26 Apr 2019

WEEKLY MAILING

This week's mailing is:

Letters:

Notices:

Annual Data Check

The Annual Data Check forms will be sent on Wednesday 1 May via iSAMS email, please complete and submit by Friday 17 May. The Data Check is an online process that takes a few minutes to complete. If you have any queries regarding the process please email the Common Room Secretaries.

Exams

Exams are fast approaching. The dates and times for results days are as follows:

AS & A level – Thursday 15 August, results can be collected from Beech Court Sixth Form Centre from 8.30am to 11am; any results not collected will be sent first class post that afternoon.

IGCSE & GCSE – Thursday 22 August, results can be collected from Beech Court Sixth Form Centre from 8.30am to 11am; any results not collected will be sent first class post that afternoon.

As mentioned in a previous mailing all candidates will be able to access their results via 'My Abingdon' portal by 9am on results days. Post results services for A level candidates opens on Thursday 15 August from 10am to 12 noon that day and Friday 16 August, Monday 19, Tuesday 20, and Wednesday 21 August from 9am to 12 noon. This service is for priority remarks, and priority photocopy of scripts. If your son is a leaver and requires this service he 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 Thursday 19 September 2019. 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.

4th year exams

These take place next week (Monday 29 April to Friday 3 May).  The timetable for these exams is available on our website under www.abingdon.org.uk/examination_timetables.  We expect to be able to publish results to the Parent Portal in the final week of this half term at the latest (w/c 20 May) and the exams will no doubt form the starting point for many of your conversations during the Parents' Evening on Thursday 6 June.

5th year revision clinics

Revision leave for the 5th Year begins at 5.20pm on Friday 3 May.  Thereafter they will not be expected in school unless they have a public exam.  As previously advertised, the School runs a revision clinic programme for the first three weeks of revision leave (i.e. up to half term) and the details of this will be published to boys (and placed on the website) next week.  The scheme is entirely voluntary for the boys, but it does provide a structure for revision and offer guaranteed opportunities to access subject teachers to clear up any remaining concerns.

Parents of U6 boys – UK university offers: URGENT DEADLINE 

U6 boys who received replies from all of their universities by Sunday 31 March must reply making their firm and insurance choices by Wednesday 1 May at the very latest. If a reply is not made by that date, all offers are deemed by UCAS to have been declined and the offers will be removed. All boys who are still waiting to hear from a university have later deadlines: those who hear by Thursday 2 May need to make their choices by Thursday 6 June; those who hear by Thursday 6 June have until Thursday 20 June to reply with their choices.  To avoid any confusion over the date by which he should make his choices, each boy should refer to UCAS Track, where he will have been given his personal reply-by date.  Please contact caroline.taylor@abingdon.org.uk should you have any questions.

For L6 parents – Futures Fair, Monday 29 April

This coming Monday, 29 April, we are holding our inaugural Futures Fair at Abingdon School. This event, for L6 boys and their parents, provides the opportunity to talk to student ambassadors and representatives from over 36 exhibitors, including 30 of the UK's top universities, UCAS and several apprenticeship programmes. The Futures Fair is the perfect time for students to consider the broad range of UK degree courses and alternatives on offer before shortlisting places to visit or research further. All L6 boys are expected to attend this event, which takes place between 5pm and 7pm in the Sixth Form Centre, Beech Court. Parents are most welcome to join us.

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.  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!

For parents of current third and fourth year day boys – Boarding Taster Night 

Have you thought about boarding? 

There are a few spaces available for our third and fourth year day boys to experience a 'night of boarding' toward the end of this term. We hope that this will appeal to those who are considering boarding in the future years (from 2020 and beyond) so they can apply in good time to avoid disappointment. Places are limited depending on beds available, but if you are interested please complete this form or contact Lucy Hamerton by email.

Game addiction 

Parents may be interested in this free webinar given by Cam Adair who spoke to some of our students last term about game addiction

Parents' prayer group

The parents' prayer group will meet on Thursday 2 May at 8pm in the library of Abingdon Prep School. We will be praying for both the Prep and Senior schools. Refreshments will be provided. All welcome.

Music

This term marks the music department's exciting tour to Japan and Hong Kong and we would like to thank everyone for their support in making the tour possible.  Meanwhile, the Summer Term Music Calendar can be found here and highlights include the following:

  • Pre-tour Japan/HK planning meeting with parents – Thursday 9 May at 7pm, CMR                       
  • Solo Concert Platform No 5 – Wednesday 15 May at 6pm, CMR                 
  • Summer Concert with main school orchestras and bands – Thursday 23 May at 7pm, Amey Theatre       
  • Junior Instrumental Solo Competition – Wednesday 12 June at 6pm, CMR                      
  • Lower School Gala Concert – Thursday 20 June at 6pm, Amey Theatre      
  • Pre-tour playing day – Sunday 23 June at 1pm, Amey Theatre   
  • Orchestra and Big Band Pre-Tour Concert – Friday 28 June at 7pm, Amey Theatre                               
  • Japan/Hong Kong Orchestra and Big Band Tour Party departs – Sunday 30 June                                            

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 son's 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 29 June).  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.

Reminder – Sport priority on a Saturday 

In planning for this coming 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 Headmaster. Any request should be made well in advance, at least one week before the fixture and copied to the Director of Sport and PE, Pete Bignell. 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.

Reminder – 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 – adventure, courage and resilience coupled with service, loyalty and commitment.  The award carries a value of £250.  All current pupils of Abingdon School are eligible to apply.  Further information is available here

Reminder – 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.

Driving along Park Road and Park Crescent: 20mph

Parents are asked to adhere to the speed limit along these private roads.

News from Easter

Food menu for the coming week – Week 2