From the Headmaster - October 2017
As we approach half term, it seems a suitable moment to take stock of the new academic year. Much activity actually takes place before term even begins, and this year was no exception with the new Year 7 boys coming into school for their team-building day at the end of August and the Silver and Gold Duke of Edinburgh expeditions heading off to the Black Mountains for their assessments.
Our annual Speech Night and Prize Giving is probably the most formal occasion at School, and it is always an important marker early in the school year. It signals a moment of transition, a 'changing of the guard' as we celebrate the many successes of the previous academic year and reassert our School's important traditions and values ready for the year ahead. Our guest speaker this year was a most distinguished Old Richian, Mr Babar Vaqas, George Pickard Fellow in Neurosurgery at Imperial College, London. In his speech, he reminded us all of the importance of an all-round education as he listed the important skills he uses every day in his professional life, from English and Art to Science and Maths, and which he traces back to his formative years at Rich's – this was for me an important reminder to preserve the broad and balanced curriculum that we cherish.
I hope that all new pupils have now found their feet in our community. Year 7 pupils have all taken part in the annual residential trips to Stratford-Upon-Avon, where they enjoyed a range of activities and lots of opportunities to get to know each other. Year 12 pupils visited Mallard's Pike in the Forest of Dean for their team-building days. Information Evenings have been held for Years 10 and 11 and a 'Meet the Tutor' evening for parents of Year 12s and a 'Meet the Teacher' evening for parents of Year 7. It is good to witness a strong atmosphere of purposeful activity in School.
The usual wide range of extra-curricular activities and sporting fixtures is in full swing. These are hugely important in making our school the vibrant and successful community it is. However, as we reach the First Order Grade period, I would like to remind parents and pupils of our core purpose, which is to encourage every pupil here to strive for the best possible academic outcomes. We expect pupils to engage fully in lessons, to complete homework to a high standard and to adopt a positive and responsible attitude in every aspect of their lives at our School. I urge you to take the opportunity provided by the Order Grades to discuss your son or daughter's achievements, attitude to learning and targets for the next half term so that the next most important half term may be used to maximum benefit.