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Kelly College and Mount House School announce merger

PUBLISHED: 09:15 20 March 2014 | UPDATED: 09:15 20 March 2014

Mount House School

Mount House School

Copyright: Graham Skedgell Natural Photos Tavistock, Devon

Two of Devon’s most prestigious independent schools are to merge in what is being billed as ‘one of the most exciting developments in education’ in the region

Kelly CollegeKelly College

From September 2014, the Kelly College Foundation and the Mount House School Trust, both in Tavistock, will amalgamate to form the Mount Kelly Foundation, combining 270 years of academic and sporting education, which has produced Olympians, politicians and other prominent public figures.

Commenting on the merger, the current headmaster of Kelly College, Dr Graham Hawley says: “I am thrilled that these two excellent schools are merging. Combining the best of both schools will provide even greater opportunities for all the children. The governing bodies of both schools have grasped the chance of a generation to strengthen independent education in the South West.”

The decision to form a single Foundation, which will provide education for 550 children and young people aged three to 18-years, follows several years of discussion between the two governing bodies. Their shared vision is to ‘unite a wealth of expertise, resources and facilities for the benefit of all pupils’.

Kelly College, Kelly College Preparatory School and Mount House School will be governed under a single foundation with the new Headmaster, Mark Semmence, as Foundation Principal and CEO. Mr Semmence was appointed last December from Rugby School and takes up his post on 1 September.

Patrick Savage, current Headmaster at Mount House School, will share the role of Head of the Mount Kelly Preparatory School with Matthew Foale, who is currently Headmaster at Kelly College Preparatory School.

Looking to the future, Mr Savage envisages a key developments for the Foundation’s early years: “This marks an exciting and important development for current and prospective Mount House families. The Mount Kelly Prep School experience will be one of great breadth and depth for pupils. They will have the opportunity to experience inspirational teaching in a highly supportive environment with first-class facilities, a vibrant co-curricular sporting and cultural life with an extended school community of pupils and staff,” he says.

“The joining of these two important institutions will enable us to continue to provide outstanding preparation for the top senior schools of parents’ choice. We are extremely excited about the merger and very much look forward to welcoming new pupils for the 2014 academic year,” he continues.

Mr Foale also shares his excitement for the merger: “This is a very exciting time and a wonderful opportunity for all of the children. Mount Kelly will offer our children outstanding opportunities and they will benefit from some quite superb facilities, in a thriving and ambitious environment,” he enthuses.

A ceremony to mark the union of the two schools is planned for the summer term.

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