Sir George Monoux College

Sir George Monoux Sixth Form College
Established 1527
Type Sixth Form College
Principal David Ball (interim)[1]
Location Chingford Road
E17 5AA
Local authority Waltham Forest
Students 2000

Sir George Monoux College is a sixth form college located in Walthamstow, East London.[2]

Brief history

Sir George Monoux, the founder of the Grammar School (later College), was born in or before 1465. In 1506 he was a Warden of the Drapers Company, in 1509 he became the Sheriff of London and later in 1514 he became Lord Mayor. Sir George Monoux was elected to Parliament as a Burgess for the City in 1523. He was a wealthy man who spent much of his time in Walthamstow.

George Monoux (alderman of London and local worthy) erected the Almshouses, associated school and feast ball for the poor of Walthamstow on a former parcel of St. Mary's Churchyard in 1527 in Walthamstow Village.

The Monoux School operated there for 353 years until moving firstly to West Avenue then to High Street, and finally to Chingford Road in 1927. The western end was rebuilt in 1955 following bombing in October 1940.

From 1527 to 1999 the school underwent many changes. From 1659 to 1968 it operated as a grammar school for boys. From 1968 to 1986 the school was a comprehensive, and in the late 1960s, it was ranked as the 11th best state school in the country. In 1986 the school became a sixth form college and girls were admitted for the first time. In 1993, Monoux became an Incorporated College, which it remains today.

Sir George Monoux Grammar School 1885-1968

The school was re-established following a scheme made under the Endowed Schools Act in 1885 in a different part of Walthamstow, temporary premises in West Avenue, and then a purpose-built site in High Street. It moved to the present premises in July 1927. There have been many additions to the buildings since then. In 1961, 1977, 1990, 2002 and 2004. The school remained independent, but came increasingly to depend on local authority grants. From the death of the headmaster, William Spivey, in 1916, it can be regarded as effectively a local authority grammar school. The school was a selective boys grammar school until 1968 catering for boys aged 11–18.

Following reorganisation of secondary education by Waltham Forest council (devised by a Labour council but instituted under a Conservative one), during the years 1968 - 72 it gradually became a comprehensive Senior High School for boys aged 14–18 admitting most of its pupils from the Junior High Schools Chapel End, William Fitt, Warwick Boys School and Aveling Park. The last entry of boys to the main Monoux building was in 1987 who were taught separately to the sixth form but within the same building in Chingford Road. The last entry of boys however was in 1988 who were not taught in the main building but in an "annexe" located in Brookscroft Rd in the old Chapel End Junior High School. This was closed in 1990.

Sir George Monoux Sixth Form College 1986-

In 1986 the school became a co educational sixth form college for students aged 16–19 and fully co educational from 1989. It was funded and administered by the London Borough of Waltham Forest from 1986 to 1993 when under the provisions of the Further and Higher Education Act 1992 it was incorporated becoming in effect an independent body funded by the newly formed Further Education Funding Council for England (FEFC) In 2001 the FEFC was replaced with the Learning and Skills Council (LSC) The college driven by government growth targets increased in size from 600 students in 1986 to approximately 2000 students in 2006. The college offers A level and vocational courses. [3] The college draws students from a wide geographical area of north and east London and from a very wide range of cultural and ethnic backgrounds. At present over 95% of the students are from minority ethnic communities.

The Principals

Since 1986 the Principals of the college have been:

Mrs Corine Moffett 1986-1993

She was appointed as Principal of the new college, having previously been the Headteacher of Walthamstow School for Girls. Towards the end of her time as Principal the college was Incorporated and no longer controlled by the London Borough of Waltham Forest but by an independent governing body or "corporation". Incorporation took effect on 1 April 1993. The first chairman of the new Corporation was Brian Tierney. The first Clerk to the Corporation was Robin Jones. At the end of August 1993 Mrs Moffett retired.

Arthur Harvey 1993-1996 After incorporation in 1993 the college entered a period of instability. Prior to becoming Principal, Arthur Harvey was Vice Principal of Sir George Monoux College from 1986-1993. He had previously been a deputy headteacher at Leyton Boys School. He was initially appointed Acting Principal for a period of up to two years which was later extended for a further year. The Chair of the Corporation and the Clerk to the Corporation held the same posts on the newly formed Waltham Forest college corporation and it was at one point proposed that the corporations of both colleges should move towards common membership. This proposal was rejected by the governing body of Sir George Monoux College. Although Tierney and Jones acted with the utmost honesty and integrity there was some concern about potential conflicts of interest given the fact that the colleges had a financial relationship. As a result of these concerns both the chair and clerk left office in 1993. At the end of the same year the college saw the departure of the finance director, Peter Ward. The first inspection under the new Further Education Funding Council Arrangements proved disappointing with many areas being awarded only a satisfactory grade. Arthur Harvey retired in 1996.

Stephen Grix 1996-2000

He was appointed Principal having previously been Vice Principal at Barking College. Relatively youthful at the time of his appointment (39) and unashamedly proletarian in origin and demeanour (he had started his career as a bricklayer at the age of 15) he brought a modern managerial style to the college for the first time. His background had been entirely in the Further Education sector and he brought none of the experience or sentiment of the traditional school teacher. He used his builder's instincts to improve the fabric of the building to enormous effect, significantly enhancing the scope and quality of the accommodation. He also initiated a programme of management restructuring. Two of the senior managers left the college and all posts of responsibility were re-advertised internally. His interventionist management style reaped great rewards in the subsequent inspection. The general view of his Principalship is that he had "turned the college around" He left the college at the end of March 2000 to become the Head of Post Compulsory inspection at Ofsted.

John McMinn Acting Principal April-September 2000 He had worked at the college from 1986. He was initially the director of the foundation course before being promoted to a senior post in 1993. In 1996 under the Grix reorganisation he became Deputy Principal.

Richard Chambers 2000-2006

He came from Lewisham College where he had been a Vice Principal for nine years. He presented himself as a "thinker" and innovator and attempted to develop links with Higher Education institutuions, making formal associations with Middlesex University and Queen Mary College. He initiated and oversaw the construction of the Drapers building. It was also during his time as Principal that the Brockman building, a project initiated by Stephen Grix was completed. He left at the end of October 2005 to take up the post of Principal of Lambeth College.

John McMinn Acting Principal November-March 2006

Almost immediately after the departure of Richard Chambers the college was subject to an inspection under the new Ofsted inspection procedures. The outcome of the inspection was considered generally less favourable than recent FEFC inspections. The college being awarded a satisfactory grading in most categories where previously it had been considered good.[4]

Kim Clifford 2006-2010

She was Director of Sixth at Exeter College before being appointed Principal in March 2006. Unlike her two immediate predecessors she came from an academic background and with relatively recent teaching experience, having taught Sociology. During her time as Principal the college underwent of inspection by Ofsted in December 2009. Kim Clifford left the college at the end of 2010 to take up the post of Principal of Cirencester College.

Paolo Ramella 2010-2015 Ramella had been appointed to the post of Vice Principal in 2009. A native Italian he had spent a considerable period working in schools and FE Colleges in London before joining the staff of Sir George Monoux College. Paolo Ramella stepped down the post of Principal on 31 December 2015.

The Corporation

Chairs since 1993. Brian Tierney, Peter Brierley, Derek Harris, Peter Leighton, James Hedges Alan Wells OBE

Clerks to the Corporation since 1993. Robin Jones,1993 David Ranger,1993-1995 1996-2009 Roy Smith,1995-1996 Charles Bond 2009-10 Robert Smith 2011-

Notable former students

Sir George Monoux Grammar School

Sir George Monoux Senior High School


  1. "A Welcome From the Interim Principal, David Ball". Sir George Monoux Sixth Form College. Archived from the original on 30 July 2016. Retrieved 16 August 2016.
  3. "Profile of Sir George Monoux College - Walthamstow, Greater London, Colleges in England". 2007-10-09. Retrieved 2011-02-13.
  4. "Ofsted report". Retrieved 2011-02-13.
  5. "LHS". Retrieved 2011-02-13.
  6. "The South Atlantic Medal Association 82". Retrieved 2011-02-13.

Coordinates: 51°35′43″N 0°00′53″W / 51.5953°N 0.0148°W / 51.5953; -0.0148

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