From the Headmaster
We begin this second half of term with a sense of confidence and a determination to ensure that this is an exciting and enjoyable time for all of our students. Never have we felt our conviction of purpose as keenly as we have felt it during recent months. It is hugely reassuring to observe that, across Europe, there is a resolve to ensure that young people do not suffer further loss due to this pernicious virus. The political rhetoric within the UK has changed and there is now a cross-party consensus that schools must remain open. This seems entirely sensible and we believe that we have demonstrated that we are able to operate successfully during these times. There is increased talk of a vaccine being available around Christmas time but we must remain vigilant and learn to live alongside this virus successfully for the next little while.
Current circumstances have forced us to adapt in order to flourish. I am incredibly excited that this Christmas will see the launch of Rossall’s film version of A Christmas Carol. Our Remembrance Day ceremony will go ahead and elements of it will also be available online. There is plenty else for us to look forward to and as the sun streams through my study window (yes, really!), it is hard not to reflect upon the fact that we have so much for which to be grateful. Our school is full of happy children who have adapted extraordinarily well to the times within which we are living.
It is well worth us reflecting upon the life of one particularly special Old Rossallian. Rex Crummack was born in 1887 and grew up in Salford. His father’s family ran a brewing business and Rex was sent to Rossall School where he excelled at sports. Upon leaving School he trained in the cotton industry before enlisting in the army where he served with distinction on the Western Front. He sent many letters back to School during the war and copies of these letters are to be found in the School archives.
Although primarily famed as a golfer, Rex was selected for the Great Britain Hockey team that travelled to Antwerp for the 1920 Olympics. The 1916 Olympics had been cancelled because of the First World War and, despite the fact that Belgium had been ravaged by four years of conflict, the Belgian Olympic Committee were determined to press ahead. The 1919 Paris Peace Conference exerted a miserable influence upon proceedings – not least because four empires had ceased to exist and a good number of nation states were only just formed. Some were precluded from participating due to punitive sanctions meted out at Versailles and others were feeling a little anxious due to the Spanish Influenza. Nevertheless, those who did turn up were treated to a real spectacle that included the last ever Olympic ‘Tug of war’ competition and the oldest ever medal winner, 72 year old Oscar Swahn.
The hockey was a bit of a shambles – a simple round robin competition between just four nations. The gold medal was to be decided by the penultimate game between Great Britain and France. Great Britain won this match 17-2 to claim gold but there is some suggestion that a nefarious scheme to undermine the match had backfired. The Ilford Recorder claims that:
Great Britain’s opponents invited our lads out on the town – with the intention of drinking them legless. The French found their opponents were made of sterner stuff than themselves in the hangover league and the inebriated opposition actually conceded the next day’s final following their mutual night out on the town.
So Rex might have participated in one of the most amusing and relaxed of Olympic competitions but after the dreadful depredations of the Western Front, both the French and the English could be forgiven for adopting a somewhat amateur and light hearted approach to proceedings.
Rex lived on until the mid 1960s, He returned to his first love of golf and was the only person to compete in the British Amateur Championship both before the First World War and after the Second World War.
Two hundred and ninety eight of his fellow Old Rossalians were not so fortunate and, as we approach the forthcoming week, we remember all from our own communities who perished during the terrible conflicts of the twentieth century. It is our collective responsibility to honour those who have gone before and there is no doubting that their fortitude and courage continues to exert a tremendous influence over this wonderful school. Telling the individual stories of those Rossallians who died during the First and Second World Wars constitutes a colossal undertaking. It is a historical undertaking of epic proportions. However, it is a project that I would like us to begin sooner rather than later because it serves to enhance our understanding of all that was lost on a human level.
As we enter this period of increased restrictions, we intend for the School to continue operating as normally as possible.
Our vision is for the future but our inspiration comes from our past of which we are so proud.
All best wishes,
Mr Jeremy Quartermain
Headmaster of Rossall School
Message from the Junior Headmaster
Welcome back to the second half of the Michaelmas term. Despite ongoing events around us, I am delighted that the children are back and are throwing themselves into all that the Junior School has to offer. Our inclusive co-curricular programme has restarted, with the clubs as important as ever due to the closure of so many other areas of the children’s lives. I was delighted to see ‘Classics’ being so well attended at lunchtime, and our sports offering is more popular than ever.
In other news, the next stage of our renovation of the Infant and Nursery area of the Junior School is now well underway. The creation of an incredible Pre-School Nursery Hall will allow for our outstanding Nursery to continue to grow, in custom, state of the art facilities. I know that the youngest members of our community are exceptionally excited to watch the work being carried out; we may have some budding builders and architects in our midst!
I hope that you all enjoyed receiving the effort grades for your children prior to half term. Following on from these, pupil progress has been discussed in the ‘virtual’ parents’ evening events that have taken place this week. You should also have received the most recent half termly curriculum map; the pupils are loving getting to grips with their new topic areas. All these communications combine to allow for a positive home-school partnership and I know that the teachers were delighted to be able to speak to you all, albeit via a screen.
Please do take a moment to click on the Junior School further news section, to find out what activities each year group has been taking part in this week. From dissecting owl pellets to baking cupcakes, the fullness and variety of each day supports the learning process, as well as creating lifelong memories.
Have a lovely weekend.
Headmaster of Rossall Junior School
|ROSSALL LAUNCHES ELITE FOOTBALL PROGRAMME FOR GIRLS BACKED BY ENGLAND AND CHELSEA FC FOOTBALLER, MILLIE BRIGHT
We are delighted to announce that Millie Bright, England Lioness and Chelsea defender, is to become the Ambassador for our brand new Girls’ Elite Football Programme being launched this week, in partnership with League One football club, Fleetwood Town FC. Read more here: https://www.rossall.org.uk/millie-bright-england-lioness-becomes-ambassador-for-new-elite-girls-football-programme/
Robert Robinson has been appointed Deputy Head of The British School in Rio de Janeiro. Robert will take up this exciting new role on 1st January 2021 and we are absolutely delighted for both him and his family. On 1st January, 2021, Dina Porovic will assume the role of Senior Deputy Head here at Rossall School. Dina joined us in January 2019, after a highly successful career at some of the UK’s top performing independent Schools. Marie-Louise Brown has been appointed Pastoral Deputy Head. Marie-Louise is Deputy Headteacher and Head of the International Section at Lyceum Alpinum Zuoz in Switzerland. Her experience of boarding, leadership of the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme, and keen interest in mental health and student wellbeing makes her an ideal ‘fit’ for Rossall. There will be an interregnum between Robert leaving and Marie-Louise arriving. Our Director of Boarding, Emma Williams is also Head of Safeguarding and you will be aware that our Heads of Years and Heads of Sections are responsible for all pastoral issues. However, we felt it prudent to ensure that we have additional ‘firepower’ during these times. Consequently, we are pleased that Jonathan Cohen is now coordinating much of our response to COVID-19. To read the full story, please click here.
|SIXTH FORM FUTURES
We are very excited about our new microsite specifically designed to host our virtual events. Providing a first-rate visual and audio experience, the site allows you to ask questions and download relevant documents.
Watch our excellent launch programme, Sixth Form Futures on demand at www.rossalldigital.org/6thformfutures. This engaging and informative event highlights what a tremendous Sixth Form we have here at Rossall and showcases a number of our incredible students past and present.
|ASSEMBLY – MONDAY 2ND NOVEMBER 2020
Our first assembly back includes an outstanding performance on the piano by Year 10 student, Oscar Knight. There is also a spooky segment, courtesy of Mrs Lee about the ghostly goings-on at Rossall School, and Miss Lane talks to us about the value of gratitude. We hope you enjoy!
|UKMT SENIOR MATHS CHALLENGE
A selection of year 11, 12 and 13 took part in the UKMT Senior Maths Challenge this week. It is an international challenge run by The University of Leeds, they even made a film in which it featured heavily called “x + y” in 2014.
Here is a link to last year’s paper. Take a look and see how well you would fair:
|WHAT’S ON THIS WEEKEND
See what’s on this weekend at Rossall School.