Message from the Head
‘Do you know where you’re going?’
This is a question I heard our senior students asking our new pupils so often on our induction day that I made it the theme of my opening assembly of the new academic year.
I endeavoured to share some guidelines that all our students might like to reflect upon as they think about their aspirations and goals for the year ahead. I also emphasised the support that they will receive from those around them; not just their teachers, tutors and so on, but also from one another and the positive role that each of them can play in supporting their friends and classmates.
I also pointed to the remarkable longevity of the School and the fact that our new pupils now have the chance to shape and be part of that history.
We also start the year with a new-look Senior Leadership Team and you can read about the team and their responsibilities here. I’d like in particular to welcome Mrs Keevil, who joins us as Deputy Head Pastoral and Designated Safeguarding Lead from Epsom College. I know she is looking forward to meeting many of you this term.
From my perspective, our students have made a very positive start to the new academic year. Despite the soaring temperatures, which I have to say would have been more welcome on the beaches of Cornwall a month ago, they’ve displayed enthusiasm and endeavour as they have got underway with lessons and Other Half activities.
I’m looking forward to seeing many of them take part in the training matches that take place this weekend as the rugby season gets underway. It’s also the start of the Rugby World Cup of course, a tournament I will be approaching – like many England supporters – more in hope than expectation…
Best wishes, Mike Windsor
- To parents of Lower Sixth students – An introduction to Sixth Form Life letter
- To parents of Lower Sixth students – Meet the Tutor evening letter
- To Parents of Lower Sixth students – Duke of Edinburgh Award Gold Level
- To Parents of Lower Sixth students – Duke of Edinburgh Award Gold Canoeing Expeditions
- To parents of Third year students – Meet the Tutor evening letter
- To parents of Fourth year students – Meet the Tutor evening letter
- Independent reading books for 3rd Year, from Dr Gardner and Mr Coolin:
- The English department and the Library encourage all students in the 3rd Year to carry a book for personal reading at all times; this will help them take advantage of opportunities for voluntary reading, including during free time.
- From Monday 18 September, all 3rd Year students must bring a personal reading book for the weekly English lesson in which time is devoted to silent reading and will be sanctioned if they do not.
- This document provides a brief overview of how Abingdon School encourages and supports independent reading in 3rd year; it also indicates how parents can help. For more detail, including on the importance of independent reading for academic success and wellbeing, see this document. Students and parents can view reading lists, which are reviewed and updated frequently, through the school library’s online management system.
- From the Head of Drama, Mr Phillips:
- I am delighted to announce that this year’s Middle School drama production will be an exciting version of one of Shakespeare’s best ever plays – Twelfth Night. This will be a really fun, dynamic production with modern tinges and festive frivolity!
- Auditions for the show will take place on Tuesday 19 and Wednesday 20 September at 5.15pm until 7pm in A321 (Drama Studio, top floor of Arts Centre). If pupils are interested in auditioning, they should please sign up on the sheet outside the drama office (on the middle floor of the Arts Centre, outside the A218 drama studio). They do not need to prepare anything before the audition, it will be in workshop format.
- Pupils who audition will need to be able to rehearse on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings from 5.15-7pm until the show finishes on Friday 1 December 2023, please. They may not be called to every rehearsal, but they will need to be available if called and be able to be collected from school in the evening after rehearsals. Rehearsal schedules will be published well in advance so cast members will know when they’ll be needed. There are a good number of roles in the show, but depending on numbers who audition it may not be possible to cast everyone.
- Cast members will also need to be available for a Sunday rehearsal on 26 November 2023, as well as the two evening performances on Thursday 30 November and Friday 1 December 2023.Please do email [email protected] if you have any questions.
- For Parents of 5th Year Pupils: Morrisby Profile Programme – FINAL REMINDER. As referenced in previous Weekly Mailings and emails, should you wish to opt your child out of the Morrisby Profile Programme, email Michael Triff at [email protected] no later than midnight on Monday 11 September 2023; otherwise, your child will be enrolled in the Programme and the £88 charge will be made. We regret that refunds will not be possible after this date. To read more about the Morrisby Profile Programme, go to bottom of this web page: https://www.abingdon.org.uk/academic/career-guidance.
- To parents of Fourth Year students – Duke of Edinburgh Award Bronze Level
- To parents of Fourth Year students – Duke of Edinburgh Award Bronze Canoeing Expeditions
- Independent reading books for 1st and 2nd Year, from Dr Gardner and Mr Coolin:
- The English department and the Library encourage all students in Lower School to carry a book for personal reading at all times; this will help them take advantage of opportunities for voluntary reading, including during free time.
- This document provides a brief overview of how Abingdon School encourages and supports independent reading in Lower School; it also indicates how parents can help. For more detail, including on the importance of independent reading for academic success and wellbeing, see this document. Students and parents can view reading lists, which are reviewed and updated frequently, through the school library’s online management system.
- Reading and Research lessons for 1st and 2nd Years. All 1st and 2nd Year students go to the library for a Reading and Research lesson once every two weeks. For an overview of the purpose and lesson programme, see this document.
- Absence and Registration:
- If a pupil is away from School, a parent should phone 01235 849031 to report their absence.
- If a pupil arrives late for any reason they must report in person to the Deputy Head Pastoral’s office to register there.
- If a pupil has to go home during the day because of illness, they must first report to the School Health Centre. Parents must phone in the next day if their child is still unwell.
- If you prefer you can email [email protected].
- Save the Date: Abingdon Open Day will be held on Saturday 30 September. All students, except First Years and Third Years are expected to attend, unless they are required for a specific activity. Any requests for absence should be made in writing to your child’s Head of House. Further details to follow shortly.
- Relationships & Sex Education (RSE) and the PSHCE Programme of Study for students 2023-24
- Sporting – Welcome & Key Information. All key information around the logistics for Sport & PE, including fixtures and team selection can be found here. The link to the Sport section of the website can be found here, with fixtures located here.
- Drama – Other Half Opportunities 2023-24 Letter
- Residential Trips for academic year 2023-24 (reminder from the end of last term). Attached is the updated trips matrix. As usual, regrettably, with a plethora of trips available, avoiding clashes between trips is not always possible for each student, as there are many constraints to work with. Enquiries should be addressed to [email protected] please.
- Reminder for all students who have music lessons that lessons will start from Monday 11 September. Students can check this on Scheduler from Friday 8 September.
- Please see here the Michaelmas term music newsletter outlining some of the key events and introducing the members of the Music Department.
- See other upcoming Music Events
- For parents of students who use the Joint Bus Service (JBS):
- It has come to our attention that the Vectare ‘Bus Travel Guide’ is inaccurate for some routes. We have therefore taken the decision to remove it from our website. Please refer to the live Vectare timetable ( https://jbs.vectare.co.uk/ ) to check routes and times. We have been reassured by Vectare that if any changes to timings or bus stops planned for the future are made, users will be notified via email, and a notification banner will be posted on the vectare website. For any immediate changes eg road closures/road traffic incidents etc, parents will be notified via text and email.
- OX14 Learning Partnership Upcoming Events
- News from the week
- Food menu for the following week – Week 2
- School calendar
- Weekly mailing archive
- Box Office:
- Christian Garrick and the Budapest Cafe Orchestra – Saturday 9 September, 7.30pm
- An Evening with Bryan Habana – Tuesday 12 September, 7.30pm. We are excited to be able to offer you an opportunity to spend an evening in the company of a true rugby legend – Bryan Habana OIS. In the middle of this year’s Rugby World Cup, Bryan will talk to us about his career, the Rugby World Cup and much more. There will also be an opportunity for an audience Q&A in the second half of the evening. Suitable for ages 18+. Please visit our website to book tickets.
- See other upcoming Box Office events