Head’s Blog Friday 3rd March 2017

I have to say I did not think I would ever be writing to say how enjoyable and exciting an Inspection would be but here it is in black and white; it was a wonderful week. I suppose a school week here is always intrinsically exciting and it certainly felt as though the inspectors caught the spirit of engagement and energy that is transmitted through the corridors and classrooms wherever children are busy and engaged.

The week held much to be excited about. Representatives from Gideons bibles started off the week telling pupils about their work and handing out their special theme based bibles for those who wanted them. A working group met to start to think about planning a Performing Arts development, Parents and Friends met to plan the support they are offering to the community life of the school. Their big project is the Summer Festival on May 20th, which is a day-long music and entertainment extravaganza that will get toes tapping and bring the community together in a relaxing and creative way. Once you are on site, a huge array of children’s activities is available at no extra cost. The only additional items are food and drink. Do plan your diaries to be sure to be there.

In Pre-Prep there were pancake races for Shrove Tuesday and children in the Prep school, using the metaphor of choosing nice fillings for pancakes, were encouraged to think about what nice things they wanted to fill Lent with and the good choices they could make.

On Thursday we celebrated Book Week with assemblies in both parts of the school. In Prep, the assembly team of staff shared their favourite childhood book and a photo of themselves when young. It was a special time when we learnt about the important place of books in the lives of all sorts of staff, with some moving moments which brought us closer to one another. That was followed by Literary Library Café in Prep offering refreshments and quiet reading time for all parts of the school, whilst in Pre-Prep there was much rejoicing in the costumes sported by pupils and staff representing their favourite book character and their assembly had them sharing extracts of books and enjoying being read to.

It was fabulous this morning to receive a handwritten invitation from Oliver N in Reception J to visit his classroom “wun day”.  I took Oliver up on this today and enjoyed looking at all his writing, as well as being shown around the classroom.  What a lovely surprise.

Reception letter to Mrs Aisher

The outcomes of the Inspection will be officially announced once the report is released to us by ISI. In the meantime thank you to all parents who replied to the survey and chatted to inspectors. I’m looking forward to the report.

Have a great weekend

Jill Aisher

Latest News

Prep pupils treated classmates and music teachers to a variety of musical performances this week in their half termly concert.

Performed in three instalments within their bubbles, the musicians showcased a variety of pieces, varying in both genre and instrument.

And although parents were unable to attend the concerts due to Covid-19 restrictions, the pupils’ families received a recording of the event.

Gordon Baird, Director of Music, said “We were delighted by how these first concerts of the academic year went despite the absence of the children’s parents. It was a lovely intimate experience for the children to play or sing to their friends and we heard some confident, accomplished performances.

Mr Baird added: “For some, it was their first time playing in a concert in the Prep school and we look forward to organising many more opportunities for them to perform throughout the year.”

A montage of the three music concerts can be found on the St Michael’s YouTube page at https://youtu.be/Bj_Wx4P9heg.



Spooky spiders and plump pumpkins sparked Halloween fun at St Michael’s this week.

Supported by the school’s Parents and Friends association, pupils enjoyed two games which offered great prizes to winners.

Coordinator of the Halloween competitions and P & F committee member, Kelly Downey said: “Given the restrictions currently in place, the P&F are focusing on strengthening the school community for parents and children this year.

“The competitions are a simple way for the children to have some fun in the week before half term, while raising some funds for the P&F.”

Children in Pre-Prep were tasked with guessing the number of spooky spiders in the jar, while Prep children were asked to guess the weight of a pumpkin. Pupils made a donations to the P & F in exchange for each guess they made.

And the winners of the games, Herbie W (Pre-Prep) A Ward, M Little, L Lutzow and H Owen (Prep), were awarded Halloween hampers which will help them celebrate this year’s festival in spooktacular style.

Kelly added: “The funds raised for the P&F will go towards funding activities and facilities for the children to enrich their time at the school.”

For more information about St Michael’s P & F association visit stmichaels.kent.sch.uk/parents-friends


Strawberries and sunflowers were just some of the items celebrated in last week’s harvest assemblies.


The annual Pre-Prep event, performed as three instalments this year, saw Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 pupils sing, dance and give prayer for the harvest while learning about the festival from their music teacher, Mrs Raveyeh.



Reflecting on the success of the events, Louise Raveyeh said: “I am quite moved by the children’s enthusiastic singing in our harvest celebration.


“It was a wonderful opportunity for the children to realise that there is joy in giving and sharing what we have and happiness for those who gratefully receive it.


“Their singing and eagerness to share with others was heartwarming.”



During the assemblies pupils sung songs about harvest time, nature and the variety of fruit and vegetables grown in this country.


Louise said: “I wanted the children to be thankful for what they have by realising what an amazing rainbow variety of food we have, created with individual characteristics just like them.


“I wanted them to realise the sense of joy that there is in sharing what we have.


“The songs reflect our celebration of what we have and realisation of the process of planting, harvesting and sharing.”



And it wasn’t just songs that helped the children express their thanks. Helped by their generous parents, Pre-Prep donated hundreds of food items and household essentials to the Swanley branch of Trussell Trust food bank.



Head of Pre-Prep at St Michael’s, Zerrin Leech, said: “We had tables, cupboards and bags festooned with food last week as our families gave very kind donations of food and other items.


“A huge thank you must go to the pupils’ parents for their wonderful generosity once again this year which will be gratefully received by the Trussell Trust.


“Thank you also to Mrs Ravayeh for leading our three harvest assemblies. They have been lovely with lots of new songs as well as my all-time favourite, Cauliflowers Fluffy.”





Sunsets and sizzling sausages set the tone for the new term last Friday as Year 7 pupils celebrated the start of their senior education journey.

The annual event, traditionally held as a Camp Out, was delivered as a fun-filled barbecue night which the children enjoyed with teachers including St Michael’s Acting Head, Mrs Bridges.

Throughout the evening pupils tucked into dinner cooked by Deputy Head Mr Wiseman, and toasted marshmallows on an open fire.

And to make use of their new term energy, games and group bonding activites were carried out, followed by a walk up the school’s famous Warren where the sunset was relished in all of its glory.

Reflecting on the sucess of the event, Head of Year 7 and 8, Mrs Shield, said: “Unfortunately, we were unable to camp this year, but that did not dampen anybody’s spirits.

“One of the highlights of the evening was our twilight walk to the top of the Warren where we marvelled at the beautiful site that our school occupies.

“We viewed the bats swirling the skies in the dusk of late summer and ended the evening with a well-deserved hot chocolate – not forgetting the squirty cream and yet more marshmallows.

“Life-long friendships were made and re-established after the long summer break.”

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