Returning after half term allowed a refocussing of priorities, and also provided a reminder of the often unrecognised contributions our boys make outside of school. Many of our boys do work in the local community, volunteering in a formal context, but also simple acts of kindness that therefore project the values we espouse in regards helping others. There are occasions that sometimes we get a negative comment when a boy may not do the right thing, but the positives significantly outweigh the negatives. It was heartening to receive letters earlier this week singling out boys for particular praise. These ranged from boys helping elderly neighbours clearing leaves from their gardens, to supporting the distribution of food to families as part of the Marcus Rashford campaign. We all recognise that people make contact more quickly about negative matters than positive ones – so I know our boys do a lot more that we don’t get alerted to.
Our Y11 boys are currently experiencing GCSE Mock Exams. They would usually have experienced these back in June of Y10, however, as in many other areas our routines have had to be adjusted. The principle behind these assessments is to give the boys an experience of what they will face in the summer GCSE period proper. So our Exams officer and team of Invigilators, are working to ensure the complex operation functions as smoothly as possible. This helps minimise unnecessary stress for our boys and prepares them for the challenges they will face in the summer.
Our boys would normally be at the heart of Remembrance events this weekend. Again due to the current situation, adjustments mean that for the first time in decades our prefects will not be supporting the Remembrance Parade in Stalybridge. Our Head Boy and Senior Team would usually lay a wreath and read the exhortation each year. Leaders of our music department and band members typically have a busy itinerary, crisscrossing the borough to support various ceremonies.
That said within school we still ensure Remembrance has a prominent focus; assemblies are being held throughout the week, poppy displays are around school, as well as images of previous trips the school has undertaken to the Battlefields. The sale of poppies within school is coordinated by our prefect team whilst within lessons, many subjects have inputs highlighting themes connected to this time and events. The school has contributed to the bid for the extension of the Stalybridge Cenotaph, and we work closely with Peter Edwards from the British Legion, who was keen to feature in our Moving On video, to emphasise the strong links our school has with the community.
So on Wednesday at 11am, the school will fall silent, and the only sound across the site will be from one of our boys playing the Last Post. It is a tradition, but more importantly it allows our boys to reflect on the sacrifices of others.
Lest we forget.
Posted by Mr Owens on 6 November 2020
Category: Headteacher's Log Book