Headmaster’s Headlines – 03.03.23

Senior School
3 Mar 23

‘The School was large enough to preserve a family atmosphere; but not so large as to become Institutional…This family spirit for want of a better definition seems to have been universal through the ages, at any rate as far back as Dr Forster when he first took in Scholars to board with his family.’

This is a snippet of part of what I read to the School in Headmaster’s Assembly today from Blatchley-Hennah’s 1951 History of Sutton Valence School. It is interesting that many of the aspects of which we are so proud here today have been true for centuries. My theme in today’s address was ‘Books’ since yesterday was World Book Day, hence I read from our own School’s book! I also spoke about how we can all continue to learn more and more as we grow and that as much as phones and tablets can provide us with information (and indeed can now even present books to us), sometimes just sitting or lying down with a good old hard copy book can be a great thing for our mind and lives.

Tomorrow, we have an Open Day with many visitors coming to see the School. While I could give my usual presentation about the School, I could also probably just list this week’s activities and that would do the job. In chronological order so as not to show any favouritism (!): A victorious U16 National Hockey team, a trip to the theatre, the Chamber Choir singing in Ypres, an evening Kingdon Lecture by Paul Morland with over 100 in attendance, a very busy Third Form Options Evening, some great early Maths GCSE results, every student in the Juniors representing the School at Hockey/Netball, a fabulous Bake Sale in aid of UNICEF, an U18 National Rugby Semi Final…. and much more as well as all the ‘normal’ things that go on in a week here. What a place; it is no wonder so many people want to come.

Of course while we celebrate what currently goes on at the School, it is always a pleasure to hear from Old Suttonians and members of the community from the past. Next week I will be in London at the RAF Club for the 1940s/50s/60s annual OS lunch, and last weekend Mr Radford and I were in New York for two days meeting a great group of OS who live in the US. Hearing stories of the past and their interest in the present and future of the School is so refreshing.

Next week the highlight will I am sure be the SVS Foundation Quiz night on Friday (we will have over 220 people there) and I can assure you it will be a great occasion. May the best team win (although it’s the taking part that counts, isn’t it?). We will also welcome the Fifth Form students and parents to the A Level Options Evening on Wednesday 8th.

Have a great weekend.