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Stonar School Appoints New Deputy Head (Academic) and Director of Music for September 2021

Stonar is delighted to announce that Mr Mark Ebden will be joining the School as Deputy Head Academic) and Dr Andrew Passmore has been appointed as Director of Music, both commencing in September 2021.

Mr Ebden will join Stonar from Roedean School where he leads the Faculty of Science and Psychology and is also a Research Associate. Following a 1st Class Master’s degree in Chemistry (MSci) from the University of Bristol, Mr Ebden briefly worked as a recruitment consultant before completing a PGCE in Canterbury and starting his teaching career at St Lawrence College in Kent. He became the Head of Science at St Lawrence before moving to Roedean. Mr Ebden has also been the Chair of Governors at a Primary School and an examiner for GCSE Chemistry.

Mr Ebden commented: “Stonar’s close-knit and caring community was what initially attracted me to the School.

Conversations with the Head and senior staff also helped to emphasise how closely their values align with my own. I believe strongly in educating the whole child and I recognise each teacher’s role in helping unlock the potential in every young person. I am really looking forward to joining the team and working with the whole school community, to ensure teaching and learning at Stonar is of the highest possible quality.”

Dr Passmore has had an outstanding academic and teaching career to date. Following a 1st class degree in Music at the University of York, Dr Passmore then completed a Master’s degree and a Doctorate in Music at York. Currently teaching music and chorus at Marymount International School in Rome, Dr Passmore has been Assistant Director of Music at Queen Anne’s School, Caversham and Director of Music at St Mary’s, Shaftesbury, as well as having previous experience in prep and senior schools in Yorkshire. His performance specialism and passion is historical performance on keyboard instruments – organ, harpsichord, and piano – having performed as an accompanist and soloist with professional ensembles such as the Royal Northern Sinfonia, London Concertante and the Gabrieli Consort.

Dr Passmore has also overhauled the prep and key stage 3 music curriculum in previous schools to include technology to engage pupils of all musical abilities and he has a track record of strong GCSE and A Level uptake as a result.

Dr Passmore commented: “I am really excited to be joining Stonar as Director of Music in September. I am looking forward to getting to know all of the pupils, staff, and the wider Stonar community. Together, we will embark upon an active and fulfilling programme of concerts, lessons, and performances, celebrating the musical traditions of Stonar, whilst embracing new paths in music education.”

Commenting on the appointments Headmaster Mr Way said: “We had a field of 60 applicants for the Deputy Head (Academic) role, Mr Ebden demonstrated a clear vision for teaching and learning and an empathy for Stonar’s values.

Dr Passmore’s appointment as Director of Music signals the start of exciting times for the performing arts at Stonar. In addition to bringing his impressive experience into Music lessons throughout the whole school, we are looking to forward to his collaboration with Mrs Toghill, our Director of Drama, for our musical productions.”