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Newsletter February 2019

A sustainable school The Eco Committee travelled to London to present their ideas for encouraging sustainability at Skinners to executives at Tideway, the firm that is building a new 27km sewer under London. Hosted by Darren White, a Skinners’ parent who leads on sustainability at Tideway, the afternoon involved a significant insight into how schools can reduce their own carbon footprint and how imperative it is to spread awareness of the urgency to do just that. The clock is ticking and all generations need to take action, so it is good to see this generation of Skinners’ students leading the challenge.

George Hoff, leader of our Eco council, speaking at Tideway's offices near London Bridge.

Just before half term the school was pleased to welcome back Old Skinner and exChairman of Governors, ex-master of the Skinners' Company and currently High Sheriff of East Sussex, Major-General John Moore-Bick. John spent an hour with all of Year 7 discussing the role of High Sheriff, his career in the army and his career at Skinners' before hosting a seminar with Year 13 Politics students on a wide range of political issues and the constitutional significance of ancient titles like that of High Sheriff. Lunch was hosted by Head Boy, Dan Johnston and Deputy Head Boys, Jacob Turner and Luca Tonelli. John's visit also coincided with Mari Mason's last day at the school after 14 years as Head of Chemistry. Mari also has a good spell on the Governing Body under John's chairmanship.

John is pictured on the front cover with Year 7 pupils at the end of his talk with them.

SPORTS NEWS Our victorious U15 team which has won the County Basketball Championship and the West Kent League

Our U14 & U16 badminton teams which have won the National Schools Local Qualifying Championships. In addition the U16s came 2nd in the County Championships, whilst the U14s came 4th.

Our squash team competed in the County Championships for the first time

The U13 Table Tennis team made it to the semi-finals of the English Schools Zone

Boxing Day saw a large crowd turn out at TWRFC for an Old Skinners’ v Tunbridge Wells festival match. The Old Boys edged a thrilling contest and celebrated with equal gusto in the bar afterwards!

At the end of January, Henry Russell-Ross & Jack Field competed at the Welsh National Pool in Swansea in the Welsh Stillwater Lifesaving Championships. They won gold medals in both the 16-17 age group manikin & medley relays (along with their team mates Ben Browning & Ben Cusselle) as well as individual gold in the 100m manikin carry (fins) & bronze in the rescue medley for Henry, & individual gold in the rescue medley & silver in the 50m manikin carry for Jack. Meanwhile, after a trek to the far side of the county, the Skinners' swimming team pitted themselves admirably against the best swimmers in Kent. Representing the school were Aiden McMillan, Henry Russell-Ross, Ben Watson, George Green, Joey Ajayi and Charlie Brice. The first event was the senior boys 100m butterfly, with George, Henry and Aiden competing. Aiden walked away with the gold medal. Next, Ben and Charlie took seconds off their respective PBs: Charlie in the 100m backstroke, and Ben taking the silver medal in the junior category. The second session saw Joey competing in his first event and being joined by Ben in the 100m freestyle, with Ben taking another finalist medal. Refreshed from his earlier victory, Aiden secured his second gold of the day, winning both the senior and open age group categories, with a 100m freestyle time of 54.78 seconds. The final event of the day was the 100m breaststroke with George finishing seventh.

Great spirit was shown by all and it was clear their hard work in training at their respective swimming clubs had paid rich dividends.

We are organising a book collection in the week of World Book Day (Thursday 7th March). If you have any books you’d like to donate (see below for the best ones), please bring in books from 48th March (2nd week after half term) and bring them to S8 in Science before morning registration on Mon-Thurs. The books will all be going to Ghana, where English is their working language and the charity, Reading Spots, will send us video footage of where the books have gone. Reading Spots would love to receive:  Children’s fiction/non-fiction (children’s books with pop-ups, noises, etc are always particularly popular!)  Dictionaries (in English and in other languages – French is often studied).  Encyclopedias and atlases (again, recent is preferred)  Adult fiction (please only donate high quality fiction that is likely to be read).  Science books (these are in particularly high demand)  Any educational resources (e.g. abacuses, shape boxes, spelling cards, posters, stationary etc.)

 Excellent quality and fully operational laptops and mobile phones.  African books, or donations to allow us to supply our projects with African fiction and much needed text books (here’s the link to donate to this cause: They request that the books are: ·

In good condition, or new (we will check everything that comes through).


If non-fiction: books should ideally not be not older than 10 years old.


Not text books that are specific to UK syllabuses.

Reading Spots is a project working to support rural communities in their desire to establish community-led and owned libraries in partnership with Book Aid International. The project won the TES International Award in 2018. Since 2015 22 ‘Reading Spots’ have been created mainly through pupil-led fundraising in UK schools, with a team of over 200 volunteers running the projects every day in Ghana. The libraries are fitted with solar-power to enable communities to have free light to read and study by in the evenings. Please visit for more information.

Chess: we hosted Langley Park to a friendly fixture just before half term, emerging as 9-3 winners. The senior team is once again through to the final of the national team problem solving competition, to be held at Imperial College on 3rd April. Meanwhile our A team played our B team in the second round of the U19 competition and ensured good order by winning 5-1 after some close matches.

Once again a group of Sixth Form students travelled to compete in the 66th session of the Harvard MUN conference where students from 50 countries around the world met to discuss some of the world’s most pressing challenges.

Skinners’ pupils once again took part in the gruelling British Maths Olympiad paper (for top scorers in the Senior Maths Challenge). The school had two qualifiers (for the top 1000 scorers in the country), Jamie Hood and Sam Richards, both Year 13. There were also three discretionary entrants: Jake Rule & Hugh Simmons in Year 13 and Scott Hall from Year 11. Particular congratulations to Sam, Jamie and Scott, all of whom achieved a merit for ranking in the top 25% to 70% band. A tremendous effort by all, but phenomenal for Scott. Joe Hawthorne in Year 12 also received a merit in the Senior Kangaroo Competition, for a top 25% score. This is awarded to pupils with top scores in the Senior Maths Challenge, but just below the BMO threshold.

NOURISH FOODBANK – thank you Many thanks to pupils who donated milk for the Nourish Food Bank Final Friday collection. We managed to fill 3 crates. Next month, we will be continuing to support Nourish and ask for donations of squash or cordial.

Profile for Teresa Luckhurst

The Skinners' School Feb 2019 Newsletter  

The Skinners' School Feb 2019 Newsletter