Academic rigour and qualifications are central - but a real education goes way beyond this and develops the skills which enable young people to make the most of all of their abilities and trains them for life. It may be the academic results which secure you the interview but it is the person who walks through the door who gets the job. Extensive extra-curricular activities give pupils the opportunity to try out many new experiences and this, along with a strong set of values, is the bedrock of a rounded, confident individual.
At King’s this runs true from the youngest children at the beginning of their learning journeys right through to those ready to embark on their adult lives.
Pupils from King's Preparatory School move into the Senior School at 13+ on the basis of their Year 8 examination results. Children from other independent schools are admitted following Common Entrance examinations or, for those from schools which do not offer Common Entrance, pupils will sit our own Entrance Assessment Tests.
Top Results & Personal Successes For King’s GCSE Pupils
King’s Rochester is celebrating another year of excellent GCSE results and outstanding achievements by pupils.
King’s Rochester is celebrating another year of excellent GCSE results and outstanding achievements by pupils today. With 26% of all grades at 9-8 (A*) and 88% of all grades at 9-4 (A*-C), pupils have continued to flourish after the shift away from coursework-based qualifications to the new linear exams and numbered grading system.
28% of pupils outperformed their predicted grades with an average increase of 1 to 3 grades. This means pupils have achieved higher grades at King’s that they might have done had they gone to school elsewhere. The top 40% of the year (comparable to a grammar school cohort), achieved 54% of their grades at 9-8 (A*) with 93% at 9-6 (A*-B).
With top performers all gaining a clean sweep of grades 9-7 (A*-A) there were many stories of individual success.
Leading grades were attained by Pedro Moniz Gomes with 9 x 9-8’s (A*), Adam Snelling with 9 x 9-7’s (A*-A) and after a busy year of concerts and fixtures, Music and Sports Scholar, Maili Cumming achieved a wonderful 10 x 9-7s (A*-A).
As the world’s oldest Cathedral Choir School, we are delighted with the success of our former Cathedral Choristers, all achieving A*/A in their music examinations. The Music department achieved 100% of all grades at A*-B. (Please note that currently the Music examination is still graded rather than numbered).
Keen athlete Xavier Smitherman-Cairns who celebrates all grades at 9-7’s (A*-A) overcame injury this past year, to excel in both his sporting and academic commitments. He recently joined the Saracens Under 16 Elite Rugby Player Development Group, a testament to his resilience, performance, and ambition.
With excellent results across all subjects, this has been another outstanding year for a range of departments. Art achieved nearly 30% of grades at 9 and core subjects English Literature, English Language, Mathematics, Chemistry, Biology and Physics this year achieved 25% or more of all grades at 9-8’s (A*).
Mr Ben Charles, Principal of King’s Rochester said, “I am absolutely delighted for the pupils who receive their GCSE results today. Their achievements are a testament to their hard work and dedication and I am enormously grateful to the staff for guiding them through these last two years of study. We celebrate their success together with their families as the pupils move through to the next phase of their King’s careers in the Sixth Form.”
Vibrant Destinations & Results For King’s A Level Pupils
King’s Rochester has a strong reputation for maximising the potential of pupils and this year is no exception as pupils have achieved another set of excellent A-Level results.
King’s Rochester has a strong reputation for maximising the potential of pupils and this year is no exception as pupils have achieved another set of excellent A-Level results.
Grades were significantly higher than in 2018 with 11% at A*, 31% at A*/A and 57% of grades at A* to B, showing an improvement in performance from pupils after the shift away from modular qualifications to the new linear grading system.
The top 40% of the year (comparable to a grammar school cohort), achieved 61% of their grades at A*/A with 100% at A* to B.
With such pleasing results, it is no surprise that our pupils are off to a range of exciting and prestigious destinations including Oxbridge, Durham, Exeter, Nottingham, Manchester, Brunel, Goldsmiths and ACM London.
Giselle Harris and Isobel Gilbert deserve particular congratulations on their grades. Giselle takes up her place at Magdalen College, Oxford to read English Language and Literature having achieved three A* grades; Isobel, a ‘lifer’ who has been at King’s since Nursery, will study Veterinary Medicine at the University of Surrey after achieving 3 A grades.
After sitting his Further Mathematics examination a year early, Erez Li achieved an outstanding 4 A* grades and will study Engineering at Robinson College, Cambridge.
Vibrant travel experiences await Head Boy, Leon Neubauer, (A*, 2 As) who will be reading Japanese at Durham and for Lewis Bentley, (A*, A, B) who goes on to study The Ancient World at University College London as both courses include a year abroad.
Chris Walji is looking forward to starting his time with the Royal Navy in September and Leon Kennedy will be heading to Tanzania to support an entrepreneurial charity, showing that studying at King’s opens up a world of opportunities in the future.
Mr Ben Charles, Principal of King’s Rochester said, “Set against a background of A Level reform where exams are now linear, these results are particularly pleasing and reflect the hard work of pupils and staff alike. Particularly pleasing is the broad range of courses pupils will pursue including Music Production, Architecture, Law, Languages, Zoology, Psychology, Economics, Accounting and Mathematics. But, behind all these statistics lie some compelling and exceptional personal triumphs for our pupils and we celebrate their success with them and their families today”.
Mr Ben Charles has been appointed as the new Principal of King’s and Headmaster of the Senior School following Mr Jeremy Walker’s move to be Head Master of St Peter’s School, York.
Mr Charles is currently the Second Master (Senior Deputy Head) of The Portsmouth Grammar School (PGS), a large independent all-through school from 2½ to 18 with very close ties to Portsmouth Cathedral. He completed his degree at the University of Exeter before gaining his Post Graduate Certificate of Education from Durham University. He began his teaching career at another King’s School, this time in Peterborough, where he was Assistant Director of Music and a Lay Clerk in the Cathedral. He went on to become Director of Music at two HMC schools – the first at Chigwell School in Essex and later at Millfield School in Somerset. In 2009 he was appointed Deputy Head (Co-Curriculum and Communications) at PGS and was promoted to the Second Master role in January 2016. He is currently a Governor at Amesbury School and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. Ben is married to Helen, also a teacher and Deputy Head of Sixth Form at PGS, and between them they have three young children with another on the way. Ben is an experienced choral conductor and singer, but is also a huge sports fan, particularly offering support to teams from his native city of Leicester.
Jeremy Walker leaves King’s in December at the end of the Michaelmas Term and Mr Charles will commence as Principal in April 2019 at the start of the Midsummer Term due to his contractual notice period. Mr Roger Overend, who retired as Headmaster of King’s Preparatory School in July 2018, has been appointed Acting Principal for the Lent Term.
Miss Jacqueline Shicluna, Chair of Governors said, “Governors were highly impressed with Mr Charles’ experience, his affinity for King’s and vision for the future building on strong foundations. We all look forward to welcoming him and his family to Rochester and are confident that King’s will continue to thrive and develop under his leadership. In the meantime, I am delighted that Mr Roger Overend will be Acting Principal for the Lent Term. His long experience and knowledge of King’s will ensure stability and successful transition to Mr Charles.”
Of his appointment Ben said, “I am thrilled and honoured to have been appointed as Principal of King’s School, Rochester and to be joining such a welcoming and happy community. I look forward to building on the outstanding leadership of Jeremy Walker.
King’s is renowned for its exceptional pastoral care, the breadth of opportunities it provides across the full age range and its commitment to a Christian ethos, all in an incredible and unique setting. I am excited to lead a school with such a rich heritage, but which also has significant aspirations for the future. My family and I very much look forward to joining the King’s community and to meeting pupils, parents, staff and alumni in the months and years ahead.”
Jeremy Walker said, “I am delighted with Ben’s appointment and couldn’t be happier with the Governors’ decision. Much as I am excited to be moving to St Peter’s, leaving King’s has been a difficult decision to make and I know that Ben will be an outstanding Principal and that he and his family will be welcomed as warmly as mine.”
Edward Hyde’s vocal journey as a treble is drawing to a close and, as is to be expected from the singing superstar, his last professional engagement is as impressive as all of his previous projects.
Edward, a Music Scholar at King’s Rochester, was approached by British composer Rebecca Dale to attend a recording session for her new release ‘Materna Requiem’. He is one of four vocal soloists featured on this piece in a number of movements, all being accompanied by The Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra.
The album has been produced by Jonathan Allen, who earlier this year produced the three worldwide cinema broadcasts for The Royal Opera House in which Edward was involved. Edward’s solo part had a very demanding range and was technically challenging throughout. He approached it with commended professionalism and all involved commented not only on Edward’s musicality and tone, but also the way in which he conducted himself throughout the day. In the words of Jonathan Allen, “I don’t need to tell him what to do - he’s a true professional already."
Edward said, “I was incredibly humbled to be asked by Rebecca Dale to record for her after she had heard a recording of me on the radio last year. Working on this project with producer Jonathan Allen and Rebecca has been an amazing journey and I am looking forward to the album launch in August”.
Edward will now switch his focus to the trombone as the Junior Royal Academy have requested that he audition for The National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain. At 14 years of age this is very young and requires a serious amount of work and focus.
International Selection For Hockey Superstar Aspen
King’s Rochester pupil Aspen Cumming has been selected for the Scotland Women’s U21 Hockey Squad for 2017/18. The international player will play her first match for the squad in summer 2018.
Aspen currently has ten international caps for Scotland, following a successful season playing for Scotland Women’s U18s and is set to build on this experience when the training sessions for the U21s begin in early 2018.
During her time playing with the U18s, the coaches were impressed with her performance and nominated her for the U21 Squad. Aspen’s selection was confirmed on 25th November.
Both Aspen’s parents are Scottish and she is delighted to represent Scotland at International Level. Aspen is a regular player in the King’s Rochester 1st XI School team and is currently playing in the English Premier League for her local club, Holcombe, who have recently qualified for the European competition which will be held next May in Dublin.
Dominic Taylor, Head of Hockey at King’s Rochester says “This is an amazing achievement and truly well-deserved for Aspen. She is an outstanding player on the pitch and her professionalism and dedication to her sport is inspirational”.
Away from the hockey pitch, Aspen is in the Upper Sixth at King’s Rochester where she is Head Girl and busy studying for four A levels in addition to being a Music Scholar, playing Violin at Grade VIII and Piano at Grade VI standard.
A Moving Royal Performance By Edward At Mansion House
After completing his final performance in David McVicar’s production of Die Zaberflote at the Royal Opera House just the week before, Edward gave a “a moving and impressive performance” for The Friends of Cathedral Music at Mansion House.
Edward who is in Year 9 at King’s Rochester, was given the honour of being invited to perform at a fundraising Gala event for The Friends of Cathedral Music held in the magnificent splendour of Mansion House and hosted by HRH The Duchess of Gloucester and the Lord Mayor of London.
Edward who is also an ambassador for the Diamond Fund for Choristers was invited to sing a specially arranged version of John Rutter's Gaelic Blessing arranged for him by John Rutter CBE himself.
The prestigious event was in aid of raising funds and awareness for the importance of maintaining the tradition of Choral Music within this country for future generations. Amongst those present at the sold out event were international soprano Dame Felicity Lott, Andrew Carwood, Director of Music at St Paul's Cathedral, composer Roxanna Panufnik, Dr Stephen Cleobury, Director of Music at Kings College Cambridge, Countess of Limmerick, Baroness Neville - Rolfe, Baroness Perry, actor Simon Beale and His Honour Judge The Lord Meston QC to list just a few.
The evening was a great success and the Friends of Cathedral Music and guests were impressed with Edward's professionalism.
Edward received many congratulatory comments during the evening including “an immense credit to both Rochester Cathedral and King’s School Rochester,” as well as receiving a personal message from John Rutter congratulating him on his performance.
Anna Triumphs to Join the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain
Anna Crawford will be celebrating this half term after gaining a place in the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain.
A dedicated musician, Anna age 17 plays both the cello and piano and is a Music Scholar in the Upper Sixth at King’s Rochester. To secure her place she faced a rigorous audition process which consisted of directing a sectional rehearsal, playing a solo repertoire, sight-reading and playing excerpts from orchestral pieces all to a select panel of judges. This success will see her perform with the National Youth Orchestra at the BBC Proms in the Royal Albert Hall next season
Anna enjoys her selection for the National Youth Orchestra after an exceptional year in which she won the Medway Rotary Young Musician of the Year 2016 and performed as a commended finalist in both the Rotary Young Musician of the Year 2017 and the Woodard Young Musician of the Year 2017. She will shortly feature as cello soloist in the Elgar Cello Concerto with the Bromley Youth Music Trust Symphony Orchestra in November.
Director of Music at King’s Rochester, John Mountford said “This is one of the greatest opportunities and highest accolades a young musician can gain. This is the gold standard of achievement and a life changing opportunity for Anna”.
HIGH PRAISE FOR GAMES DEVELOPER CHRISTIAN BLANDFORD
King’s Rochester Year 9 student Christian Blandford has been exceptionally productive in his free time, designing games for both online play and virtual reality.
Christian first discovered a passion for game development in Year 5 and now has a catalogue of games that spans 16 different titles, over a million plays/downloads between them and over ten thousand subscribers to his YouTube channel.
‘Overnight 2’ came to the attention of famed YouTuber ‘Markiplier’ who records play through videos of computer games and whose channel is currently the 21st most subscribed channel on the video platform. His video has been viewed over two million times, bringing hundreds of new players to the game and a recent video of Christian playing ‘Overnight 2’ is close to reaching an amazing one hundred thousand views on YouTube.
What makes Christian’s achievements stand out is that he is a completely self-taught developer. His motivation and commitment to his craft is so impressive, he is sometimes found late at night in King’s Rochester boarding house working away on his creations by Housemistress Mrs Rogers.
An accomplished composer, Christian also creates the creepy soundscapes for his games, drawing inspiration from acclaimed musician Ludovico Einaudi. His music is hauntingly beautiful while at the same time terrifying. Christian has even admitted occasionally being so spooked by his own work that he’s needed to take a break.
Christian came to King’s Rochester after reading about our Music programme and all that we offer to talented musicians. Initially a shy child, Christian certainly handles his newfound fame well, replying to both fans and naysayers with a calm professionalism beyond his years. “King’s has helped my confidence grow, I would never be doing any of this a few years ago”. Christian also leads a programming class for Sixth Form students after school.
With an ambition to compose video game soundscapes, Christian’s future is certainly full of opportunities. Comments such as “Child Prodigy” and “Amazing Game Developer” pour in from gamers across the world, His network of admirers include Scott Cawthorn, creator of ‘Five Nights at Freddy’s’ the game which initially inspired Christian to develop horror games and with the full support of his family, teachers and friends.
We are certain great things lie ahead.
Forthcoming Open Days
King's GCSE Subject Forum
Meet our Subject Teachers and discover the broad variety of GCSE choices at King's.
King's Whole School Open Morning
The best way to get a real sense of the School is to visit us. We hold Whole School Open Mornings twice a year in the Michaelmas and Midsummer terms. The Nursery, Pre-Preparatory School, Preparatory School, Senior School and Boarding Houses are open for tours and you will hear a talk from the Principal, enjoy a range of activities across the School with our Senior School pupils, meet pupils and staff and receive information on the School and the admissions process.