|Lent Term 2021
Letter from the Headmistress
Words of Encouragement,
Feedback and Working Together, Logistics, the Office, the Bursar,
Houseparents, Unpack and Good-Bye, Chapel, Exeats and Half Term,
Parking, Gate Protocol, Trunks, Transport, Accommodation, the Martlet, Closed Weekend, Dentist, Phones, Please Do Keep Asking for Help.
See you on Monday!
Letter No 2 already!
Now that the time has come I know that the feeling of excitement about going back to school will be replaced by feelings of trepidation and just feeling scared of the unknown.
We all feel the same way and these are indeed uncharted waters. However, this step must be taken and we need to have faith that between us we can adapt and react and keep each and every member of our school community safe and healthy throughout the coming days, weeks and months.
As many of you may know, we always meet as a team each morning to share feedback from the day before and plan for the coming set of lessons and activities. This is an ideal time for us to work together and share each piece of information so that no stone is left unturned in our efforts to take the best path in the coming days.
Please do have a look at Charlie Mackesy’s drawing below and take heart that you are not alone. We all feel the same way…..
I think most families are now ready to come back to school on Monday. Many of you have made arrangements to come and unpack trunks somewhat earlier over the weekend and this is of course very sensible and will make everything a bit less busy and congested for everyone when we come to Monday.
We have staggered arrival times.
Seniors between 2.30 - 3.30 pm,
Middles between 3 - 4pm
Juniors from 3.30 -4.30 pm.
Of course many families have siblings so please just pick a time that suits you best.
The Martlet Cafe
The Martlet will be the point of contact for Katrina and Terry and everything to do with the office. They will be based at the cafe to help guide you with paperwork and help you with any queries. It is here that you need to kindly sign or hand in your completed Covid 19 self declaration form
Chantal will be based under the umbrella outside the offices. Please do be kind and make arrangements to pay your fees promptly.
Please plan to park down in the parking area by the games fields.
We will have members of our support team ready to help carry the children’s trunks and other belongings up to the Houses.
Please be Prepared
Please could you all be mindful of wearing your masks and respecting the guidelines to socially distance. If you do have a temperature of 37.5 or above you will not be permitted to enter the school. We will all be asked to wash or sanitise our hands as we enter the school gate.
We will be returning to school with our Covid protocol in orange. This means we all need to wear masks until a member of staff tells the children that they may be dropped if we are outside, or if the children are sitting quietly on their beds or are working at their desks in class.
The Martlet will have refreshments and take away options for those of you who wish to drop and leave quickly and be as careful as possible. For others there will be the opportunity to mingle and catch up with friends but at the cafe or on the playing fields, in the open air and with plenty of space.
The Head’s Hub is on standby as our isolation centre but there are B & Bs in Gilgil and other lodges in the vicinity (please do contact Katrina for numbers) and of course we have the forestry and the opportunity to camp. The washrooms will be all ready with hot water and firewood for your campfire so please do remember this if it might help in the coming few days or indeed at any time over the course of the coming months.
School & Protocols
Please keep the number of family members accompanying your son or daughter to dorms to a minimum - I think Mum or Dad is best or it may fall to Granny or an Auntie but one person only in dorms will work best for us all.
Chapel will be at 6pm and it will be outside on Pre’s Lawn. Unlike our usual Chapel services we are not inviting parents to join us. To begin with we need to be as careful as possible, so once you have unpacked your child’s trunk and put everything in order it is time to say good-bye and head home.
Please do take the number of your child’s Houseparent so you can check up that all is well once you get home. Whatever the scenario, sending your child off to boarding school is always quite an emotional time. Remember we all know how you feel and would like to help in whatever way we can. Texts and Whatsapps are often easier than phone calls especially on that first night, so please do not hesitate to reach out.
Exeat & Half Term
We will have a trip over exeat for any children that cannot make it home. At half term too we will make a plan to take care of any children that for one reason or another cannot return to you or stay with a friend. Please do get in touch nice and early if you know that you will be in need of our support at these times.
Some of you may need help with transport. At present we have no buses arranged because all our families have made their own arrangements for returning to school on Monday. However, should you need help please do get in touch and we can make whatever arrangements might be best.
The First Break
The first exeat begins on Friday 29th January starting at 8 am. If you would like to collect your child after lessons and activities on Thursday late afternoon you may. The children should return to school by 10 am on Monday 1st February. The timings of this break are to help you travel when congestion on our roads is at its least. There will be an exeat trip led by Ms D for those children who would like to stay at school or who cannot make it home for some reason.
We ask you kindly to liaise with the Houseparents and Tutors for the first two weeks to give your children the opportunity to settle in to school and make new friends without the very real worries of phone connectivity, recharging and topping up credit not to mention actually getting through to you! Special arrangements can always be made with the Houseparents but we have found that this plan works very well and really helps the children find their feet quickly unfettered by worries about trying to get through to you at home.
The first weekend is a closed weekend and so all our children are expected to stay in and those younger children who usually go home each night are encouraged to join us all at school for Saturday and Sunday. This weekend is a very busy time with lots of activities on offer as well as auditions for the senior school play. The Year 8s will also be working hard on their Geography Fieldwork Project which is part of their CE exam.
We are aware that many of you may well have struggled to visit the dentist with your children over the course of the past 10 months or so. Our usual dentists from the Regency Dental Practice in Karen will be with us on this closed weekend for check ups and to make the more individualised mouthguards for your children if you so wish. Please do let Purity know should you like to book your child in for a consultation. I know Purity will be in touch to remind you and prepare the booking list.
I think that is quite enough for now!
Please do remember to get in touch if I can help in any way whatsoever.
I cannot tell you just how excited we are at school at the thought of seeing you on Monday. Have a safe journey to school and we will all do our very best to look after you as and when you arrive.
With very best wishes,