22 Apr 2016


This weeks mailing is:

Letter from the Head (PDF)



Exams are fast approaching. The dates and times for results days are as follows:
  • AS & A level – Thursday 18 August, results can be collected from the CMR from 8.30am to 11am, any results not collected will be sent first class post that afternoon.
  • IGCSE & GCSE – Thursday 25 August, results can be collected from the CMR from 8.30am to 11am, any results not collected will be sent first class post that afternoon.

Some boys may not be able to make it in to school to collect results due to living abroad or being on holiday at the time, therefore they can arrange for them to be emailed directly. Please ask your son to send an email to [email protected], stating their name, candidate number and the email address(s), they would like the results sent to. Post results services for A level candidates opens on Thursday 18 August from 10am to 12 noon that day and Friday 19 August, Monday 22, Tuesday 23, and Wednesday 24 August from 9am to 12 noon. This service is for priority remarks, and priority photocopy of scripts. If you are a leaver and require this service you will need to pay in advance by cheque or cash. Post results services for IGCSE and GCSE candidates and all non priority A level candidates opens at the beginning of the Michaelmas term in September. The deadline for requesting a standard remark is 20 September 2016. The breakdown of fees will be included in your results pack. Please note that remark requests cannot come from parents or teachers. The candidates must make this request themselves and are required to sign a document that states they are aware that the mark can go down as well as up.

Sleeping and exercise during the exam term – advice from the Deputy Head (Pastoral)

As exams loom, the importance of rest and good sleep becomes paramount. Can I take this opportunity to reiterate our advice on sleeping and using screens before bed? All the research shows very clearly that being on screens before going to sleep means that the sleep you get is not as deep and therefore doesn't have the full recuperative effect.  I am sure your son will tell you that he sleeps fine, but this is unlikely to be true, and would be evident were he able to measure his REM.  We would recommend a “screentime” ban 50 minutes before trying to go to sleep. (Please refer to my earlier mailing with Pastoral Advice to Parents for articles and further research on this.) To reiterate, we would advise no screens in your son's bedroom after an agreed time (I would suggest 9.30pm or 10pm.) However beware, he might challenge you to do the same…

Equally, it is very important that your son keeps up his endorphin levels and resists the temptation to be permanently chained to his revision. For this reason we would recommend that he keeps exercising. Hopefully this will happen through his Other Half commitments, so if there is doubt, do encourage him to continue with these. Do also encourage him to go out and exercise, whether that be a brisk walk, a run, a game of football or touch rugby, or even an ergo to show support for the Boat Club!

Sport priority on a Saturday – reminder

In planning for this term, please observe this extract from the Parents' Handbook:

Boys are expected to be available for matches against other schools unless specific permission has been sought from and granted by the Head. Any request should be made well in advance, at least one week before the fixture and copied to the Director of Sport and PE, Andrew Hall. Abingdon has a strong tradition of participating in interschool fixtures across the age ranges. In recent years we have strengthened our fixture list, and been more ambitious in the schools we have been playing, and we are putting out more teams. Please avoid asking for leave of absence. We are keen the boys practise and play together, that the boys develop an allegiance to the School, and that our opponents have the best opposition we can provide.

Drinks Reception in honour of Miss Felicity Lusk – Wednesday 29 June – 5:45pm.

Prior to the Summer Concert – All members of the Abingdon community are warmly invited to join Miss Lusk at a drinks reception at Oxford’s Divinity School before the annual summer concert that takes place at the Sheldonian Theatre later that evening. We hope that you will be able to join us on this special evening to wish Miss Lusk farewell. Please note: tickets for the two events should be booked separately. For the Drinks Reception please go to the relevant section of the Box Office.

Summer Concert 2016 – Wednesday 29 June – 7pm – Sheldonian Theatre, Oxford

Following a drinks reception to bid farewell to Miss Lusk, this finale to the musical year will include performances from all our senior bands and orchestras: Big Band, Wind and Brass Bands, Chamber and First Orchestras. Come and hear Music Scholars, Rossini’s Thieving Magpie Overture and Saint-Saëns’ Second Piano Concerto with Leon Wu as soloist. Please note: tickets for the two events should be booked separately. For the Summer Concert please go to the relevant section of the Box Office.

Music Notes

Please refer to the Music Calendar for information about our music events this term. Music Newsletter gives more detailed information.

Abingdon News

The latest edition of the School's newsletter, Abingdon News, has been given to your son to bring home this week. Boys who are full boarders will have a copy posted home. The newsletter can also be viewed online. Any feedback regarding school publications is very welcome, please to reply email [email protected].

The John Rayson (OA 1942) Award

The John Rayson Award is a memorial to the late John Rayson (1924-2012), an Old Abingdonian (1942) who gave a lifetime of service to Abingdon School. The award will be given to a current pupil to help fund a personal project/experience that embodies the defining characteristics of John Rayson himself – adventure, courage and resilience coupled with service, loyalty and commitment. The award carries a value of £500.  All current pupils of Abingdon School are eligible to apply.  

ASPA / OA Club Travel Awards

ASPA and the OA Club have joined forces to offer travel awards to upper and lower sixth pupils undertaking some form of travel and activity either during the summer or in their gap year. The awards range from £50 to £500 depending on the activity and its benefits. Further details, and the conditions attached to the awards, can be found on the school website.

Return of textbooks

Abingdon is keen to ensure that parents are not charged erroneously for textbooks that have in fact been returned. Please assist your son in following the standard procedure we have been operating for many years. Heads of department need to ensure that there are sufficient books for September, so they need to have your sons' books back before the end of this term. Many departments number each book, and record the book number. Boys are encouraged to put their name in the book, too. When the issued copy is returned by your son the head of department then knows not to charge parents for the book. If the pupil returns a copy belonging to someone else then his parents are billed for the 'missing' copy and the original 'owner' is credited with having returned his book. For boys not on revision leave, textbooks are collected by their class teacher during lesson time, but pupils who are absent for any reason need to ensure that their books are returned to their teacher before the term ends. Boys on revision leave (fifth and upper sixth) should return their books directly to the department which issued them at the latest by the Saturday before the term ends (i.e. Saturday 2 July).  Some departments have labelled boxes close to the department office in which books may be left. If there is no area, boys should return the book directly to a member of staff who teaches that subject, and not just leave the book where they hope it will be found. In these  circumstances it might be advisable to get a note from the member of staff confirming the receipt of the book(s). Parents should note that returning books after the end of term, including on results day, will not necessarily be sufficient to prevent a charge being placed on the bill – many heads of department will already have incurred a cost by having to reorder books in advance of the new school year.

Abingdon Box Office

Sleuth – Thursday & Friday, 5 & 6 May at 7pm – An entirely student led production performed and directed by Thomas Cope and Charlie Macpherson. On his sprawling country estate, successful crime novelist Andrew Wyke squares up to out of work actor Milo Tindle who has stolen his wife's heart.  The production is suitable for 5th years and above and there will be a collection for the mental health charity Mind post-performance. Tickets are free.

Simon Currie's 6plus1 – Friday 20 May 2016 – 7pm – 6plus1 is a group of 7 musicians who tour the UK in arts centres & theatres, mixing jazz, funk, rock and classical styles with two saxophonists doubling woodwind, two trumpets, trombone, tuba and drums. Doors will open at 6:30pm. Local pupils who have been involved in jazz workshops during the afternoon will be playing from 6.30pm, and accompanying on one piece during the evening. Tickets are now bookable.

Food menu for the coming week – Week 2