girls running

Effingham Schools Trust


In 2019 neighbouring schools St Teresa’s and Cranmore formed the Effingham Schools Trust partnership to create a diamond model school, a powerful and exciting educational proposition, delivering all the advantages of both single sex and co-education to girls and boys. We are delighted that Manor House has joined the Trust from September 2023 forming a dynamic educational triumvirate.

A diamond school is, quite simply, the best of both worlds, leading to an outstanding experience. It is an approach that not only elicits excellence from pupils, but also from teaching staff who are able to tailor their professional techniques to age, stage and gender. Three modern, progressive schools, CranmoreManor House and St Teresa’s Effingham have enviable track records, delivering best practice teaching to their pupils, whilst maintaining exceptional pastoral care.Combining these skills will provide a distinctive and distinguished education.

The new partnership will allow each school to focus on its strengths whilst retaining its individuality, presenting to all pupils an extraordinarily rich variety of shared events, facilities and resources to provide a distinctive and distinguished education for pupils of all faiths and backgrounds.

The Trust’s diamond model will offer the benefits of the co-ed classroom to very young pupils, the benefits of the single sex classroom in later prep and secondary years, before finally returning to co-education Sixth Form.

Mike Farmer, Executive Director of the Trust

Mike joined St Teresa’s in September 2012. He began his career teaching Economics and Business at the Godolphin School in Salisbury, taking up the position of Assistant Head at Headington School in Oxford in 1997. In 2003 he was appointed Principal of Kilgraston School in Perthshire. He transformed the school to achieve the highest growth rate within the sector and also topped the Scottish academic league tables.

In 2011, Kilgraston gained national recognition by being named the UK Independent School of the Year.

Under Mike’s headship, St Teresa’s has experienced dramatic growth of 60%, enabling capital investment of over £5m. With a roll of 650 pupils, St.Teresa’s is currently the largest Catholic independent girls-only school in the UK.

In addition to Headship, Mike was a member of the governing council for the Girls’ Schools Association for many years, and also Chair of the boarding committee. In 2016 he had the honour of chairing the Boarding Schools’ Association.

He is a Governor of two independent schools and also chairs the advisory board for the Chinese owned company, Achieve Education.

Mike is supported by his wife Mary-Ann who has worked in boarding for many years.
They have two grown up children.