St. Ethelbert’s Catholic Primary School was built by the local Parish over 86 years ago to serve Catholic families and the local community. The school is in one of the oldest buildings in Ramsgate – not being rebuilt or moved site – and is surrounded by housing. The school has a very good reputation in Thanet and is very oversubscribed. The school is a one form entry of 30 pupils from Nursery to Year 6. The school governors are moving to academy with the Kent Catholic Schools Partnership (KCSP).
The school recognises the challenges of being in a coastal town, a selective county and a deprived area of the country.
The Governors and Staff believe that the closest co-operation between school, parents and community is necessary to bring the best out of the children and for this purpose we wish to provide you with the following information about our school.
The present building was begun in 1928 and officially opened as St. Augustine’s All-Age School on 29 April 1929 by Bishop Brown.
In September, 1963 we were re-designated as a Primary School catering for children between the ages of 4 and 11 years and re-named St. Ethelbert’s.
We continue to use the original school badge which depicts the pallium of St. Augustine who brought the faith to Kent in 597 A.D. and the crown of King Ethelbert (later St. Ethelbert) the King of Kent.
The school motto is “Serviam”: “I shall Serve”.
St. Ethelbert’s is a Catholic School maintained by the Kent Education Authority under local management in the East Kent Area.
In A.D. 560 Ethelbert became King of Kent which having enjoyed a hundred years of peace had become so rich and powerful that it held superiority and influence over the rest of England, so much so that Ethelbert is said to have ruled as far as the Humber and is often styled King of the English.
Ethelbert married Bertha, daughter of the King of Paris, a pious Christian princess whose great work prepared Ethelbert for when Augustine landed in Thanet bringing Christianity to our shores. For the remaining twenty years of his life Ethelbert’s only ambition was to establish Christianity in the hearts of all his subjects.
In governing his kingdom Ethelbert thought only of promoting the welfare of his people. In Canterbury he founded the Cathedral called Christchurch and built the church of Ss. Peter and Paul, now called St. Austin’s. St. Andrew’s at Rochester and St. Paul’s in London were amongst many other churches founded by Ethelbert.
Having reigned for fifty-six years Ethelbert died in A.D. 616 and was buried in the church of Ss. Peter and Paul.
Source – The Lives of the Fathers, Martyrs and Other Principal Saints by Rev. A. Butler; Virtue & Co. Ltd.