|15 Jul 2021|
Jonny Timms, Head at Walhampton, shares this message with our alumni community:
"It is hard to believe it’s 2 terms since I started; time certainly flies when you’re enjoying yourself. It’s been documented that the OED has departed from precedent and rather than choosing a word for the year, they decided that in such extraordinary times there should be a list of words: ‘lockdown’, ‘furlough’, ‘unmute’, ‘social distancing’, ‘remote learning’…there has also been a 57,000% increase in the use of the word pandemic! The language of covid-19 is complex, it is difficult to avoid cliché or hyperbole as we seek to describe the impact on every aspect of our lives, not least here at Walhampton. But what if I was to choose an image to summarise my first 2 terms? An image that could reflect the fact that in the midst of change, some things stay the same? After all, it is a balancing act that is always at the heart of what we try to be and do…
I hope that this is a reassuring image of the school gathered together on that lawn in front of this building. A glimpse of staff holding laptops for those still not able to join us, dialling in remotely. The children sitting listening to my end of term message, maintaining the integrity of their bubbles. It was at this gathering that we also unveiled our ‘community tree’. This was an art project that brought the whole school together during lockdown. We hope our tree will be a lasting reminder of this strange time in our lives. It was made from pieces of fabric sent in by our families and leaves made by the children with something that makes them happy on. Far from normal of course. And yet…somehow, oddly, it felt completely normal. At the same time, this provided the perfect image of my first term back in April. And a beautiful one too.
As always and in spite of the pandemic, there has been so much that the school has been able to celebrate and many highlights on which to reflect.
Academically, despite remote learning and lockdowns, our children yet again (under the guidance of our excellent staff) performed remarkably well with a plethora of scholarship successes. As another cohort of alumni move onto the next phase of their lives, we congratulate them for their achievements and wish them every success, safe in the knowledge that there will always be a life-long bond with this place.
I am immensely proud of the many and varied contributions by the children, staff and alumni of this school. Our community is flourishing and I cannot wait to welcome you back so you can see the lasting memories of friendship, the busyness, challenges, success, and most importantly, fun! My first 6 months has been one of great enjoyment, but I very much look forward to having more opportunity to get to know more Walhampton families and of course, the many alumni and Friends of Walhampton all over the world. I am excited about the future ahead; we look forward to another year of success and achievement, and it is certainly shaping up with some exciting developments."