THE highest achieving Sixth Form students became King’s and Queen’s Scholars during a special installation service at Ely Cathedral on Friday (20) – an occasion which has long been one of the highlights in the life of King’s Ely.

Each year, students are selected to become King’s and Queen’s Scholars on the basis of excellence in their GCSE examinations. They are chosen and installed upon entry into Year 12 and continue until Year 13. As academic leaders of the school, the Scholars receive their distinctive red gowns – the colour traditionally associated with royalty. They are also admitted as members of the Cathedral Foundation and often process at cathedral services, strengthening the special link between King’s Ely and Ely Cathedral. The King’s and Queen’s Scholars provide a continuing connection to the foundation of the school by Henry VIII in 1541 and the introduction of co-education in 1971, soon after which our current Queen instigated Queen’s Scholars.

After the Admission of Scholars Service, the new Scholars and their families joined staff and guests for a candlelit Evensong with the school’s Chapel Choir. Celebrations then continued in the Monastic Barn.

Two International Scholars are also appointed each year and join the King’s and Queen’s Scholars in leading the school academically and during many important formal occasions.

“I am inspired by the achievements of our young people and by none more so than our King’s and Queen’s Scholars,” reflected Sue Freestone, Principal of King’s Ely, adding: “The red gown gives tacit acclaim to academic excellence and it’s something to which many students aspire.”

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