Friday, 10 January 2014

Head Master's Weekly Blog - 10th January

So we lost the Ashes Test in spectacular fashion losing 5-0 to the impressive Australians. I admit, I did not see the final two tests, nor the highlights as I was being constantly updated with the scores by colleagues in Australia who were basking in their Christmas sunshine.  I take my hat off to the Australians who only 6 months ago lost the Ashes and were able to turn things round in a relatively short period of time and taught us a thing or two about the beautiful game. We too can learn much about the England defeat and how they cope now with the tests in Sri Lanka and India looming will be testimony to them. No doubt I will keep you posted about development on the sub-continent. However, it wasn’t all doom and gloom over the Christmas holiday - there was some sporting consolation in the fact that Arsenal remained top of the league in 2013 and in 2014 and that Yeovil Town (and not Manchester Utd) have made it through to the 4th round of the FA Cup!

We started back this week (have we really been back only a week?!) on a cold and wet Monday morning (thankfully we had repaired the roof before the onset of the storms so the new Deputy Head did not walk into a flooded study!) with renewed vigour and enthusiasm ready for the challenges of this Lent term. We welcome the following members of staff to Sexey’s - Miss Breeshey Harkin, who joined the Science Department (Miss Harkin is a Biology specialist) and will be with us until Mrs McCarthy’s returns from maternity leave later this term; Mrs Elena Buchanan who joined the MFL department and will teach Spanish and French and Mr Paul Reddick the new Deputy Head –Teaching & Learning, who is a Historian with a keen eye for detail and policy.

Intellectual risk-taking and the detrimental effects of ‘mollycoddling’, was the topic of this week’s assembly to the Sixth Form. They are currently preparing for their Mocks in February and Mr Reddick spoke to them during the assembly about his philosophy on teaching and learning . With the absence of January modules under the current educational reforms, there is more continuity and time devoted to teaching which will hopefully ensure that the students are well prepared to achieve their university offers this summer. Similarly, the Y11 pupils are now embarking on their individual GCSE campaigns in preparation for this summer and hopefully have been using the holiday to take on board the advice given to them by colleagues in light of their Mock performances back in November. You will be able to download their reports this afternoon from Moodle and they are also being posted and we look forward to seeing you at the Y11 Parents’ Meeting which will be taking placenext Friday (17th January) at 4.15pm across the estate.

The Lent term is packed (I wouldn’t have it any other way!) with plenty of activities in and around school – from sport, drama, music, art, charity fund raising, lectures and Open mornings. For a list of this season’s sporting fixtures (Football and Netball) please do check the website which is easily accessed through the school’s website – go to Extra Curricular along the top navigation menu and click on Sport in the drop down menu. Fixtures start in earnest next week and if you can come down for the Home matches it would be wonderful to see you and share post match tea with you. The music and drama department are busy rehearsing for the School musical production ‘Putnam County Spelling Bee’ which takes place on the evenings of Wednesday 5th to Friday 7th of February (we were given a sneak preview at the Christmas Concert and it looks incredibly entertaining) while the Boarding Open Morning takes place the morning after on Saturday 8th February.  

The PSA Quiz Night last term was a resounding success and I thank you for supporting it – there were a record number of parents, staff and friends of the School in attendance and it is great to see the community coming together to enjoy such an occasion.  I still refute the claims that it was a fix - the Head Master’s team won the Quiz fair and square. The PSA are organising a Spring Dinner and Dance this term on the 1st of March and it looks to be another glorious occasion for the school community – do get your tickets quickly (details are on the website) as I expect these will sell out pretty quick – something to look forward to after Christmas!

With regards Charity Fundraising, I have been impressed at the way the school supports such endeavours and the event this term is equally as impressive. The school will be supporting a 24 hour cyclathon in aid of the Children’s Liver Disease Foundation and the event ‘Big Yellow Friday’ will be taking placeon Friday 7th and Saturday 8th of Marchwhere the Bishop of Taunton will be also present. Please do read the flyer attached for more information and if you could support the event in whatever capacity it would be much appreciated. I hear that the 3am slot may still be available…

The new term is already in full swing and it proves to be an exciting one – England are doing well in the First Test of the Women’s Ashes in Perth, Australia.


Irfan H Latif JP
Head Master

Dates for the Diary:

Friday 17th January – Year 11 Parents’ Meeting
5th – 7th February – School Production ‘Putman County Spelling Bee’
Saturday 8th February – Bruton Spiral of Light
Saturday 1st March – PSA Spring Dance
Friday 7th March – Big Yellow Friday
Friday 7th March – Year 9 Parents’ Meeting
Friday 14th March – Inset Day – All Staff In
Friday 4th April, 3.40pm – Monday 21st April – Easter Holiday
Tuesday 22nd April – Inset Day – All Staff In
Tuesday 22nd April, 6.00pm onwards – boarders return all houses
Friday 2nd May, 3.40pm – Monday 5th May, 6.00pm – Quarter Term (Monday 5th May – Bank Holiday)
Friday 23rd May – Sports Day
Friday 27th June – Inset Day
Monday 30th June – Inset Day
Friday 18th July, 3.40pm – End of Term

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