Saracens have become the first professional sports club to open a free mainstream secondary school in the UK.
Saracens High School opened its doors for the first time today (Friday September 7) – welcoming 156 Year 7 pupils to the new facility in Barnet.
The initiative continues the Premiership rugby club’s commitment to improve society through the power of sport.
Some of the most disadvantaged children in the capital will benefit from progressive education programmes, greatly increasing their chances of fulfilling their academic and personal potential.
Nigel Wray, Chairman of Saracens, said: “What a challenge and a privilege to be able to open a school, to try and make a real difference to young people in a disadvantaged community.
“Saracens High School is, we believe, the first mainstream secondary school ever to be set up by a professional sports club. Our aim, as it is for our players, is to help every young person be the best they can possibly be.
“Saracens High School will provide young people with a journey of new experiences and opportunities, and with the care and support to help them along their pathway.
“Helping the local community prosper is at the heart of everything we do, and we are extremely proud to be able to use our position to bring about positive change through the power of sport.”
The school’s Principal, Matt Stevens, said: “It is a great honour and privilege to lead Saracens High School to serve Colindale and its surrounding area. All who work and learn here are fortunate to have the unique opportunity of doing so as part of the wider Saracens family, and our shared values will develop an exceptional environment and culture for learning.
“Our outstanding members of staff will deliver a comprehensive Character Education programme, combined with academic success to enable our pupils to challenge the best in the country for jobs and university places. We also aim to become a local hub for the neighbourhood, using our facilities and expertise to the benefit of the whole community.”
Saracens wing and Scotland international Sean Maitland, who will be presenting house ties at the school’s first assembly today, said: “It’s great the club is committed to providing an education to kids in the local community. If the club ethos can benefit the children then that makes me proud as a Saracens player.”