27 Mar 2020


This week’s mailing is:


End of Term Reports

These should be posted, for 1st to 4th and L6th, to the parent portal by the end of Friday 27 March.  Because of the changes in public exams for 5th and U6th parents’ reports will be sent by the end of Friday 3 April.

Start of next term

Term begins on Tuesday 21 April, with registration and tutor time at 8.35am.  Normal Tuesday lessons, using Week A timetable, begin with period 2 at 9.55am.

School Calendar

Given the number of calendar changes, owing to the impact of Covid-19, please continue to consult the School Calendar.  Please wait till Monday before downloading or printing off the calendar. Subsequent amendments will be shown clearly.  Thank you for your patience.

Parents may wish to consult the term dates page now to remind themselves of the beginnings and ends of terms and half-terms.

Second Year Parents’ Evening: Thursday 23 April 

If boys are still being taught on-line on this date in the first week of next term, parents’ evening appointments will be conducted via Zoom, in the room in which your son is taught his Zoom lesson.  Please wait outside the room if the teacher is engaged with another parent.  The teacher will then invite you in.  More details will follow nearer the time.

Supervision for sons of key workers

Many thanks to those parents who filled in the form in last week’s weekly mailing regarding this. You should have now all been contacted directly by Adam Jenkins to confirm what days you need your son to be in school next week. If you did not complete the online form and are a key worker who needs your son to be in school, please use the email address [email protected] to contact us as soon as possible. Please note that over the holiday period the supervision of all pupils will be taking place on the Prep School site.

Supporting your son’s wellbeing during the coronavirus period

We are keen to support your son’s wellbeing during this difficult and anxious period. All the support information has been collated and can be found on their firefly page under: School life/ Wellbeing/ Coronavirus.

I would also like to draw your attention to this set of powerpoint slides which have been drawn together by psychologists in Oxford who are keen to support students at this time. Do take the time to look through these resources as it has some helpful techniques and ideas for your sons.  The online safety organization, ThinkUKnow, have also pulled together some resources for parents to use over the Easter break with a view to discussing online safety with their children. The link is here if you would like to make use of these home activity packs.

In the meantime should you have any concerns about your son’s wellbeing please raise these with your son’s Tutor, Housemaster, Head of Section, Mr Hindley (Deputy Head pastoral), the Health Centre or myself.

With very best wishes at this challenging time.  Paul Gooding, Head of Wellbeing

Useful links for parents during the coronavirus period:

Middle School Scholars’ Newsletter

The Mercers’ annual wellbeing survey

The Mercers’ annual wellbeing survey has been postponed due to the coronavirus.  Further details about when this will take place will be shared with parents as soon as we are informed. This is now likely to take place in the Michaelmas or Lent Term 2021. Best wishes Paul Gooding, Head of Wellbeing


  • Remote instrumental lessons from Abingdon’s Visiting Music Teachers are now fully underway and are proving to be highly successful, even at this early stage. We believe that the music teaching and learning through the zoom app will become easier as it beds down and will provide new opportunities for a self-starting and increased independence.
  • Please note that the Summer Term Music Calendar can found here.
  • Congratulations to David Bicarregui and Joe Bradley, who despite the cancellation of last week’s Spring Concert, were still able to perform their concertos at an impromptu recording with a somewhat reduced orchestra. David and Joe played the first movements respectively of Chopin’s 2nd Piano Concerto and Elgar’s Cello Concerto. We hope that these can soon be enjoyed by the wider school community through the School’s website.

Abingdon Box Office:

In these unusual times, many of us are now missing our regular visits to the theatre and live screenings. We are so pleased to be able to share some exciting news that will hopefully help fill the gaps in your cultural calendar.

The National Theatre and Royal Shakespeare Company have just announced that they are making some of their past productions available to watch online, for free! The Royal Opera House have also launched a similar resource this week: ‘From our House to your House’, which includes productions and behind the scenes footage. For more information on what these institutions are offering, please visit the links below:

We hope this goes some way towards keeping theatre and the Arts accessible to as many of you as possible, and we look forward to welcoming you back to the Amey Theatre in the not-to-distant future.

  • In need of an adventure fix while we can’t leave the house? Our friends at the Banff Mountain Film Festival UK & Ireland tour are putting together evenings of inspirational films that can be enjoyed from the sofa! Check out the first ‘home screening’ collection of adventure films from around the world – from Hawaii, to Tasmania, to the Swiss Alps – and there’s even a prize draw too. See www.banff-uk.com/watch – we hope you enjoy the show!  #Banff2020 #HandpickedAdventure

News from the Week:

Please follow this link to read a message from the Headmaster and to view the Lent Term in pictures.

Here is the link to previous weekly mailings.