Head’s Blog

Rearranging Deckchairs

St Edmund’s plays a key role in the local partnership East Kent Schools Together. This group seeks to strengthen links between maintained and independent schools in the area through collaborative staff and pupil projects. One such collaboration was the Rearranging Deckchairs Art Exhibition which was recently shown at the Turner Contemporary Gallery in Margate. The pieces are now at The Bay Trust’s Pines Gardens in St Margaret’s Bay and are well worth a visit…

https://www.kentonline.co.uk/dover/news/youngsters-decorated-deckchairs-artwork-212307/

Successful Summer

I hope that you have all had a wonderful summer break. It has been a busy time for the school despite the holiday period.

Much work has been done on our grounds and infrastructure, including the construction of a new changing area by the Swimming Pool and the installation of a new cricket square on the Jackman Field. We are also in the process of building a new Fitness Suite in the Sports Hall.

Our results this summer were excellent: a record breaking 92% pass rate at GCSE and a 99% pass rate at A-Level with 36% of entries graded A*-A.

There were also two exciting school trips: the CCF Summer Camp to the Isle of Wight and an expedition of 11 pupils to Kenya led by our Assistant Head Mr Millard.

We are also about to start a new two-week timetable which should better balance academic and co-curricular pressures and improve our pupils’ learning experience.

In the next month, we will also be launching a new website that better captures the essence and unique energy of our school.

I look forward to seeing you all soon.

Remember there are drinks on the Terrace this Thursday from 6.30pm!

Remember your Physics!

When I was at school, I always struggled with Physics. I just didn’t get it. Much to the frustration of my immensely kind and patient teacher Mrs Walters. She found my good humoured incompetence very frustrating.

However, when I was thinking about the first day of term last night, something she taught me back in 1986 popped back into my head. We were studying potential energy. Mrs Walters used the image of a rollercoaster at the top of its first climb, just before the tipping point when it starts to accelerate, to demonstrate the idea of potential energy.

The day before term starts feels like that moment…lots of potential mixed with excitement and some nerves.

Inevitably, though St Edmund’s is about to accelerate to full speed for another exciting term.We are ready to get started and looking forward to the ride!

Independent School of the Year Awards 2019

I am delighted to announce, in the week of the St Edmund’s Festival, that the school has been shortlisted for the Independent School of the Year Awards 2019 in the category of “Performing Arts”.  The judges will make their decision on the winner in October, but to be shortlisted is a tremendous achievement and a fitting tribute to the extraordinary work done by pupils and staff in music and drama across the 3-18 school.

Politics News

Leader of the Opposition Jeremy Corbyn may have outlived Theresa May politically, but he finally met his match after PMQs yesterday. As you can see, the Labour Leader took on Cameron Molland from our Upper Sixth. Cameron is a bit of a Politics specialist himself so I hope he grilled Mr Corbyn on policy.

Festival!

Preparations are in full swing for the St Edmund’s Festival which starts next week.

This year we have an amazing programme starting with headline act Curtis Stigers on Wednesday night. The schedule also includes Pupil Cabaret Night,  Open Water in Concert, MCC vs St Edmund’s Cricket, The Derek Nash Funk Experience, The Passion and, of course, Abba-Dabba-Do!

It promises to be a unique and exciting week which allows our pupils (and those from some local schools too) to work alongside professional performers.

We are especially grateful to Paul Roberts Associates, who once again, are our principal sponsor. Without their generous support, the event simply would not be possible.

I look forward to seeing you there!

Sports News

Joe Gordon (L6) has followed his astonishing innings of 224 against The Canterbury Academy last week with selection for the Kent Men’s 2nd XI. He played for Kent against Warwickshire this week and scored an amazing 57 on his debut against seasoned professional opponents.

Last weekend Alex Millard (L6, see photo) won the 800m and 1500m double in the Kent County Athletics stadium at the Julie Rose Stadium in Ashford. This was a tremendous performance and Alex now looks forward to the English Schools Championships in July.

At the same event, Jildou Chappell (M5) won the silver medal in the Javelin with an exceptional throw of 28.77m.

Huge congratulations to all three pupils on these impressive achievements.

Leavers

There was a party atmosphere at school yesterday as our current Upper Sixth enjoyed their last day. The theme this year was ‘carnival’ and in addition to samba beats, whistles, party poppers and some incredible costumes, we were treated in chapel to a brilliant video prepared by the pupils celebrating their time at the school. This was followed by a Staff v Pupils Rounders match, an ice cream van (very popular) and then brunch on the Terrace.

It was a brilliant occasion, expertly overseen by Mr Mount our Head of Sixth Form. My thanks to the pupils for giving us such a colourful and good natured event.

We wish them every success for their A Level examinations.

Windlesham House School

On Sunday, I had the pleasure of speaking in Chapel at Windlesham House School in West Sussex.

This is the fourth time I have spoken there at the invitation of their Head, Richard Foster. It was their Grandparents’ Day and I talked about the wisdom of listening to the advice of our elders! I then met Windlesham families to talk about St Edmund’s.

It was a great experience and my thanks as always to Richard and Rachael Foster for their hospitality.

Confirmation Service

There was a wonderful confirmation service in the school chapel last night.

Five Junior School pupils were confirmed by Bishop of Dover, The Right Reverend Trevor Willmott.

Bishop Trevor is retiring in May and so this was his last official appearance at St Edmund’s. He has been a strong supporter of the school over the years and we wish him health and every happiness for the future.

My thanks also go to The Reverend Steve Bennett for organising this event, the Chapel Choir (with Mr Payne) who performed brilliantly as always, and to all those parents and staff who attended.