As is usual at the end of the Term I am writing to summarise what has been a compact and very busy ‘second half’ and also to look briefly ahead to what is in store when the children return at the end of the Easter holiday.

The pupils have been incredibly active during the last five weeks and I am in no doubt that they are in need of a good rest. The involvement of the children in such a large variety of activities has, once again, been fabulous. As always, they have been busy in many different areas, barely pausing for breath, and they have accomplished much with tremendous energy and drive. I have been very impressed by their approach and how, by always trying their hardest, they will ultimately succeed.

Excursions, Speakers and Sports results

Once again, we have been involved in many residential trips and visits. Most of the year groups within the main School and the Nurseries have also been to local places of interest to enhance the curriculum and to further their knowledge. In addition to our boys and girls going off site we have also had a number of visitors here. I particularly enjoyed the talks given on World Book day by our visiting authors; Dan Freedman, who spoke with the Year 3 to Year 5 pupils and Elif Shafak, who spent time leading workshops with the Year 6 pupils. I am sure that the pupils were inspired to apply some of what was learnt to their own writing in the future.

Eaton Square has quite a reputation for skiing and this has developed over the years with the annual residential Year 5 ski trip. Once again, the boys and the girls enjoyed a fabulous week in Italy where they all improved their skills on the slopes. In addition, they also had a week away, getting to know each other in a different setting and learning how to be that much more independent which are valuable skills all round. The School ski trip was then followed by the annual IAPS tournament in Italy. As in years past, the elite skiers were sent to a week of training and competition, where they learn so much from the wonderful coaches that we have with us. Each year the competition seems to be increasing and yet we appear to be able to improve our performances accordingly. We certainly now have quite a strong reputation within the competition which clearly encourages our pupils to work hard if they are to finish at the head of the pack.

I am delighted that we competed excellently once again, winning another impressive haul of medals with many wonderful team and individual performances. My thanks to Mr. Ashby for organising the trip, to Mr. Bunten and Miss Peck for attending, and to the coaches and parents who made this such a positive and enjoyable experience for all concerned. This year’s results were:

Championship Mixed U11 Team Race – Bronze
Plate Mixed U11 Team Race – Gold
Plate Girls U11 Team Race – Gold

In the pool we have, once again, dominated the races and galas in which we have been involved; both internally and those against other schools. The Senior Gala was a wonderful series of events, full of passion, vocal support and colour.

There were four new records set and the spectators there could not help but be impressed by the speed and strength of many of the swimmers. The new records were:

Year 3
Nikolai P: 25m Butterfly 20.82

Year 5
Tomas M: 25m Butterfly 16.10

Year 6
Liza I-G: 25m Front Crawl 14.00
Liza I-G: 25m Butterfly 15.42

The House Swimming Cup was awarded this year to Belgrave and the Best Swimmer Cup was awarded to Tomas M. for some quite stunning performances.

As an observer it is evident that the depth of the swimmers goes throughout each year group; it is unusual to have all pupils within the school who can not only swim but who can do so with such speed, skill and grace.

As with the skiers, the swimming team has also been involved in the heats of the London League competition, the ISA competition and the national IAPS competition. In all of these races the times recorded were amongst the fastest in the country by many of the swimmers, both team and individual and we eagerly await the finals in the summer term.

Before the swimmers take part in these finals, the EESS (Elite Eaton Square Swimmers) are off to Tenerife for a warm-weather training camp in a beautiful 50m pool. Whilst there they will also have the opportunity to have their techniques filmed and developed in a Hydrodynamic flume, in addition to competing against other local Clubs. Last year the team were also fortunate enough to be training alongside the Spanish Olympic team which was an unforgettable experience for them. I am sure that this year will be equally rewarding and beneficial.

In the final assembly on Thursday I also made mention of the girls who are now competing in their own girls’ football teams and House league. I am delighted that they are embracing this so passionately and I am sure that we will see them going from strength to strength in the future. In a similar vein, the girls’ cricket will surely grow year on year and I am really looking forward to seeing them play.

If not competing in water or with some form of ball those who prefer the Epee were hard at it this term, both in training and in competition. My congratulations to those who took part in this year’s ISA national fencing championships where there were some very strong and mature performances from the ESS team.

Eaton Square’s ISA results were:

Thea M – Girls Under 11 Epee achieved gold!
Ernesto C – Boys Under 11 Epee achieved gold!
Carlo C – Boys Under 9 Epee achieved gold!
Pyotr C – Boys Under 9 Epee achieved silver!

As you know the boys and girls compete each Term in a number of House Sports, and although enjoyed by all there is undoubtedly a keen, competitive edge to these as they are played out. Once again, I congratulate all who took part, not only those for whom sport comes easily but also those who find them a little more challenging. House representation and playing for the ‘team’ are important skills and character traits to develop and these were on show throughout.

This Term’s results were:

Girls Football

Joint 2nd – Belgrave and Lowndes
Joint 1st – Chester and Eaton

Hockey

4th Place – Eaton
3rd Place – Chester
2nd Place – Belgrave
1st Place – Lowndes

Rugby

4th Place – Lowndes
3rd Place – Eaton
Joint 1st Place – Belgrave and Chester

Academic and Results

As mentioned earlier, I have been very impressed by the students’ dedication to and concentration on their studies. In the classroom, I have been pleased to see much excellent work being done and I have thoroughly enjoyed seeing the pupils’ creations when they have brought them to my study for discussion. What is worth mentioning here is the breadth of academic activity which the children are involved in and how this enriches their experience. The pupils’ academic journey is greatly enhanced through inventive teaching, using London as a resource with the many visits to museums and places of interest, together with encouraging the students to think outside the box.

Once again, the pupils have achieved Scholarships and Awards at entry point to a large variety of schools and it is pleasing to see that this has now been the fifth year in a row where this has been the case. My congratulations to those who won 12 Academic Scholarships this year.

As ever, the calm and methodical approach which the boys and girls displayed throughout the process was exemplary; I congratulate them. The full list of leavers will not be published until the Year 8 boys have completed their Common Entrance in late June however I list below the results so far for your attention. For those parents in Year 5, if you are considering any of the schools shown and we have not yet discussed them in relation to your own children please do contact Mr. Jones to arrange an appointment. My thanks go to our wonderful staff team and of course, to you the parents for all of your support with the process to date.

The Schools where our pupils have won places to date (* represents Boarding):

Alleyn’s School
Arts Educational School
City of London Boys
City of London Girls
Dulwich College
Eaton Square Upper
Emanuel
Francis Holland, Regent’s Park
Francis Holland, Sloane Square
Godolphin & Latymer
Hampton
Harrodian
JAGS
Kew House
Latymer Upper
More House
Putney High
Queen’s College
Queen’s Gate
Roedean*
South Hampstead High
St. James’s Girls School
St. Paul’s (girls)
Streatham and Clapham High
Tudor Hall*
Whitgift
Wimbledon High
Woldingham*
Wycombe Abbey*

11+ Pre Test offers to date (* represents Boarding):

City of London Boys
Charterhouse*
Hampton
Haileybury*
Tonbridge*
Whitgift

As above, I am delighted to announce that this year, to date, the pupils have won:

12 Academic Scholarships

Music and Drama Events

I must congratulate Mrs. Saklatvala, Mrs. Dorman and Mrs. Pyke for all of their hard work and enthusiasm. Monday’s end of term Spring Concert, together with the more intimate pupil performances to their year groups in assemblies during the last two weeks, displayed a fabulous level of musical talent but also great enjoyment which is so important. I was particularly impressed with the variety of musical offering and the confidence displayed throughout. I must also thank all of the peripatetic staff who do so much to encourage, develop and teach their young charges; the results are plain to see.

The cast list has been distributed for the Summer Term’s play, which this year will be ‘Through the Looking Glass’. I know how eagerly the children in Year 5 and Year 6 have been awaiting the allocation of roles and I am sure that the production will be excellent once again. I do encourage as many of you as possible to book tickets when they are available, whether or not you have children in the upper year groups, to see just how much these amazing boys and girls can achieve.

I should give just praise to the Year 6 pupils and the Musical Department for another successful year on the Scholarship front. This year the children were awarded:

8 Music Scholarships and 1 Music Exhibition

Art

Ms. Tabuchi has been working tirelessly with the children to ensure that their technique improves each term, that they cultivate a love of drawing and painting and that art is seen as a subject which straddles all areas of the curriculum and of life itself. I must thank her for this and I am always greatly impressed with the art work I see being produced in her lessons.

The Spring Term is one where we see the children entering the annual Royal College of Art Competition, which culminates in a small number of the pupils’ works being chosen for an exhibition at the Royal College. I was delighted with the results this year and my congratulations to those below:

Year 2 Tilly
Year 2 Claudia
Year 4 Benny
Year 6 Sara
Year 3 Iskander – Commended
Year 4 Uliana – Commended
Year 4 Danyal – Commended
Year 5 Gabriel – Commende
Year 5 Sophia – 3rd prize overall

 

Charity

This has been a busy few weeks for the parents, staff and pupils in terms of Charity and I cannot thank enough all for their efforts towards the many fund-raising events for Chiltern Music Therapy. The Term has been full of activity, with the children selling homemade cakes, slime and more, together with the Pre-Prep CD and the Prep School’s art works. Through their efforts they have raised in excess of £5000.

Last Friday night saw the Charity Quiz Night at the Kia Oval. Just over 200 parents and guests filled the England room to take part in the fund-raising event. It was a truly enjoyable evening with interesting and humorous questions being asked, all with a musical theme of course. The evening passed by in excellent spirits and it was undoubtedly a huge success. My thanks to the Charity Night Committee who worked tirelessly to make sure that the event was so productive and enjoyable for all who were present.

The Charity Ambassadors (a new role for some of the pupils this year) have been excellent and I congratulate them for all of their hard work and ideas.

As ever, my thanks to you all for your support and involvement with Eaton Square throughout this Term; the staff team and I are, as always, most grateful to you.

It only remains for me to wish you all an enjoyable and peaceful Easter break with your families.