Our pupils have been performing throughout the week at the Cheltenham Festival of Performing Arts, which is a great experience for them, and something which they truly enjoy. The exam season is now underway, and the 5th Form have had a taster for what the coming weeks hold in store for them. We once again wish them everything of the best.

Last Saturday, we saw our first century of the Cricket season scored last by Archie Benson for the 2nd XI, and I do hope that we see a few more as the term progresses. The girls’ tennis teams have enjoyed a really good start to the term recording some very good results and winning the Midlands Doubles Competition for the 5th year in a row.

This week has also played host to Junior Bowden Society, a Classics Symposium, Mead House Soiree, Musical Concerts, Golf and the House Cross Country Competitions.

5th Form Exam Leave

The 5th Form are on study leave as from Monday 15 May and as such are no longer required to be in School except for exams. This applies to both Daypupils and Boarders. For those who have morning exams, registration is at the normal time of 8.15am in Houses, and they then go to Chapel, Congo or House Assemblies as normal, before going to the Exam Hall. For afternoon exams, pupils are required to register at the Front Office on arrival.

When in school during the working day, all pupils should be dressed in their normal uniform. This enables the School to maintain an atmosphere of work for all on site. Boarders may go to lunch at 12.45pm and may wear School Games Kit or School Uniform. Pupils have to wear full school uniform when writing their examinations.

It is worth noting:

Academic –Teachers continue to be available during the taught lesson times to answer any questions which pupils might have.

Choir –There is an expectation that all choir members continue to attend rehearsals until Half Term.

Orchestra –Pupils are expected to attend Orchestra Rehearsals until Half Term.

Team Sport –There is an expectation that team players continue to train and represent the School in the relevant fixtures as published in the Calendar, including Cup Fixtures. But, if pupils have a heavy exam load during any given week, or are experiencing the pressure of exams, they are encouraged to enter into conversation with the Head of Sport, so that the School can be flexible in its approach. Early, clear communication works best for both parties. Players are encouraged to keep an eye on the notice boards.

Carousel Sport –For exam groups, the Games sessions are optional, but scientific evidence suggests that regular exercise is beneficial to academic performance, and as such if pupils are wanting to continue with their sports options during exams then pupils are most welcome to attend.

Co-Curricular –All other Co-Curricular activities are optional during exam leave.

If pupils have any concerns in this regard, please speak to the relevant Heads of Department, Mr Baber-Williams (Sport), Mr Bell (Choir), Mrs Porter (Music). Our key aim is to support the pupils at this busy time.

Commemoration – Uganda Raffle: Requests for Donations

This summer in July, 18 members of the current Sixth Form with 6 Staff from DCS and DCPS are going to Uganda to visit and help out at Nyakatukura Memorial School, a link school founded with the support of Dean Close in 2004.

The Headmaster has agreed that the Uganda Group can hold a Prize Raffle Draw at Commemoration. One of our fund-raising targets this year is for the installation of an Electricity Generator to provide permanent electricity on the school site. Please see the attached letter for further details.

We already have a few prizes for the Raffle, which have been generously offered to us, but we would be very grateful for further offers of prizes to enable us to raise more money so that our projects can be implemented during the school visit in July. It really does make a huge difference to people’s lives. Please direct offers to either office@deanclose.org.uk or drevans@deanclose.org.uk.

If you would like further information on our Uganda Link, then please take a look at our website pages or contact David Evans at drevans@deanclose.org.uk

Commemoration Timings: Friday 26 and Saturday 27 May

Please see below for the Commemoration Weekend timings. This year, our Service will be taking place at Tewkesbury Abbey, and if you are intending to join us for this special occasion, we would be grateful if you could complete and returnthe attached Attendance Reply Slip,if you haven’t already done so.

Friday 26 May

7.30pm Commemoration Concert

9.00pm Jazz on the Terrace

Saturday 27 May

8.15am Choir Depart for Tewkesbury & Registration in Houses

8.45am Choir Warm-up & Rehearsal

8.45am Coaches Depart Shelburne Road

9.30am Service of Commemoration (Tewkesbury Abbey)

10.30am Coaches Depart Tewkesbury Abbey

11.00am Refreshments and House Receptions for Pupils and Parents

11.45am Marquee Open

12noon Speeches and Prizegiving (Marquee)

1.15pm Leavers Photo and Prizewinners Photo

1.30pm School vs ODs Cricket

1.30pm Picnics

3.00pm Exhibitions & Events

4.00pm Tea, Pimms & Strawberries, Concert Band, Raffle Draw (Marquee)

4.30pm Close of Events

6.00pm Cricket Ends

If you have any queries in this regard, please contact Karen Evans on office@deanclose.org.uk

Update: 5th Form Skills Week

Thank you to all of who have sent back replies for the 5th Form Skills Week. Please note that the lifeguarding course is now full, however, there are still spaces on all other courses and we are extending the deadline for returns to Monday 22 May. The letter and reply slip can be DOWNLOADED here.

Duke of Edinburgh Award

Please note that the following trips are taking place this term:

D of E Gold Assessment to Lake District (Lower 6th) – May Half Term. Leaving at 4pm on Saturday 27 May and returning to DCS Wednesday 31 May by 7pm.

D of E Gold Training – Friday 30 June until Tuesday 4 July by 6pm. There are 10 places available to current 5th Form.

Please email cehatchell@deanclose.org.uk if you would like further details about either trip.

Inter-Schools Show Jumping Competition

The annual Inter-Schools Show Jumping competition will be taking place on Sunday 11 June. Please share the attached flier with any friends or family who may be interested to help us make this a fantastic event once again. Please contact Fleur Cradock on fecradock@deanclose.org.uk for further details.

The Week Ahead

This term, we are experimenting with a new online Calendar which updates any changes every evening. We are hoping that parents will find this helpful. It is inevitable that there are updates and amendments to any printed calendar, and this Live Calendar gives us an opportunity to keep you informed of any changes as soon we have this information available.

CLICK HERE to access the Live Website Calendar.

It is still work in progress, and therefore if you have any comments, please contact rerichards@deanclose.org.uk.