6 Sep 2019


This week’s mailing is:



Rewards and Sanctions

At the end of last term there was a review of Rewards and Sanctions. It was felt that Prep Detention in period 8 was not working effectively due to pupils’ Other Half commitments, therefore we have abolished Prep Detention as it used to be.

To replace it we have introduced two new systems –

1. Academic Concerns.
  • These are registered on the system by staff if a pupil has missed prep, or if a pupil’s work shows a lack of effort.
  • If an Academic Concern is issued, the tutor and housemaster will be notified, as will the relevant Head of the Academic Department.
  • Repeated academic concerns will trigger a Thursday night Academic Detention. This will run from 5.20 to 6.30pm, but is solely for academic issues. Friday Detention (from 5 to 7pm) remains as it has been, but is a sanction for poor behaviour, whether in class or outside the classroom, rather than for poor academic work.
  • The guidelines are: 3 Academic concerns in a week = Thursday Night Detention; 4 Academic Concerns in a rolling two week period = Thursday Night Detention.
2. Behavioural Concerns.
  • These are registered by staff, and are a tier below a Housemaster’s Summons.
  • Again, the tutor and housemaster, and the relevant Head of Department, will be notified if a Concern is issued.
  • Housemaster’s Summons remain as they were. These are for behaviour that is sanctionable, but yet not of sufficient severity for a Friday Detention.
  • If Behavioural Concerns and/or Housemaster’s Summons build up then it could lead to a Friday Detention. Housemasters, in consultation with tutors and teachers, will decide when and if a Friday Detention is appropriate.

Hopefully these changes will improve our systems, and are logical, clear and fair. The pupils have been notified and asked to feedback any issues or questions they have to Mr Hindley, housemaster, or tutor, or to their School Council Rep. Our full Behaviour, Rewards and Sanctions Policy is available at https://www.abingdon.org.uk/school_policies. If you have any queries, please do contact Mr Hindley on [email protected]. Many thanks.

Change to distribution of Abingdon News – the School’s termly magazine

The latest issue of Abingdon News, September 2019 edition No. 51 is now available to view online.  Hard copies of the magazine will be given to boys in the First to Third Years to take home. Boys in Fourth Year and above will no longer receive hard copies but boys and their families can use the link above to view the magazine.  If you would rather receive a hard copy then boys can collect one from outside Common Room.  Any feedback is always welcome to [email protected]

OA Career Networking Reception

The OA Club warmly invites parents working in the following sectors to join OAs at a career networking reception on Wednesday 2 October 2019.

  • Public Sector
  • Technology
  • Environmental
  • Finance
  • Investment
  • Law

This event will be held at the National Liberal Club, Whitehall Place, London SW1A 2HE from 6pm to 8.30pm.  Please register your interest via this form. For further information, please email Alison Lester [email protected].

ASPA 3rd Year Parents

Tickets are now on sale for the ASPA Mexican parent event which we are planning for Saturday 5 October.  Please don’t worry about getting a full table together before booking your tickets. We will seat everyone (where possible) within their son’s House – this information will be gathered on the google form which will appear once the booking has been made and also includes information on special dietary requirements and access needs.”

For Parents of 5th Year Pupils: Morrisby Aspirations Programme 

You will have previously received an email about the Morrisby Aspirations career profiling programme designed and delivered by the Morrisby Organisation. This Programme is operated by Abingdon at a cost to parents and on an opt-out basis. The cost for a 5th Year pupil to participate is £80 (including VAT), which will be charged via your next school bill. To read more about the Morrisby Aspirations Programme, go to the Career Guidance page. If you do not wish for your son to participate in this Programme, you may opt-out. To opt-out, a parent or guardian must email Michael Triff at [email protected] no later than midnight on Friday 13 September 2019; otherwise, your son will be enrolled automatically in the Programme and the £80 charge will be made. We regret that refunds will not be possible after this date.


  • Michaelmas Term Calendar – I am delighted to welcome parents and friends to this term’s music calendar which can be found here. We have a rich range of events – concerts, masterclasses, competitions, quizzes – and everyone is welcome to attend.
  • Alexander Technique – Some eagle-eyed parents have already spotted that Alexander Technique classes return to the department after a pause of a few years with a new teacher, Cathie Kidger, who also teaches at the Dragon School and MCS. These individual weekly lessons will work on the same basis as instrumental ones and are designed to help musicians and anyone who wants a better awareness of good posture and how to avoid tension in day-to-day activities, including musical performance. Please click here to see more information and write to [email protected] if you would like to enrol your son.
  • Joint Choral Society this term – for Adults and Pupils – for Sunday 17 November – An invitation is extended to parents and friends to join our JCS performance on Sunday 17 November. Pupils from both Abingdon and St Helen’s come together to sing a wonderful modern choral work, Gjeilo’s Sunrise Mass under the direction of Abingdon’s Chapel Choir Director, Adam Treadaway. Rehearsals will be at Abingdon School’s CMR from 6 to 7pm on Wednesdays, starting next Wednesday 11 September. Do please consider joining us – I know it will be a great experience for everyone!

Behaviour on the Buses

I am told that the Joint Bus Service is the biggest school bus service in the country, with over 1100 pupils from The Manor, SHSK and Abingdon using the bus service: Abingdon alone has over 650 boys using the Joint Bus Service.

Most behave impeccably but there can be moments of poor behaviour, ranging from nagging irritations, such as the persistent leaving of litter on the floor and use of bad language, to the safety issue of boys not wearing seat belts. Inevitably the people who tend to bear the brunt of this bad behaviour are the drivers. The boys know our expectations of them, but please reiterate to your sons that they are representatives of Abingdon School and that they must behave accordingly. Equally it is a requirement, not an option, that they wear seat belts.

In the course of that conversation could you please also remind them that if they cannot adhere to the requisite standards of behaviour, then they will receive a Friday Detention. If they continue to misbehave, we reserve the right to ban them from the buses for a period of time, probably 3 to 5 days in the first instance. The level of the sanction will obviously be dependent on the severity of the offending behaviour.

Exam Remarks

Parents are asked to remind their sons that the deadline for exam remarks is fast approaching. Requests should be made by 3pm on Thursday 19 September, and any requests received after will not be processed. Rebecca Cottam and Heidi Clarke will be available in the Exams office in Park Lodge for pupils to make application. To contact Rebecca or Heidi please email [email protected] or call 01235 849035.

Weekly Mailing

We aim to send an email each Friday at 4pm which provides a link to that day’s Weekly Mailing. All editions of Weekly Mailing may be found on the website, under the Information tab. We would encourage those who missed the link to view last Friday’s Weekly Mailing, which was the first mailing of the term.

Dropping off and collection of pupils by car

Parents are reminded not to drop off or collect boys from the Park Lodge area, or Lower Field car park, please. This is because the area is already busy with pedestrians, pupils and school traffic. We therefore ask that parents drop and collect boys in Park Crescent, operating a one-way system travelling clockwise past the private housing to the west of Albert Park, and ending up near the boarding houses. The Crescent ends at a cross roads, where halting is obligatory on these private roads. Wheel clamping operates on Park Road and Park Crescent, so you are advised not to leave a car unattended.

Abingdon Box Office

Robert Harris in Conversation – Monday 9 September at 7.30pm

Margaret Atwood: Live In Cinemas – Tuesday 10 September at 7.30pm

NT Live: Fleabag – Thursday 12 September at 7pm

News from the week:

Food menu for the coming week: Week 2