About MGS

Welcome to the MGS Headmaster's Blog.

Tuesday, 20 March 2018

20 March 2018

A huge thank you to the Parents' Association, the sixth form students and the students from Years 7 and 8 who all helped to support the MGSPA Spring Fair on Saturday.  Despite the extreme weather over the weekend the event went ahead and ended up being very successful.  Thank you to the many families who braved the cold temperatures and spent a few hours enjoying the many stalls on offer. 
This week is a busy one for the school.  Tonight we welcome the parents of Year 11 to attend the Year 11 Parents' Evening: a chance to hear from subject staff how the students are performing and what final preparations need to be made before the summer examinations.
On Thursday the Sport Relief 24 Hour Rowathon begins which has now attracted over 60 students, members of staff and Old Maidstonians wishing to play their part.  Thank you to everyone who has offered to row during the day, and thank you to the many of you who have already sponsored the event.  It you would like to show your support then please visit http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/MGS24HourRowathon  and follow the instructions.
And Friday is the Sport Relief Charity Day where we will see the completion of the rowathon but also see many more students take part in the Sport Relief Mile at lunchtime.  Non-uniform accompanied by the usual contribution of £1 will take place, but it is hoped that much more money can be raised during the day when students cheer on their peers in both sporting events.  
Also on Friday the Old Maidstonian Supper takes place in the evening.  A number of former students of the school will return to their old school to reminisce and catch up with old friends.  It always proves to be a wonderful occasion.
And finally, good luck to the rugby players from Year 10 to 13 who are playing in the Rosslyn Park National Sevens Tournament this week.  The Rosslyn Park Tournament is extremely prestigious which will hopefully encourage the players to step up and raise their game.


Tuesday, 13 March 2018

Tuesday 13 March 2018

The CCF Army section entered a team of eight cadets in the 11 Infantry Brigade military skills competition over the weekend 9-11th March.  Each of the 13 stands tested a different area of the cadet syllabus; weapon handling, military knowledge, first aid, obstacle course, map reading, shooting and section attacks. Weather conditions were challenging and the fog, heavy rain and mud added an extra dimension to the competition. The section finished 5th overall, against teams from the ACF and CCF from all over the South East of England. The team now has six weeks to prepare itself for the Cadet Cambrian Patrol, the ultimate Army cadet competition taking place in the Brecon Beacons.
Yesterday I was out of school as I was renewing my emergency first aid qualification.  Every three years I refresh my first aid skills to ensure I have the basic elements just in case I need to attend to an emergency.  I am now good for another three years.
Tonight after school I am leading a presentation to all staff looking at what we have achieved this year, what we still need to do, and what we wish to aspire to achieve over the next few years.  We have achieved a lot already, but there is still work to be done to ensure that all of our students reach their potential.  Tomorrow after school I will be making a very similar presentation to governors at the postponed Full Governors Meeting.
On Friday the entire Senior Leadership Team are away from school to give us time to discuss what our priorities are for the rest of the year and beyond.  These 'away days' are really helpful as they provide undisturbed opportunities to discuss a number of matters.
Saturday the Parents' Association Spring Fair takes place.  It starts at 10.30am and there will be many fair-style stalls to enjoy, music and art, refreshments, raffle draw and much draw.  If you have a few hours on Saturday please do come along.  Thank you to everyone who supported the non-uniform day last Friday which generated many items to the Fair.  It also raised over £800 for the Association, which will ultimately be directed back to school in support of a project.
Congratulations to Sam Ghinn of Barton House who competed in the British Gymnastics Competition at the weekend. won the bronze medal for Floor, was 4th on pommel (missing a medal position by 0.75) and came 7th overall in the U16 age group. Well done Sam.
 And finally, please remember to sponsor the 24 Hour Rowathon which is taking place from next Thursday 22 March for Sport Relief.  Many students and staff and already signed up to do their bit, and thank you to those who have offered to make some food for the rowers.  If you would like to sponsor the rowathon please visit:

Tuesday, 6 March 2018

Tuesday 6 March 2018

It is good to be back to normality.  Last week's disruption due to the bad weather is fortunately rare, but when it happens, it causes problems.  As well as students missing lessons a number of events and meetings had to be cancelled and now need to be rescheduled.  Sadly lessons cannot be rescheduled, so I hope students were able to do what they could at home.  Thank you for your understanding during last week, and thank you to the many who made it in on Thursday.  I also again wish to thank the members of staff who helped clear the school site on Wednesday to allow us to open.


Sadly the weather did not improve enough to allow yesterday's CCF Biennial Inspection to take place.  60 cadets accompanied by members of staff and volunteers were due to take part providing an opportunity for our cadets to demonstrate to the inspecting officer how proud we are of our CCF.  We hope to reschedule. 


Thursday we invite parents of year 13 students into school to attend the Year 13 Parents' Evening.  It is the last opportunity parents will hear out their child's progress before final preparations are made for the summer examinations.  A busy few months ahead.


And on Friday the rescheduled Parents' Association Non-Uniform Day takes place to raise funds and generate items to support the MGS PA Spring Fair on Saturday 17 March.  Please do refer to a previous ParentMail to understand how you can support.

Tuesday, 27 February 2018

Tuesday 27 February 2018

Last week I had the pleasure in interviewing six very strong candidates for the positions of School Captain and School Vice-Captain.  The decision to find the two successful students was the hardest yet, but I am pleased to announce that Henry Warby and Daniel Little will be the next School Captain and School Vice-Captain respectively.  Congratulations to the two of them, and well done to the other four who can still be extremely proud of themselves. 

Following last week's search to find the next School Captain and School Vice-Captain, this week we launch the process to appoint the new house captains and house vice-captains.  Students across the entire Year 12 will be invited to apply, and the final outcome will be announced near the end of the term. At that point we will then know next year's Student Leadership Team.  Good luck to those who apply.

This week senior members of staff continue meeting with students from Year 11 to discuss their thoughts for next year and progress to date.  By the end of the week, all students in the year will have been seen. 

Tonight I was due to attend the February Full Governing Body meeting to discuss a number of matters including how the school has continued to develop at the half way point through the year.  Due to the weather that meeting will now be rescheduled.  At the next meeting I will also be sharing how I see the school evolving over the next several years, setting out our ambitions and aspirations for current and future Maidstonians.

On Thursday I am attending an Old Maidstonian Society event in London where former students of the school will be gathering together to reminisce and remember fondly their time at MGS.  The concept of a London event began last year, and it is hoped that the one this week will be just as successful.

Tuesday, 20 February 2018

20 February 2018

Welcome back to school and to Term 4.  I hope those who were able to have a week away enjoyed the break.  I particularly would like to welcome back the students and staff who went on this year's ski trip to Italy.  I hope the snow was good and that there were very few injuries.


We come back to school with many students beginning the final push towards their summer examinations.  Many subjects finish teaching during the next few weeks and begin the all-important revision.  Coursework deadlines are also just around the corner with many students completing essential work that contributes towards the final grade.  Keep your heads down everyone and continue working hard.


This week is a very busy and important one for me as it is the time when I appoint the next School Captain and School Vice-Captain.  Yesterday and today six students from Year 12 are going through a rigorous interview process to decide the outcome.  Following these two days I will then appoint the successful candidates later in the week.  It will be once again a pleasure inviting those students to take on the roles.  I look forward to seeing what happens.


Beginning this week every student in Year 11 has an interview with a senior member of staff to discuss their plans for next year and how they are progressing this year.  These interviews help to focus the students’ minds during the last few of months before the examinations in May.


Over half term I had my final thoughts to how I see the school developing over the next 5 to 10 years which I presented at an Extended Leadership Team meeting last night.  Following this I will then present my vision to the governors and staffing body at meetings later this term and to parents and students later in the year.

Tuesday, 6 February 2018

Tuesday 6 February 2018

Firstly can I thank once again everyone who came along to support Friday night’s Parents’ Association Quiz.  It was very well attended with the winning team achieving 280 points out of a possible 300.  Thank you again to Mrs Birrell, the Parents’ Association and all of the students who helped make the evening run smoothly. 

Congratulations to College House, led by Ms Kruppa, for a successful House Charity Day on Friday.  Over £2000 was raised, every College form was involved and a number of students and members of staff dressed up following the animated character theme.  Well done all.

The MGS team of 14 RAF Cadets took part in the Royal Air Squadron Trophy South East Finals on Sunday. They came second overall. This means they will represent MGS and the SE region at the National Finals in about a month’s time. All 14 cadets have worked hard over the last six months to prepare for this event. They were, as always, excellent ambassadors of the school.

Over the weekend senior staff enjoyed reading the 27 application letters from the 27 students who have this year applied to be School Captain.  This time of year we search for the next School Captain and School Vice-Captain, and Friday was the deadline for students to apply.  This week we shortlist the 27 candidates to a few; they will then be interviewed the week following half term.

Tomorrow we welcome parents of Year 8 students who will be attending the Year 8 Parents’ Evening.  This parents’ evening is crucial as it is the last point parents understand how their sons are doing until the boys make their final decisions in what GCSE subjects to study next year. We hope the evening is an informative and positive one.

One trip goes out over half term, on Saturday a group of 40+ Year 8, 9 and 10 students travel also to France to spend the week skiing.  Thank you very much to the members of staff who are accompanying the students.  

Tuesday, 30 January 2018

Tuesday 30 January 2018

Firstly I would like to thank Mr Ferguson, the deputy head, who wrote my Headmaster's Blog in my absence last week.  On Thursday 18 January, just three days before the Year 12 Harvard trip was due to leave, Mr Gymer had to pull out as he was too ill to travel.  He was extremely disappointed as he had worked incredibly hard for months planning the trip and supporting the 24 students prepare for its rigour.  I instead stepped in at the last minute and so was out of school last week, but did keep in regular contact with the Senior Leadership a Team ensuring that things were well at MGS. 
Despite the last minute preparations that I needed to make, I am so pleased I went.  It was such a pleasure spending the week with the students.  The Harvard trip has been part of this school for over 10 years, but it wasn't until last week that I really appreciated what went on.  Seeing Maidstonians debate numerous in depth and complicated issues on a global scale with delegates representing over 50 countries was humbling.  I had complete respect for all of them, sometimes wishing that I had had a similar opportunity when I was at school.  I wish to thank all 24 students, as well as Ms Mason and Mrs Van Mol for making the week one in which I will never forget.  It has taught me a lot and encouraged me to think differently about the work that I do and the role that I undertake.  Thank you.

Now I am back in school, the job of leading MGS continues.  Last night I chaired an SLT meeting that considered the feedback the school received following Tony Smith's visit two weeks ago.  His report highlighted a number of things that we could now consider and so action will now be taken to address them.

Tomorrow the MGS Development Fund welcomes donors and supporters to an event in the evening to say thank you.  The school has started building the new pavilion and the Development Fund has now reached a point that can support it.  The evening will consist of a few speeches from key people involved in the project, but mainly provide an opportunity for supporters to engage with each other and meet those involved.

And on Friday, the annual MGS Parents' Association Quiz Night takes place.  This year the quiz has the theme, 'The 100 Years Quiz', and already a number of teams have registered their interest.  If you are interested and can get a team together then please do contact the school before Friday.  The quiz starts at 7.30pm.  See you there.

And finally, congratulations to Lewis King of Tonbridge House who has made the reduced squad for the England Roller Hockey Team following successful training sessions all season.  Well done Lewis.