Friday Messages from the Headmaster – 30 November 2018

I am starting this week with some staff news. We are sorry to be saying farewell at the end of this term to Wendy Spencer who has been our Assistant Bursar at the school for the past 15 years. I am sure that you will join me in wishing Wendy well for a more relaxing future.

Staff and pupils alike were delighted to see Chris Murgatroyd (our Head of English) when he paid a visit to school this week. I am delighted to report that Chris is making a good recovery after his recent illness and he plans to return to work on a part-time basis from the start of next term. Please see below a message from Mr Murgatroyd.

As always, please find below some useful reminders and important information about future events at school.


Next week is Week 12

Please see the termly calendar for details of all future events.

All week

  • Year 3 Parent Consultations with Form Teacher (by appointment)

Thursday 6 December

  • Nursery Christmas Sing-a-long (in the Nursery from 1.30 to 2.00pm, parents welcome)
  • Years 1 & 2 Nativity (at 2.30pm in the Haybrook Hall)
  • Last Swim Squad session of 2018 (no Swim Squad on Thursday 13 December)

Friday 7 December

  • ABRSM Individual Music Exams
  • Years 7 & 8 Brecon Beacons Assembly (parents welcome – at 3.15pm in Hemery Hall)
  • Please note that Judo Club will now be taking place as the FoSF Discos have been postponed (please see below about the latter)

Future Events Please note these forthcoming events:

  • Christmas Jumper Days:
    Thursday 13 December – pupils and staff in Reception to Year 8 are being encouraged to bring in a jumper to wear during Christmas Lunch and for the rest of the afternoon, along with a £1 donation to raise money for this year’s Christmas Charity, Save the Children. (please see the attached advert for this event)
    Friday 14 December – Christmas Jumper Day for children and staff in Nursery.
  • Carol Service (at 3.00pm on Friday 14 December at Marlborough College Chapel)

Week 13 Clubs Please note that, as stated in the printed calendar, after school Clubs will not be taking place in the final week of term. There will however be a School Orchestra rehearsal from 4.00-5.00pm on Tuesday 11 December. Care Club and Homework Club will continue until Thursday 13 December.

Important Message from FoSF The Years 3 to 5 Disco and the Years 6 to 8 Disco are no longer taking place on Friday 7 December. Both discos are being rescheduled to the New Year: the date will be communicated as soon as possible. 

Instead, on Friday 7 December, FoSF are holding a Bonfire Burning event from 4.00-5.00pm. Cakes will be on sale in the Rondavel during this event. As this is a FoSF event, rather than a school event, children do need to be accompanied and supervised by an adult, please.

A reminder that the re-scheduled FoSF Fireworks event will take place on Friday 1 February 2019.

Invitation to Carol Service Please find attached a letter of invitation to the Carol Service at Marlborough College Chapel at 3.00pm on the afternoon of the final day of the school term, Friday 14 December.

Years 5 & 6 Drama Production: ‘Aladdin Trouble’ Please note that the performance date of the Years 5 & 6 play next term has been changed from Thursday 14 February to Thursday 21 March 2019.

Message from Mr Murgatroyd Dear Parents and pupils, First of all, I would like to thank you for your kind messages of support and for the very generous vouchers; both of these have given me a real lift over the last few weeks. You will be pleased to know that I am very much on the mend and that I am aiming to be back in January; I look forward to seeing you all! I hope you have a wonderful Christmas. Best wishes, Chris Murgatroyd.

Learning a musical instrument in January 2019 Mrs Francis, Director of Music, writes: We are very fortunate at St Francis to have a very dedicated team of peripatetic teachers offering opportunities for our pupils to learn a wide range of instruments. In January there is availability for pupils to start lessons on string, brass and woodwind instruments as well as the guitar and piano.  If your child is interested in learning an instrument or having singing lessons in January, please send me an email or complete a request for instrumental lessons available from the School Office.    

Car Park Safety With darker mornings at drop-off time and darker evenings at pick-up time, we would encourage all drivers to be aware of pedestrians on the school site, especially when manoeuvring in car parks. We also ask pedestrians to take extra care of themselves and their children when moving from and to their vehicles, especially in the supervision of younger pupils. Please use drop-off areas, pavements and paths ways. Thank you for your vigilance and cooperation in ensuring the safety of our children.

Strategic Planning Parent Feedback Form Thank you again to those who have already responded to my request to provide some parental feedback to assist in our future school strategy planning. The deadline for returns is today (but any forms submitted over the weekend will also be accepted and eligible for entry into the champagne draw). A copy of the Feedback Form was sent as an attachment to last week’s Friday Message, so is available in the Parent Zone area of the school website.

Friends of St Francis Theatre Trip This year’s FoSF Theatre Trip is to ‘School of Rock’ and will take place on Thursday 7 February 2019.  Tickets, priced at £45 each (including return coach travel from school, departing at 3.30pm and arriving back at 12.30am) are now available on a first come, first served basis.  Please sign up in the School Office. Payment can be made online, by cheque or cash.  The trip is more suitable for Travancore children, but that decision is ultimately at the parent’s discretion. This is a FoSF trip, rather than a school trip, and so children do need to be accompanied by an adult.

Twitter Account Please do make sure that you are following the school’s twitter account: @stfrancispewsey

Links Please find the following attachments with this e-mail:

  1. (All) Invitation & details : Carol Service Marlborough College Chapel Friday 14 December
  2. (Years 3 to 8) The Sports fixture list for Week 12
  3. (Reception to Year 8) Info: Christmas Jumper Day 

And finally
With best wishes to everyone for an enjoyable weekend.

Yours sincerely
David Sibson