Responsible citizens

Our approach to education instils a strong sense of responsibility towards others, and we encourage our young people to become responsible citizens, both in our local and global communities.

Development Education

From Junior School to Sixth Form, we encourage students to explore the relationship between global issues and their own everyday lives.

Development Education is initiated in our Junior School curriculum. The values that underpin this moral and social philosophy reflect those of Mary Ward, and are translated through the curriculum into opportunities for the girls to learn and, more importantly, engage with the world around them.

Issues such as poverty and hunger, unequal distribution of wealth and opportunity, environmental degradation and diminishing resources are some of the challenges that the girls confront, investigate and ultimately act upon. This approach leads to a greater understanding of global inequalities, why they exist, and what can be done to improve (or develop) the situation.

Imparting this thinking from Junior School onwards, may seem highly aspirational for young learners, but we aim to sow seeds of discernment as early as possible, equipping our girls with age-appropriate knowledge and skills to make sound decisions for a just, sustainable world.

An environmentally-friendly community

We are committed to making sustainable, environmentally-friendly decisions which will benefit our school community and set a good example for students.


In 2017, we introduced recycling to separate mixed dry recycling from general waste. This means less waste is sent to landfill. We are currently looking at recycling food waste and how we can practically introduce this. To reduce single-use plastic waste, we use water coolers in our schools and every student and staff member has a re-usable St Mary's water bottle.


We encourage students to travel to school using public transport or by bicycle. Our annual Bikeability sessions to encourage our girls to get active by travelling by bike. We have bicycle parks at Junior School, Senior School and Sixth Form. We are also a member of the Travel for Cambridgeshire scheme which offers discounts at various bicycle shops.

To promote cycling to school, we are planning in-house small bicycle repairs which will be carried out by our fully qualified staff. In addition, we have negotiated a 10% discount for all repairs with Lensfield Road Cycles (please provide proof your daughter attends St Mary's School when arranging your repair).

We are members of the Cambridgeshire Student Connect scheme which offers students aged between 16-18 in full time education a 50% discount on rail fares.


Last year, we ran Fairtrade Fortnight at the Junior School, during which, together with our pupil-led Eco Council, we hosted a range of activities and raised money for the Fairtrade Foundation.