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This week, we welcomed some of the ILG Head Office team to Sunninghill – Vernon Hales, the Deputy Chair of the Advisory Board and Justin Spanswick, Director of Education. They came to visit to talk through our development for the forthcoming year and to chat to pupils, parents and staff. Working across many schools, and having both worked as headmasters, and ISI inspectors, they confirmed what a very special place Sunninghill is. They were impressed by the warmth of the community, the respect and kindness shown by the children to each other, and in the academic, musical, enrichment and sporting opportunities that Sunninghill delivers. They visited the Sailing Academy in the week that Sunninghill brought home the gold medal from the Millfield Sailing Regatta. I was incredibly proud of our school and very excited for the future for all our children.

Justin and Vernon also came along to our assembly on Friday, and were impressed with how much we celebrate the achievements of our pupils. This week our Well Done Winners were Aiden, Juliette S, Remi, Rory, Sasha-Mae, Ted and all of the U10/U11 Cricket team.  Orlando, Elsie, Hussain, Arthur, Max, Abel, Leo, Daisy and Andreas were our Academic Excellence Winners this week.

Juliette S and Callisto won the Courage award this week, Mina and Daisy the Commitment award, Violet and Manu the Creativity award and Emily P and Seb the Compassion award. Well done to you all.

We also celebrated our fabulous sailors, who won the cup at the Millfield Sailing Regatta at Portland Harbour on Wednesday. Our team came first overall with Will and Freddie receiving gold medals, and Scarlett and Leo the bronze medals. An absolutely fantastic result!

Form 3 also impressed this week as they experienced their first residential at Rock And Rapid Adventures in South Molton, Devon. The children canoed, paddle boarded, surfed, went on the high ropes, and went climbing and bouldering. Mr Stazicker said the children showed incredible courage, commitment and compassion as they looked after each other and put themselves out of their comfort zones to try something new. Great teamwork and fantastic resilience. Their happy faces says it all!

We are very proud of our residential programme that begins in Form 3, that we believe plays a vital role in our pupil’s development. The emphasis is not only on fun and adventure but the development of personal skills such as organisation and independence.

Thank you to Mr Stazicker and Mrs Baker for ensuring our children had a truly wonderful time. They came back completely exhausted but I’m sure with a lot of stories to tell and memories to keep forever.

On Monday we were invited to attend a Junior Orchestral day at Bryanston School. The children joined other local prep schools and performed as part of a large orchestra. Mrs Nolan-Stone says:
‘It was a wonderful day and they all learnt so much throughout the day. It was also fantastic to hear former pupil Astral perform and to be joined by Will in the orchestra on double bass. Thank you to all Bryanston staff.’

Our nursery is going from strength to strength and I would like to welcome our newest member of our nursery staff, Ms Lorna Skinner. Lorna joined us last week and her first day was our Open Morning – she loved her first day welcoming all our prospective families and we are very happy that she is part of our Sunninghill family. Next week we have another new nursery starter – Alfie who will be joining us in Fledglings.

Our Fledgling children have been enjoying their specialist lessons this week – with their music lesson with Mrs Nolan-Stone and planting sunflowers with Liz. They are settling in so well and my thanks to all the nursery team for working so hard with all the Nursery children, old and new, creating such a fabulous, nurturing environment for them all.

It was fantastic to see our Form 8 entrepreneurs hard at work yesterday as they invited the school community to a tennis event, to raise money for their projects, and to do some market research as they talked about the business products that they will be selling at our Summer Fayre on Saturday 6th July.

Our Lion’s Lair project, Sunninghill’s version of Dragon’s Den, is run each year for our Form 8’s. Each team has to learn about how to set up a business – from coming up with commercially viable ideas and researching their target markets, to sales and customer relations. They will make a presentation of their experience to a panel of judges (the “Lions”), professional women and men from a range of backgrounds.

Our 4 teams all hope to raise the most money, and all of the profits will be given to their chosen charity. Thank you to everyone who supported them on Friday. I was very impressed with their sales techniques! We hope you will support them at the Summer Fayre!

Thank you to our fabulous Form 4 girls, Mabel, Martha and Heidi, who came up with the idea of a breaktime craft club, inviting all the children from Junior Prep. This week was chalk drawing and the children had a great time – even the Form 8 girls who also joined in the fun! Next week they hope to be making daisy chains – lets hope Ant and the team haven’t just mowed the lawns!!

Next week is exam week for our Senior Prep, and we hope the children will be well rested ready to do their very best next week. I can’t quite believe it is just one more week until half term! This term is literally flying by!

Have a wonderful weekend!


David Newberry

Author David Newberry

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