Headmasters News Letter - Friday 23 September
23 September 2022

Headmaster's News Letter - Friday 23 September

Dear Parents 

“Every endeavour pursued with passion produces a successful outcome, regardless of the result. For it is not about winning or losing – rather, the effort put forth in producing the outcome” 

I would hope if you asked your children what our two school values are they would be able to repeat to you – loudly and proudly – those four words: Be Kind, Aim High! But truly living those values is about more than just getting the children to remember them. We try to ensure that throughout the whole school, the values and their associated behaviours are modelled by teachers, explicitly taught, and, importantly, constantly celebrated and praised. A new initiative this year is our ‘Living our Values’ postcards, and it has been lovely to see so many pupils (and indeed staff!) being presented a postcard in assembly for either ‘being kind’ or ‘aiming high’ already this term. 

As well as this, our assemblies each week often back up these key themes, and are such an important tool for establishing the culture and the ethos of the school. On Tuesday, I spoke to the children about aiming high and shared the story about the transformation of the British Cycling team through ‘aggregation of marginal gains’ theory - what things can you do 1% better each day, and what would happen if you kept finding 1% gains day after day? 5C then produced a brilliant class assembly about Aiming High that was thought-provoking and entertaining in equal measure. Their assembly reminded me of the Matthew Syed quote above: it is so important that children see that success in life is not about your talent, or indeed winning – it's about setting yourself goals and putting as much effort, enthusiasm and passion into whatever you want to do or be.  

Welcome Evenings 
Thank you so much to the Pre-Prep parents who joined us for our welcome evening on Tuesday – it was an excellent evening and we have had so much positive feedback about how enjoyable and informative it was. It is the turn of the Prep School parents on Monday – please arrive at the Assembly Hall for a 7.30pm start. Following a presentation from the Senior Team, you will then spend some time hearing from your child’s form teacher before finally having the chance to have some informal cheese and wine in the Dining Hall with other parents and staff. 

New Parent Portal 
We are working hard behind the scenes on launching a brand-new parent portal – apologies for the delay here but we hope you’ll agree that the wait will be worthwhile, with the new portal offering lots of features that will really support you as parents in terms of information and communications. In the meantime, if there is any information you need, please contact the school office. Please also contact Lerryn directly if you need to get my permission for any planned absence from school of 1 day or longer. 

Y3 Stonehenge Trip 
Y3 very much enjoyed their visit to Stonehenge this week – they learnt a huge amount that will support them with their Humanities topic this year. They were apparently brilliant, engaged and immaculately behaved – well done Y3! 

Sporting Success 
It was a very busy week of fixtures with nearly every single child in the Prep School representing Dumpton. As well as some excellent competitive fixtures again Walhampton, a number of teams competed in tournaments at Stroud and Moyles Court. Particular special mention to our U10A team who won the Stroud Tournament, beating Twyford 5-0 in the final. With a number of teams from all over Dorset and Hampshire attending, this is a significant achievement! 

Performing Arts Assembly 
Each Thursday we are treated to performance in assembly – this week it was Freddie B in Y7, whose stunning vocal performance of Electricity from Billy Elliot had us all feeling tingles. I hope that every child who learns a music instrument, sings, or acts, will take up this entirely voluntary opportunity to perform to the school at some point this year – a brilliant opportunity! 

BBC Make a Difference Award 
We are so proud of Fraser B in Y8 who won the ‘BBC Solent Make a Difference Award’ this week. Fraser was nominated for his outstanding effort to raise money for charity through swimming the equivalent distance of Dover to Calais – and back again! He was the youngest of any of the hundreds of people to be nominated, and to win is a wonderful achievement. Well done Fraser – we're very proud of you.  

Y6 and Y7 Pre-Tests 
Many children have tests of some kind over the coming weeks, with the local 11+ grammar tests tomorrow, and thenlots of children sitting the ISEB Pre-Test next month for Canford and Bryanston, as well as schools further afield such as Wellington, Eton and Winchester. We wish all the children the best of luck with these different processes. Parents who have children taking the ISEB pre-test should look out for a letter from Mr Morgan today – but as ever, if you have any questions about future schools at all please always do get in touch. 

Plea from 4C 
We are still collecting for Wet Weather Boxes! In DECA 4C are making boxes of preloved toys and games to play when it rains. They would like a box to be in each prep school form room. If you have anything lurking in a tidy out that you would like to donate then please do so early next week. Donations to 4C classroom or to Reception. Many thanks! 

Dumpton Stroll 
It looks like we will have well over 100 people attending the Dumpton Stroll on Sunday – it's not too late to sign up via Classlist if you haven’t already for this lovely community event. I look forward to seeing lots of families there – and the odd dog too – from 2pm on Sunday. 

Key Events Next Week (please see sports site and calendar for all fixtures)

Week 4: Theme of the Week - Celebration of Other Cultures 

Monday 26 September 
Year 7 Science (Biology) Field Trip to Kimmeridge 
8.30am - 8.50am: Prep School Assembly (European Day of Languages - Class 7TU) 
7.30pm - 9.00pm: Parents' Welcome Evening / Meet the Teacher (Y3 - Y8) 

Thursday 29 September 
8.30am - 8.50am: Prep School Assembly - Performing Arts & Sports Reports 

With best wishes for the weekend.

Christian Saenger


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