February 24, 2023

Weekly News – Friday 24th February

Message from the Head

Dear Parents,

Well, we’re back and I hope that you had a good break and managed some relaxation.  I did have a few hours in the garden and have big plans!

Talking of plans, Hollygirt’s five-year strategy will soon be on the website so that you can see the future direction of the school; it’s a very positive and optimistic read and just awaiting a final sign off.

Monday’s assembly from Mr Casey was about the power of volunteering and we include a link here.  Timely, given that after their mocks (two weeks’ time) Year 10 will be out in force on their Work Experience placements; thank you to parents for accommodating, finding and supporting their children in these placements.

Tuesday saw the sign up for the whole school play ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ and the audition schedule then rehearsal schedule will follow shortly.  We are so excited to finally be able to come back to the idea of a whole school production.  Save the dates now: There will be an evening performance on Thursday 15th June followed by a matinee performance on Friday 16th June.

Wednesday was the launch of the Senior House Music Competition.  This is going to be so much fun with extra house points available for roping staff members in!  The senior house reward trip is yet to be announced but as I am privy to that information, I know it’s well worth being courteous for!

Wednesday after school, the staff came together for a meeting where we focussed on what makes learning fun and engaging.  I wish to thank Miss Hook for the survey of KS3 students and what and how they like to learn and Ms Keyworth for sharing some fabulous ideas about cross-curricular exciting lessons.  It’s so important to get the students’ views about how and what they like to learn, and I look forward to sharing some examples that are created on the back of this staff meeting.  We will observe these in our learning walks and lesson observations.

I have been treated to several lesson observations this week and was impressed by the use of visuals, demonstration and differentiation in Biology and the use of retrieval practice, Cognitive Science in Geography.

On Wednesday 8th March we are celebrating International Women’s Day and we’re aiming to do this in style!  If there are any parents out there who would like to volunteer some input into our assembly that morning, please do let Lucy know.

A reminder to Year 9 parents to please complete consent forms for the school connectedness research (if you consent!).  Due back to Lucy by Monday 13th March please.

An update on the roll out of our new parent portal – it’s coming soon – this half term – along with the app.  It will be imperative that parents sign up to the portal (we will send clear instructions in the next few weeks) as reports /attendance /emails / rewards and conduct will all be held in one place for your convenience.  More anon but this is a head’s up.  We may trial with one year group first to see if we need to iron out any glitches.  You will still be able to email teachers directly as and when you need to.

Finally, the new washable and less expensive blazers are now available.  There is no requirement to buy a new one at all!  Just letting you know that both (wool, non-washable and synthetic washable) now exist.

Have a good weekend.

Helen Barsham

Message from the Head of Prep

Good afternoon,

Welcome back.  I hope you all had a lovely half term break.

On Tuesday, Mr Deacon and Miss Cooper took some of the children in Years 3 and 4 to an athletics event at Harvey Haddon.  They competed against other schools in different track and field events.  Everyone who participated was enthusiastic, had fun and there were some amazing performances.

It was lovely to see parents this morning at the coffee morning.  The next one falls on Friday 24th March.  This will be combined with our Science Fair.  In a couple of weeks, as part of Science Week, Mrs Wand and Mr Firth will be introducing Science projects for the children to complete and these will be displayed at the Science Fair.  More details will follow.

Today, Year 4 organised a book sale for Kindergarten and Prep.  Thank you for sending in both books and money to purchase these.  They raised £40 for the Turkey and Syria earthquake appeal.

Parents’ Evenings are on Tuesday 28th February and Wednesday 1st March.  A reminder that for Years 1 to 6, these will take place in the Year 5 and 6 building (9 Villa Road).  Meetings for Kindergarten and Reception parents will take place in the EYFS classroom.  Please access the classroom via the back gate on Villa Road where a member of staff will be there to let you in.

On Wednesday 1st March, all children will be having their photographs taken.  These are individual photographs.  Please could you make sure children have their blazers in school.  Please could Years 1 and 2 children come to school in uniform and bring their PE kits with them.

Thursday 2nd March is World Book Day and children are invited to dress up as one of their favourite book characters.  Mrs Keyworth will begin the day with an assembly and following this, the children will work in their classes to complete a storyboard challenge.

You should have received an email about a social event for Kindergarten and Prep parents on Friday 10th March from 6pm  to 7pm in the Senior School.  This will be a great opportunity to chat to your children’s teachers and other parents.  Please could you complete the form, which can be accessed from the email, so that we can cater for the correct numbers.

Have a lovely weekend,

Victoria Wright
Head of Prep