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Mark Scully - Current Headmaster

The John Fisher School is a voluntary-aided Roman Catholic boys secondary school located in Purleymarker, UKmarker. It is maintained by the London Borough of Suttonmarker, but many of its students come from the London Borough of Croydonmarker. Its current headmaster is Mark Scully, who joined the school in 2006. Before him, Pat Liddiard took a cover year as acting headteacher. The previous headteacher was Robin M. Gregory, who oversaw a successful application for the school to become a specialist sports college.

The School has an Old Boys Association and two Old Boys sports clubs, Purley John Fisher RFC (for Rugby Union) based in Old Coulsdonmarker and John Fisher Old Boys Sports Club ( for Football and Cricket based in Limpsfield Road, Warlinghammarker), though both are accessible to Sixth Formers.


The John Fisher School was founded by Peter Emmanuel Amigo, Archbishop of Southwark, in 1929 at Duppas Hillmarker in Croydon, and moved in 1931 to its current premises in Peaks Hill, Purley. It is the only currently-open school, named after Saint John Fisher, which was founded before his canonization in 1935. This is indicated by the absence of `Saint' from the school name.

At the start of the 1970s the John Fisher School was diocesian grammar school with an intake of fee-paying and non-fee-paying children. It had a small number of boarders until 1970 when a decision was made to end this facility and in 1977 it became an all-ability school maintained by the London Borough of Suttonmarker. In 1992, following much discussion and a vote by parents, John Fisher was incorporated as a Grant Maintained School. In 1998 the School expanded from four to five forms of entry, and in September 1999, it became a voluntary-aided school once more.

In 2003 John Fisher School became a Specialist Sports College and construction began on a 1.2 million pound Sports hall which was opened by Sir Bobby Robson. Today, John Fisher is organized into 6 forms of entry in the lower school, but remains a five form entry school, admitting 150 pupils.


The school's admissions policy gives priority to boys who are baptised and practising Roman Catholics, and the school is consistently oversubscribed. The proportion of pupils who are baptised Catholic is 98%. Recently the School has come under fire for "its controversial points admission system which favours children from families who are the most active in the church." The John Fisher School was investigated by the Office of the Schools Adjudicator (OSA) after complaints from a parent. Objections to the OSA included "governors could manipulate what was considered a bona fide parish activity to 'exclude those they do not wish to admit from the school'" and "that governors were using surnames to reject single parents". The OSA did not endorse the latter claim but made "the strongest recommendation" that the current system be scrapped. This is the second time the School's admission policy has been investigated by the OSA following complaints.

Sixth form

The School also has a Sixth Form, which allows pupils to take both and A-Levels and BTEC Sport and Business Qualifications. In 2008 there were 254 pupils in the sixth form, approximately one quarter of the school's enrollment. In the 2008 league tables published in the Daily Telegraph; the school was ranked, for its A Level results, 18th out of all comprehensives in England.

Notable alumni


  1. 70% of pupils came from the London Borough of Croydon in 2004. Ofsted Inspection Report November 2004, accessed 26 April 2009.
  2. The John Fisher School Admissions Policy for admissions September 2009, accessed 26 April 2009.
  3. Archdiocese of Southwark Commission for Schools and Colleges, Section 48 Inspection Report December 2008, accessed 26 April 2009.
  4. Telegraph, Degree of security is the goal, 23 November 2005. Accessed 26 April 2009.
  5. The Irish Post, Mike Nestor and Sean Crowley - Against All Odds. 24 May 2006. Accessed 26 April 2009.
  6. Telegraph, Michael Latham, 4 January 2006. Accessed 26 April 2009.
  7. The John Fisher School Newsletter Winter 2008, accessed 26 April 2009.
  8. The Times, Bill Nighy talks Pirates of the Caribbean, 12 May 2007. Accessed 26 April 2009.
  9. The Guinness Premiership, Six join Quins as Academy Professionals, accessed 26 April 2009.
  10. Croydon Guardian, Rooney wants British record, 3 November 2008. Accessed 26 April 2009.
  11. England Rugby, Paul Sackey England Profile, accessed 26 April 2009.
  12. Sackey and Skivington support schoolboys, 3 February 2009. Accessed 26 April 2009.
  13. Telegraph, Commander Jim Suthers, 27 March 2007. Accessed 26 April 2009.
  14. Scotsman, Traynor has the degree, now he's looking for more honours, 11 July 2008. Accessed 26 April 2009.
  15. Merton Council, Profile of the Mayor of Merton, Councillor Martin Whelton, accessed 26 April 2009.
  16., College team ready for cup semi-final test, 12 March 2009. Accessed 26 April 2009.
  17. Cricinfo, Player profile: Tim Murtagh, accessed 26 April 2009.
  18. Cricinfo, Player profile: Chris Murtagh, accessed 26 April 2009.

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