Notes from the Head – 26 April 24

Posted: 26th April 2024

The school’s focus this week has been centred around the Diocesan Inspection led by the Catholic Schools Inspectorate. Both the Lead Inspector and her assistant are serving Heads in Catholic primary schools and both have experience of working as teachers in the Independent Sector. The inspection follows a new framework agreed by the Bishops of England and Wales that assesses three key areas: Catholic Life and Mission, the teaching of academic RE, and Liturgy and Worship.

The inspectors have met with pupils, governors, staff and myself, of course. They have observed a number of RE lessons and scrutinised schemes of work and exercise books. Their scope does not extend beyond the delivery of RE and no other subjects have been included in their assessment, other than English which is used to benchmark pupils’ progress in RE.

The Catholic Inspection perhaps has more in common with Ofsted rather than ISI and I have to say the process has been characterised by a culture of dialogue and willingness to listen. I will share the full report with parents when it is published later this term. What I can say now is that the boys have acquitted themselves admirably throughout the inspection and have been wonderful ambassadors for the school. My thanks to families who completed the inspection survey.

Timothy Cho’s talk to the senior house boys at last week’s assembly clearly made a big impact. Timothy is a two-time escapee from North Korea who brought home the reality of living in a totalitarian regime but also the importance of his Faith in keeping hope alive through some dark days. The inspectors noted that the senior boys were keen to discuss Timothy’s story and just how inspired they were to hear it.

I am grateful to Georgina for leading the Earth Day assemblies for both houses on Monday; this chimed in well with Pope Francis’ encyclical Laudato si that encourages us to think of ourselves as custodians of the planet, and all that has been created by almighty God. Nada led some Year 5 boys to an Inspired Maths Competition at Wetherby School yesterday (at which we comfortably defeated the school situated opposite us in Arkwright Road!) Year 7 boys are out today at Epping Forest for a Geography River Studies trip.

Sincere thanks to Ally for organising a hugely enjoyable Quiz and Curry night on Thursday. Congratulations to The Waitlisters who won the quiz for the second year in a row. Monies raised will go to Mary’s Meals, one of the school’s major charities.

Interest in the nursery continues apace and looks set to reach capacity by September. There are still a few places left and families who are interested are urged to make contact with school registrar, Emma Hollender, at the earliest (

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