Headmaster’s Newsletter – 3 July 2020

Dear Parents,

The government have now published their guidance for schools to return in September.  We will be looking through this carefully over the next days and weeks as we make all the adjustments that may be necessary to meet every regulation. The excellent news is that it seems we will be able to return to a near normal situation. Many of the proposals in the guidance are things that we do in normal times anyway, such as staggering lunch and going home times. Having the school spread over a number of sites is also to our advantage when it comes to year group “bubbles”. The two most significant unknown elements that remain are music, in particular singing and wind playing, and the myriad of sporting venues we use across London, most particularly our swimming pools. We expect the picture here to become clearer during the holidays. You may well have heard about the proposal that curriculums should be narrowed next year to help with catching up. This will not be necessary at Hill House where, due the great efforts of our tutors to ensure the online provision has been so complete, we will be able to pick up really quickly where we left off. 

We have all learnt an enormous amount over the last few weeks and months that will hold us in good stead for the future. We are looking carefully at the many newly discovered benefits of Google Classroom and how these can continue to be incorporated into our teaching. However, we must be mindful that further lockdowns are a possibility. Should this happen we are now well prepared. We will publish our reviewed and renewed Covid-19 Action Plan in due course and continue to communicate with you over the holidays should there be any significant changes or new restrictions coming into force.

I have spent much of this week watching Showcases on Zoom. There have been a magnificent eighteen in total. At a time when the Performing Arts in the United Kingdom are in such a desperate and perilous state it is wonderful to see so many children taking part with such enthusiasm. It gives real hope for the future. Two showcases remain, both on Tuesday at 6.00pm; Mr Lau’s violins and the Delta Drama Showcase. If your child is not performing in one of the showcases and you would like to watch please email the school office for a link to join the Showcase. 

A reminder that the Art exhibition will now be held in the autumn and Poetry Day early in September. Every pupil is invited to choose and learn one poem for Poetry Day.  

Billings and Edmonds’s shop in Chiswick is now open again. They are very keen to avoid the traditional last-minute rush as this will not be possible to manage under the current restrictions and so they are offering discounts for those purchasing uniform in July.

Preparations for our Virtual Field Day are coming on apace. Hans Place is a wonderful hybrid of academic lessons in one room and in the next a Games Tutor instructing a remote Fitness Display rehearsal. You will have all received a letter from Mr Hastings setting out the timings for the last day of term.  Please don’t forget your flag!

  • 9.00am All register with their Form Tutor and watch the End of Term Assembly

Virtual Field Days:

  • 10.00am Small School
  • 10.45am Lower School
  • 11.30am Middle School
  • 12.15pm Upper Kappa, Upper Delta
  • 1.00pm Upper Beta, Upper Gamma
  • 2.00pm Upper and Lower Senior School
  • 2.45pm Upper and Lower Transitus
  • 3.30pm Upper and Lower Sixth

Best wishes,

Richard Townend