Video shows proud and historic moment for Ripon school
Ripon's Outwood Academy is celebrating the history of its site on Clotherholme Road with the installation of a new plaque organised and installed by Ripon Civic Society.
The green plaque, the latest in a series of more than 30 around Ripon, will mark 80 years since the first buildings on the site were opened in 1939 by Sir Percy Jackson, Chairman of the West Riding County Council, and 75 years since it became Ripon Secondary Modern School.
The school first opened as a result of the raising of the school leaving age to 15 in 1936, when secondary schools were reorganised. Ripon had the West Riding’s first purpose-built new school, opening in September 1939. Declaring it open, Sir Percy stressed that Ripon was fortunate to have the first school of its type in the county.
Under the 1945 Education Act, the senior departments of the former elementary schools became Secondary Modern Schools, and the 1939 buildings now housed Ripon Secondary Modern School. Over the years it has had other titles; from the 1990s it was known as Ripon City School and then Ripon College.
In 2011 it became Outwood Academy Ripon, one of the schools operated by Outwood Grange Academies Trust.
Principal of Outwood Academy Ripon, Will Pratt, said, "As Principal I feel privileged to be celebrating a momentous day in the history of Outwood Academy Ripon, or Ripon Modern School as it was known in 1939.
"We are extremely proud to be part of the 80-year chronology of the school and the education provided for the local community. The Outwood Grange Family of Schools is commemorating its 10th anniversary this year and we are celebrating our 6th year in Ripon.
"The ethos of the academy continually to put ‘students first, raising standards transforming lives’ is closely aligned with those original values of the school in raising a generation of well-educated and civic-minded young people."
The Chairman of Ripon Civic Society Christopher Hughes, said: "It is important that the long history of education in the city is recognised – we can claim a scholastic tradition at least as far back as the school founded by St Wilfrid here in the 7th century. The Society is very pleased to mark the milestone of these buildings and the important foundations that Outwood Academy Ripon is laying in its education of our future citizens."