Friday, 27 September 2013

Head Master's Weekly Notes - 27th September

Hola! GutenTag et Bienvenue!

Thursday saw The European Day of Languages being celebrated at the school and the MFL department put on a variety of activities which engaged and enthused not only the students, but the staff too – from a French breakfast in the KDR to quizzes and competitions. Acquiring the skills to speak and understand another language is so important as it not only helps communication but also develops a deep cultural understanding which nurtures the values of tolerance and respect – the very values we as a school promote as part of our ethos – studying languages can only be a good thing.

Not only am I proud of our students achievements in a variety of sporting and cultural pursuits, but also those of our staff on their personal achievements – firstly Mrs Jill Byrne who came 33/132 competitors in the Ping’s Women 4 Ball National Golf competition and to Mrs Nicky Young who graduated from Plymouth University with a PGCE. I would like to congratulate them both on their success and I look forward to golf lessons with Mrs Byrne! And speaking of success, our U12 Boys’ rugby team had their first match on Thursday against Wells Cathedral School (normally they would play after half term) and they put up a tremendous performance only narrowly losing to a strong Wells side.  We learn a lot from such experiences and you can gauge the measure of a person at how well they come back from defeat – and I believe our students grow stronger and wiser as a result. We look forward to welcoming Wells on the return fixture. The U13 Girls’ hockey team played Ansford yesterday and, although they lost marginally, they were magnanimous in defeat and clearly enjoyed the game by the enthusiastic response I got from them when I asked them about the fixture. Our philosophy is to inspire a lifelong interest in sport, promoting fitness, well-being,  team work and most of all, enjoyment and I hope our Sexeians enjoy the opportunities on offer to them.

We welcomed Ofsted on Tuesday (a baptism of fire to say the least!) who spent the last three days assessing the quality of our boarding provision and I would like to thank all the staff and students for their cooperation and support during the inspection. The official report will be published in a few weeks’ time and I will notify you in due course of the outcome. During Ofsted we also had our Open Evening and welcomed many prospective parents and their children to the school. Thank you for promoting the event amongst your friends and our next Open Evening, which will be for Sixth Form, is on Tuesday the 8th of October.

The Macmillam Coffee Morning’s is now a national institution and we hosted one today at Walwin House – Douglas Macmillan, the founder of the Macmillan Cancer charity was an Old Sexeian (1894-97) and Macmillan House is named in his honour. Thank you to the Catering team for supporting the event and over £250 was raised this morning.

There are plenty of activities going on this weekend, from a trip to London to visit the London Dungeons and the world class Westfield Shopping Centre, a visit to Bath Guildhall to hear the author Robert Muchamore speak at the Bath Literary Festival to surfing at Woolacombe in Devon. Follow us on Twitter @SexeysSchool. Now where is my wet suit…

The exeat seems like such a long time ago!


Irfan H Latif
Head Master

Friday, 20 September 2013

Head Master's Weekly Notes - 20th September

The week began with the Harvest Festival Sunday service at St Mary’s Church, Bruton attended by our boys and girls - it was wonderful to be part of this special congregation and to see our students in their Sunday best. Many also sang as part of the St Mary’s Church Choir where a former Housemaster at Sexey’s, Mr Harry Mills, is the Choir Master -  I would urge more of our boys and girls to get involved with this fine choir. Father Justin’s entertaining sermon also gave many of us plenty of food for thought…

We welcomed our new Y7s and their parents to the Meet the Tutor evening on Monday and were treated to some glorious cheese and wine afterwards with the ever gregarious Parent Staff Association (PSA) in Reception. The PSA works hard for the school and I am grateful for their time and effort – please do contact them if you would like to support their excellent work. The PSA Quiz Night ‘Cranium Cruncher’ takes place on Friday 11th October in the Main Hall and its worth getting a table organised now – it is quite a competitive event from what I can recall! We also welcomed our new L6 and their parents and I hope both year groups are settling into life at Sexey’s.

After the opening of the 1st XV pitch last week (is it only last week?!) we played three competitive fixtures (U14, U15 and U16) against King’s Bruton on Tuesday afternoon and the boys did the school very proud by only narrowly losing to them. Similarly, our girls’ hockey teams (U12 and U13) took on Bruton School for Girls and again played a hard fought contest displaying dedication, passion and a great understanding of the game. Although they too narrowly lost, it shows that the gap is closing and that sport at Sexey’s is getting stronger.

Both Mrs Latif and I hosted the Year 7 Boarders at Walwin House last night and treated them to pizza, chips and ice cream – there was salad too I hasten to add – courtesy of Mr Briatore and the Catering Team. It was an opportunity for the boys and girls to get to know us as a family and for us to find out more about them. I was given a quick lesson in playing a Sexey’s tradition, Squares by the boys and girls and I fear I will need a lot of practise! I also met with a number of students from Glynn Jones, Knight, Hobhouse and Gollege who had received commendations this week for their sterling efforts both in and out of the classroom - well done to them all.

We have our Lower School Open Evening next Tuesday (24th September) and if any of your friends are considering sending their children to Sexey’s then please let them know. Full details are available on the website and you can also follow us on Twitter (@SexeysSchool) for all the latest news and goings on at the school.The exeat is a time for rest and reflection (especially for our boarding community) and I look forward to seeing everyone next week, recharged and refreshed.


Irfan H Latif JP

Friday, 13 September 2013

Head Master's Notes - 13th September

So we have completed our first full ‘week’ of the two week timetable this term and I trust that your sons and daughters are now getting used to the rhythms and routines of the school. This week saw the opening of the new 1st XV pitch on the Elm Field and proved to be a wonderful occasion for the school and I was impressed at how the boys and girls conducted themselves on the day – they were a real credit to both the school and to you their parents. My thanks to all staff and friends of the school who made this event such a success - it makes me very proud to be the Headmaster of such a fine school.

We have our Year 7 Meet the Tutor event and Lower 6th Parents’ Induction Evening next Monday (further details can be found below) and I look forward to meeting parents then either over a cup of tea or a glass of wine. If you do wish to meet me to discuss any aspect of school life, then please do not hesitate to contact my PA, Mrs Stallion who will be only too happy to arrange a suitable time for us to meet.

Please do continue to support the many events that go on in school and I would like to wish Mrs Wilkinson, Mr Southwood and the DoE Silver expedition the very best this weekend as they tackle the glorious Quantocks.


Irfan H Latif JP
Head Master

Friday, 6 September 2013

Head Master's Weekly Notes - 6th September

From the Headmaster

The first week is over and I hope that our boys and girls have settled back quickly into normal school routines and that our new members to the school are beginning to understand how we work and operate. It is a delight to see our new Year 7 boys and girls enjoying all that Sexey’s has to offer and I hope their energy and enthusiasm continues long into the term. It’s a busy week as you can imagine for our boys and girls – the Head Boy and Head Girl reading at the Main School assembly on Tuesday; Leadership Training for our Sixth Form, meeting new boys and girls as well as new staff, girls’ hockey practices, rugby practice, various clubs and societies at lunchtime and after school, singing practices, learning how to play Squares, doing and handing in prep, the 1st XV playing away to Wellington on Wednesday and of course lessons! There is so much going on.

Please do take a moment to look at the website which will provide you with plenty of information and do try and support as many of the events that you can – from concerts to plays, from sporting fixtures to exhibitions. Please book the dates in your diaries and join us when you can. You are all very welcome to these. If there is anything you are not sure about, then please do not hesitate to get in touch with us at School or with your son’s or daughter’s tutor. We are always here to help.

I am sure I will meet you all in due course, but for now I wish you and the children a pleasant and peaceful weekend.

Irfan H Latif JP FRSC
Head Master