I hope this newsletter finds you well and you are enjoying the start of the break. I wanted to start this newsletter by explaining that my communications to parents will change in the summer term. Rather than having a weekly newsletter containing lots of information, I am going to move towards communicating through a weekly blog as well as Instagram and Twitter pages where I can share more palatably all of the exciting things happening at HCH. Any big issues that I would like to highlight, such as our recent change in catering or when we are having a special event, will be sent as a separate specific communication. This should help with our clarity of communication and ensure you do not miss any vital information. Thank you to those of you who communicated your thoughts around communication to us in the recent parental survey. This feedback is greatly appreciated.
On Tuesday we suspended lessons in the afternoon to bring our houses together to bond, discuss their house values, make a house shield, and decide what they are going to do for their house community project. It was a great community event that involved all of the staff.
I would like to particularly thank the house captains for their hard work in leading their teams:
- Wright: Cameron Jones (11) and Vali Banter (6)
- Garrick: Zach Armstrong (12) and Zacharie Levesque (6)
- Halifax: Sammy Alim (12) and Rupert Turnbull (6)
- Twining: Bruno Hawkins (13) and Edward Harrison (6)
DELF assembly and Label FrancEducation Ceremony
On Wednesday we had a special assembly in the afternoon and were joined by Mr Stéphane Foin (Deputy Cultural Counsellor to the French Ambassador) who handed out the DELF exam certificates to the children. We are so proud of their results and achievements.
We continued to celebrate our commitment to French later into the evening and were joined by Mr Bertrand Buchwalter (Deputy Cultural Counsellor to the French Ambassador and Director of the French Institute) who presented us with the prestigious Label FrancEducation Award. The evening provided us with the opportunity to reflect on why our bilingualism and focus on French language and culture is so important. In these divisive times, we are proud to be able to focus on what connects us to others and celebrates our differences. Thank you to Julie and the French department for all of their effort in making HCH so unique.
Thank you, too, to those parents who joined us. It is so nice to get together on evenings such as these to break bread and share our stories. I hope to increase the frequency of these events in the future and am actively working on this with The Friends.
Easter Egg Hunt
We finished the term with a lovely Easter Egg Hunt for the Lower School on Wednesday. Thank you to Hannah and the parent volunteers who hid the eggs in advance and to Claire Weber and the Lower Years staff for helping to organise. Years 1-4 worked in teams to find colour-coded eggs, complete a word-search, and solve a riddle which revealed the location of the chocolate eggs. My boys absolutely loved it!
Our New Working Cat
We are supporting Battersea Dogs & Cats Home by adopting a working cat. The cat we are adopting is a 6-year-old black cat that Battersea named “Phoenix” who was abandoned following a house fire. They have confirmed that he is extremely shy but not aggressive.
He will have a job as a working cat, to help keep any pests in check. He is not a traditional house pet and we will be educating the students to give him space and to not pick him up or try to stroke him. As he is shy, it is unlikely that they will see him very much. He will be living in an outbuilding to the rear of the site.
We will be asking the children to select a permanent name for “Phoenix”. Ideas so far are:
- Halifax (after Earl of Halifax who built the mansion)
- Henry (King Henry VIII)
- Mr Boswell – Head of Pest Control
He arrives during April holidays so he can familiarise himself with the empty site. The Estates and Operations team will be making him feel comfortable. Please ask your children to let their form tutor know what they would like to call him. We look forward to welcoming him to the community.
I will be sending out some further communications over the Easter break about some specific operational issues. In the meantime, I wish you and your children a wonderful break.
With best wishes,