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Campaign for Excellence

The Campaign for Excellence launched in September 2013 to raise funds needed to complete a range of important projects within the School, all of which directly impact on the quality of our teaching provision.

The generosity of the RMS community and our alumni has already raised £1.5m and has enabled us to build the All Weather Pitch.  The girls and PE staff are thrilled with this stunning addition to our facilities. 

But we are not there yet.... 

As Diana Rose retires after 15 years of exceptional leadership, during which the distinctive vision of RMS has been established, there is still one project close to her heart that she would love to realise before she leaves...

"I have always been deeply moved and impressed by the quality of Performing Arts at RMS which have graced so many magnificent occasions in the School.  We now have the opportunity to create a Faculty of the Performing Arts in the recently vacated Alexandra House, bringing forward this project by several years.  It is one of my deepest wishes to retire knowing that the project has sufficient funding to proceed"

Dan Hyde, Director of Performing Arts says:

"The enthusiasm and talent of the pupils are a constant source of joy within the School. Putting all the performing arts into one building will create a thriving and exciting hub which can only lead to further creative brilliance, where each discipline can work together and inspire the others"

Do please click on this link  and watch our beautiful promotional video, starring four exceptionally talented students and introducing our Head Designate, Mr Kevin Carson, who passionately supports this project.

We need a further £950,000 to secure the commissioning of The Faculty of Performing Arts before Diana Rose retires.  Could you help us to reach our target?

For those who would like to leave a lasting legacy, The Faculty of Performing Arts provides 13 unique naming opporutnities.  There are 13 individual practice rooms, each one currently with a number on it. By way of a gift totally £25,000 (the actual cost to a 45% tax payer wanting to name one of the practice rooms is £13,750 after tax relief), the practice room can bear your name, or that of a loved one in memorandum, for future generations of musicians to use.  Who knows what future talent may be nurtured in that room? It is an exciting thought...

Two generous benefactors have already sponsored performance spaces.  The first is a recording studio and editing suite, and the benefactor writes:

"Performing Arts at RMS produce superb results but they are scattered around the School site.  Helping to fund a dedicated Faculty will further enhance this exceptional school, and especially the talented musicians, actresses, presenters and film-makers of the future"

The second major benefactor has sponsored a percussion and orchestra practice studio and  writes:

"My daughters are still young but adore music and drama so I am delighted to have been able to support this exciting campaign.  I would love others to join me, in any way they can, so that all pupils can develop their talents in what will be a vibrant and thriving centre for the Performing Arts."

There are still four performance spaces remaining for direct sponsorship within Alexandra House, and when the Faculty is completed, we ill start to raise funds for the Studio Theatre which will complement and enrich the performing arts still further. Any potential benefactor interested in naming rights for this exciting performance space should contact Suzie Peck at campaign@royalmasonic.herts.sch.uk

One of our major benefactors, a former parent of the School, explains why he gave so generously to the Campaign:

"My genuine respect for Mrs Rose and her team led me to give to the Campaign as a thank you, but also as an investment in the pupils of the future.  I sincerely hope that you will join me in ensuring that the funding is available for the Faculty of Performing Arts by December 2016"

We are truly grateful to all of our benefactors who have so far given so generously, and we sincerely hope that you will join them to ensure that The Faculty of the Performing Arts can be given the go-ahead before Diana Rose retires after so many years of exemplary service.

Download the Faculty of Performing Arts brochure here.

If you would like to learn more about the Campaign, please get in touch with Suzie Peck, Campaign and Development Consultant on campaign@royalmasonic.herts.sch.uk   You are very welcome for coffee and an informal chat.  In the "Support the Campaign" section below you will find details of giving options and downloadable covenant and gift aid forms.

Download our Campaign for Excellence Brochure here

Campaign Progress

Whilst we already had a superb Sports Hall and plenty of outdoor pitches, the lack of a full size, all weather playing surface was a serious gap in our sporting provision. Over an 18 month period, the Campaign for Excellence raised the £750,000 needed to build the RMS All Weather Pitch which was officially opened in June 2015.  The financial support from our community has meant that the project has been swiftly commissioned and built.  We are enormously grateful to all those who have given so generously. We have all been impressed how the pitch, albeit seemingly enormous when you stand on it, has effortlessly blended into the landscape near the sports hall. Our talented hockey players now have a first class pitch for training and matches which is floodlit for all year use.

We have also been delighted to be able to assist so many local sports clubs by renting the pitch for training purposes and matches when it is not being used by the School in the evenings and some weekends.  The pitch has added a valuable new resource to the local sports clubs and further enriches our ties with the local community.

Having fully funded the All Weather Pitch, the next project, a new state of the art Design Technology Faculty, can now be progressed subject to the continued support of the Campaign.  It is indeed a very opportune time for RMS to be investing in DT with our stunning successes this academic year.  One of our students won first prize in Cambridge University's Newnham College essay competition for her essay on engineering and two other students won the Bill Bryson Prize for their video on probability - visit the news section of the website for more information!  Our commitment to STEM projects will the front page feature of Private Schools in their October 2015 edition which will also feature in the news section of the website when it is published.

Campaign Projects

Creative Arts Faculty and Design Technology Centre

The Creative Arts such as Art, Textiles and Photography are in great demand.  We want to construct a dedicated Creative Arts faculty in the main School building (on the West side of the West Quad) which currently houses art rooms, home economics and design technology class rooms.  The new faculty will accommodate three art classrooms, two textile rooms, a printing room, kiln and separate Sixth Form provision for art and textiles.

Design Technology is also very popular at the School and becoming more so as growing numbers of girls see the career opportunities in design and engineering.  Our current provision is simply not adequate to meet present, let alone future, needs, being too small and dispersed around the School. A suitable site has now been identified for a new Design and Technology Centre.  This will be created from the conversion of the existing garage, former school shop and laundry, and the office currently occupied by the Facilities Manager.  It will comprise three workshops, four classrooms and ample storage.

Estimated cost for both facilities: £1,500,000

Food and Nutrition

Thankfully, the days when "domestic science" was on the curriculum and focussed on preparing girls for domestic life are long gone! In Food and Nutrition today, which we teach to all girls in Years 7 to 9 and to GCSE level, the emphasis is on healthy eating.  Girls learn how to prepare and cook healthy food and to enjoy developing these skills.  We also prepare Sixth Form girls for independent living at university, by providing courses such as University Masterchef, in conjunction with local boys' schools. Our Food and Nutrition facilities are in need of upgrading and the Department is to be relocated to purpose-built accommodation on an ideal site behind the main kitchens and adjacent to the Dining Room.

Estimated cost: £400,000

Performing Arts Faculty and Studio Theatre

The Performing Arts is another area in which the School is extremely strong but which also lacks dedicated teaching and performing space.  Alexandra House, ideally located adjacent to The Space, is large enough to accommodate all our Music, Drama and Dance teaching.  As well as the appropriate classrooms and storerooms, it will have dedicated dance and drama studios, a music rehearsal and percussion room, thirteen individual practice rooms and, on the second floor, a recording studio and Music ICT suite.  Collectively this will amount to a very significant improvement in our provision for the Performing Arts, in terms of both size and standard.  At the same time, we want to convert The Space into a fully equipped Studio Theatre, with comfortable seating for up to 150, modern lighting and sound systems, flexible acoustics capable of accommodating both music and drama, backstage and scenery storage area, and cloakrooms.

Estimated cost  for Perfoming Arts Faculty: £700,000
Estimated cost for Studio Theatre: £800,000

Bursaries

At The Royal Masonic School for Girls, we cater effectively for very different children: from girls who thrive on academic study to those who love sport; from confident dancers and actresses to gifted painters and designers.  It is essential that the same diversity is reflected in the social, economic and ethnic backgrounds of our girls.  This benefits all pupils by exposing them to the opinions and experiences of others, and is vital in preparing for adulthood young people who understand and appreciate diversity and difference, and whose horizons and perspectives are equally broad.

At a time when many able girls are excluded from attending The Royal Masonic School for Girls because of the cost, we want to increase our provision for means-tested bursaries to give an additional 40 girls the opportunity of a place at the School. Funding bursaries from fees would mean increasing fees still further, thus taking them out of reach of many parents, and thereby limiting rather than enhancing access and diversity. We have, therefore, decided to create and Endowment Fund for bursaries.  We recognise that this will be a long-term process in order to create a fund substantial enough to meet all the likely demand to means-tested assistance, but if we could raise an initial sum of at least £500,000 to put towards bursaries whilst the Fund was accumulating, this would make a promising and meaningful start.

Support the Campaign

There are several ways that you can support RMS and the Campaign for Excellence.  A single donation with Gift Aid will take us a step nearer our goal. A covenant over five or seven years will spread the load and allow us to progress our plans ever sooner.  For those who would like a lasting legacy within the School, there are naming opportunities for significant gifts.

HOW MUCH DO WE NEED?

The cost of the capital projects to be funded from the campaign and outlined in this section totals about £4million. The School, in addition to the very substantial sums it has already committed to the Development Plan, intends to provide further significant support.  However, we need to raise at least £2.75million if we are to be able to fund all the campaign projects.  It is an ambitious target, even for a school such as The Royal Masonic School for Girls, but we firmly believe that it is attainable, with the generous and enthusiastic support of all our friends. The table below shows the levels of giving we need to achieve our target, and illustrates the advantages of covenanting.  Please study if before deciding the level at which you are able to contribute.

Number of Gifts Needed (£s)Regular payment by 7 Year covenant (£s)Regular payment by 4 Year covenant (£s)Actual Cost to 45% taxpayer (£s)Actual Cost to 40%
Taxpayer (£s)
Annual Cost to company over 4 years (£s)Single Payment by Gift Aid (£s)Total Gross Value (£s)
Major Gifts
1 x 500,00057,143 annually100,000 annually275,000300,00096,250400,000500,000
1 x 250,00028,571 annually50,000 annually137,500150,00048,125200,000250,000
3 x 100,00011,429 annually20,000 annually55,00060,00019,25080,000300,000
5 x 50,0005,714 annually10,000 annually27,50030,0009,62540,000250,000
Standard Gifts
8 x 20,000190 annually333 monthly11,00012,0003,85016,000160,000
20 x 10,500100 monthly175 monthly5,7756,3002,0218,400210,000
50 x 5,25050 monthly87.50 monthly2,8883,1501,0114,200262,500
75 x 3,15030 monthly52.50 monthly1,7331,8906062,520236,250
175 x 2,10020 monthly35 monthly1,1551,2604041,680367,500
150 x 1,05010 monthly17.50 monthly578630202840157,500
Other gifts and convenants totally56,250
Total needed2,750,000

NAMING OPPORTUNITIES AND IN MEMORIAM GIFTS

The Campaign offers a number of opportunities for donors to associate their names with particular aspects our our Plan, including the Sixth Form Centre.  Some indicative examples are listed below:

Campaign Projects

ProjectCost
Studio Theatre£500,000
Design Technology Centre£500,000
All Weather Pitch£350,000
Floodlighting for All Weather Pitch£100,000
Endowed 25% Bursary£120,000
Dance or Drama Studio£75,000
Art/Textile Classroom£50,000

Completed Projects

ProjectCost
Sixth Form Lecutre Theatre£250,000
Sixth Form Common Room£100,000

TAX EFFICIENT GIVING

As a charity (Registerd Charity Number 276784), The Royal Masonic School for Girls can reclaim tax on all donations that taxpayers make by covenant or Gift Aid, increasing the value of the gift to the School and decreasing the cost to the donor.  The best ways of giving are generally:

  • by spreading payments using a deed of convenant
  • one or more lump sum gifts
  • through a company
  • through a tax-exempt charitable trust
  • by direct transfer or assets, such as stocks, shares, property and works of art.

COVENANTED GIFT AID

Covenants remain the most effective way for the majority of people to give their support because they enable RMS to predict future income with a high degree of certainty, whilst enabling siginificant sums to be given by way of relatively modest monthly or annual contributions.  A covenant enables you to spread the cost of your gift over a number of years and RMS to reclaim the income tax you have already paid.  With the basic rate of income tax at 20%, for every £100 you donate by covenant we will receive an extra £25 at no extra cost to you.  Higher rate tax payers can also claim the relief outlined below. There is no minimum period for a covenant.

SINGLE GIFT AID

For those able to make a significan lump sum payment, or unable to covenant, giving by Gift Aid is the tax efficient way of contributing one of more lump sum gifts.  The tax advantages are the same as for Gift Aid covenants.  This will increase the value of your gift by a quarter at no extra cost to you because, as with covenants, this method also allows income tax to be reclaimed by the School.

HIGHER RATE TAX RELIEF

If you are a higher rate taxpayer, you can claim higher rate relief.  This relief is calculated at the difference between the basic rate and the higher rate of income tax on the gross value of the gift and significantly reduces the cost to the donor.  For example, a payment of £50,000 by Gift Aid will be worth £62,500 to the Campaign and after tax recovery will cost a 45% higher rate taxpayer only £34,375.

DONATIONS BY COMPANIES

The procedure for company donations has now been greatly simplified.  Companies can claim corporation tax relief on all donations to charities, including covenanted donations.  For a company paying corporation tax at 23%, the actual annual cost of a gift of £50,000 to the Campaign spread over four years would only be £9,625.

GIFT OF SHARES

Gifts of publicly quoted shares, in addition to being exempt from capital gains liability, will enable the donor to claim income tax relief on the current value of the shares, which makes such gifts extremely tax efficient.

OTHER GIFTS

Any gift is of course most welcome.  Direct transfer of stocks, shares, property and works of art will not incur liability to capital gains tax.  All outright gifts, including bequests, are exempt from inheritance tax.  Contributions by CAF voucher are welcome. Please contact the Campaign Office for further details.

ADDRESS AND CONTRIBUTION DETAILS

Download our Four Year Covenant Form Here

Download our Seven Year Covenant Form Here

Download our Gift Aid Declaration Form Here

Please make cheques payable to "RMS CAMPAIGN" and send to:

Samantha Gillam,
Campaign Administrator,
The Royal Masonic School for Girls,
Rickmansworth Park,
Rickmansworth
Hertfordshire WD3 4HF

Email: sgillam@royalmasonic.herts.sch.uk

The Campaign for Excellence has been very well planned and delivered, and it's great to see such a positive response from the School community Parent

Contact RMS

The Royal Masonic School for Girls

Rickmansworth Park
Rickmansworth
Hertfordshire
WD3 4HF

01923 773168
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