Head’s Blog 24th March 2017 Friday 24th March 2017

My D-J son, Jack in the States has an as yet unreleased track called “I’ve got music in my soul” which I think is his best yet and I felt this week that St Michael’s truly has exactly that. There are times when something extraordinarily special happens here which children truly appreciate and the Big Sing that took place on Wednesday was utterly amazing. Gordon Baird, Jack Bennett, Sally Beesley, Jackie Dennett and Emily Balcombe, helped by the marketing and admissions team in so many administrative ways put on a fabulous collaborative singing experience in which the children expressed themselves in music, words and actions to such a high standard that it was almost impossible not to shed a tear. The joyful faces and the energy and accuracy of four musically complex and witty songs that held the audience enthralled were a privilege to behold. We are delighted to have hosted such a successful singing day and to  have welcomed our five neighbouring primaries to be a part of it.


Music continued to flow out the next day when Pre-Prep hosted an end of term concert and we enjoyed again this morning very touching words and happy singing , both solo and ensemble as Reception treated their mothers to a special assembly . Up in Prep, amid the red nose fun, came our Interhouse Music  competition with a morning of solo sections of breath-taking quality, a huge well of support for one another among the performers and enormous pleasure offered to the audience.  


The afternoon final sing off, involving every child was both exhilarating and hugely impressive. I congratulate everyone on their preparation and polished performances.


I’m not sure about the hills but the corridors and halls of St Michael’s have definitely been alive with the sound of music. Would that I too could have been a pupil here!


In a week which produced such shocks and reminders of the differing perspectives on peace, right and wrong,  my colleagues and I join with the many who have condemned the attacks in London. For the children whose parents won’t now ever go  to pick them up from school and for those who lost their lives and have been injured, we grieve too. I think we all feel that strength and courage can come from uniting together to keep calm and carry on doing everything as normal.


Of course the week began in a much more jubilant mode and it is good that we have been distracted by the huge variety of special moments in the week. The Inspection Report sent to you all on Monday is truly wonderful and my only disappointment is that the word Outstanding is no longer ISI’s top descriptor! For those of you who haven’t yet studied it yet, I commend it to you. We are judged Excellent for pupils’ academic and other achievements and Excellent for pupils’ personal development as well as being fully compliant. These judgements are hard won and I’m immensely grateful to every child, parent and member of staff who took part in the inspection, prepared for it and showed off what they can do in the days the inspectors were here.


As we move towards the weekend with the holiday beckoning beyond, this will be our last e-news of term. I wish you a very Happy Easter and peace, calm and rest as well as joy and fun together this holiday.



Jill Aisher


Latest News

The governors of St. Michael’s Prep School take pleasure in announcing the appointment of Nik Pears as our new Head Teacher with effect from January 2021.

Nik was educated at St Dunstan’s College, London and is a graduate of Cambridge University. He is currently Head of Prep at Kent College Pembury, a post he has held since 2016. Prior to that, he was Headmaster of the Junior School at Sevenoaks Prep for 5 years. Nik is also an ISI inspector and a governor at Dulwich Prep, Cranbrook. We believe that he has the experience and qualities required to lead St Michael’s into the next chapter of its history.

Nik represented Kent U18 group at rugby and has a love of all sports. He is an accomplished musician and has performed at The O2 and Wembley Arenas. He is an Ambassador for “We See Hope”, a charity working with orphans and vulnerable young people in sub Saharan Africa. Nik devised The Social Entrepreneurs Project an initiative that challenges young people to turn £10 seed capital into £100 or more with their profits going to support the work of the charity.

We feel very fortunate to have secured Nik’s headship and welcome him and his wife Emma and two children, Jessica and Josiah into the St. Michael’s family from the start of next year. Nik has said

“I am delighted to have been appointed the next Head of St Michael’s Prep. Having lived in the area for the past twenty years, it is a school I have known and long admired for its ambitious and child-centred approach to learning. There is a very special atmosphere in the school and I am excited to become a part of the community, getting to know the children, parents and staff over the months and years ahead. St Michael’s is privileged to have an experienced and committed Senior Leadership Team and I very much look forward to working together with them as we embark on an exciting future for the school.” 

Some of our super St Michael’s Swimmers have won an array of silverware at recent events.

At the Sevenoaks Swimming Club presentation evening, I Pennington Legh was presented with the Kingsbury Cup for U10 girls; A Green was awarded the Kingsbury Cup for U10 boys; E Green received runner up plate for the best U9 boy; S. Taylor was awarded the Mike Radford Trophy for most improved U9 boy; A Ashton was presented with the U9 Individual Medley Cup and U9 trophy for most improved swimmer; B Tovey and J Taylor were both awarded plaques with their positions from the recent Sevenoaks Club Championships.

At the Black Lion Gala, Gillingham, at the start of March our swimmers again came away with medals. A Ashton won three gold, one bronze, one fourth and one sixth medal; A Green three gold and two silver medals; E Green four silver and one bronze medal; S Taylor one silver and one fourth medal and J Taylor a fourth position medal. V Medlen also came away with a medal from the gala.

Well done to all those swimmers; your hard work and dedication is certainly paying off!

Mrs Denton

Swim School Manager

Well done to our doubles girls, E Julio and S Savidge, who also played in last weekend’s Junior Orange Ball Tournament in Sevenoaks. They played four matches, won two, beating Sevenoaks Prep and Lady Boswell’s and lost two to the eventual finalists Amherst and Granville.

This was a great performance by the girls, particularly in the light of little experience of Orange Ball competition.

Well done!

With around 20 pairs competing, representing 9 schools, pupils S Taylor, D Booth, J Vanderlanh-McKeown and J McDonnell were proud to represent St Michael’s at the Sevenoaks Junior Orange Ball Doubles, held at the Sennock Centre in Sevenoaks on Saturday 7th March.

S Taylor and D Booth started their Orange Ball tournament well with a win against Lady Boswell’s, before losing to a very strong team from Sevenoaks Primary. They followed with a close match against Amhurst Primary which they lost 7-6 and needed two wins from their remaining games to make the final stage. They won the first quite easily against Russell House and then had a tight match against Sevenoaks Prep. It was neck and neck throughout, but they kept their cool and won 7-6.

Their tally of three wins to two losses saw our Year 4 pair through to the play-offs. They had two games against a Year 5 pair from Sevenoaks Prep and New Beacon. They lost both games narrowly, 7-6 and 7-5, finishing 6th overall, which was a good performance given they’re at the younger end of the Orange grouping and the standard of the competition was high.

J Vanderlanh-McKeown and J McDonnell both demonstrated strong teamwork, good sportsmanship and skills. They came up against some strong competition from the other schools but never gave up and kept competing to the end with some great saves, serves and volley. The boys also showed respect towards others and maintained a positive attitude at all times. Both boys really enjoyed the tournament and look forward to improving their position at the next one.
It was great to see both pairs supporting each other throughout the games! Very well done, keep up the good work!

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