The award recognises the work RGS has done, in particular to promote mental health and wellbeing amongst its students, with the judge’s commenting it was ‘A clear example of the SLT putting their pupils’ welfare first’.

The senior leadership team, together since 2011, has crafted and led the ‘ReTHINKing learning and wellbeing’ project. This has shaped the School whose nurturing of students and staff alike means children thrive emotionally, learn effectively and achieve highly. Recognising that a strong link between the academic and pastoral enhances all outcomes, a new role was created combining the monitoring of wellbeing and academic progress.

This concentration on care, support and improved access to advice and counselling has shown clear gains at all levels of the School. Students are routinely ready to discuss mental health issues and support the community as well as taking greater control of their development throughout their school years.

Exam results led The Sunday Times to name RGS the Best School in the North in both 2014 and 2015. Building on this success, in 2015 RGS opened its spectacular new sports facility including a new swimming pool and second sports hall as well as state-of-the-art fitness studios. This project was commercially funded from fee-income raised through collective vision and sound planning.

Headmaster Bernard Trafford, who retires in the summer of 2017, was delighted to be presented with the award. He said,

“Excellent as my senior team is (and it’s a privilege to work with such amazing colleagues), we are in no doubt that it is the consistent and generous work of the staff as a whole that has brought about such great progress in our approach to mental health and wellbeing among our girls and boys. We’re very grateful to have that work recognised.”

RGS has further cemented its position as a leader in the region by placing 11th (Junior School) and 62nd (Senior School) in The Sunday Times Parent Power survey.