From the Headmaster's Desk

A new term, a new start. We have returned to some wonderful new learning spaces, and some things will be different as a result. The children are all a year older, a whole school year; they will have different teachers and different lessons and, as with all things Lyonsdown, they will be encouraged to explore new things.

And there is much that is new for this academic year. As you know, we have been working hard on a range of developments in school. These include:

  • Enhanced facilities: the Year 4 classroom, Science Laboratory and Library are brand new, with all other classrooms reinvigorated by the teachers that have moved into them.
  • Embracing all girls’ education, as our first all girls’ Nursery class join Lyonsdown. They will explore a new curriculum and some wonderful improvements to the outside space.
  • Much work is also taking place on what happens inside the classroom, as we revamp our curriculum, with English being strengthened further and a greater focus on STEAM, as well as developments in Maths and Computing. Our INSET days gave teachers the opportunity to continue these developments – watch this space for further announcements.

The focus of my assembly was the 80th anniversary of evacuation that took place at the beginning of the Second World War on 1st September 1939, and the evacuation of 1.5 million people over three days. In the spirit of war time, we have all kept calm and carried on, with the news that our Dining Room is not quite ready. Children and teachers have been fantastic in adapting to lunch “being on holiday,” with my particular thanks to Mrs Brodie, the architect of this solution, and Mrs Carthage for keeping lunchtime itself ship-shape and proper.

I have one piece of staff news – our SENDCO, Mrs Ojo, is expecting a baby and I am sure you will join me in wishing her congratulations. To continue the high quality of pastoral and academic care for those children receiving learning support, I am delighted that Mrs Smith is able to return to Lyonsdown in January to cover Mrs Ojo’s maternity leave. Mrs Smith has a wealth of experience across the Prep School age range and taught at Lyonsdown until the end of July.

Finally, some news about our Board of Governors. Congratulations to Claire Osborn, who is taking on the role of Chair of the Independent Schools Association for this academic year. As with all our governors, Mrs Osborne does a great deal to support Lyonsdown and I look forward to her plans for ISA and all of its member schools, their staff, pupils and families. We also say farewell to David Glass, who retired from the Board at the end of the last academic year. We would like to thank him for his service and contribution to Lyonsdown in the role of governor. We are delighted that Kiran Bavisha will be taking David’s place and joining the Finance and Premises Committee, where his skills and experience as a CIMA qualified accountant will be most welcome. Kiran has two daughters, both who attended Lyonsdown, with his younger daughter leaving Year 6 in July.

With so much going on, please look at the calendar, as there are several new events, including an additional parents’ evening. Also, keep an eye on our social media accounts, which will be expanding this term.

As we cling to the last vestiges of the summer weather, I wish you all a relaxing weekend.

Mr Hammond