“So what’s new?”

“Has anything been done about..?”  Being far too old and not “down with the kids” I couldn’t make an appropriate response to “What’s happening?” when I was asked, although I did like the fact that it was followed by a rather more traditional “Sir?”  The short answers to the above are; lots, loads, yes, I think so and education…

Most obviously, students have returned to campuses which have been either renovated or refreshed. In some cases small changes have been achieved which will have significant consequences.  The alert will have noticed that the drain covers in the Junior School play-ground have been changed, not I admit the most glamorous of enhancements but certainly important.  Visitors to the Senior School can hardly fail to notice a newly renovated Morisot building, carpets in classrooms, acoustic pods in music and occuli in Braille (I didn’t know what that meant either, ask a student for a translation).  We look forward to the appearance of new refectory furniture on both campuses.  I’m not going to list all the work done over the summer but I do want to salute the heroic efforts of our maintenance team. 

Other areas of school life have received a makeover.  There have been curriculum changes and the consequence of the public exam reforms will become clearer as we teach the new specifications this year.  Our uniform supply has changed significantly and the design has changed a little.  It was fantastic to see pupils wearing their uniform so smartly on the first day – long may it continue and thank you to parents for engaging with a new way of ordering so positively.  On the first day we welcomed over 200 new pupils to the BSP and it is here that perhaps we are best to concentrate not so much on the new but rather on the old and the established.

What hasn’t changed is the open and friendly way that established pupils look after new members of the school, what hasn’t changed is the buzz of enthusiasm for activities and challenges, what hasn’t changed is the commitment and dedication of the staff. 

It was a pleasure to see smiling faces coming into both the Junior and Senior School on Thursday morning, our aim as it always has been is to see that the smiles remain for the rest of the year. 

Whilst there may be changes to the fabric of the campus, to the curriculum and to the uniform, our core values have not been altered or indeed revamped. There is no makeover required.  We as a school remain committed to meeting the academic and social needs of each individual pupil, to making the most of our unique com-munity and to infusing our learning with both fun and rigour. 

New is often good, old is sometimes better.  What is without doubt is that this academic year is going to be an exciting one for all of us here at the BSP.  I look for-ward to sharing it with you.

Nicholas Hammond


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