I rather enjoyed a walk around the school on Thursday afternoon for what is generally termed a ‘Learning Walk’ but I prefer to call a snoop. As I would expect there was a calmness in the Prep Room with the only detectable noise being Paganini’s Centone di Sonate in the background. Strategy Club provided a slightly different atmosphere with the babble of excitement as four girls pitted their wits against each other in a game of rummy. The delights of ‘Stratego’ were being enjoyed by a mixed group and dominoes by a throng of boys. There were other clubs taking place and the school was still a hive of activity at 5.00pm. The aim of our After School Clubs is to provide the range which will cater for all ages interests; we are not there yet, but I think we are getting there.

It was lovely to greet many of you at the School gate on Tuesday morning and very uplifting to see the children return so well rested, so positive and so ready for the start of term. The Christmas break is an important one for children and I hope you were all able to enjoy their wonder and excitement while also having a rest over the festive season. However, holidays have a lifespan and I think they (and possibly you) were ready for the structure which school brings, for days spent with friends and for the opportunity to learn in and outside the classroom.

Our Christmas events have begun delightfully with a charming Year 1 Nativity in the School Hall on Thursday afternoon. The children did wonderfully well to learn their lines and collaborated beautifully in the songs. It was lovely to see so many parents, siblings, and grandparents supporting the children. I am very much looking forward to our Reception Nativities next week. On Thursday morning our Choirs visited Barford Court Care Home to sing and talk to the residents. Not only did they bring great delight but they thoroughly enjoyed the experience and benefited enormously from giving to others.

At 8.20am on Thursday 30th August, your sons and daughters, a significant number new to the school, came through our red gates to begin the Michaelmas Term, the longest of our three terms. It seems a long time ago and yet only a moment ago. On reading the reports of our 300 pupils, it is clear all have made very good progress, have achieved much and have enjoyed the varied opportunities they have had. They can look forward to the opportunities and challenges of the New Year with confidence, but come Thursday afternoon, when they will be passed over to you for the holidays, they will have thoroughly earned a rest.

With the emphasis on the performing arts last week, it was the turn of the creative ones on Thursday morning with Mrs Lomax giving a lovely photographic presentation of some of the art work created by our pupils in Assembly. The montage of art was accompanied by Christopher C. performing one of his own compositions on the piano. I have also thoroughly enjoyed seeing the many Christmas Cards designed by the pupils, cards which I know will be winging their way to various parts of Sussex and beyond in the not too distant future. My thanks to the Parents’ Association for the support it so generously gives the school to ensure this is possible.