As the end of our second week back at school draws near, the days are already lengthening. It will be no time at all before the school day starts in daylight and ends in light. I have been visited in my study already by countless children with their commended work; it is a great joy to see the pride they take in their achievement. It also gives me a welcome opportunity to see the range and variety of work being done across the school and the excellent progress that individuals in every year are making.

It has been a busy week and I think all will be ready for the Christmas break, a time to spend with family and friends, to reflect, an opportunity to celebrate the birth of Christ. This morning was a chance to celebrate some of the achievements of the children over the week and over the term, collective and individual. Not all can be named individually in a Newsletter or in an Assembly but it was lovely to see the enthusiasm with which those who had not won an award applauded those who had.

Though sports fixtures continue into the last week of term this is the time of year when the creative and performing arts take the limelight. It was lovely to see a number of parents at our Teatime Recital on Tuesday afternoon and to listen to such a rich range of music and instrument performed by children from Year 3 to 8. Last night it was the turn of Year 4 pupils to perform ‘The Twits’ to a very appreciative audience. The children had great fun, showed confidence which belied their age and collaborated wonderfully well together. The production was a shining example of what can be achieved by passionate and committed Form Tutors when fully supported by their colleagues and by parents. On Monday, Mrs Lomax displayed to the school some of the lovely Christmas Cards our children have designed. I hope they will soon be adorning living rooms throughout Sussex.

I have been delighted with the response of our children to our initiative to support ‘The Clock Tower Sanctuary’ and I am very grateful to the many parents whose support enabled us to send a large assortment of donations. These will be distributed to those who are most in need over Christmas. Earlier in the week, a delegation of our pupils visited the offices of The Sanctuary. They were described thus by those from the charity who welcomed them: ‘Your pupils were total stars. Not only was their behaviour exemplary but they were bright eyed and really engaged with the visit. In short, they were a real joy’. 

It was lovely to see so many odd socks - in both senses of the word - in Assembly this morning, a symbolic community statement about the uniqueness of every individual within our School. I think we are all very keen that children at St Christopher’s, indeed children in general, recognise that we are all unique and that difference should be celebrated. The response of our pupils to a number of presentations and discussions to mark Respect Week have been refreshing and uplifting as often are the responses of children.