2 September 2016

Dear Parents, Colleagues, Governors and Boys of Abingdon, 

I hope you and your families have had an enjoyable and restful summer. I am very much looking forward to welcoming your sons back to Abingdon after the summer break as their new Headmaster. I look forward too to meeting you, be that at the various receptions at the start of term or on the touchline, at concerts, productions and so on.

I am excited at the prospect of leading Abingdon into its next phase and over the course of the term will be keen to hear parents’ views on the school. It is clear to me already that Abingdon is an exciting, ambitious and busy school. I hope you will be able to keep up to speed with events at school via the website and social media but I will also be writing a regular blog which you can access from the website. I will also be posting on Twitter at @Abingdon_Head.

I am delighted to be taking on a school that is in such good heart and students certainly had much to celebrate over the summer, achieving excellent results at both A level and GCSE. At A level, almost 40% of students gained A* or A grades in three or more subjects and at GCSE a record breaking 87.3% of passes were awarded an A* or A grade. Leavers have progressed to an impressive range of courses and universities.  Students will be taking up places at Oxford and Cambridge to study subjects including Engineering, Geography, PPE, Philosophy, Natural Sciences, Music, Maths, Classics, Materials Science and Biochemistry. The London universities have proved very popular with Imperial topping the list with nine boys studying courses including Medicine, Physics and Mechanical Engineering. The majority of students have gone on to Russell Group universities and places have also been won at prestigious US and European universities. At GCSE students have given themselves a superb platform for continued success at A level.

It is great to see that so many pupils have also been engaged in the wider aspects of school life over the summer, including trekking in Vietnam, a Geography field trip to India, sailing in Greece and CCF and DoE activities. I have been pleased to see so many pupils involved with pre-season training over the past few days and I wish them all the best on the sports field, and indeed with all activities, over the months ahead.

Much work has been undertaken on the school site over the summer break and I am grateful to the Director of Finance and Operations and all our support staff for their commitment and endeavour.

The extensive refurbishment of Greening Court ensures superb facilities for Classics, Geography and History, while a new Multi-Use Sports Area will not only provide four high-quality tennis courts but also very welcome hard-play space for pupils. The projection facilities in the Amey Theatre have been upgraded to a very impressive standard and we will look forward to welcoming students, staff, parents and the wider community to live broadcasts from the National Theatre and the Royal Opera House.

I am of course not the only person who is new to Abingdon this September and I am pleased to be able to welcome the following to the school:

Pete Bignell – Director of Sport
Joanna Bridgeworth – Head of English
Kim Briscoe – Teacher of Geography
Katherine Burrows – Teacher of English
Peter Chamen – Teacher of Geography and CCF Contingent Commander
Graham Cook – Teacher of Maths
Andrew Crisp – Teacher of French and German
David Domm – Teacher of Economics and Business
Julian Easterbrook – Teacher of Maths
Michael Frampton – Teacher of Chemistry
Matthew Gold – Director of Rugby
Charles Griffin – Teacher of English
Mark Johnson – Teacher of DT
Nathan Jones – Teacher of Maths
Joe McDonnell – Teacher of Drama
Linda Raabe-Marjot – Teacher of MFL
Jason Taylor – Teacher of Maths
Helen Whitworth – Teacher of RS
Peter Willis – Teacher of Physics
Deborah Di Nino – Language Assistant
Raquel Fraile-Munox – Language Assistant
Kimberley Poppmacher – Language Assistant
Netha Samarasinghe – Language Assistant

Looking forward to meeting you over the weeks ahead and in anticipation of a busy and successful term,

Yours faithfully

Michael Windsor

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