Whether to open… Weather to close. The dilemma all headteachers faced this week has been challenging. Each day the site team has worked during the day to clear the snow and make pathways and the drive and car park safe. Each night the elements have conspired to cover up their work and present fresh challenges. It has been very helpful to have Ian, our Estates manager, on site to give us sensible advice when making the decision to open or close and a combination of access, potential staffing levels and government warnings have led to the decisions this week. Thank you to Peter, Barry, Ian and Simon, who did a stalwart job on Tuesday and Ian and Simon working hard together all the other days this week; they’ve spent more time outside than anyone else I know in these freezing conditions. Thank you to parents who helped us by supervising children at home and helping them explore snow work, sit mock exams, take part in World Book Day’s extreme reading challenge and sent us photos and engaged on our Twitter feed. Have a go, it’s fun! We have a few new signups and followers this week. All of this has been done with immense good cheer when presumably many parents were being obliged to take days off work. We are grateful for your positivity and flexibility.
It has been fun to see children and parents sledging on our perfect slopes, to have pictures of snowmen proudly built and hear from staff who sent us pictures of their exploits in the snow and the beautiful places they have been able to explore and enjoy.
I hope that most of you have been able to be warm and safe. The news of those who have really suffered, got trapped or had terrible accidents has been very sad to read.
Evidently there have been many cancelled meetings and we will do our very best to reschedule all of these as soon as possible.
Next week there is a great deal to look forward to apart from one another’s company again. Some pupils head off for Orchestra Day at King’s Rochester or the rescheduled IAPS netball tournament. Our Chair of Governors, Paula Carter, is spending a whole day in school talking with all the Leadership team about their work and mine. The Year 8 pupils will head off to Jersey, Year 4 will enjoy Roman Day, Year 7 will be off to hear a talk by the brilliant Professor Winston and the Drama room will soon become out of bounds as it transforms itself into our “Lord of the Flies” set.