Manchester Academy (secondary school)

Manchester Academy
Established 2003
Type Academy
Religion Christian
Executive Principal and Senior Partner Mr Andy Griffin
Founder United Learning
Location Moss Lane East
Moss Side
M14 4PX
Coordinates: 53°27′33″N 2°14′02″W / 53.4591°N 2.2338°W / 53.4591; -2.2338
Local authority Manchester
DfE number ???/352-6905
DfE URN 134224 Tables
Ofsted Reports
Students 912
Gender Coeducational
Ages 11–16
Former name Ducie Central High School
Website Manchester Academy

Manchester Academy is a non-selective co-educational secondary school within the English Academy programme, in Moss Side, Manchester.


It is run by United Learning,[1] a subsidiary of the United Church Schools Trust.[2] Over half of pupils are entitled to free school meals and many are from refugee or non-English speaking backgrounds.[3]

It is situated on Moss Lane East (B5219), near Denmark Road, with the University of Manchester nearby to the north and the Whitworth Art Gallery to the east.


The Manchester Central Grammar School for Boys moved to Whitworth Street in 1900, then moved to Kirkmanshulme Lane in Longsight in 1958. It was still known as the Manchester Central Grammar School for Boys. The Central High School for Girls remained at Whitworth Street. The boys' school had around 950 boys. The former site on Whitworth Street became the Mather College of Education in 1963, a teachers' training college. The boys grammar school merged with Victoria Park Secondary School for Boys to become the comprehensive Central High School for Boys in 1967 with 1,300 boys and girls.

The Ducie Technical High School had separate boys' and girls' schools, with 600 girls and 700 boys. It moved into a new building in 1964.


This became a comprehensive in 1967 when the boy's and girls' schools were merged. The Ducie High School was on Lloyd Street North. It merged with the Central High School for Boys in 1982 to become Ducie Central High School for Boys.

It then moved to a site on Daisy Bank Road towards Longsight. In 1993 it had the highest truancy rate of schools in England. It moved back to Lloyd Street North in September 1995, when new buildings were built at a costs of £5 million when the headteacher was Dawn Peters. The former school site is now the Belle Vue Athletics and Leisure Centre.

It was a very multi-ethnic school, when known as Ducie High School. Prince Charles visited the school. Due to its multi-ethnicity, the pro-multi-cultural National Union of Teachers was alarmed when a Christian charity, the Church Schools Company, offered in April 2002 to take the school over. A teacher at the school said the development of a white, middle-class, Christian ethos would be offensive at the multi-ethnic school. Iain Duncan Smith visited the school in October 2002.[4]


Upon takeover by the United Learning Trust, a new £12 million school was built, replacing Ducie High School (formerly Ducie Technical High School) which had earlier absorbed the old Central Grammar School for Boys, established in 1900.[3]

The school opened under the new name of Manchester Academy in September 2003 under the leadership of Dame Kathryn August.

Academic performance

In 2009, the Manchester Evening News reported that the school had achieved an 'astounding transformation', with its predecessor once branded 'the worst in the country', it was now rated by Ofsted, the schools inspectorate, as 'outstanding'.[3] The fact that many pupils come from diverse and often economically impoverished backgrounds led experts to state that pupils at the Academy performed much better than they would at most other schools.[3]


Pupils from the Academy won the national "Apax – Mosaic Enterprise Challenge".  2009/10 Award, with their 'virtual business' having generated profits of over £6.3 million online. Attending a ceremony at Atlantic House, London, in March 2010, they were awarded a trophy and a cheque for £3000 from BBC Dragon's Den and Radio Four Today presenter Evan Davis and Khawar Mann of Apax Partners.[5]

Having won the regional final of the Debate Mate [6] competition, pupils from the Academy competed as national finalists in the 2010 Richard Koch Cup Debating Final, chaired by Channel Four's Krishnan Guru-Murthy at the House of Lords.[7]

Notable alumni

Central Grammar School for Boys

Prof. Frank W. Cambray, professor and chairman, Geological Sciences, Michigan State University, USA

Ducie Technical High School for Boys

Other local United Learning Trust schools

See also


  1. Charity Commission. United Learning Trust, registered charity no. 1093277.
  2. Charity Commission. United Church Schools Trust, registered charity no. 1016538.
  3. 1 2 3 4 Qureshi, Yakub (28 April 2009). "Reborn school a class act". Manchester Evening News. M.E.N. Media. Retrieved 28 April 2009.
  4. "The 'quiet man' hits the road". BBC News. 14 October 2002.
  5. Mosaic (2010-03-11). "Manchester Academy Enterprise Champions". Mosaic. Retrieved 6 November 2010.
  7. Manchester Academy (2010-07-01). "National Finalists in 'Debate Mate' Competition at the House of Lords". Manchester Academy. Retrieved 6 November 2010.
  8. Falconer, Isobel. ‘Chadwick, Sir James (1891–1974)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, Sept 2004; online edn, Jan 2009 accessed 26 June 2009

News items

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