Start of the Second Half Term October 2016 Blog

Dear Parents,

We welcome the children back from half-term to another busy period of school life at HGS. Please note that winter uniform is now compulsory for all children. The first half-term concluded with some notable successes and events. The Senior School Prize Night at The Town Hall with George Sampson as our special guest proved to be a memorable celebration of achievement at the school.  Student representatives from the school journeyed to the Royal Albert Hall to collect the National Music for Youth Award in recognising the quality of our All Aloud Choir and our swimmers will now competing at the Olympics Aquatics Centre in London for both the English Schools Relay Finals and the Independent Schools Association National Swimming Finals.

I am also delighted that we made such excellent use of the two week break to have student groups visiting Iceland for a Geography Field Trip; travelling to France for a Modern Foreign Languages Trip; and watching a live Shakespearian Performance at The Globe Theatre, London.  The school has formed a Spanish Exchange Partnership with El Limonar School, a Cognita school based near Murcia, providing a wonderful opportunity for our Year 10 and Year 9 students to develop their language skills and to experience Spanish culture and life. Having visited the school personally, I know that this will offer a very enjoyable and beneficial experience and I strongly recommend that all of our GCSE Spanish students consider this carefully.

Returning to school, we now have pedestrian gates at both entrances to the school site. Children using these gates will not enter via the car park area and we would recommend that Senior and Prep School children use these entrances to avoid parents needing to bring their car into the car park. The safety of the children will be further enhanced with the coming introduction of a lollipop crossing outside of the school. Please can we reiterate our plea for all parents to show courtesy and understanding for our neighbours when parking in the streets surrounding the school.

The Parent Voice and Parent Forum sessions have always played a key role in shaping our School Improvement Plan for each school year and we greatly value your thoughts and comments. Cognita will be launching the latest online survey on Tuesday 1st November and we do hope that parents will take the time to complete this.

The Senior School Homework Club has proved to be an extremely popular addition to the extra-curricular programme and was a direct result of parental comments on the Voice of the Parent survey. A number of comments also suggested the need to ensure that all children are fully aware of the appropriate and effective methods to assist them with their revision. We are inviting all parents to join us for a ‘Sticky Studies’ session with renowned revision expert David Thomas on Tuesday 1st November at 6pm in the Performance Studio.

The school will again be supporting the British Legion Poppy Appeal. Poppies will be on sale at the start of the half-term and we would hope that all children will support the British Legion in their annual campaign.

I do hope that all members of the school community will join us for our special events this term. The Fireworks Night is always very impressive and takes place at 7pm on Friday 4th November. The gates and school café in the dining room are open from 6pm and tickets are available from the school office. Our popular Christmas ‘Stay and Play’ event takes place on Saturday 3rd December from 9.30am to 11.30am for children aged 2 to 7 years. Christmas on the Courtyard takes place on Thursday 1st December and we do hope that you will be able to join us for what is always a special evening on the festive calendar. The concert will take place in the courtyard at 4.30pm and there will again be the opportunity to enjoy family skating on the ice-rink and to purchase seasonal items from the Christmas Market. Please note that the ‘Fat Chilli’ Christmas card orders for children that have designed their own Christmas card are to be received at school by 11th November in order to ensure Christmas delivery.

I trust that this will prove to be another productive and enjoyable half-term for all at HGS. Please note that we will revert to closing at lunchtime on the final day of term, Friday 16th December.

Best Wishes,


Tim Hoyle


Tim Hoyle

01484 424549