Poole Grammar School

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Poole Grammar School
Gravel Hill

, ,
BH17 9JU

Coordinates50°45′16″N 1°58′49″W / 50.7544°N 1.9803°W / 50.7544; -1.9803Coordinates: 50°45′16″N 1°58′49″W / 50.7544°N 1.9803°W / 50.7544; -1.9803
TypeAcademy grammar school
MottoFinis Opus Coronat
Local authorityBournemouth, Christchurch and Poole
Department for Education URN136850 Tables
Head MasterAndy Baker
Staff100 (approx.)
Age11 to 18
Enrolment1,200 pupils (approx.)
Colour(s)Forest green & golden    
Former pupilsOld Grammarians

Poole Grammar School (commonly abbreviated to PGS) is a selective, all‐boys grammar school and academy in the coastal town of Poole in Dorset, on the south coast of England. It is a member of the South West Academic Trust (SWAT). The school was a mathematics and computing school, with an additional specialism, Cognition, added in 2006.

It is situated in the north of Poole, on the A349 (known locally as Gravel Hill).


The school has 1,200 male students from the surrounding area aged 11 to 18. To gain acceptance to the school, pupils must sit and pass three exams testing mathematics, English, and verbal reasoning.[1]

Excellence in the fields of sport or arts is not grounds for special admission; however, many of its pupils compete at county, national and international level, or go on to study at film schools, conservatories and art houses.[1]


The school moved to its current site between Broadstone and Canford Heath on the A349 (Gravel Hill) on 11 October 1966. It was originally situated in Seldown, in the centre of Poole, where it was founded in 1904.[1] (The site is now home to the Dolphin Swimming Pool.)[2]

Parkstone Grammar[edit]

Originally Poole Grammar was the only grammar school in Poole. This quickly filled up so Parkstone Grammar School was opened. At first, both schools took boys and girls, but this was changed by Poole Council who sent boys to Poole Grammar and girls to Parkstone Grammar. This started the separation of boys and girls which is still in effect today.[1] The two grammar schools have very close links as they are only around half a mile (0.8 km) apart. They share certain activities such as social activities, drama performances and a number of sixth form subjects.


Poole Grammar students in Years 7–11 wear a uniform of a green blazer, black or grey trousers and a white shirt. The boys in Years 7–8 wear a school tie without stripes, those in Year 9–11 wear a tie with stripes.

Once entering the sixth form, students may wear their own choice of clothing, though this must still include a shirt and tie, smart trousers and either brown or black shoes.[3]

For sport, the boys are required to wear a white T-shirt, the school's green and yellow rugby jersey, black shorts and bottle green football socks. When attending science classes the boys are expected to wear a white lab coat.[3]

The prefect system[edit]

Towards the end of Year 12, boys may apply to become a prefect. Candidates are voted for by teaching staff and students. The head prefect is the head boy and has three deputies. There are additionally five team leaders and a legacy project co-ordinator within the prefect body.

The prefects do not have to wear a special uniform; however, they are given a blue version of the school's tie which they are encouraged to wear. Prefects attend parents evenings and represent the school on many routine occasions.

Year 11 prefects, known as "main school leaders" were introduced in 2009. Candidates are selected by the Head of Year 11. Main school leaders are awarded a blue enamel badge which identifies them.



Sport is a major part of life at Poole Grammar, which has only had four heads of sport and physical education since the school was founded. The school owns large playing fields adjacent to the main buildings. They are used as football and rugby pitches, with two overlapping cricket fields and as a running track during the summer. Pupils also play sports on the school playground. The two large gyms provide changing facilities, a climbing wall, indoor volleyball courts and a room for weights and fitness training. The school boasts two astroturf tennis courts, installed in 2008, with a further two concrete courts on the playground used during the summer term. A multi-use games area was installed in 2010.[1]

The pupils partake in many sports throughout the year from football to tennis. During the winter term, pupils participate in rugby during their games lessons. During the spring term, the pupils play football. In the summer term, pupils play a variety of games including cricket, tennis and softball. Most of these sports contain an inter-form tournament towards the end of the term. Pupils competing in cross country running train on Canford Heath during lunch hour.[1]

Information communication technology and computing[edit]

In Years 7 and 8, the boys learn the basics of word processing, spreadsheet software, web design and simple programming. In Year 9 they take a Microsoft Office Course (from 2019).

At GCSE, Pupils can take computer science, which focuses on programming. In Years 12 and 13 (sixth form), computing is offered as an A Level.

Music, art and drama[edit]

Art and drama are taught in two large art studios, a number of music rooms and a fully functioning theatre. The school puts on a play in conjunction with Parkstone Grammar School in alternating years in each school.


All pupils learn French from the start of Year 7, when they also choose between German and Spanish. The school has had success in teaching modern languages with work and cultural exchanges to the continent. A higher than average percentage of pupils leave Poole Grammar to study languages at a university level. After Year 10, students can quit languages.

History and geography[edit]

Pupils must study geography and history from their first year until their third. After this pupils may take these subjects for GCSE. Poole Grammar has geography and geology departments housed in a modern extension to the school. School trips include the Jurassic Coast, the Old Town of Poole and Wimborne Minster as well as London, Iceland and the village of Corfe. The History Department runs trips to Krakow, the Trenches, and the Chalke Valley History Festival.

Religion and philosophy[edit]

Through Years 7, 8 and 9, all pupils learn religion and philosophy and in Years 10 and 11 they take a GCSE in religious studies.

Year 7 Entry[edit]

The school has accepted pupils from the age of 11 (Year 7) since 2013 after a large-scale change to the structure of schooling in Poole. Large-scale construction work west of the main entrance between 2006 and 2009 added the Ashley Thorne Building, a three-storey wing housing four new classrooms, a new music department and a fully equipped drama studio which often hosts productions. Other smaller adjustments have been made around the school to help group subject lessons into rooms closer to each other. The location of the new buildings was chosen to prevent the reduction in the size of the school's playing fields, although the new food technology block was built where the athletics area used to be. A new rubber-surfaced pitch has also been built within this area, as well as a new set of long-jumping pits.[1]


The school's expectations are very high and it gives out Student Leadership badges (5 levels) and Achievement Points for good behaviour. If a student has poorly behaved, the school gives out Minors (5 Minors = Detention) and Behavior Points (Detention).[citation needed]

Notable former pupils[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g "BACKGROUND INFORMATION ON POOLE GRAMMAR SCHOOL" (PDF). Retrieved 26 January 2015.
  2. ^ Juliette Astrup (1 September 2010). "Work on new park at Poole's Dolphin Swimming Pool due to start". Bournemouth Daily Echo. Retrieved 26 January 2015.
  3. ^ a b "Dress Code". Retrieved 26 January 2015.


External links[edit]