Headmaster's Newsletter, Friday 1 March 2019

| 01 March 2019

Dear Parents
Scholarship News
I am delighted to announce a further tranche of scholarships awarded to Dumpton pupils this term.  Firstly, Maya D and Harrison B have been awarded Sports Scholarships to Millfield.  In addition, Mia S, Harrison T and Sienna T have been awarded Sports Scholarship to BCS and Mia an Academic Scholarship too.  Meanwhile, at Talbot Heath, Zoë H has been offered an Academic Scholarship, Holly P a Sports Scholarship and Megan P an Art Award, while Lily V (Sport and Music), Esther P (Art and Drama), Grace F (Sport and Music) and Elouisa A (Music and Drama) have all won All-Rounder Scholarships.  This takes the total of scholarships offered so far to 22.  Many congratulations to all the pupils and staff involved.
Book Fair
From Monday, we have the Book Fair in the Recital Room for the whole of the week.  Miss Fox has sent home a letter with details of when your child will be visiting the fair and how to purchase books.  As usual, various book-related activities and competitions will be taking place on World Book Day and throughout that week in English lessons.  As previously outlined, children's author Ali Sparkes has visited the school today. In addition to running workshops across the day, Ali was available at lunchtime (from 1.30pm) for a Book Sale and signing in the library. We now look forward to a special week of celebrating reading, great books, brilliant authors and the art of story-telling!
Music at Dumpton
A big well done to all the musicians who took part in the Informal Lunchtime Concert in the Recital Room before half-term, and also the violinists who entertained us in School Assembly this week. The next Informal Lunchtime Concert will be for our guitarists on Tuesday 5 March at 1.30 pm.  
With the colder weather forecast for next week, I may be announcing the start of Spring a little prematurely this year.  Nonetheless, I am now inviting pupils to head for the allotments most lunchtimes to prepare their plots for the summer.  The pupils have some big ideas already, and I am happy to accommodate as many of these as space will allow.  Do please send your sons and daughters in with boots and gloves, if possible to preserve the life of their school shoes and protect their hands – if necessary they can be stored in our capacious sheds!  Thank you, as ever, for your support.
Sports News
We have had a very successful week with 20+ fixtures against a host of other schools, and a very busy day here at school.  Of particular note was another impressive 1st place for the U10 netball side at the Stroud Tournament. Well done girls!
IAPS Competitions
Our senior netballers have been very busy at the IAPS Regional Tournaments over the past two days.  Well done to the U11 girls who won three games impressively in their group, just missing out on qualifying for the later stages.  The U12 girls also battled hard today, with a win, a draw and some other very close games.  Congratulations (and bad luck) to the U13 team who powered through their group, beating some strong sides on the way, before losing narrowly in the 3rd/4th place play-off. Thank you, as ever, to all the parents for their support.
Parents’ Evenings
Thank you again for your positive response to the Parents’ Evenings so far. The next meeting of the season will be for    Year 8 (CE Candidates) which now follows after the mock examinations on Tuesday 5 March. A big thank you should go to Mrs Rielly again for her faultless organisation.  If there are any parents (from Years 6-8) that have not yet booked for their meetings, please use the following link to the online booking system which you will need to type in your web browser www.dumptonschool.com/parentsevening 
E-Safety News - Please find below advice for parents regarding the Momo Challenge (Dorset Police Facebook page)
The 'game' played via Whatsapp, involves contacting 'Momo', who issues a series of challenges - the final challenge, reportedly, being suicide. It has been getting a lot of press over the last few days and is understandably causing parents a great deal of concern.  It is worth noting that most of the hype around 'Momo' is being generated by popular YouTubers posting videos of themselves taking part, capitalising on the apparent popularity of the trend. Although the information about the 'Momo Challenge' is rather concerning, the number of reported cases of children harming themselves because of the game is extremely low.  This article from Parent Zone gives an overview of the issue. http://bit.ly/2GNaCjz. The following link may also be helpful to share with your children https://www.bbc.co.uk/newsround/47402709
Mobile phones and access to social media at Dumpton
It may be apposite at this point to remind pupils and parents that mobile phones are not allowed on site.  We would be grateful if this could be reinforced at home.  Also, just to reassure you, there is no access to YouTube or social media for the children through the Dumpton network and any unsuitable websites are filtered out by Smoothwall.  
With best wishes for the weekend
Andrew Browning