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History of the School

Dr Radcliffe's CE Primary School is a convertor academy and is a member of the Oxford Diocesan Schools Trust. The school was founded by Dr Samuel Radcliffe in 1640 and is still supported by the Radcliffe Trust. Dr Radcliffe was Rector of Steeple Aston and Principal of Brasenose College, Oxford, in the early part of the seventeenth century. The original school, in North Side, is now a private residence, as is the Old School House, built for the Master to go with his £10 salary. Radcliffe's Alms Houses are nearby.


The school moved in stages to Fir Lane, gradually expanding with the raising of the school-leaving age. The secondary department finally closed in 1969 leaving the primary school, which opened on 6th September 1961, with many of the empty buildings and fields of the former secondary school. Gradually these buildings, which are controlled by the Trust, have been adapted for use by the community: the Pre-school, Youth Building and Village Hall. Until December 1985 the school still used two of the former secondary school's classrooms. These were finally vacated at the end of the Christmas Term and the new Infant extension was officially opened by Canon Michael Hayter M.A. on 23rd January 1986. The new extension was funded entirely by Dr. Radcliffe's Trustees.


In the academic year 1993-4 Dr Radcliffe's Trustees provided the school with a spacious new playground, a purpose-built music room and a new staff room, as well as refurbishing the headmistress's study and caretaker's room. In 2001 the Trust worked with the parents of the school to create a new computer suite. During the summer of 2003, the school grounds were remodelled. The school worked in partnership with the village to obtain grants to improve sports facilities in the local community. As a result the school now has a match-play standard pitch and an excellent amphitheatre.


In 2005 Dr Radcliffe's Trust made a significant contribution to the funding of a project, which has considerably improved the provision for the youngest children in the school. This development resulted in three classrooms being extended, providing more space for teaching and learning, improved storage space and increased toilet facilities. An additional part of the project was an extensively improved and enlarged outside learning area for children aged four to seven.


In 2011 Dr Radcliffe's Trust funded a project to develop and extend the school hall to incorporate a permanent stage and create a corridor around the hall, linking the front of the school with the infant classrooms. In addition to this, the Trust also funded the Samuel Radcliffe building, a community building for use by the Early Birds and After School Clubs and other community projects.The Trust continues to lend great support to the running of the school by paying some salaries. Samuel Radcliffe is remembered at the end of the Summer Term each year, when we celebrate Founder's Day.


In 2015, the Trust funded a project to improve the size and layout of classrooms 3 and 6. This has made a significant difference to the learning space for the children.