Those who have a longer association with The Blue Coat School may be accustomed to the feeling, but for me there was something extraordinarily special about our Processional Service in the Cathedral last Sunday, together with this week’s Nativities and Advent Services.

What struck me was the blend of innocence and composure; of talent and modesty; of technical control and natural expression. The combination brought a smile to the lips, tears to the eyes and a general feeling of happiness to everybody who was lucky enough to be in attendance.

We must surely be thankful for our blessings and hold onto these wonderful memories. As, doubtless, will our Year 4s, following their theatre trip to The Birmingham Repertory Theatre’s production of R L Stevenson’s classic, Treasure Island.

With so much to crowd into our academic timetable, drama can come under pressure in schools. In my view, this pressure must be withstood. Through drama, the child develops a sense of empathy; a feeling for being somebody other than him/herself. In addition, he or she learns that, far from being a game, drama is an activity which demands enormous self-control and self-discipline.

While Year 4 floated dreamily away to distant places with Jim Hawkins aboard the Hispaniola, the Chapel Choir were just around the corner bringing Christmas cheer at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital. I hope that they got as much pleasure from singing and giving back to the community, as I am sure their audience did from listening.

Thank you to all the staff and children who have worked so hard this week, from the wonderful Advent Processional and Early Years’ productions, through to today’s Year 3 and 4 Advent Service, it has been a hugely positive way in which to draw our end of term towards its close.

Thanks must also go to The Friends for the magnificent Christmas Fayre last weekend, followed by the Carols and Fizz event on Thursday, both of which involved a tremendous amount of organisation.

This week, I was delighted to review recent assessment results and to see that, nationally, the School is placed in the top percentile of school achievement. This is an amazing feat. It reflects well on the teaching staff, the children and the parents, all of whom should be proud that they are combining so effectively.

In the penultimate week of sports fixtures, we can look back at our achievement outside of the classroom with pride, there have been many positives to celebrate over the course of the term. Well done to all children who have represented the School. Onwards and upwards!

I noticed over my breakfast the other day that a 17-year-old had scored for Liverpool in front of the Klopp (sic). What a proud moment for him. Over the course of the coming years, as our sports record is enhanced here, I expect boys and girls to feel it a growing privilege and honour to represent The Blue Coat School. As they say, watch this space…

NOEL NEESON | HEADMASTER