End of Term Blog

Dear Parents,

I would like to start my end of year letter by thanking all of the pupils, parents and staff for their excellent support for the school throughout the year. Huddersfield Grammar School is clearly making significant progress in a number of areas and the collective efforts and support of all members of the school community has been outstanding and greatly appreciated.

The Summer Term has witnessed some spectacular achievements, successes and events. It would be wrong of me to single out any one event. However, a glance through the Summer Term edition of the HGS Review when it is received in a few weeks will demonstrate the wealth of talent and opportunities on show this term.

As ever, the school must continue to look forwards. The exciting building developments are scheduled for near completion during the holidays and the appearance of the school is set to be transformed.  Huddersfield Grammar School will certainly be taking on a new look in the Autumn Term. Our Pre-Prep pupils will start in September in the new St David’s Building which will also provide a base for Food Technology and Senior School Art. Senior School English and Modern Languages will be temporarily located in the portacabins until the completion of the second floor scheduled for the third week of September. The Prep School will move into the re-furbished Waverley Building at the start of the year and there will be a new Library and Mathematics Classroom in the Royds Mount Building. The Argyle Building will house a Dance/Drama Studio when the A1 computers move into the new building and a new Biology Lab in the Senior School will match the works already completed for Chemistry.  Parents will have an early opportunity to experience all of the new developments when invited to view the school “At Work in our New Surroundings” on the morning of 26th September, to coincide with the MacMillan Coffee Morning Appeal.

The academic work will certainly start earlier next year as we adopt our new timetable to maximise academic learning by beginning period 1 at 8.45am. Our younger pupils will even have the opportunity to “Wake Up and Shake Up” with activity sessions in the Sports Hall from 8.15am on specific days each week. The movement of pastoral time to the end of the school day throughout the school will not only allow the form tutor to check that all pupils have the required homework and equipment, but will also reduce disruption to academic learning caused by early departures for sporting or musical events, whilst ensuring that we make the best use of the optimum learning time at the start of the day. We do believe that the emphasis on literacy and numeracy at the start of the day will enhance pupil progress throughout the Prep and Pre-Prep Schools.

School uniform and personal appearance remain important at Huddersfield Grammar School. In September, all boys are expected to attend in blazers and ties. As previously announced, boys will be wearing a white shirt with school logo for all ages throughout the year. Girls in the Senior School will now be permitted to wear their hair down and to wear stud earrings, it is expected that all students will conform to the guidelines and adhere to our expectations. Winter uniform remains optional for girls until half-term. I am delighted that Bridge School Wear will become our new uniform suppliers and will be able to provide our school uniforms for September at short notice.  I ask that parents show understanding that orders for uniforms will be completed for the start of the new academic year.

The end of the Summer Term usually brings notice of staff departures. I am delighted that there are no members of the teaching staff departing this year. I am equally delighted that we have been able to move Mr Renshaw into the Prep School from September as Mrs Ward will depart on maternity leave at October half-term. I am also pleased that we have persuaded Mr Naylor to join our Pre-Prep staff team and to take charge of both a Reception Class and Pre-Prep PE and Games. In September we welcome Mrs Amanda Richards to join our staff as Head of Food Technology and I am sure that Cookery Clubs will become even more popular throughout the school. I am also pleased that we have appointed Mr James Bullock as Director of Performing Arts to be supported by Miss Natalie Haigh in her new role as Head of Drama. Mrs Anne-Marie Dunn and Mrs Samantha Jackson also join our staff team as Teaching Assistants within the Prep School.

The calendar of school events for the Autumn Term will be sent home at the very start of the new academic year and this once again provides a wide range of educational experiences and opportunities that I hope will appeal to all. The calendar includes a number of significant events as we celebrate the opening of our new buildings. I do hope that many parents will be able to join us for cookery lessons of their own when TV chef, Brian Turner, comes to officially open the new building on 4th October. We will also receive a visit from Jason McCartney MP who will bury a special time capsule to mark the new school developments. I am also delighted that ITN Newsreader Nina Hossain has agreed to be Guest of Honour at the Senior School Prize Evening to be held at the Town Hall on Monday 13th October.

I am pleased to announce that the Head Boy and Head Girl for the next academic year will be Sam Phillips and Lorscyon Frampton-Clarke. I would also like to congratulate James Leslie and Hannah Gilkar on their selection as Head Boy and Head Girl in the Prep School.

I anticipate reporting on the GCSE Examination results in August and I am delighted that all of our Year 11 students have received offers from their number one choice for Sixth Form College. We wish them every success as they eagerly await the day when they can open their envelope and view the results of their efforts at the school.

Parents will shortly receive copies of the HGS Review for the Summer Term; the details of the Out of School Club and Holiday Club for October; the School Bus Service information; Peripatetic Music and Drama information; booking forms for Dance and Judo Clubs; and, of course, the school fees.

I wish you all a very happy summer holiday,

Tim Hoyle

Headmaster

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