We come to the end of the most extraordinary term any of us have ever known. The whole community is exhausted and we all look forward to the long break.
Could I make two points. Firstly, I would like to congratulate the students. As I have said to a number of parents the students at the very beginning of the lockdown could have turned round and simply said they weren’t playing ball. To be expected to sit in front of a computer all day at home and to follow the normal timetable was a very big ask to make and they all found it very challenging at times. But in the event the students went for it and it has actually been very moving to read their end of term reports and to see just how much effort they put in. They really did go the extra mile and a huge amount has been achieved. This was especially important for the M5 and L6 who will be facing public exams next summer and an enormous well done to them for staying the course.
We have been keen to celebrate their achievements and one way we have done this is through the annual prizes. To reflect what has been going on we have made some changes this year and in addition to the usual subject prizes for the U6/L6/U5 we have awarded prizes for the other year groups on the basis of excellence and endeavour. All teachers have taken part in the nomination process and it has allowed us to single out those whose achievements have been the very best and those who have tried the very most. The prizes have been awarded in school over the last few days and a full list of prize winners comes at the end of this letter.
Secondly, I would like to thank the staff. Overnight they had to adopt a completely new way of delivering their lessons and I can say from personal experience that trying to engage with a class when everyone is simply an icon on a screen is very difficult. Many colleagues have quietly mentioned that this has been the hardest term of their entire careers and I am extremely grateful to them for all their hard work. They too went above and beyond and some of the ideas they came up with to keep the interest and enthusiasm of the students were really inspiring. We might have been online but we still had group activities, we still did experiments and projects and we even still had music and drama performances. A very big thank you to them all.
With the end of the academic year we unfortunately have to say goodbye to a number of our teachers. Jill Ballantyne leaves us after 18 years. As a teacher of Chemistry, tutor and for many years Head of Exams she has made an enormous contribution to the College and our best wishes go with her as she retires. Michelle Bailey-Barnes is also retiring this summer. She has been with us for 16 years and in addition to her Spanish teaching, including many years as head of department, she worked tirelessly in Stenning both as a tutor and as Head of Fourth Form. An enormous thank you to her as well.
Conor Smith leaves us after a shorter stint but he has made a significant contribution to boys PE and games not least by coaching the First XV, and he has also been a tutor in the Fifth Form and a popular member of the boarding house team. We wish him well in his adventures as he moves to an international school in Malaysia. We also thank Elaine Smith who has helped us out on so many occasions in the Maths Department, Michelle Field who has been with us in the RS Department this year, Berengere Balteau, our French Assistant, and Chester Burnett, our Sports Graduate. A thank you to them all.
Our attention now moves to the autumn. I am pleased to report that numbers are looking very healthy and we look forward, in particular, to welcoming a new cohort of Lower Fours. With the island being in such a strong position we have permission to reopen our boarding houses and overall the school will be completely back to normal. The one remaining challenge we have is to get our overseas boarders back to the island. The border issue and quarantine are major concerns here but we hope that there will be movement on both over the summer and that the international students will once again be at the heart of our community in September.
I am also delighted to report that work will begin over the summer on our major building project. Through the immense generosity of the MacLeod family we are going to totally refurbish our science laboratories and lecture theatre and the new Dosch MacLeod Science Wing will have seven state of the art laboratories when it opens at the end of the year. It is an immensely exciting development and is simply a step change for the school. We are extremely grateful to the MacLeod family and it is a fantastic way for us all to remember Dosch who was such a popular member of the College.
With a new year beckoning I had great pleasure last week in announcing a new team of praepositors. The new Head of School is Lois Parry and the new Deputy Head of School is Ben Holligon. They will be assisted by Bobby Bostrom, Nic Fomin, Tegan Horrox, Millie Kinnin, Cristina Salinardi and Laora Tobelaim. I am really pleased to have such a strong team and I look forward to working with them over the next 12 months.
The holiday is now upon us and that also means the first exam results are about to be published. The IB results are always at the very start of the holiday and in fact they are next Monday (6th July). The IGCSEs are later in the summer with the Cambridge board publishing on 11 August and all the other boards (which includes RS for the M5) publishing on 20th August. Both the Upper Sixth and Upper Fifth worked extremely hard and although this year, for the first time ever, results will not be exam based we trust that their efforts will be rewarded and that we will have two strong sets of results. I will write to parents with the details.
It has been an extraordinary year but we trust that the worst is behind us and we celebrate what has been achieved. I wish everybody a safe and relaxing holiday and I look forward to welcoming the students back to school in September.
JOSS BUCHANAN - PRINCIPAL
Tel: +44 1624 820428
Jemima Shepherd - English Literature and ESS
Jessica Clucas - English Language & Literature, Spanish and Sports, Exercise & Health Science
Nicolas Gantous - History and Economics
Mia Hall - Geography
Katy Davison - Latin
Carla Menzel - French and German
Noon Khalil - French ab initio and TOK
Matija Glišić - German ab initio, Mathematics and Physics
Bia Boros - Chemistry
Anna Blayney - Biology
Daniil Antich - Music
Izzy Barber - Visual Art
Catalina Matthews - Design & Technology
Ella Webster - Business Management
Angus MacLeod - Theatre
Molly Grint - English Literature, ESS and Theatre
Mia Darroch - English Language & Literature, French and Latin
Anthony Ranji - History
Millie Kinnin - Geography
Tegan Horrox - French ab initio and Business Management
Matthew Kerruish - Physics
Stefan Fong - Biology
Ben Holligon - Sports, Exercise and Health Science
Anna Glynn - Music
Sophie Long - English, Spanish, Design & Technology,
Carys Hoile - History, Mathematics, Biology and Computer Science
Anna Cregeen - Geography and Chemistry
Helene Stetina - Latin
Ruairi McNally - French
Elias Köhler - German
Alexander Turnbull - Physics and Business Studies
Lauren Raatgever - Physical Education
Cate Atkinson - Music
Lily Ansara - Art
Hollie Jean Hodgson - Photography
Alice Gibson - Drama
Pierre de Terrasson de la Montleau - ESOL
Louise van der Merwe
Rory van der Merwe