“Keep your face to the sunshine…”

“Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see the shadow. It’s what sunflowers do.”

Helen Keller

There is much to look forward to this term. Already we have had trips away, we’ve been mask free for a couple of days and the sun is shining. There is a real feeling in school this week that school is (mostly) back to normal. Public exams look to be going ahead and older pupils are busy preparing for them. Brighter mornings have led to a welcome rash of smiles at drop off time. All is well. Much is as it should be. We’ve also had some visitors including M. Jehan-Éric Winckler the Sous-Prefect for St. Germain and stagiaire Mme Annissa Raharinirina.

This weekend promises to be a busy one. At about the time that this newsletter will drop, we will be hosting a piano recital in the Senior School with our own Jiwan Kim performing before the talented Barbara Gostijanovic takes the stage. The free shop will open tomorrow morning and we are all looking forward to the BSPS/BSP Jazz and Dance Night on Friday 6th May. A few tickets remain so don’t delay in booking your place as this will be a fantastic evening.

Whilst much is the same, this term brings some new opportunities and initiatives. On 21st May we’ll open the Senior School to all parents so they can have a try at some of the activities that our pupils experience on a daily basis (and some that they don’t). Our first Festival of Discovery will include climbing, dissection, wine tasting and vigorous debate. I’ll leave it to you to work out which are the ones we normally do in school. It’s a first for the BSP and it comes from having heard on so many occasions when showing prospective parents on school tours “I wish I could go back to school to have a go at that”. So, I do hope that you can join us for the day on 21st May and bring a friend who doesn’t know about the school. It promises to be a great day and if further encouragement were needed there is a fish and chip lunch on offer. See poster on page 3 of this newsletter.

This week we’ve also welcomed seven Ukrainian students to the school, how good it is to see them integrating into our community so successfully. On Monday we will open a class for those affected by the conflict who don’t have the necessary level of English or French to access mainstream education. Again, these children will be made to feel welcome and I’m sure that they will enrich our community. Thank you to all parents and friends of the school who have contributed to our ‘Stuff for School’ campaign. If you are thinking about donating, can I urge you to do so? Your support means an enormous amount to these young people. Click here to learn more.

Summertime by the Seine is a magical time. Over the course of the coming weeks we will be encouraging pupils to make the most of the opportunities that are on offer here and for the first time we can extend the invitation to our parents to experience what makes the BSP such an inspirational place to learn. I do hope you’ll join us.

Nicholas Hammond