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Tuesday, 13 December 2016

13 December 2016

Welcome to the last blog of 2016.  We have finally reached the last week of term! 
Firstly I would like to say thank you to everyone who donated a gift to our annual Salvation Army Christmas Present Collection; the response from you all has been overwhelming.  All of the presents were placed under our Christmas tree yesterday and then taken along to the charity’s depot before being distributed to hundreds of children for Christmas.  A photograph of what you have all donated will be posted in our newsletter, which will be going out at the end of the week.
This week there are a number of events that acknowledge the end of term and the up-and-coming festive period.  Today is Christmas lunch day.  A large number of the School come together to tuck into a plate full of delights prepared by Independent Catering.  On Wednesday the School Carol Service takes place at 7.30pm in All Saint’s Church where many from the wider school community congregate together to hear the traditional nine lessons and carols.  If you are able to please do come along.  And on Friday we are acknowledging the Save the Children Christmas Jumper Day.  Students and staff will be allowed to wear their Christmas jumpers with their uniform and offer a donation to support the charity.  I am sure some of the jumpers will have flashing lights!
2016 has been a very busy year, and I wish to thank everyone who has contributed in any way to the workings of MGS.  Your help and support for the School is very much appreciated.
Have a wonderful Christmas and New Year, and we’ll see each other again on Tuesday 3rd January, 2017.

Wednesday, 7 December 2016

6 December 2016

I thoroughly enjoyed watching the final performance of this year's School Production on Saturday evening.  Over 50 students across all seven year groups and about 10 members of staff were all involved in the classic tale of Zorro.  It was a lively mix of South American colours, costumes and music with many moments of comedy brilliance.  The confession scene was genius!  Well done to the entire cast and crew, and thank you all for giving an incredible amount of commitment for the last three months. 

This production is followed tonight by the GCSE Drama Showcase.  Year 10 and 11 students are showcasing their work to an audience at 5.30pm in Room 60.  I look forward to another evening of entertainment.

Tomorrow night we welcome parents of Year 12 who will be attending the Year 12 Parents' Evening.  It is the first opportunity for Year 12 and their parents to hear how they are progressing with their A-Level studies.  We have high hopes for the year group, so let us hope the evening is a positive one.

Thursday night is the Parent's Association Christmas Fair and Pamper Evening.  This year is the third time this event has run, and if last year is anything to go by, this year's event will be well-attended.  There will be a number of different stalls selling a variety of Christmas goodies and stocking filler ideas, plus an opportunity to relax and be pampered.  Do come along.  It starts at 6pm and is £3 to enter.

Friday is the second House Charity Day of the year.  Endeavour and invincible lead this, and as it is the charity day nearest Christmas we ask students and staff to also bring in a food item that gets donated to a charity supporting the homeless.  The day will include the usual opportunity for students to come to school not in uniform in exchange for £1, plus enjoy a number of events during break and lunch.  Remember also we are collecting toys and gifts for The Salvation Army to pass to children less fortunate than ourselves.  If you can support this your offers of help will be very much appreciated.

And finally this Friday and Saturday are two big days in the rugby calendar: they are the days we play The Judd School.  It is always a hotly contested weekend, so I wish all the players the best of luck. 

Thursday, 1 December 2016

29 November 2016

On Saturday morning I enjoyed a very tense hour watching the 1st XV rugby squad play St Olaves.  The players played with tremendous passion and pride and ended the tense hour winning 8 - 7.  St Olaves were leading 7 - 5 at half time, and after securing a penalty in the first 10 minutes of the second half we then protected a one point lead for the rest of the game.  In the last minute it looked as though St Olaves were going to win with a very late try, but fortunately for us they did not ground the ball.  A good morning's entertainment.  Well done gents.

Yesterday and today I have been joined by governors, staff and students in finding a new Deputy Head for the School.  The days are incredibly demanding for everyone but also a pleasure to meet people who wish to make a positive impact at MGS.  It is hoped that we are in a position this afternoon to make an appointment.  Thank you to everyone involved.

This week, starting from tomorrow, we will all be enjoying four nights of Zorro, this year's school production.  Students and staff have worked tirelessly over the past three months preparing for this week.  I am sure a number of us remember the black and white TV series, and those much younger will have seen the Antonio Banderas films.  We look forward to seeing this iconic character on the MGS stage.  Good luck to the cast and crew, and thank you to all of you involved.  The show is on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday this week starting at 7.30pm.  Do come along.

On Friday afternoon I am meeting Mrs Stanley, Headmistress of Maidstone Girls Grammar School, for our monthly catch up.  It is a chance for the two of us to chew the fat over a cup of tea, share ideas and look at how the two schools can continue to support each other.

And finally, congratulations to eight boys who took part in the Literature Quiz Competition at East Tilbury Library last week. The boys settled well in the crowded venue and battled to find the answers to wide ranging questions related to fiction and non-fiction books, comics, poems and author biography.  The boys worked exceptionally well together demonstrating their wide reading and recall of detail. Both teams were a credit to MGS and the results were really exciting. We achieved joint first place, but with only one team able to progress to the National Final and the opportunity to travel to Canada for the World Finals.  Well done to James Tyler, George Bacon, Toby Hardy and Henry Noble all from 7 Challenger; Sam Butler, Ben Collins and Andrew Betha of 8 Endeavour; and Bailey Hearn of 8Challenger.