Dear Parents,

I trust that you are looking forward to our forthcoming Easter break. I hope you manage to have a restful and relaxing time with your families and enjoy the spring weather.

We do seem to be heading out of a dark time, both literally and metaphorically. I’m aware of several colleagues who have already had their covid immunisations – my first jab is scheduled for Saturday morning, so I think that is a very positive way to start the holidays. It really is a sign of our times when we ask children to share good news with us, and they tell us, “my relative had the jab”. Hopefully, it won’t be long before other sorts of good news dominate our children’s thinking.

We have been in communication with you about recent changes to the expectations about the lateral flow tests. Now we’re asked to continue testing twice a week during the holidays and log the results. The government information says that they are finding the mass testing very helpful in tracking the spread of the disease, so this is an easy way in which we can all support the communal effort to control the spread of covid in our community. Please could I remind you to add the following dates in your diary to ensure your child takes a test either on the evening before or on the morning of:

Easter Break:

  • Monday 29th March
  • Thursday 1st April
  • Monday 5th April
  • Thursday 8th April
  • Monday 12th April
  • Thursday 15th April

 New Term – and then repeating this testing pattern until further notice next term:

  • Monday 19th April
  • Thursday 22nd April
  • And so on….

I know we finished for the half term in February with a “well done” message to all our children. I would really like to repeat that at the end of this period of returning to school. Our young people have had such a roller coaster ride over the past year, and as always, I stand amazed at the resilience of young people.

Having the school back full of children is such a joy. Although we are aware of individual difficulties, the students have settled back incredibly well. They are continuing to work with their teachers with positivity and enthusiasm.

One feature of life at Kingsley that I find particularly endearing is the children’s habit of filing out of a lesson thanking their teachers for the lesson; it’s lovely to hear this again.

Day in, day out, I have the privilege of hearing so many wonderful stories about our pupils’ achievements and successes. This week, I would like to publicly acknowledge one studen

t’s achievement and the good deed of another.

Maddie (Year 7) was awarded the coveted ISA National Athlete of the Term Award, recognising her admirable commitment to sport, namely running and gymnastics, and her sterling fundraising activity. She ran a marathon a week for four weeks to raise money for Falcons Gymnastics in Barnstaple. Well done Maddie.

Secondly, Lottie (Lower Sixth) decided she would like to organise an Easter Egg collection for our local food banks. Thanks to Lottie’s quick thinking and organisation skills, coupled with the generosity of Kingsley families and staff, 318 Easter Eggs were delivered to the Freedom Centre in Barnstaple and Northern Devon Foodbank in Bideford this week. Both food bank organisations have been in touch and were immensely grateful to our school community. The amount of chocolate in school has been a severe temptation this week! Unfortunately, we did have a group of intruders into the prep school one evening, who did find the temptation too much, but I’m glad to say that they have been caught, thanks to the swift work of our local police force, and the eggs were replaced and delivered to the food banks. 

I am so pleased that we have managed to have a couple of fun events in the past week.

Thank you to everyone who supported Red Nose Day last week, which was a great success. We also held a staff vs students football match yesterday. I’m delighted to say that the staff team won 4-1, despite many disparaging comments beforehand from our overconfident students – honour is satisfied!

I do wish you a very happy Easter and a restful break. I look forward to returning after the holiday to enjoy the summer term with our young people in our beautiful grounds.

My very best wishes to you.

Mrs Gill Jackson – head@kingsleyschoolbideford.co.uk