Head’s Round Up: Friday 15 May 2020
The VE Day celebrations last Friday were unusual and, yet, it was somehow appropriate that we were celebrating in the context of our own currently constricted lives, whilst thinking of those who worked so hard to ensure our freedom. I do hope you saw the moving video produced by the Drama department, which can still be viewed on Prior’s Field TV. We will all retain vivid memories of how we honoured the anniversary, in lockdown. I know many will have been refreshed and relieved to enjoy some much-needed increased human contact, albeit at a distance.
We awaited with some anticipation the Prime Minister’s address on Sunday, although we already knew much of its substance. For Prior’s Field and other secondary schools, no firm plans were announced. This is, of course, an ever-changing picture and we will keep the school community up to date with any news.
The Fifth Form and Upper Sixth began their transition courses this week and the girls have really grabbed these opportunities to explore their subjects even further. These courses have been designed by the teaching staff to prepare the girls for their studies or career after this year and they have proven to be one of the few benefits to emerge from the cancellation of examinations. With courses ranging from Criminology and Business to Ancient Greek and Mindfulness, there is something to challenge and engage everyone and we look forward to seeing how the girls progress.
I had the pleasure on Tuesday of joining the Upper Sixth Religious Studies group in a discussion about religion lead by Hazel M: Do we sit on the fence too much when deciding how we feel about religion? – a seemingly simple question which triggered a huge amount of impressively mature debate. Next week, Isabel P will be preparing and leading a discussion on Feminism and Religion; as a Religious Studies teacher with definite feminist interests, I can see where this topic might lead and will be fascinated to hear the girls’ thoughts.
Next week we are holding our first ever virtual Meet the Head. Thank you to the PF Peers who have produced some wonderful videos introducing themselves to our new girls; you have given us some very useful soundbites.
We have completed the process for selecting the new Senior Prefect Leadership Team and I was able to make an announcement in the Lower Sixth Assembly today. I look forward to introducing the team to the whole school next week and to having my first ‘SPLaT’ meeting with them.
The Summer Term normally begins with the school grounds being full of exhibits by artists taking part in AppArt and continues later in the term with the GSCE and A Level Art Exhibitions. It is therefore lovely to be able to celebrate this week some of the girls’ artistic creations, produced for the House Art club run by Miss Thorpe. You can see a PowerPoint of some of the entries on the Wall of Happiness and Achieving. Congratulations to Pankhurst on your win!
This week’s ‘Club of the Week’ has been Business and Enterprise. Please feel free to join in with any of the activities suggested by Mrs Lutwyche and Mrs Taylor. Next week, Ms Treanor is running a whole school Eco club which, I am sure, will prompt some incredible ideas and contributions. It will be interesting to see if the increased appreciation of our natural environment prompted by the current crisis will continue in the months and years beyond and if we are all motivated to become ‘greener’ in the future.
The continuum of the school community’s kindness and thoughtfulness has not missed a beat this week. Maisie A ran a marathon last weekend to raise funds for the NHS – one mile each hour, running on a treadmill through the night to complete the target she has set herself. What an amazing demonstration of commitment and resilience! Lara T is raising funds for Save the Children, one of the many charities who have lost valuable donations due to COVID-19; she is either running 2.6 miles or rowing 2.6 km every day for 26 days. If you would like to support Lara, do visit her fundraising page. Emma W in the First Form is raising money for the NHS by selling and delivering eggs from her chickens. Mrs Hodson, our Textiles Technician, has been producing large quantities of PPE for the NHS. Well done to everyone giving their time and energy to support others.
On a more local level, Kariella K has been packaging and delivering dog treats around her village, a kind gesture appreciated particularly by the elderly in the community who are unable to be out and about. Matilda D has invested much time and effort in making a special birthday present for a friend.
One of the huge positives of the situation in which we currently find ourselves is a rediscovery of the fundamental goodness of other people. It puts me in mind of the Buddhist concept of loving kindness, which is primarily concerned with the genuine happiness of others. I am so proud of the girls and staff whose enthusiasm to do things for others seems to be carry on, undimmed by the length of the lockdown.
“Never get tired of doing little things for others. Sometimes, those little things occupy the biggest part of their hearts.” (Unknown)
With best wishes