In my role as Headmaster, one of the questions I find hardest to answer is: “Has it been a good term?” There is a very strong case for a resounding “yes” this term and yet there is so much more that we think we can do better. The learning culture has taken several steps forward this term, thanks in part to the leadership of the Fifth and Upper Sixth Formers who are clear on their exam goals and working determinedly forwards. Providing meaningful opportunities for our pupils to break out of the Dean Close bubble is becoming a real feature of our school, with pupils spending time working with young people in a range of situations; from school placements to future medics having a weekly shared session with pupils from three local schools. The Work Experience programme is starting to be rolled out for pupils in the Fifth and Lower Sixth Forms and I am looking forward to hearing about how our pupils are approaching the world of work.

The “usual” Michaelmas Term cultural and sporting activities have reached new heights this term with some three outstanding drama productions, including the Bacon Theatre hit “My Fair Lady”; the music department have shown their breadth with a Choral Society concert in Tewkesbury Abbey, individual recitals, masterclasses, acoustic evening, lunchtime concerts, the new training orchestra The Ripieno Strings, the House Shout and the chapel choir leading our Chapel worship every week. The sports department have caught the headlines this term with both the 1st XV and 2nd XV rugby teams enjoying undefeated seasons, the hard work put in over many years is really paying off. The hockey teams have had some significant wins in outdoor and indoor across the age groups and the minor sports of Equestrianism and Badminton are continuing to break new ground.

It is an amazing thing when you watch a young man or woman being rewarded for the hard work and loving what they do. Our New Year’s resolution is to provide more opportunities for a wider group of pupils to learn. Has it been good term? It has been an amazing term and it provides great momentum for the next two terms.