“The Kenelm spirit is alive and strong...”
did you know...? Kenelm opened in September 1928, ten years before its neighbour, Aldhelmsted East. It was originally due to be named Digby, after the husband of the School’s founder, however following an objection by the Post Office authorities, it was decided that Kenelm was a very favourable alternative. Kathy Pinsent is the tenth Housemistress in Kenelm’s 86 year history; the house colour is peacock blue and the house motto is ‘Small Things Grow Out of Harmony.’
At the end of February, the newly refurbished Kenelm becomes home to 55 girls, three members of staff and one dog. The house (formerly Aldhelmsted West) has been carefully renovated keeping many of the much-loved period features. The new Kenelm has space for 70 girls. Spacious study bedrooms have been created for the Lower Sixth and the younger girls will be living in bright and airy three and four bed dorms. Housemistress Kathy Pinsent shares some of her memories of ‘old’ Kenelm… “One of the highlights of last term was the Kenelm Farewell Tea. We were delighted to welcome back more than 40 Old Girls to Kenelm, for a wonderful afternoon of memories, news and of course, cake! The current girls particularly loved hearing the stories of life back in the ‘old days’ and were very surprised to hear how naughty their predecessors were!
Many girls could not believe hearing that a luxury for the post-war generation was being allowed both butter AND jam on their bread, which certainly puts today’s privileges and treats such as movie nights and delivery pizza into perspective.
Some Old Girls recalled the days when they had to ring a hand-bell to wake everyone in the house, and how on Sunday evening it was their duty to do the washing up!
FROM THE HEADMISTRESS TRAVEL AND COMMUNITY
ARTS NEWS NEWS ROUND UP
Alexandra Wilson K ’95 and Nicola Brown (Bewes) K ‘95
It was a fond walk down memory lane and interesting to see how despite the differences, the Kenelm spirit is alive and strong. A kind compassionate atmosphere prevails among the current generation; Kenelm has a strong sense of identity which we will take over into our new home. Our history will come with us and although the memories of the next Kenelm generation will be anchored in a different building, we will make sure that everything we have learnt will not be lost.” MEET THE STAFF SPORTS NEWS
From the Headmistress
striving for excellence I am delighted that in this newsletter you are able to read about a selection of the activities which go on at Sherborne Girls. However, we are only too aware that one of our core aims is to provide an excellent academic education for the girls in the school and we constantly review and refine what we are doing in the classroom.
Yet again we are in consultation for major changes to both Advanced levels and GCSEs. Successive Governments change the content and methods of examining and indeed in many cases the philosophy behind all we are trying to do. We constantly debate the balance between preparation for examinations and the need to instil the educational skills such as independent learning, critical thinking, problem solving and breadth of curriculum, and it is always a challenge to place greater importance on aspects which are not tested but arguably in the long term are more important. The changes for Advanced levels are due to be implemented in September 2015. As well as â€˜uncouplingâ€™ AS and A level, the Government is focussed on key drivers including that the qualifications must match
the best in the world and that they must prepare students for undergraduate study and should include research skills, essay writing, referencing, problem solving, analysis, critical thinking and core skills around Maths and English. Indeed, the proposal is for all students to study mathematics post 16. At Sherborne Girls we already offer a programme which fulfils these aims. The International Baccalaureate is widely and globally respected, has remained free of grade inflation, free from Government influence and is increasingly understood by Russell Group universities. IB students are hardworking, versatile thinkers and the course enables them to develop research skills and critical thinking. The opportunity to tackle an extended essay and the structure of
The Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI) visited the School in December for the Boarding Welfare Intermediate Inspection; we are delighted with the results. Thank you to everyone involved in the inspection, especially to girls and parents who provided the inspectors with such positive feedback. The full report will soon be available on the School website www.sherborne.com fulfilling community, action and service commitments makes for a very broad and satisfying two years of Sixth Form study. Luckily, schools are used to adapting to the changing priorities of different governments. Despite all this turbulence, we are very fortunate that our girls have the option of the tried and tested IB Diploma.
Jenny Dwyer, Headmistress
Reflections of Christmas “It was another magical Christmas at Sherborne Girls,” writes Revd Becky AyersHarris. “With too many wonderful memories to mention. Among my personal favourites was hearing about the kind and thoughtful actions of many of our girls, whether it was wrapping food parcels for children’s charities or performing carols for the elderly in local care homes. The enchanting service in the Abbey was another highlight, a time to rejoice with friends and family, and the generosity of guests meant that over £2000 was raised in
the collection for charities close to our hearts, Perspectives and HeadSmart. Entertainment in the houses following the traditional Christmas dinners always showcases how gifted our girls really are, but this year the staff revealed their own special talents in a rarely seen Staff Revue; Mr Penty’s performance as Mrs Dwyer made me laugh so much I nearly fell off my chair! As one of the girls summed up – it was the perfect ending to the term.”
Revd Becky Ayers-Harris
U6 Leiths girls baked, iced and decorated their own Christmas cakes
spotlight on eleanor
U6 Eleanor Nickerson sang the Corpus Christi carol and Whence is that Goodly Fragrance Flowing on two separate editions of BBC local news programme Spotlight in the lead-up to Christmas.
On the slopes 31 girls from L4/U4/L5 headed for the ski slopes of La Plagne in the Christmas holidays for a week of skiing and French conversation practice. Aldhelmsted West Housemistress Hayley Vanstone writes, “We had great snow conditions and three fantastic instructors, under whose guidance everyone made excellent progress. In addition to the five hours a day tuition, there was still time for ice hockey, treasure hunts and chocolate crêpes! The girls were frequently complimented on their superb manners and impressed everyone with their ‘can do’ approach to learning.”
Billed as a compulsory lecture from the Head, the School was expecting to hear about ‘Sexism & The Media’, and instead was entertained by the song and dance routines of No Direction and the musings of new headteacher, Mrs Hairdryer. Comments from the girls included “The most hilarious thing I have ever seen…. I laughed for hours afterwards and kept replaying the funniest scenes in my head… It made me realise how lucky we are to have such talented teachers! ”
Travel & Community
The greatest gift is time...
14 girls gave up their time to help support a children’s charity in the lead-up to Christmas. The four Heads of M5 visited Kids Company in Bristol, taking boxes of decorations and three Christmas trees with them to prepare the children’s classrooms for the festive period. While they were there, the girls discovered that a local business had withdrawn its funding for the children’s Christmas dinner. On checking our charities account made up from various fundraising efforts by the girls over the last couple of years, it was discovered that there was enough money to ensure every child could still enjoy the festive lunch so many of us take for granted.
Later in the month, L6 and U6 girls spent two days at Kids Company in London, filling stockings, putting together food parcels and wrapping gifts. U6 Melissa Townshend was one of the volunteers and explained, “Over 30,000 presents, all organised by age categories, are wrapped in the lead up to Christmas and later distributed to the 4,000 children which Kids Company supports.
“If you really want to make a difference to someone at Christmas, I would very much recommend volunteering at a local charity. I didn’t realise how rewarding it would feel to just give up my time, but now I have done it I fully appreciate the importance of volunteers, especially at Christmas.”
‘Looking outwards’ is the Head’s theme for this year and it is represented in no better place than our exchange programmes. The Canadian exchange for L5 has its origins in WW2, when Sherborne students were evacuated to Branksome Hall in Toronto, and is our longest established exchange. In
Wrapping presents may seem like a simple task, but it was actually exhausting and required a surprising amount of concentration! We were working alongside children who had at one time in their lives received support from Kids Company, so they could explain to us how very important the work is. For some children, these would be the only presents they would receive.”
M5 we offer an exchange with Launceston Church Grammar School in Tasmania. For U5, we have a new programme with St Peter’s in Adelaide, which is an IB school. Sixth Formers are offered the chance to exchange with non-maintained state school Parmiters in Watford, Hertfordshire - a valuable experience for students from both schools. Finally, for the younger years, we offer a regular one day exchange with The Gryphon School in Sherborne. All of these activities are a valuable part of the extracurricular programme of Sherborne Girls, providing new cultural experiences and many lifelong friendships.
Messrs Brooker, Fremlin, Osorio and Gammon took on the Movember challenge to grow some distinctive facial hair to raise awareness of men’s health issues. Looking like a cast list from The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, the four amigos managed to raise a grand total of £467. Many thanks to all those who donated.
28 FEBRUARY Madrigal Society and Strings Orchestra, Cerne Abbas 14 MARCH Sinfonia Concert (Joint Schools Junior Orchestra), Leweston School
16 MARCH Celebrity Organ Recital, Sherborne Girls
21 MARCH Music Scholars Concert, Sherborne Girls 23 MARCH Sherborne Schools’ Symphony Orchestra at St George’s, Bristol 2 - 6 MAY Sherborne Abbey Festival
no fear of shakespeare
The Senior Play was a great success, with full houses on two of the three evenings. Head of Drama Lizzie Nurse writes, “Tilly Taylor made a striking, confident Macbeth who was more at home with a flick-knife than a sabre and Celeste Bowden portrayed a fragile and vulnerable Lady Macbeth, who pushes things too far in order to prove her loyalty. Isla Gething as Duncan commanded the stage without the need for any pomp and circumstance and Holy Serukenya showed Banquo’s increasing suspicion superbly and made a terrifying ghostly presence. The text was performed with great understanding, showing a maturity far beyond their years. Shakespeare is never an easy choice, but the cast performed truthfully, bravely and worked as an excellent ensemble. Congratulations to the whole cast.”
Audition success for Eleanor
L6 flautist Eleanor Roda has been offered a place in the National Youth Wind Orchestra of Great Britain. Eleanor, who achieved Grade VIII with Distinction last summer, has been playing the flute for seven years. Director of Music John Jenkins said, “Many in the profession consider the NYWO to be one of the finest student wind orchestras in the world, so this is an excellent achievement for Eleanor as she starts off on her musical career.” She will now undertake two nine-day residential courses with the orchestra, rehearsing a full range of music in preparation for concerts to be performed in Oxford and London.
Junior Play Announced
This year’s Junior Play will be Roald Dahl’s ‘The Witches’. Described by drama teacher and director Jenny Moore as “a wonderfully sinister and spooky story”, the performances will be at Sherborne Girls on 11, 12 and 13 June at 7.30pm, with a matinee at 2pm on 11 June.
On 16 March, internationally renowned organist Margaret Phillips will perform the School’s first public organ recital on its Hunter organ. Professor of Organ at the Royal College of Music in London since 1996, Margaret is regarded as one of Britain’s most outstanding concert organists and teachers. Tickets are free (on a first come first served basis) for the hour-long concert in the School Hall which starts at 3.00pm. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01935 818212.
When art meets dance…
“Having four salsa dancers twirling around the art block floor at Sherborne Girls is not an everyday occurrence. With that in mind, the wonderful experience this brought us was hugely entertaining, as well as challenging, as we attempted to capture the vitality and energy streaming from the figures onto paper. Through the excellent tutelage of James Meiklejohn, this seemingly impossible task was achieved while we all learnt to stem the tears of frustration and enjoy the spontaneity that comes from capturing movement.” Tatiana Guinness, U6
News Round up
Insights and anecdotes
Life peer Lord Sharkey presented a fascinating insight into his extraordinary career, the House of Lords and during an informal supper with senior girls, his frank assessment of the current state of British Politics.
Rowan MacNeary, Director of Sixth Form said, “It was fascinating to hear about his relationship with Charles Saatchi, whom he described as one of the most impressive people he has ever worked for, and his role as Director of Saatchi & Saatchi in working for the Thatcher Government in 1986 during the general election; his story of meeting Margaret Thatcher and Norman Tebbit, and his realising that they were now his clients was compelling, as well as being very amusing!”
Lord Sharkey’s insights and anecdotes about life in the Lords were both informative and at times very funny - but of most interest was his role in the Alan Turing Bill, and his ambition to retrospectively overturn convictions of all those convicted and condemned of nothing more than being gay. Thanks in part to Lord Sharkey's Bill, nearly 60 years after his suicide from cyanide poisoning at the age of 41, Alan Turing was recently officially pardoned by the Queen.
Bridging the Gap
A new careers initiative programme was recently launched for U6 students. Designed in partnership with an occupational psychologist, the programme will coach all the key skills required for a successful job application. It will culminate with the girls going through a rigorous interview process to ‘win’ one of four (fictitious) offers of employment. Headmistress Jenny Dwyer said, “This generation of students faces more competition in the job market than ever before. A good degree is not enough; the girls need to learn how to market themselves.” The programme was launched with an inspirational speech by Juliet Blanch, a partner at an international dispute resolution practice.
Two prizes were awarded in the Michaelmas term. After a very close competition in M5, the judges felt that Lara Taylor’s essay on the value of academic qualifications had the edge in terms of originality of approach.
The winner in the senior section, L6 Lottie McNair-Scott, was one of several to tackle a question on the impact of the ‘war on terror’ on abuses of human rights. Her argument was well constructed, properly referenced, balanced and wellwritten. Congratulations to all entrants for their initiative and drive.
This year 28 girls were confirmed by the Bishop of Sherborne in a service in Sherborne Abbey which was attended by many friends and family.
E-book published for Julia
U5 Julia Routledge has had her first e-book published: a biography exploring the life and works of George Orwell. She is now working on her second book entitled ‘The Genocidal Century’. Julia intends to study History at university and has her sights set on a career in political journalism.
...Kate Creswell as Teacher of Economics who has joined us from Sherborne School, where she was teaching A level Economics. She is an economist by background, having worked for the United Nations and a variety of government departments in the UK, South Africa and the Middle East.
Meet the Staff
meet the staff
congratulations to... ...Louise Orton, Head of Maths and Head of M5/U5, who has been appointed Deputy Head (Teaching and Learning) and in due course she will take over responsibility for academic provision.
Tom Fremlin Leader of the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme and Outdoor Activities Instructor
Tom joined Sherborne Girls in 2010 and is also a resident house tutor in Mulliner. The School’s Duke of Edinburgh programme is thought to be one of the most successful in the sector, with 40 girls currently taking the Gold award, 40 taking Silver and over 60 taking part in the Bronze.
What did you do before joining Sherborne Girls?
I studied History and Politics at the University of York before taking a year out to travel around New Zealand . When I returned I took up a post at Dame Hannah Rogers School in Ivybridge, which included helping young people with disabilities to train for a Ten Tors type of challenge. During this time I studied for a Master’s in Outdoor Learning and Applied Sports Development and then I arrived at Sherborne Girls.
How DoEs the DOfE scheme operate in School?
We have three year groups involved in the programme – M5, U5 and L6 – although many girls continue into U6. The growing level of interest enables us to run more and more exciting expeditions; last summer, for example, we trekked through the Picos de Europa in Northern Spain and this year we are planning a canoeing challenge for the Great Glen in the Scottish Highlands.
Which part of the job do you enjoy most?
The job is rewarding, unpredictable and good for the soul! I enjoy seeing the teams working together and overcoming challenges in some really tough environments. I try to promote having fun on expeditions, and I hope that I inspire the girls to have adventures of their own in the future.
Bill Penty has taken up the newly formed role of Second Master and will continue to lead on all academic matters, deputising for the Headmistress in her absence. Fiona Clapp has been promoted to Deputy Head (External Affairs); she will continue to oversee the admissions process but has a broad portfolio of other responsibilities including marketing and development. We look forward to welcoming Violaine Ludwick in April to the position of Deputy Head (Boarding); Violaine is presently Head of Boarding at Headington School in Oxford.
Congratulations to L5 girls Annabel Harris and Emily Mitchell who have both qualified for the National Schools Biathlon Championships. These will be held at The Olympic Park in April. Good luck girls!
The Rathbones National School Lacrosse Tournament takes place at Surrey Sports Ground at the end of February and for the first time ever, the England Lacrosse Association has announced an U14 tournament into which we have entered our U14A team. Our U15 and 1st XII will also be competing. All teams are developing well in the lead up to this tournament and will no doubt enjoy the challenge of playing against some of the country’s finest players.
Cross Country 16 girls competed in the Dorset Cross country trials at Kings Park under the guidance of new coach, Jayne Dart. There were some fine performances with the junior team coming second overall in their category. Best individual performances were from U5 Georgie Lane and L5 Isabel Hunt who were in the top 15 in the County.
U4 Kitty Palmer qualified at the area competition of The Pony Club Dengie Dressage and Show Jumping which means she will now train for the Nationals.
We are delighted to announce the launch of our new sports web pages. These will enable parents to view School sports fixtures, team lists, times, venues, match reports and photos. Changes to fixtures will be updated in real time on the website, which is also available as a mobile app for any handheld device. Any changes, updates, scores and news will be available at your fingertips. Further details have been emailed out to all parents, so please take a look around the site, sync with your iPad or mobile phone and keep up to date with us.
Next edition of the script is due out
Hockey The U18 team played some excellent indoor hockey in the West Schools Tournament. A strong win against Clifton put Sherborne into the semi-final v Millfield, and despite suffering crucial injuries, Sherborne pushed Millfield all the way, narrowly losing 3-2. All the U18 girls deserve commendation for gutsy and determined performances. The team: Lulu Herring, TC Mackean, Flora Ritchie, Lexie Humphrey, Imo Andrews, Amelia Rogers and Maddie Jannoe.
25 February U13, U12 North Dorset Netball 28 February to 1 March Lacrosse Nationals 1st XII 3 March Lacrosse Nationals U14 XII 4 March Lacrosse Nationals U15 XII 6 March U15 Netball County Tournament 20 March U13 XI North Dorset Hockey Tournament
Sherborne Girls, Bradford Road, Sherborne, Dorset T. 01935 818224 E. email@example.com
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There’s a buzz around school about a fitness initiative launched this term, aimed at encouraging health and well-being while taking advantage of all the classes on offer at Oxley Sports Centre. The girls have been set a series of fitness challenges including zumba, fab abs, Pilates and gym sessions, which if completed, can culminate in a free massage. Over 110 girls have signed up to the challenge and are well on their way to improved fitness levels!
FROM Zero to Hero