William Bennett served as US Secretary of Education in the eighties under Ronald Reagan. He once said, “An elementary school that treats the arts as the province of a few gifted children, or views them only as recreation and entertainment, is a school that needs an infusion of soul. That arts are an essential element of education, just like reading, writing, and arithmetic.”

The world has changed, but that fundamental belief still holds true. I am a great believer that performing in front of a live audience gives children confidence that lasts a lifetime; that here is a ’soft skill’ which should not be underestimated. This week, music and drama provided the main focus. The Year 6 Recital was excellent. I believe that the standard of musicianship at our school is second to none, and, over the course of the coming years, I would like to see BCS children performing on a national stage. Credit must be given to the visiting music staff and outside tutors for their support.

The singing, drama and teamwork which went into the production of Fantastic Mr Fox by Years 3 and 4 was also truly remarkable, and I congratulate the children on their hard work and flair. They should be very proud of their achievements. I would like to commend all the Year 4 staff and the Prep staff as a whole for their efforts. A special mention must go to Mrs Jennings, Director, Mrs Lynn for the fantastic costumes, Mrs Lambert-Green for the scenery and Mr Nicklin, who wrote and composed all the songs for the play. Photos will be included in the first Update after half term.

We finished this week with an uplifting Chapel Service from Rev Dr Mike Branscombe from St Martin’s Church in The Bullring. This completed a ‘fantastic’ half term of talks on teamwork. I would like to thank the Chapel Choir, all the readers, Mr Hardie (organist), Mr Isherwood and Mrs Walker for the lights and sound. Another special mention goes to our wonderful Chaplain for all her hard work and support in all areas of the School – but especially Chapel.

We are sorry to say goodbye today to Mrs Jefferson, our School Nurse. I would like to thank Mrs Jefferson for all her hard work and care for the children. We wish her well as she returns to the front line nursing in the NHS. Mrs Jefferson’s replacement will be announced shortly.

In so many respects, this has been a positive half term. As always we will not stand still. The vision is strong and we must ensure that the standards in all that we do are the highest possible. As long as I am Headmaster at BCS, my goal will be to provide the gift of opportunity to the children in our care.  Once again, thanks for working with the school. I look forward to welcoming the children back on Monday 26th February.

With every best wish for the half term break.