Gender pay gap report 2020

As required by the Equality Act 2010 (Gender Pay Gap Information Regulations 2017) the gender pay gap at St Mary’s has been calculated in order to show the difference between the average earnings of men and women across the school. The calculations were based on the workforce on 5th April 2019.

The school uses salary scales for teaching staff and hourly rates of pay for domestic and catering staff, thus ensuring equal pay for men and women. The gender pay gap is a result of the roles that men and women are employed in and the salaries these roles attract.

The workforce at the school consists of 74.9% (73.1%) women and 25.1% (26.9%) men. The mean gender pay gap is 5.8% (1.7%) and the median pay gap is 6.4% (0.8%). 

The percentage of males and females in the different earnings quartiles are as follows:




Upper Quartile

33.3%  (28.6%)

66.7% (71.4%)

Upper Middle Quartile

21.0% (25.8%)

79.0% (74.2%)

Lower Middle Quartile

22.6% (27.4%)

77.4% (72.6%)

Lower Quartile

23.8% (25.8%)

76.2% (74.2%)

St Mary’s School Ascot is committed to equal opportunities irrespective of gender, and training and promotion opportunities are open to all.

School policies











Other policies including those listed below are available by email or printed copy on request from the Registrar:

Mission Statement, Aims and History

Admissions Policy

Anti-Bullying Policy

Behaviour Policy

Complaints Policy

Curriculum Policy

English as an Additional Language Policy

First Aid Policy

Health and Safety Policy

Health and Safety on School Trips Policy

Health and Safety Statement

Rewards, School Rules, Discipline and Sanctions Policy

Special Educational Needs Policy

Staff list

The Lord Hemphill (Chairman)
Mr Mark Armour
Mr Nicholas Davidson
Mr Peter Davis
Baroness Hogg of Kettlethorpe
The Hon Mrs Olga Polizzi
The Hon Martin Hunt (Chairman)
Mrs Annoushka Ayton
Mr Christopher Beirne
Mrs Clare Colacicchi
Miss Jo Ebner
Mr Martin Hattrell
Mr Edward Horswell
Mr Peter McKenna
Mr Gordon Moore
The Rev Dr Dermot Power
Sr Michaela Robinson CJ
Miss Clementine Vaughan
Mrs Danuta Staunton (Headmistress)
Mrs Cathy Ellott (Senior Deputy Head)
Mrs Jo Devine (Pastoral Deputy Head)
Mrs Barbara Breedon (Academic Deputy Head)
Mr Andrew Smith (Director of Co-curricular)
Mr Christopher Ellott (Director of External Communications)
Dr Daniel Coughlan (Director of Sixth Form)
Mr Giles Brand (Bursar and Clerk to the Governors)
Mrs Sandra Young (Registrar)
Mrs Phyllida Dewes (Development Director)
Mrs Kate Jenkinson (Mary Ward)
Mrs Helena West (Babthorpe)
Mr Tom Parsons and Mrs Katie Parsons (Bedingfeld)
Ms Roisin Toner (Poyntz)
Mrs Helen Jansen (Rookwood)
Mrs Valerie Hutchinson and Mr Nigel Hutchinson (Wigmore)

Public benefit

St Mary’s School Ascot has a long history of providing financial support to children who would otherwise not be able to afford a St Mary’s education, and we place great importance on the school’s means-tested bursary scheme. This scheme is funded by the school and the St Mary’s School Charitable Fund (Charity number 800450), which was established for the purpose of providing funds for the St Mary’s School Ascot bursary programme. The scheme operates two types of means-tested bursary: admissions and hardship. Each case is assessed on its own merits and awards are made accordingly, subject to the school’s ability to fund these within the context of its overall budget. This year the value of means-tested bursary awards totalled £542,212. This provided assistance to 26 pupils, of whom eleven benefited from in excess of 80% remission of fees, and eight of these benefited from 90% remission of fees. Information about fee assistance through means-tested bursaries is provided to all applying to the school and is published on our website.

The school undertakes work and activities for the public benefit throughout the year with children from local schools and with the local community, and these are fundamental to the Catholic ethos and spirit of the school, and in line with its charitable objectives.  They are core activities for staff and pupils alike, who welcome them as part of our day-to-day life. The significant investment in time, energy and resources into our work with local state schools reflects our belief that these activities are the most effective way of broadening and widening access to St Mary’s resources to the public, including those in poverty. 

This year we have continued to develop our close relationship with two local state schools with whom we have formal Memoranda of Understanding – Charters School and St Francis Catholic Primary School. St Mary’s engagement with these schools is a matter of normal day-to-day school life and involves both the sharing of resources and the dual use of teaching staff. The examples below illustrate the depth and breadth of our relationship with these schools and our commitment to the charity IntoUniversity:

Charters School - Latin GCSE. This year St Mary’s has again provided a teacher to Charters School to take a GCSE Latin class, taking responsibility for one of the three GCSE Latin modules for gifted Year 11s (the Latin Language paper). Without St Mary’s support, six pupils from Charters School would not have been able to take Latin GCSE this year. The results were impressive, with three grade 9s, two grade 8s and one 4 - all impressive passes. In addition to the teaching, St Mary’s also provides the textbooks, paper, handouts and worksheets as well as support with resources and teacher notes for the Charters Latin teachers.

Sharing of sports facilities. Throughout the year St Mary’s is delighted to share its facilities with our near neighbours St Francis Primary School, including the routine use of our swimming pool (plus four staff) for Years 3 to 5, and the use of our athletics facilities for their annual sports day. St Mary’s enjoys hosting the Ascot schools sports cluster event which brings six local schools together for their Year 5 children to experience a round robin of coaching sessions for all of the athletics events and tennis. Throughout the hockey season we host tournaments for Berkshire maintained schools at U12, U13, U14 and U15 age groups. In addition, the school provides sports staff to act as lead organisers for the District and County athletics for all schools in the Bracknell district and Berkshire, which involves over 20 schools

IntoUniversity. St Mary’s has hosted up to 24 pupils and four staff from IntoUniversity (charity number 1118525) for a two-night residential stay, thereby facilitating primary school children from deprived areas of west London to gain an understanding and taste of university life. The school made no charge for this facility and indeed made available minibuses and drivers for their visit to the University of Surrey.

St Francis Primary School. St Mary’s hosted the St Francis Catholic Primary School summer production of Robin & the Sherwood Hoodies for rehearsals and matinee and evening performances in the Rose Theatre. The performances were seen by all the St Francis pupils and parents and was acclaimed a huge success. St Mary’s provided full technical support throughout the rehearsals and performances.

Other examples of activities carried out this year for the public benefit include:

  • Support to Oxbridge and medical applications, including interview practice, for pupils from Charters School and Mulberry Girls' School, Tower Hamlets. In addition, Lower Sixth pupils from both schools were able to attend an Oxbridge preparation day provided by Oxbridge Admissions, hosted and funded by St Mary’s.
  • Support to aspiring lawyers from Charters School Sixth Form by providing help and guidance for the Law National Aptitude Test (LNAT).
  • Russian Club and Mandarin Taster lessons for Charters School pupils hosted and provided by St Mary’s.
  • Provision of a safe but exciting venue for the St Francis Forest School on a weekly basis all year round.
  • Provision of facilities and resources to allow Charters School Music Department to use St Mary’s as an INSET venue.

Council planning conditions restrict the use by others of our athletics and hockey facilities. 

Details of our arrangements with Charters School and St Francis Catholic Primary School can be found on the Schools Together website:



The new Upper Sixth Courtyard officially opened on Saturday 30th June 2018. The completion of this ambitious 18-month project heralds an exciting new phase in the boarding life of the school, increasing the space and facilities for all the girls without increasing the school's numbers.

The new Upper Sixth accommodation comprises 64 en-suite bedrooms spread across five houses gathered around an attractive central courtyard. Each house has a large kitchen and dining area, and there are also three new residential staff houses.

In addition, there is a light and spacious pastoral centre containing an amphitheatre-style lecture hall, a multi-use space for modern dance, yoga and entertaining, a reading room, a kitchen, and a series of rooms for meditation, prayer and reading, with clear views across the field and open spaces beyond. The pastoral centre is designed to create a peaceful, calm atmosphere which will be welcoming and inviting for the Upper Sixth pupils.

Our architect for this project, Angus Neil, has worked with us on many projects before, including the Orchard Centre, the Rose Theatre, the refectory and the senior library.

Importantly, the opening of the Upper Sixth Courtyard will not lead to an expansion in the number of pupils in the school. It will merely give us more space. We believe that the school is already the perfect size, allowing every girl to be known and valued by all, while maintaining a Sixth Form strong enough to attract and retain the very best teachers, and offer a full range of academic subjects at A level. That means holding to the current system, with forty boarders arriving in Year 7, joined by a further twenty in Year 9, our aim being that they all stay on for the Sixth Form. 380 pupils is also the maximum number that can fit into Chapel – a very important consideration for a community which meets every morning for prayer.

Therefore, the current Mary Ward Courtyard becomes the Lower Sixth Wing, and Year 11 move into single rooms in the wing of the school formerly occupied by the Lower Sixth. In this way, the new boarding complex benefits not only the Upper Sixth, but the whole of the school, by freeing up space in what had become a rather cramped main building.

Thus we remain faithful to the essence of what has always made St Mary's such a special community and school, and ensure that we can remain unique and special for generations to come.

Job opportunities

Please click below for information about job opportunities at St Mary's.

Application and Recruitment Process Explanatory Note

Equal Opportunities Monitoring Form

Privacy Notice for Job Applicants



Teacher of Psychology - closing date 22 January 2021

Teacher of Psychology job description

Teacher of Psychology application form

Graduate Assistants - closing date 19 February 2021

Graduate Assistant job description

Graduate Assistant application form

French Assistant - closing date 19 February 2021

French Assistant job description

French Assistant application form

Sport Graduate Assistant - closing date 19 February 2021

Sport Graduate Assistant job description

Sport Graduate Assistant application form 

Please email for word versions of application forms and job descriptions.

For further information, please contact Mrs Nicola MacRobbie at:

01344 296710


Ascot Alumnae Association

Welcome to the AAA section of the St Mary’s School Ascot website. By the time girls leave St Mary's, they have made some of the most important friendships of their lives, and the Association helps them to preserve, extend and deepen those friendships. It is a thriving network comprising nearly 3000 alumnae based in the UK and in 50 countries worldwide. All our Upper Sixth pupils are invited to join the Association, which then helps them to stay in touch with each other, both professionally and socially, after they have left the school.

In the summer of 2018 we launched AAA Connect, our new online platform for the AAA, which makes it much easier for members to stay in contact with us and each other, to keep abreast of news, to join networking groups, and to find out about reunions and other events. Members are also able to learn more about how to help current St Mary’s girls, for example by offering careers advice, mentoring or work experience. We would love to hear from any alumnae who are not yet members, and who would like to be part of our community.

If you are an Ascot alumna but have not yet registered on AAA Connect, you can do so here.

You can also update your details here.

The Association is run by the AAA Committee, which consists of the Chair, Deputy Chair, the school’s Alumnae Director Cathy Leneghan, and three other alumnae. The Headmistress also attends its three meetings a year as a representative of the school.

We would love to hear from any alumnae wanting to learn more about the Association and forthcoming events, to update their contact details, to give feedback, or to be put in touch with old friends or career contacts.

For more information about the Association, or AAAConnect, or for details about how to join, please contact the Alumnae Director, Cathy Leneghan, at or on 01344 296685.


Examination results

We are delighted to announce our A Level results for summer 2020. Our Upper Sixth girls achieved 51% A*s and 87% A*-A.


We are also pleased to announce the I/GCSE results for our Year 11 girls, who have achieved 66% Grade 9s, 89% Grades 9-8, and 98% Grades 9-7.


We are once again extremely proud of all our girls, who have worked so hard and so cheerfully, and we are grateful also for the excellence and diligence of our teaching staff.


Please click this link to download the 2020 A Level and I/GCSE results in pdf format.




The six houses

The school remains inspired to this day by the aims and mission of Mary Ward, the founder of the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary, which established St Mary’s School in Ascot in 1885. The school’s houses are all named after women who were members of the Institute in its earliest days, including Mary Ward herself.

MARY WARD HOUSE, named after MARY WARD (1585-1645)

Head of House: Kate Jenkinson. Kate taught at St Mary's from 2000-2001, and returned in 2012 as Head of the Upper Sixth Mary Ward House. She teaches in the Maths Department, and also runs the Wine tasting society. 

Mary Ward was born in 1585 into a wealthy Catholic family, and grew up in Reformation England leading the double life that Catholics were compelled to live in those dangerous days. She felt called to the religious life at 15 and entered the monastery of Poor Clares in St Omer. By 1609, she had gathered around her a group of companions determined to follow her guidance in founding a religious Order for women along the lines of the Society of Jesus. Despite controversy and obstruction, they established themselves as a religious community in St Omer, and opened a school for girls. In the following years Mary Ward travelled widely, founding schools all over Europe. In 1639 she arrived in London, and founded several free schools there, as well as a convent near York. She died at St Mary’s School in York in 1645.

BABTHORPE, named after BARBARA BABTHORPE (1592-1654)

Head of House: Helena West. Helena has been at St Mary's since 2000, and has been Head of Babthorpe House since 2006. She teaches in the Religious Studies Department, and is also a member of the Ministry team. She is in charge of and organises the annual retreats which take place for each year group. 

The Babthorpes were one of the oldest recusant families in Yorkshire, and it was while staying with them in 1600 that Mary Ward felt the calling to religious life. In 1609, Barbara Babthorpe joined Mary Ward and the small band of women who had come together as Mary's companions at St Omer. She was named by Mary Ward to be her successor as Chief Superior in 1645. Barbara Babthorpe died in Rome in April 1654 and was buried at the English College.

BEDINGFELD, named after FRANCES BEDINGFELD (1616-1704)

Heads of House: Tom and Katie Parsons. Tom has been at St Mary's since 2000, and has been Head of Bedingfeld House since 2003. He teaches in the History of Art and English Departments. He also runs the Bridge club, and SPoKE, the national art history film competition which is hosted by St Mary's. He leads art history trips for parents to London and abroad, and enjoys playing in the staff and girls Football club. Katie joined St mary's in 2003 as Head of Bedingfeld House. She is a joint editor of the Ascot Alumnae Association magazine, and also takes parent trips. 

Frances Bedingfeld became a pupil of Mary Ward at the age of 14, and at 16 entered the Institute in Rome. She accompanied Mary Ward on her last journey back to England in 1639. In 1669 she moved back to England for good, became a headmistress, and then a dedicated superior. In 1686, she bought a house just outside Micklegate Bar in York, and started a school there. The house is now the Bar Convent and is home to members of the CJ community. She died in Bavaria in 1704 and lies in an unmarked grave.

POYNTZ, named after MARY POYNTZ (1593-1667)

Head of House: Roisin Toner. Roisin joined St Mary's in 2002, and took over as Head of Poyntz House in 2009. She teaches in the Religious Studies Department. She is a member of the Ministry team, with particular responsibility for sacramental preparation. She is also the School Garden Co-ordinator. 

Mary Poyntz lived and worked alongside Mary Ward from 1609 to 1627, and accompanied her on several journeys between England and Rome. In 1627, she was appointed the first superior of the community in Munich, and in the late 1630s, she once again accompanied Mary Ward on her return to England. When Mary Ward died in 1645, Mary Poyntz and Winifred Wigmore moved to Paris and worked on the first biography of Mary Ward. Mary Poyntz was appointed as successor to Barbara Babthorpe as Chief Superior in Rome in 1654. She died in 1667 and is buried in Munich in an unmarked grave.

ROOKWOOD, named after SUSANNA ROOKWOOD (1583-1624)

Head of House: Helen Jansen. Helen first joined St Mary's in 1994, and became Head of Rookwood House in 2010. She teaches in the Drama Department, and is also in charge of the school's many and varied equestrian activities.

Susanna Rookwood was 26 when she met her younger cousin Mary Ward, and was inspired by her enthusiasm and faith. She chose to go to St Omer with Mary, and within a few years was back in London as superior of a community of six members. In 1622, she went to Rome to assist Mary Ward in the presentation and defence of the Third Plan of the Institute before the committee of cardinals. Mary Ward valued her services highly, but realised that her spiritual gifts were underused. When the new house was set up in Naples in 1623, Susanna was named as the first superior. She was in office for only six months when she became ill and died.

WIGMORE, named after WINNIFRED WIGMORE (1585-1657)

Heads of House: Val and Nigel Hutchinson. Val and Nigel have run Wigmore House together since 2008. Val teaches in the Computing and ICT Department, and Nigel is a member of the Music Department and the school organist.

Winnifred Wigmore joined Mary Ward as one of her companions in 1609. In 1619, she became novice mistress in Liège. On the death of Susanna Rookwood, who was superior of the house in Naples, Winnifred was regarded as her obvious successor, but she resisted the appointment fiercely. In 1631, she went to Rome to set up a community on the Esquiline. Winnifred was one of the members who returned to England with Mary Poyntz and Catherine Smith, to be with Mary Ward at her death. In 1650, she went to Paris and became headmistress of a school and novice mistress. She died in 1657.