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Bristol Grammar School awarded Southwest Independent School of the Year 2024

Staff, pupils and parents alike are celebrating today as Bristol Grammar School is named Southwest Independent School of the Year 2024 in the Sunday Times Parent Power Schools Guide.

Our school has a rich history as the longest-serving independent school in the city and has been providing an outstanding education to the children of Bristol for almost 500 years.

Reflecting on the award, Head of BGS Jaideep Barot, said “I am delighted to have received this independent validation of our endeavours. This accolade is for our whole school, and I am grateful to our pupils, staff and the wider BGS community, whose collective efforts, enthusiasm and dedication to our shared values make BGS such a special place. The values which underpin our success run throughout the school as BGS continues to develop young adults of integrity and character, ready to make a real and lasting difference in the world that awaits them.”

Mr Barot believes “everything has come together” for the school following a period of sustained reflection, refocusing and evolution: “There is an air of real positivity about the school.”

He feels the award recognises the continued excellence in education provided by teaching staff and credits the move towards data driven ‘value-added’ success as a driver to its academic performance. “It is about getting each child to a place they never thought they’d be.” says Barot.

The award also mentions the school’s mission to enable one in four pupils to hold a Bursary Award by 2032, the school’s 500th birthday. As a recipient of an assisted place at Manchester Grammar School, Mr Barot has a firm belief in widening access and says: “If what you have here is those brightest, hungriest minds, then it lifts the whole school, it has got to be fairest that this (sic) is available to everyone who could benefit from it.”

Chair of Governors, Romesh Vaitilingam, said: 'I'm delighted to hear of the Sunday Times Southwest Independent Schools of the Year Award - as a former pupil, parent of former pupils and as current chair of governors. It's a wonderful recognition of the many and varied contributions of the whole school community - our senior leaders, our teaching and support staff, our pupils and parents, our alumni and my colleagues on the board.'

The Sunday Times Parent Power Guide ranks schools by the first true set of post-pandemic examination results and is widely acknowledged as the most authoritative survey of the country’s top schools.

Helen Davies, Editor of Parent Power, said: “The guide showcases academic excellence but also celebrates schools who may not be right at the top but are rising, innovating, and helping pupils flourish. Being a teenager is hard enough, and the past few years since Covid have made life even harder. It is heartening to highlight the achievements of so many students and schools across the UK.

“This year Parent Power includes details on extracurricular clubs, wellbeing initiatives and school lunch menus.”