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At the weekend I spent a little while looking over our Sunninghill Facebook page and I was absolutely overwhelmed with the amazing things our children have got up to this term. I am so proud of the opportunities on offer to our children and I am so grateful to all the staff who work so hard to provide these opportunities. If you have a few minutes over the festive period, please do take some time to look over our Facebook page too.

We have just returned from a beautiful and incredibly moving Church Service at St. Peter’s. The children spoke and performed beautifully and made me extremely proud. Thank you to Rev’d Magee, Mrs Nolan-Stone and all the staff who put together such a wonderful service to end our term.

Yesterday was a fabulous day as it was Christmas Day at Sunninghill! We started the day with our Celebration Assembly, where we awarded children sport and music colours, academic certificates and certificates for the most house points for each of our school values – Commitment, Compassion, Creativity and Courage.

Junior Prep were lucky enough to have a visit from Father Christmas and his Elves and our Parent and Toddler group also held their Christmas party. Carols under the staircase followed, where parents joined in with the carol singing. We were then treated to the most incredible Christmas lunch from Kerry and the team. In the afternoon, whilst Junior Prep enjoyed their party in the hall, the Senior Prep enjoyed an ice skating trip to Brewery Square – even the torrential rain did not stop the fun! Our day ended with our wonderful PTFA Christmas Fayre – this year with both visiting stallholders, with all their wonderful gifts, and children’s games and activities run by our Form 7’s and 8’s.

It really was a wonderful day and there are so many photos we can’t possibly include them all in here! Please do take a look at our Facebook page where you will find the photos!

This year, we held a Christmas door competition for all the forms. Competition was very fierce and Jean Walker, our  Chair of Governors, and I had a tough decision choosing which door was the best! In the end we had to choose a winner from Junior and Senior Prep with Form 4 and Form 6 coming out on top. (Do scan the QR code on the Form 4 door to watch the fabulous rendition of Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer!) Form 2 and Form 5 were also highly commended! A great show of creativity and teamwork from all the pupils!

On Monday we held our beautiful Christingle Service. It was so lovely to sit together as a school and reflect quietly together. Thank you to all our parents who made the Christingles in the morning.

Last Friday night, we were treated to a fabulous Senior Prep formal concert. Set in our intimate drawing room, with the fire crackling, we listened to wonderful performances on the piano, violin, clarinet, bass clarinet, trumpet, harp and even the drums. Our singers also sang beautifully. It was a very special evening.

Last Friday afternoon we were also delighted to welcome guests from Glencairn Residential Home who came for afternoon tea with their buddies. It was lovely for our Form 4 parents to also meet their buddies! Kerry put on a fabulous afternoon tea, while the children entertained their guests with games, music and readings of the biographies they had written about their buddies. This community project is so important and both the Glencairn residents and our own students get so much out of these friendships.

It’s been a busy week in school with some fabulous artwork happening in Form 5. Form 3 finished their Roman topic off in a celebratory style today with a Roman feast complete with Roman soldiers, Senates and slaves all present. The children grazed on grapes, bread and ‘wine’ before making speeches and playing some banquet games. Well done Form 3 for thoroughly embracing your Roman topic this term!

Wednesday was also House comps. The teams played brilliantly for both rugby and hockey. Mrs Wilson says; ‘The Senior girls played out a competitive and exciting interhouse hockey competition. Some very close matches with everyone involved and it was good to see the determination to win. All four goalkeepers were called into action with some impressive saves. Aria, Rosa, Vira and Katy. Results for the hockey were 1st Purbeck, 2nd Ridgeway, 3rd Maumbury and 4th Frome.’

On Wednesday night we said goodbye to our governors with a leaving dinner, as we now officially become part of the ILG Group. The governors were presented with a card, signed by every pupil in the school, and some of our parents were kind enough to donate money so that we can purchase a friendship bench as a thank you for all they have done for the school over the past few years. On a personal note I am very grateful for all their support, especially over the past year.

We also say goodbye to Marielle Smith who leaves us this term. I am sure you would all like to join me in thanking Marielle for all she has done teaching French to all our pupils over the past 18 months. We wish her all the very best in the future.

We look forward to welcoming Mrs Audrey Derrick to Sunninghill next term. Mrs Derrick joins us from Hanford School and she is very excited to be joining our team!

Finally all that remains for me to do is wish you all a very Merry Christmas. I look forward to seeing you all in the New Year!

David Newberry

Author David Newberry

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