Welcome to the latest eNewsletter
An Introduction from Headmaster, Leo Winkley
One of the various ways I’ve been marking out the passage of time during lockdown is my regular weekly journey to the pavement outside 17 Ashton Road. No, this isn’t an attention-seeking reference to my modest contribution to domestic life Chez Winkley in putting out the bins. Rather, I’m thinking of the 15 minutes or so we spend each week at 8.00pm on Thursdays clapping the carers, chatting with neighbours (at a safe distance) and sharing our appreciation of all critical workers across the land who have been doing such amazing work. Ours is not the most populous street, especially as our dear near-neighbours in Ingram’s, Churchill’s and Moser’s are away, but there is nonetheless a palpable sense of community at these weekly happenings. Together, we mark the passing of another seven days. Each week, the claps resound and small changes are noted – someone’s had a close encounter with an inexpertly aimed hair trimmer; someone else has had an exciting Amazon delivery; another has just gone back to work.
In this week’s newsletter, you will find abundant evidence of the ongoing community spirt, initiative and resilience of our pupils and staff. We have now carried out two captures of pupil feedback on the remote learning programme and this has given excellent encouragement, as well as some helpful indicators of areas to tweak. A bumper virtual Floreat double-bill, featuring pupils living in England, Scotland, Kenya, Bahrain, and China, was a highlight of another busy week - further details on Floreat Group 1 and Floreat Group 2. Among the Floreat-eers this week was Kate Woodman (IV, M) who has achieved the remarkable accolade of gaining a place in the National Youth Theatre. This is a marvellous achievement given that thousands of young people audition every year. There are so many examples of effort, endeavour and enterprise. Mr Middleton’s thoughts this week pick up on these themes, which run deep in the Salopian collective consciousness.
We do like to interact and video-conferencing has been the gateway to so much social activity. It is allowing us to stay connected, with the near-miracle of electronic communication zinging through space via satellite and cable, binding us together, and becoming a common, everyday medium. Please follow this link to read the latest Letter from Shrewsbury: Dear Video-Conferencing App beginning with Z
You’ll notice that Mr Walters’ academic blog this week has a space-based theme. By coincidence - or more likely (knowing him) by clever design – the space theme works well on the 15th May, as this was the launch-day chosen for Sputnik 3 in 1958 and Sputnik 4 two years later. The 15th May 1963 also saw the final US Mercury Mission, when Gordon Cooper became the first American to spend more than a day in space. His was the last US solo space mission. As Ms Peak explores in her blog, we are social animals, and this seemingly applies in space as well as on planet earth. We do rather like company.
It may feel at times as if we are each navigating our solitary crafts across unmapped galaxies. I hope, however, that the vitality of communal life of Shrewsbury, even in remote, comes beaming through these pages and reaches you loud and clear wherever you are.
As ever, I send my best wishes to all Salopian households up and down the UK and across the globe. Do keep in touch.
An update from Maurice Walters, Deputy Head Academic
This term has divided itself into distinct phases rather neatly and, such is the unusual landscape in which we find ourselves operating that I have frequently found myself relating the management of the academic programme (in a predictably grandiose manner) to the phases of a NASA mission. The first three weeks, leading up to the extended Coach Weekend were all about the launch – using a more interactive and dynamic set of platforms to build a powerful furnace of engagement and to propel both staff and pupils into a ‘new normal’.
Now, of course, we move into a higher orbit… Please follow this link to read the full update from Maurice Walters
An update from Peter Middleton, Deputy Head Co-Curricular
Salopian Inspiration: Initiative
Adapting to the ‘New Normal’
School will feel a little different for our pupils right now as we adapt to the new circumstances we find ourselves in. It is perhaps interesting, therefore, to cast our eye back to a period in Shrewsbury’s history where the school population likewise needed to adapt, finding creative solutions to an unusual and unprecedented scenario.
An update from Anna Peak, Deputy Head Pastoral
Human beings are social animals. We don’t need the Darwin statue to remind us of this evolutionary characteristic. Whether we like the company of many, or a select few, the truth is we have built modern society through social interactions, granted not always positive. Every fragment of communication we create builds or weakens social bonds. As a race we enjoy coming together to share common values and beliefs. There is no better environment than the comforting arms of a community. It is only at our most comfortable that we are willing to fail, to try something different, because we know we will be caught.
Notices to Parents and Guardians
Stay Active Shrewsbury - Sports Roundup
Our Weekly Sports Roundup can be view here:
- Part 1 - OS Dom deliveres a message to Salopians
- Part 2 - Pupil compilation highlights with a guest appearance from Mr Middleton
- Part 3 - A review of our Netball season
Virtual Friday Concert
Our second Virtual Friday Concert can be viewed here:
- Part 1 - Rohan M plays a magical piano piece by English composer Frank Bridge.
- Part 2 - The first movement of Moonlight Sonata by Beethoven.
- Part 3 - Archie A playing a piece composed by George Frideric Handel.
- Part 4 - New work from Salopians, a new single from the band Putney.
- Part 5 - The ladies of The Grove performing at our House Singing Competition in October 2019.