Tuesday, 15 December 2015
Tuesday, 8 December 2015
Tuesday, 1 December 2015
After a couple of relatively quiet weeks the next three leading up to the end of term are busy ones. This week there are three events in which parents are invited to come into school. Parents of Year 12 students on Wednesday attend their child’s Parents' Consultation Evening and on Friday they attend the GCSE Presentation Afternoon, a formal occasion where we present Year 12 with their GCSE Certificates and acknowledge the year group's academic achievements. In between those two events, on Thursday all parents are invited into school for the Parents' Association Christmas Fayre and Pamper Evening; an opportunity to pick up some Christmas gifts and be pampered in the process. We look forward to seeing many of you there.In the week beginning Monday 7 December, the main event is the School Production: Return To The Forbidden Planet, being put on over four days from Wednesday 9th to Saturday 12th. Tickets are now available from the School Bursary. The show starts at 7.30pm each night. On Wednesday 16 December, in the final week of the term, the School Carol Service takes place at All Saints Church, Maidstone at 7.30pm. This particular event always hopes to provide an opportunity for the whole school community to come together, including many Old Maidstonians, some who are returning home for Christmas from university.
Looking back on last week, on Thursday saw a very good Autumn Concert. With some high quality performances once again, the evening provided the first opportunity for the newly formed Performing Arts department to illustrate the excellent talent at MGS. This year's concert saw a number of memorable singers, singing a range of songs, with some bringing a tear to the eyes of some of the audience! Well done to all of the performers and musicians, and thank you to the staff members who continuously support them. On Friday I had a meeting with our School Improvement Partner (or SIP). With MGS still being a maintained school and not an academy, we still have a relationship with the Local Authority, and part of that is to have regular meetings with someone who simply keeps a little eye on what we are doing. The overwhelming message at the meeting was one of positivity and support. The Local Authority is extremely pleased how MGS is currently developing and is excited about what we want to achieve in the future. Congratulations to the many students who play school sport, particularly as we have recently seen some outstanding performances. Last week the 1st and 2nd XI football teams beat Norton Knatchbull 7-2 and Simon Langton 6-1 respectively, with both teams still in with an excellent chance of winning their respective league titles. On Saturday the weekly rugby fixture was against Dartford Grammar School, a school that has a good track record against us. This year we beat Dartford in five out of the seven fixtures, with all the Home matches coming away with a win. The U12B squad beat Dartford 20-15, the U13s won 56-5, the U15s won 29-12, the 2nd XV won 10-7, and the 1st XV won a very exciting and tense match 22-19. Well done boys and good luck to every squad in two weeks’ time as they prepare to play our, and mine, biggest rival, The Judd School. Matches are on Saturday 12 December, so please do come along if you can.
Tuesday, 24 November 2015
Tuesday, 17 November 2015
Tuesday, 10 November 2015
Last Thursday was the Post 16 Open Evening, aimed at Year 11 students both from MGS and other schools who are thinking about A-Level studies. It was very well attended and hopefully informative giving details of specific subjects, what to expect at MGS's 6th Form and the application process. Many thanks to the 6th Form students who helped out; all were a credit to the School.
Wednesday this week is a very important day for the School. Our present and future is about reflecting on the past and appreciating our history, so 11th November is integral to what we do. At around 10.40am there will be a small service in the School Hall in front of the WWI Memorial Boards to remember all Old Maidstonians who lost their lives in combat. During the last few weeks CCF cadets have been going round the School selling poppies, and many hundreds of students are proudly wearing theirs each day, and this week Mrs Sewell, the Deputy Head, is giving the assembly on the theme of Remembrance. We will continue to remember.
Friday is also an important day when we acknowledge BBC Children In Need. There will be number of events during the day to raise money for the charity alongside the normal Charity Day arrangement of non-uniform. I encourage all students to get involved, and that way we can raise a large amount for what is an important cause. The theme for the day is, 'Wear Something Yellow or Spotty'.
To complement this Headmaster's Blog there will soon be a Student Blog where news and chat from a student perspective will be posted for all to read. A small group of Year 8 students have come up with the idea themselves and only last night did they pitch it to me and the Senior Leadership Team. I commend them on their passion and interest for the concept and their ability to present it in front of us all. We all look forward to the first edition which will probably be in January.
Finally, congratulations to Oliver Leyland of Year 10 who has been selected for the London Broncos Rugby League Scholarship Programme. This is in addition to the Saracens Kent Elite Squad that he is already a part of. Well done Oli.
Tuesday, 3 November 2015
Tuesday, 20 October 2015
Tuesday, 13 October 2015
Last week the School, in fact our catering company Independent Catering received some excellent news. They received a spot check inspection from Environmental Heath and I am pleased to say achieved a Level 5 Certificate, the highest level that can be awarded. Congratulations to the entire team. We are very proud of our catering team who feed the students incredibly well each day and who receive so many positive comments on the quality and quantity of what they serve.
A busy week.
Tuesday, 6 October 2015
Lastweek all subject teachers gave their first set of grades to each student. Following the first five weeks of the School year all students have been graded on their attitude and approach to learning. These grades were introduced last year, and many parents particularly found them useful in addition to the Attainment grades. This week they will be collated together and then available for parents. I hope they give you a good idea in how your child has begun the year. On Wednesday last week the senior rugby squad beat Chatham Boys Grammar School in the first round of the National Cup 29 - 10. It was their first win of the season too. Well done boys and I now hope that this win will kick start a series of success in the weekly fixtures. Also both senior football squads (the 1st and 2nd XI) won their matches in the East Kent Premier League beating Tunbridge Wells Boys Grammar School 2 – 1 and Borden Grammar School 3 – 2. Well done boys. On Sunday a number of MGS students from Years 8 to 13 took part in the Maidstone Small Boats Head. Every October Maidstone Invicta Rowing Club hosts a head race; a race covering a distance of 2500m from Allington Marina to Maidstone Town Centre, and many other rowing clubs are invited to compete. Students from this school competed for Maidstone Invicta Rowing Club and Maidstone Grammar School. Over 200 different sized boats took part, and MGS students were part of some of the individual wins throughout the day. Congratulations to everyone who took part and thank you for making it such an enjoyable day.
Yesterday was an important day for the School. It was the CCF Biennial Inspection in Folkestone, and many cadets from the CCF took part to represent their school and their unit. The CCF is an incredibly important part of the School and so this inspection is taken very seriously. Thank you to all of the adult volunteers who spent all weekend down in Folkestone preparing the cadets for the inspection, and well done and thank you to all of the cadets who represented their school, their unit and themselves with pride. This week on Friday is the School's first Charity Day led this time by Invincible and Endeavour Houses. Charity Days are fundamental to MGS and part of our culture and ethos. A lot of work goes on behind the scenes in preparing for them, and much of this comes from the students themselves. Like every charity day students are invited to come to school in non-uniform contributing £1 to do so. Throughout the day, particularly at lunchtime, a number of activities and events take place to raise money and awareness for the charity, which this year is the UN Refugee Agency. Thank you in advance to everyone who takes part and a big thanks to members of the Student Leadership Team who are overseeing the day.
Tuesday, 29 September 2015
Wednesday, 23 September 2015
Thursday, 17 September 2015
Tuesday, 8 September 2015
Tuesday, 21 July 2015
Sadly the weather on Tuesday required us to move the annual Sports Day to Thursday, but once again Sports Day was an excellent event involving the entire school community. There were many very good individual performances but seeing Year 12 getting stuck in to their last Sports Day was memorable. Well done to Max Reid of Year 12 took part in every event and won every event, and congratulations to Rory Kuypers of Year 9 who broke the school 100m record which has stood for 30 years. Many thanks to everyone who took part, and thank you to all the parents who came along and joined us in the day.
Thank you for a wonderful year, have a lovely holiday and see you in September.
Tuesday, 14 July 2015
Tuesday, 7 July 2015
Advance notice to remind you all that next Tuesday is the annual MGS Sports Day and next Wednesday is the Staff vs. 1st XI Cricket Match; both events parents are welcome to attend. Please just arrive in school and sign in at Reception. Sports Day takes place during the entire day starting around 9am and finishing about 3pm. The cricket match on the following day starts at 2.30pm. Also, and something that is going to be special for MGS is the Terry Shambler Memorial Concert, which is taking place next Thursday 16th July at 7pm. Terry, a student who left MGS last year, was sadly killed in a traffic accident whilst on holiday last July. This concert will be a permanent event in the School’s calendar as it is important that we continue to go on remembering Terry. Please do come along and support.
Tuesday, 30 June 2015
Tuesday, 23 June 2015
Monday, 15 June 2015
Last week saw the return of Year 12 following their AS Level examinations. They completed two days of activities that covered a number of important aspects from how to go about writing a UCAS Personal Statement, understanding how to manage one's finances and what to do in an emergency situation when required to give basic first aid. Today Year 12 return to normal lessons embarking on their A2 studies; it is good to have them back. Last Friday I went on my second visit to another grammar school to see what they do there and what we could learn from them.
I visited Dr Challoner's Grammar School in Amersham, Buckinghamshire and spoke to a number of staff and students about a variety of things: teaching and learning, pastoral structures, staff development, all things 6th Form, and Development Funds. I came away with some good ideas and will be sharing them with the rest of the MGS community soon.
Sharing some good news, George Oram, an Old Maidstonian aged 21, has signed a professional contract for Rotherham Titans in the Rugby IPA Championship. Not only this but he also represented England Counties on their tour of Romania last month where they won both their games. George started the first match at number 8 and came off of the bench for their second win. Congratulations George.
Later in the year in November the Maidstone Riverside Rotary Club is organising a sponsored swim to raise money for Children In Need and other local charities. 24 teams of between four and six swimmers will swim as many lengths as possible in 30 minutes - the event is open to teams of anyone and of any ability. MGS has a very close relationship with the Rotary Club and so wishes to support this event and encourage keen swimmers to take part. If you would like to know more or simply register a team then please visit www.swimrelay.co.uk. Many thanks.
This week I am attending the Grammar School Heads' Association annual conference. It takes place every June and provides a great opportunity for all the Heads of grammar schools to network, share ideas and come away with some new ones. This year Boris Johnson MP is the keynote speaker giving the case for 'Grammar Schools in the 21st Century'. I have never heard him speak but I am sure he will be fascinating to listen to and provide the odd smile as he delivers it in the only way he knows how!
Tuesday, 9 June 2015