. ^ "Daily Mirror 'Zero Tolerance feature". http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/top-stories/2011/04/08/a-zero-tolerance-school-that-gave-pupils-717-detentions-in-three-days-for-petty-offences-was-slammed-by-parents-yesterday-115875-23045486. 
  8. ^ "Daily Mail 'Zero Tolerance feature". http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1374487/Ely-school-gives-717-children-detention-4-days-rules-crackdown.html. 
  9. ^ "Daily Mirror 'Zero Tolerance feature". http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/top-stories/2011/04/08/a-zero-tolerance-school-that-gave-pupils-717-detentions-in-three-days-for-petty-offences-was-slammed-by-parents-yesterday-115875-23045486. 
  10. ^ "Daily Mail 'Zero Tolerance feature". http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1374487/Ely-school-gives-717-children-detention-4-days-rules-crackdown.html. 
  11. ^ "Ely People 'Zero Tolerance feature". http://www.elypeople.co.uk/news/ELY-SCHOOL-ZERO-TOLERANCE-POLICY/story-10935117-detail/story.html?22084378=142708224. 
  12. ^ "Ely People 'Zero Tolerance Is Working feature". http://www.elypeople.co.uk/Ely-School-Zero-Tolerance-Policy-Working/story-11166611-detail/story.html?625933146=643909778. 

External links

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