Eastbourne secondary school looks at two new names

Bishop Bell school ENGSUS00120120924121716
Bishop Bell school ENGSUS00120120924121716

Officials at Bishop Bell have revealed there is a second name they may choose for the school as part of a rebranding exercise.

Last week the Herald reported the school was likely to be changed to St Catherine.

Mark Talbot, head teacher of Bishop Bell School SUS-150623-144108001

Mark Talbot, head teacher of Bishop Bell School SUS-150623-144108001

The Priory Road school is changing its name because of links to disgraced clergyman Bishop George Bell, the late Bishop of Chichester who died 57 years ago but is widely reported to have sexually abused a child.

Now it appears the school is also looking at an alternative – St Edward’s.

In the latest school newsletter, headteacher Mark Talbot said the name change was part of a rebranding exercise as the school looks to become an academy by joining the Diocese of Chichester Academy Trust.

“When choosing to become an academy, schools have the opportunity to review their name,” said Mr Talbot.

“This was our intention and, with the news relating to Bishop George Bell, this was accelerated and we anticipate the name change to take place in readiness for the new school year in September.

“The comment that one name is preferred, perhaps reflects the pupil voice feedback we have had to date. However, please note that both names will be given equal consideration and parents’ feedback will form part of the decision-making process when the Governing Body meets later this month. “We would really value their preferences, which can be submitted online using the following link: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/DJFDY28 until midday on Wednesday January 20.”

The options are St Catherine’s College - A Church of England Academy, in memory of St Catherine, a Doctor of Scholarship and Teacher of the Faith, who was recognised for being honest and standing up for what she believed to be right.

Mr Talbot said, “She was charitable and demanded nothing for herself. She was a peacemaker and a greatly respected figure for her spiritual writings.”

The other alternative is St Edward’s College – A Church of England Academy, named after Edward the Confessor, the English king who founded a monastery.

“He was a man of great prayer and hailed throughout his life as a gentle, loyal and devoted king,” said Mr Talbot.

“He built a new cathedral in Norman style to replace the Saxon church at Westminster. The cathedral became known as Westminster Abbey.”

Mr Talbot said the school was in the process of reviewing school uniform and said, “We are very mindful of cost and that, as parents, they

may well be planning ahead.

“Therefore we aim to publish any changes this term, including how any new badges, provided by us, can be ironed on to existing blazers. We will also provide new school ties, with house colours, for all pupils.”

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