Sheffield High School for Girls and Ashdell Preparatory School to merge to form South Yorkshire’s leading girls’ infant and junior school.

Sheffield High School for Girls and Ashdell Preparatory School today announced plans to join forces to form the region’s leading independent school for girls from Nursery to Sixth Form (ages 3-18).

The merger will take effect in September 2017, building upon the excellent academic and pastoral traditions of both schools.

The two existing schools will operate in parallel, with their current heads, for this academic year, fully merging in September 2017. All pupils at both schools will be entitled to a place at the merged school. The Ashdell name will live on as the Nursery & Infant School of Sheffield High School for Girls, and pupils from Nursery to Year 2 will be taught at the Ashdell site on Fulwood Road. Pupils from Years 3 to 6 will be accommodated at Sheffield Girls’ Junior School, less than ten minutes’ walk away, on Melbourne Avenue. Chris Hald, current Head of Sheffield Girls’ Infant & Junior School, will stay on as Head of the merged school, while Anne Camm, currently Headmistress of Ashdell, plans to retire in August 2017. 

Jon Dunn, Chair of Governors at Ashdell Preparatory School, said

"This is a great opportunity for our pupils and staff, and will build on the excellent education we offer all our girls. The two schools already have very strong links, with many girls leaving Ashdell in Year 6 going on to Sheffield Girls’ Senior School. The governors carefully explored the strategic options for the school and concluded that this merger is the best way forward both for our girls and our staff. Our two schools share a strong ethos of girls-only education and values that consistently put the education and wellbeing of the girls first.”

Valerie Dunsford, Headmistress of Sheffield High School for Girls, commented

"We are delighted that Ashdell Preparatory School is becoming part of Sheffield Girls’ Infant & Junior School. Both schools share a similar ethos and values where the focus is on nurturing every girl to help her develop her individual talents and interests. I take great pride in knowing every girl at Sheffield Girls’ and I look forward to getting to know the Ashdell girls and to working closely with parents and staff as our two schools merge and grow together. This is a unique opportunity to build upon the heritage of both schools to create the strongest possible teaching and learning environment for all our girls.”

As a member of the Girls' Day School Trust (GDST), the UK’s leading network of independent girls’ schools, staff and pupils will benefit from the expertise, support and advice of their peers in the other schools in the GDST network. The GDST has a track record in educational innovation and high standards of teaching and learning to support a broad and balanced education that encompasses both academic excellence and wide-ranging opportunities in sport, music and the arts; it is committed to investing in the long-term future of the merged school.