Views from the Headmistress’ Study – 16th May 2014


Dear Parents,

There is an eery silence around parts of the school as the GCSE and AS public examinations are in full swing. Even the Year 10’s had their first experience of a ‘real’ exam as they take both the Science and RS GCSE’s this year. Before the Year 11’s and LVIth went on study leave we had the Pre-Exam Service ‘Testing-Times’ with Father Michael. It is always a rather emotional time, not only because stress levels are rising but the some of the girls realise that they will have to say goodbye as they move on to their new adventures. We have a tradition, during the service, of each one of us lighting a candle and writing a prayer which is pegged to the ‘Prayer Tree’. I have chosen one of the prayers for the ‘Prayer of the Week’. During this quiet time of reflection, Mr Keeley played a beautiful piece of music which I later found out was a composition by Celeste for her GCSE Music examination.

The Year 7 students were treated to a truly authentic experience of biological field work last Thursday when they went and explored the London Wetland Centre. They collected data for their wetlands assignment and experienced different habitats and the birds and animals adapted to living there. Many were surprised by the amazing variety of wetland birds, particularly the mow-hawk look sported by the tufted ducks and the blue beaked birds, but of course the playful otters provided the most entertainment, putting on quite a show of roly poly tumbling and play fighting in the water right in front of the girls.

Last Thursday evening saw the parents celebrating, in style, our 60th Jubilee with a Gala Dinner at the Royal Horticultural Society. It was a fabulous evening; great company, a beautiful setting, delicious food and some dubious dancing (from the staff!). I would like to thank Helen, Kathy and Kath from the Parents’ Association for all of their hard work as it truly was a fun evening. I must also thank Ruby, Rosanna, Grace, Amara, Anna, Katja and Flora (all Year 9) for their professionalism in providing the wonderful music during the drinks and canapés.

It was back to reality on Friday with the Year 11 and LVIth going on Study Leave and the final day of the A2 Art examination. Don’t forget to put 18th June in your diaries when you will be able to view their stunning work.

With the sun shining it has been the perfect weather for some Rounders fixtures. The U12’s, U13’s and U14’s played Queen’s College and I think the extra lunchtime practices are beginning to pay off.  The U12’s lost by 3 rounders and the U14’s lost by 1 rounder. Well done to Sophie R and Lucy A for being the top scorers in those games. The U13’s had a glorious win, 12 rounders to 6.5, with Tilly scoring 5 rounders! There were excellent fielding skills by Flora T at backstop and Tilly on base 2 who got numerous opposition out. Well done to all the girls!

There was lots of hair flicking and smiles on Monday and Tuesday when the photographer was in taking photos for the new website and prospectus. I was treated to a sneak preview of some of the shots and he has captured the spirit of the girls and staff in our beautiful building. I cannot wait to see the finished article in September.

Yesterday was the annual music competition where over a quarter of the school took part. Our guest judge was Christopher Jacklin (a professional opera singer who studied at the Royal College of Music). He was very impressed by the standard of music and I think he found it a difficult task to decide on the winners for each category. We shall showcase some of the winners at the summer concert so please make sure you have 24th June in your diaries. The girls will receive their prizes and certificates after half term. Congratulations to everyone who took part!

Next week is our Activities Week when Year 7 go off to Germany, Year 8 go to France, Year 9 to Devon and Year 10 to Sussex to complete their Bronze Duke of Edinburgh Expedition. I wish them all a safe and fun week and look forward to the blog entries during the week from the staff.

Have a lovely weekend,

Amanda Leach


rounders steph

The weeks ahead

Sunday 18th May Year 8 Activities Week Starts 
Monday 19th May A2 Study LeaveActivities Week for Year 7 and Year 9

Science GCSE Year 10

6.30pm Parents Association Meeting

Tuesday 20th May Year 10 Activities Week Starts
Friday 23rd May Half Term Begins


Prayer of the Week:


Grant me the serenity to except the things I cannot change, the courage to change that things I can and
the wisdom to know the difference.


(pinned to the Prayer Tree by a member of the examination years)

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