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Here comes the sun! (for a day or two)

27th April 2018


The Trinity Term has taken off like a rocket and is going strong! The staff gathered before the girls returned to take part in an INSET session on Emotional Literacy with an external consultant Julia Woods who we will be recommending to parents from time to time, should we find someone is struggling in or out of school. Despite the role play (the dreaded enemy of most teachers!) the feedback from the session was very positive and so I feel very confident in asking Julia to see girls in the future.

Open Morning brought glorious sunshine and I would like to thank all the girls, parents, staff and governors who came to support us. While we had fewer visitors than we were hoping, we all felt that they had done their research. Hence they were here for a serious reason, the tours lasted for over 2 hours in some cases and there were many sensible questions at the end.

The Wychwood Association met that afternoon with many ideas for upcoming events and it feels right that so many of our former girls and staff are still very involved in the school in so many ways – the careers fair, the university fair, providing work experience for the current girls and event like the lecture from Dame Ottoline Leyser last term which shows just how far Wychwood girls can travel if they are so minded. One of the lovely ideas they have had as a fundraiser is for former girls to come back for dinner and a sleepover in their old dorms – we are planning to go ahead next Easter holidays – apparently we will be inundated!

So many of you were at the Friends of Wychwood Quiz and Curry that I need hardy describe it here! It was so good to see so many of you there and the whole evening was such a pleasure that was well worth the effort. Noel Rainbird ably organised us with such thought for everyone concerned, Rob Lagden made a knowledgeable and very amiable quiz master with as I described them to the school, evil and very clever questions from Jilly Hilton. It is always good to know exactly where you stand in terms of understanding  popular culture and the Head Girls’ picture round put most of us over 25 very firmly in our places and pointed out there’s a world out there to get to know. Everyone on the FOW committee, the form reps and Richard and Dale all pitched in to help us move furniture, set up and clear away – thank you all so much. It is always fascinating to see the competitive streak come out in people and that top spot was a real goal for every team!  And Wendy’s curry – what a treat we all had: I know someone commented that it was better than an Indian restaurant and I would wholeheartedly echo that – we had all felt starving for much of the week as spicy breezes drifted out of the kitchens as she prepared the base sauces and then lovingly simmered the final curries. She is exceptional and we are very lucky to have her and her team.

The textiles pupils also put in an afternoon of examination preparation on Saturday ready for this week when the examinations begin. GCSE drama all enjoyed The Flying Lovers of Vitebsk and the Computer Science girls had the most marvellous visit to Oxbotica – “A world where vehicles think for themselves. We are developing the next generation of autonomous vehicles – creating the software that makes them go. Using the latest in computer vision and machine learning, our systems learn from their environment and share experiences with each other, so that they are getting smarter all the time.”  Professor Newman welcomed the girls and gave them a fabulous time. Do come and listen to his WD lecture next term – it should be fascinating.  They enjoyed themselves so much, having done some advance preparation work so they could  ask intelligent questions and they were a real credit to Wychwood. The GCSE Computer Science group are going back for a visit and to take a drive and I am going to try and wangle an invitation too.

Finally this week, we had the Head Girls dinner where we thank the outgoing Head Girls and reflect on what they have learned and gained from the post, apart from something excellent to put on their CVs. We talk through the highs and lows with the new Head Girls and help them to have some idea of what to expect – it was a lovely evening as always. The former Head Girls now need to settle down to their A Level final preparation and the new head girls can take over and make their mark on the year.

Until next week.

Mrs Andrea Johnson