Headmasters News Letter - Back to School Friday, 26 August 2022
26 August 2022

Headmaster's News Letter - Back to School Friday, 26 August 2022

Dear Parents

I trust you have all enjoyed an excellent Summer with your families so far.  It seems a long time since we all came together as a school community for a fantastic Speech Day and Friends of Dumpton Picnic on that gloriously sunny last day of term. It goes without saying that we are all very excited about the prospect of seeing you and your children back here at Dumpton again soon.

Today's letter is a chance to give you some initial information so you can feel well prepared for a smooth transition into the new school year for you and your family.  It's going to be a very exciting year at Dumpton, and there is so much more to tell you about in due course: do look out for our Welcome Back letters which will be sent next week, and then, once term is underway, our Welcome Evenings, which we will be hosting here at Dumpton for the first time: with a chance to meet your child's form teacher, hear from the Senior Management Team, and some evening refreshments too, it is certainly a date for the diary.

Summer Works
Though it may have been largely empty of children, the site has been buzzing with activity, and everyone will notice a few changes on their return.  The ground floor and the outside areas of the Pre-Prep have been refurbished and re-designed.  Both Reception classes have brand new classrooms, and parents will see our wonderful new learning area for our youngest pupils - the Early Years Garden.  We have at the same time developed a more spacious and pleasant parent waiting area for parents which we hope you will all enjoy.  In addition, the Netball and Tennis Courts have been completely refurbished and are looking very smart indeed.  My thanks go to Justin Perry and his team for overseeing these projects so well, and I am delighted that we can continue to invest in improvements to our school site and facilities in this way.

Co-Curricular Activities - Exciting new additions
As we continue to evolve and develop our co-curricular offering, I thought I would highlight a few exciting changes.  Further information will follow, including the all-important 'Sign-up' forms, in next week's Welcome Back letters.

  • We are delighted to broaden our Pre-Prep Hobbies choices again this year, including a new Martial Arts class for Y1 and Y2 called Ninjas, taught by World and European Champion Gordon Fearn. 

  • DECA (The Dumpton Extra-Curricular Award for pupils in Y3 to Y5) gets a re-launch as a year-long programme of engaging and varied co-curricular activities and experiences.

  • An Early Morning Biathlon club will begin this year - we're very excited to build some budding biathletes and triathletes at Dumpton.

Timings of the School Day
A reminder to Prep School parents of the updated timings of the school day for the new school year.

16.15 Early Pick-up (Parent Waiting Area)
16.15 Tea - a drink and a snack
16.25 Prep (Homework/LAMDA/DECA/Hobbies)
17.15 End of Prep School Day (Parent Waiting Area)
17.15-17.45 – Stay Late (Collect pupils directly from ICT Suite at any point)

Minibus Booking
We will also using a new online booking service which we hope will improve the experience for parents - it is far easier to use and has all the information parents will need to book both regular and one-off journeys.  We will share the link to the new service next week so that journeys can be booked once you know the activities on offer for the term ahead.

Instrumental & Vocal Tuition - From Mrs Mudd, Director of Performing Arts
We have a team of highly qualified and experienced musicians who offer lessons in just about anything! Lessons are timetabled on a rotating basis each week, throughout the school day, and many pupils are entered for music exams and certificates each term as well as being invited to perform in assemblies, informal concerts and whole-school events. Once pupils are underway with their progress, they may be invited to join one of our many ensembles and groups.

Pupils who already partake in one-to-one vocal and instrumental lessons are automatically re-enrolled each term unless half a term’s written notice is given to the teacher. If your child is interested in taking up an instrument or you would like to arrange a trial lesson, please apply via this form and I will pass on your request to the appropriate teacher.  Alternatively, do get in touch should you require further information.  Please note that the termly charge for individual music lessons will be invoiced separately via the teacher.  Pupils may also be entered for examinations if and when they are ready; in these cases, parents will be notified with more information on exam times and fees.

Key Dates for your Diary
The Autumn Term Calendar will soon be published, but please note the key dates below:

  • Wednesday 31st August to Friday 2nd September - 9am to 4pm - Triathlon Holiday Camp (A small number of places are still available, please contact Tracy Cook directly if you are interested tracycooksportstherapy@gmail.com)

  • Thursday 1st September - 10am to 3pm - Second Hand Uniform Shop Open

  • Monday 5th September - 3pm - EYFS Meet, Greet and Play for new pupils and their parents

  • Tuesday 6th September – 3.30pm - Y1 to Y8 New Pupils Tea (including all Y3s)

  • Wednesday 7th September - 8.15am - Term begins, more information to follow

  • Monday 19th September - 7.30pm - Prep School Welcome Evening

  • Tuesday 20th September - 7.30pm - Pre-Prep Welcome Evening

Welcome Back Letters and Sign-Up Forms
Next week you will receive your Welcome Back letter with more specific information relevant to your child's year group and covers all you need to know about the start of term.  As mentioned above, this will include the 'Sign-up' forms for all our co-curricular activities and any before and after school wrap-around-care. 

May I take this opportunity to wish you all a superb Bank Holiday weekend. 

Best wishes

Christian Saenger


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