The History of Our Schools
The Friends' Endowed School in Reeth was founded in 1778 by brothers George and John Raw to provide education for the children of Quaker Friends. The present school, with house attached, was built in 1862. By 1890, 30 boys and 20 girls were receiving free education. It became a county school in 1939 and a community school in 1999. In 2003, outbuildings on the site were converted to a nursery classroom. Further developments include improved office space, an Early Years outdoor area, a ball court and, more recently, full refurbishment of the two classrooms in the main building.
In 1854, permission was given to the Reeth Circuit of the Methodist Church to build a school and house for Gunnerside village, and the first pupils started the following year. Situated in Gardy Garth, the original school building was destroyed by fire in 1963 and classes continued in the village hall for a number of years. The school opened on its present site in 1969. Developments since then include the addition of a school library, an additional classroom, an outdoor classroom. Like Reeth School, recent refurbishments ensure a high quality learning environment. It is now a Voluntary Controlled School maintained by the Local Authority. The Methodist Church continues to play an active role in the life of the school.
Over the last decade rural schools across the region have experienced falling pupil numbers. Our schools have responded proactively and have been at the forefront of collaborative working, confederating in 2005 and federating in 2012, with the common goal of providing sustainable provision of high quality education to all communities within the catchment. Pupil numbers have now stabilised and projections for the next three years indicate that this will continue. We have one governing body, share resources fully and continue to value the distinct nature of the two schools.