Headmaster’s Newsletter – 18 December 2017

Dear Parents,

A long but very successful  term  was brought to a conclusion by our carol service at St. Columba’s. We can reflect a little on what has happened in the last fourteen weeks. In addition to the regular timetable of classroom, games and swimming lessons we have managed to have 8 social evenings, 2 Geography courses in Switzerland, 47 sports fixtures, 17 educational trips, 12 music showcases, 2 drama showcases and 6 Christmas plays. Every week there are 476 individual music lessons and 49 instrumental ensembles. These are filled with 97 guitars, 124 violins, 42 cellos, 103 pianists, 21 flutes, 22 clarinets & saxophones, 7 oboes, 7 bassoons, 40 brass players, 6 harps and one viola. Over 250 children sing in the choirs and all in all 70% of the school plays an instrument.

The last Wednesday Assembly of term demonstrated perfectly the variety of life that we champion at Hill House. Awards for Maths in a national competition, swimming awards, football medals and a cup from an inter school competition, presentation of Sports Colours and Sportsmanship awards, Cello ensembles from both Hans Place and Cadogan Gardens and poetry reading.

Small School performed their Christmas Play, A Wriggly Nativity, on Tuesday and Wednesday. What these four and five year old children, who have only been with us for less than four months, were able to achieve was excellent. It is always striking then to see the plays of Lower School and Middle School and see how the children develop so much in such a short space of time. Thank you to all the staff who made such an effort to ensure all these plays were the great successes they were.

The boys and girls, and staff, at the other end of the school have also been working hard but with more of an eye on the exams which lie on the other side of Christmas. The girls in Upper Transitus enjoyed a morning’s ice-skating at the Natural History Museum as a treat following their hard work preparing for their 11+ exams in January. Some of these begin even before term has started. The boys sitting for Dulwich will have their exams not long after the beginning of term too. We wish all of them the best of luck and trust that they will do themselves proud.

All pupils should have taken their games kit, bags and sports footwear home. Please take the opportunity to wash all sports kit and sports shoes. Please also check carefully that any items belonging to others have not accidentally been taken home. There has been a high incidence of this over the past term. If you do discover something belonging to somebody else do not be embarrassed. Bring it to school and give it to your Senior Tutor so it can be returned to its rightful owner. Do all ensure all items of clothing including shoes are clearly named.

 

A reminder that the After School bus service will operate slightly differently from January. There will be now only be a service Monday to Thursday from Cadogan Gardens at 4.35 that then picks up at Hans Place at 4.45. We are hoping that there has been enough interest to enable two routes to operate: the existing northern route and a new route to the west and southwest. The 4.45 bus will be available to all Senior School boys and all Transitus girls.

Should you have any queries about signing up for the service please contact Gary Lansdown at CoachHire.com

Finally I would like to remind you of the lunchtime Carol Service at St. Margaret Lothbury EC2R 7HH on Wednesday 20 December. Members of the school Brass Ensemble will be joined by past pupils and will be playing before and after the service. They will be playing outside the church from 12.45. The service begins at 1.00pm and lasts for half an hour. This is followed by mulled wine and mince pies while the children play some more pieces.

I wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year,

Richard Townend

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