Welcome to Virtual Radley 2
One of the silver linings of the second full lockdown cloud is that we can dispense with the use of the word 'unprecedented'. We are all old hands at virtual learning now.
That is of course a reassurance; there will be less trepidation as the computers turn on . . . on both sides of the screen. We know that educational continuity and progress is possible and I know that the dedication, enthusiasm and good will - again on both sides of the screen - will ensure success.
There is a danger, however. It is January, not April. Not everything was perfect in the Summer. And familiarity can breed contempt. We have been conscious in our planning, therefore, that we need to think ambitiously as we seek to make the most of the opportunities this term will bring, however much we regret the circumstances. There are some changes to our structure, tweaks to our approach and a clear identification of some themes we want to prioritise. More detail can be found in the attached documents on this website.
They say that re-makes are never as good as the original. That might be because the expectations are too high. As we approach this term, however, I hope two things are true. That the expectations are high. And that we meet them.
Welcome to Virtual Radley 2.
Please read the booklets below.
Virtual Radley Activities
Dates and Times
Although the nature of a number of activities will change we will continue to make every effort to keep the online calendar up to date (we recommend that when viewing this you click filter and deselect "Sports Fixtures" which cannot happen for the foreseeable future).
The Shape of the Virtual Day
Virtual Radley 2 Lent Term Week 1
Please click here for the Academic Director's letter to exam candidates and their parents (06/01/21).
We will keep you posted as more information becomes available about the grading process for this summer's public examinations.
There will be a short Chapel service every Tuesday and Thursday at 1715 which can be accessed here.
If you miss Chapel (or other filmed events), you will be able to find them later here.
On Thursdays the Warden will speak about an issue of the day in Chapel. Details can be found here.
While we will not run a formal service each Sunday, we would encourage families to tune in to their local church or, if they would prefer, to one local to Radley. Here are some links.
To help us streamline communications please use the following email addresses to get in touch. Parents should copy in Tutors if appropriate.
Pastoral and Boarding Logistics: Ben Holden email@example.com
Overseas Pupils: Tom Ryder firstname.lastname@example.org
Academic Matters: Stephen Rathbone email@example.com
Co Curricular Matters: Niall Murphy firstname.lastname@example.org
IT / Technical Matters: Richard Grice email@example.com
Medical Matters: firstname.lastname@example.org
I rather fell into teaching. It was the British Academy's fault; their inexplicable decision not to fund a PhD into late 16th Century English theology meant that I was thrust into the real world in need of a job. Someone - I forget who - suggested teaching and I was lucky enough to get a job in the History and Politics department at Dean Close in Cheltenham. Having been educated at a comprehensive in Telford, I knew nothing about boarding or independent schools and thought I would probably do a couple of years or so. I loved it: the teaching, the boarding, the activities, the life. After five years in Gloucestershire, I was appointed as Head of History at Stowe and went on to run a boarding house for five years, ending up as Senior Housemaster and part of the management team. I moved to Bedford School in 2006 as Vice Master (senior Deputy Head) and became Head Master in September 2008. Very few roles would have excited me beyond Bedford . . . but Radley was one such place. I arrived here in September 2014. I am married to Diana and we have three children: Emily, Ben and Rachael. Interests include an almost pathological commitment to armchair sports viewing, the theatre, membership of a local church, reading (political biography, theology, crime novels and P.G.Wodehouse for preference) and playing golf badly. My educational hobby-horses are the importance of independence in, between and beyond schools, of boys developing their own opinions, combatting utilitarianism in all its forms, seeing adherence to values and the development of character as more important than 'results', and believing passionately in as wide a provision of experience, opportunity and challenge in schools as possible. I am terrifically proud to be the 18th Warden of what is a wonderful school.
Sub Warden, Design Engineering Teacher
I was appointed by Dennis Silk in 1987 to teach Design and Technology and coach rowing. After five years as an assistant teacher, the opportunity to lead the department arose, following the departure of the incumbent HOD. Seven years later, the new millennium started with a move to Tutoring in D Social and in 2004 our children, Ruairidh and Sadhbh arrived. It was with heavy heart that I moved on from D Social in 2011, to begin a new chapter as part of the Senior Management Team. Radley is a unique place and I have always felt immensely proud of the understated excellence demonstrated by our boys in all that they do.
Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead, Art Teacher
I was appointed in 1995 to teach Fine Art, specialising in sculpture, having previously lived and worked in the USA and Canada. Increasingly I became more involved with the Pastoral Team and was appointed Tutor of A Social in 2008 where my two children grew up with an extended family of 70 boys! Having served 12 years in Social, I am proud to be the Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead. I am passionate about coaching Colts Rugby and in the summer indulge in open water swimming with students.
I studied History at Brasenose College, Oxford, and International Relations in the War Studies Department, King's College, London. Before coming to Radley, I worked at Haileybury College. At Radley, I have been Head of the Community Action Programme (leading trips to Romania and India), Head of History and Tutor of A Social. As Academic Director, I am responsible for all the aspects of academic life in the school, ranging from management of teaching departments, to universities and exams, but I also hold an exciting brief regarding the provision of carefully researched advice for the Warden and Council regarding future academic strategy. I thoroughly enjoy preparing Radleians for the manifold opportunities and challenges presented by a globalised economy and the ongoing technological revolution. When I am not dealing with senior management issues, I still teach half a timetable and continue to love the cut and thrust of History as a rigorous intellectual discipline. My hobbies do not involve the usual panoply of sporting activities, but in my case involve vermin control, logging and the collection of vintage agricultural machinery.
History Teacher, Senior Master
I am the Senior Master responsible for all Co-Curricular activities, including Games, Oxbridge, Art, Drama, Music, CCF and others. Before coming to Radley I studied History at Emmanuel College, Cambridge, and I represented the university at rugby and hockey. I have been at Radley since 1993, as a History don, resident sub-tutor, Head of History, Common Entrance History examiner, and latterly the first Tutor of K Social and a governor of Elstree School. Ros and I were married here and Niamh and Fintan were both born here. Besides academic matters, I am a sports coach of Rugby, Hockey and Athletics, and I enjoy seeing the boys in all the different activities that Radley has to offer. My interests outside Radley include all things Irish, and the wines and culture of Languedoc-Roussillon and Catalonia.
Director of digital strategy
I joined Radley in January 2020 as the Director of Digital Strategy alongside teaching physics and computer science. In my previous school I have been a Housemaster in Boarding, and Head of digital teaching and learning. Prior to becoming a teacher, I read materials engineering at Loughborough University, and went on to work at the Atomic Weapons Establishment as a nuclear materials scientist. At Radley, I coach rugby, help with robotics and coding clubs and am a sub-tutor in D Social. I also enjoy all things technological, tabletop games, and golf.
Few people are able to realise their childhood dreams and ambitions so I consider myself fortunate to have realised mine. For as long as I am able to remember, nursing was the only career path I wanted to travel so I feel extremely fortunate to have arrived at Radley College Medical Centre as Lead Nurse in 2012. Prior to joining Radley, I worked for the NHS, spending time in Vascular Surgery, Coronary Care as well as Accident and Emergency before settling in Acute Medicine for eleven years where I progressed to Sister of a busy Assessment Unit. The Radley College Medical Centre is an incredibly team-driven and student-centred environment, which I am extremely proud to lead. I feel privileged to work with an incredible student body and find my work rewarding and positively challenging in equal measure.
COVID-19 The Radley Response
Please note that we will be adding to this page throughout the term.