Headmaster’s Newsletter – 21 May 2021

Dear Parents,

Despite the weather giving every indication to the contrary we are just one week away from the summer Half Term. This week’s fixtures have been affected to a certain extent but hopefully next week will see less interruption. 

The weather did not affected Tuesday’s visit to the Thames Explorer by the boys of Upper Senior School. They spent the day taking part in several activities on the shores of the river, learning about the history of the Thames, testing the water quality and fishing for not only fish but leeches too.

Our first week of Showcases with audiences has been excellent. The excitement of the children wanting to perform has been palpable. There have been many highlights throughout the week including a Vivaldi double flute Concerto with the String Orchestra, massed junior cellists, some excellent harp and piano solos and the exuberance of the Lower School and Middle School violinists. This Monday sees the annual John Betjeman Poetry Competition. This year we are delighted to welcome the distinguished Irish actress Brigid Shine as our adjudicator.  On Tuesday it is the turn of the Cadogan Violin pupils of Miss Reinoso and on Wednesday and Thursday the pupils in Upper Delta and Kappa perform their Drama Showcase “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory”.

Our Showcases at Founders’ Hall are held in line with the latest UK Government guidance and we will continue to review and follow Government advice. For the time being it is necessary to restrict audience numbers to a maximum of two per performer and they must be from your own household or support bubble. May we remind you that food and drinks may not be brought into Founders’ Hall. All audience members (over 11 years old) are required to wear a mask inside Founders’ Hall.

The pupils in Upper Kappa and Delta have been working hard over the past two weeks practising Monologues. They were asked to find a monologue from their favourite book and then perform it in their English class. Matilda, Harry Potter and Cleopatra were just some of the characters that were brought to life this week. The finalists then performed their monologues in front of the whole Section. Congratulations to our finalists who performed with such style and confidence.

The London Travelling Book Fair has arrived in Cadogan Gardens and will be here until Thursday. The annual visit of the book fair always creates extra excitement and buzz about books. Each book sold raises rewards for the school that are used to update library and classroom reading resources. All parents of pupils in Cadogan Gardens will have received an email earlier today with a letter from Miss Kinsman about the fair, details of how to order books, an order form and a catalogue of available titles. 

Following last week’s request to be considerate to our neighbours in relation to the ‘School Street’ outside Hans Place please be extra vigilant when dropping off and picking up in Pont Street. Pont Street is a busy road and everyone must take due care and attention. Please always park legally when collecting or dropping off. We ask that you only cross the road at the traffic lights or the pedestrian crossing. Thank you.

With the relaxing of COVID restrictions across the country it is important that we all remain vigilant about illness in general. To that end we would courteously ask everyone to err on the side of caution if your child is showing any signs of illness (not just COVID symptoms) and keep them at home. Any work they may miss can easily be caught up on when they return to school. Should a child be sent to school whom we feel is not well enough to be attending we will ask you to come and collect them.

Please may we also remind you that if your child is going to be absent for any reason we ask that you complete an absence form on the school website https://hillhouseschool.co.uk/contact/absentee-form/
Alternatively you can email absence@hillhouseschool.co.uk. Please ensure you do this even if you have emailed their Senior Tutor or class teacher.

Thank you to all of you who are already following these simple protocols.

Best wishes, 

Richard Townend