I hope this letter finds you well and rested after the half term break, notwithstanding the weather and resulting travel complications. For many of our Year 8 pupils this break has of course been punctuated with revision for the upcoming mock and scholarship exams and I would like to take this opportunity to wish them all the very best as they undertake these papers.

Once again I was delighted to see St. Michael’s School strongly represented amongst the prize winners at the Commonwealth Essay Competition Awards ceremony. My congratulations to all recipients and I would like to make special mention of Juliette Bale, who won the Royal Commonwealth Society Jersey Award for the best essay in Jersey. This was the second time this pupil has won this award and the essay was fittingly read to the audience by her father. All pupils in Years 5 to 8 were very engaged in the Potential Plus Maths workshop run by the highly regarded AS Creatives and the Senior Poetry Competition finalists delighted the small audience with the quality of their poetry and readings.

The three nominated charities for this year’s Christmas Sale gratefully received their donations in a School Assembly.  Further charitable endeavors this half-term has included the Australian County Fire Service Foundation dress down day. Part of the money raised will go towards donating Teddies to the children affected by the bushfires.

This half-term has been busy for the performing arts. It began with the Chamber Choir performing beautifully at the Opera House in the matinee concert entitled ‘Love Stories’, in support of the Oscar Maclean Foundation. They opened the concert and also performed in the Arts Assembly the following Thursday. This Assembly also included two chamber ensembles, a piano duet and the principal chorus of our upcoming production ‘Grease’ performing the show-stopping ‘Summer Nights’. We hope many of you will be able to come and see the show at the Arts Centre on the 4th and 5th of March.

The Junior Department gave two outstanding performances of ‘Hoodwinked’. The acting was superb, as was the singing from the chorus and soloists. The scenery and costumes were spectacular and in no small way contributed to a tremendous production. We look forward to the upcoming Pre-Prep Assemblies, Informal Concerts, the seniors production of ‘Grease’ and the House Music Competition after half-term.

The schedule of Lent Term sporting fixtures for both boys and girls has started well and further details can be found on our Facebook page. We look forward to the eagerly anticipated Festival of Sport hosted by St. Michael’s and the IAPS 7’s Rugby Tournament will take place on the following Sunday at Sherborne School in Dorset.

At the start of this term all the girls in Years 5 and 6 who wished to play for a school team have been involved in league fixtures. The U11A team have moved up into Group A and St Michael’s have two teams entered into the B team league. The U11B team are playing particularly well and are currently unbeaten in the league.

The senior girls in Years 7 and 8 have also been playing some excellent Netball and again the Year 7 team are currently unbeaten in the league. I would like to extend my congratulations to Issy Patel who recently gained a sports scholarship at Bryanston. Further congratulations go to Olivia Messervy who gained a sports scholarship to Sherborne Girls alongside an academic and drama scholarship making up her award.

The Rugby season has been very wet so far, with home and away fixtures cancelled due to waterlogged pitches. Fortunately, we were still able to get some Rugby matches played for teams in Years 5 to 8 against local schools and also the Jersey Rugby Club. The boys senior Hockey season has started with games played against Victoria College and several more are planned for after half-term. We also have a junior Hockey tour to Guernsey planned for the second half of term. The junior Football season has continued with the Colts A team playing in the Jersey Indoor Football Tournament and travelling to Guernsey for the County stage of the Danone ESFA National Competition. We have also held a successful mini Football Festival against Grouville School with Colts A, B, and C teams playing as well as a Year 4 team.

The School Inter-House Cross-Country started with a very colourful Years 3/4 funky hat fun run. In the main events, Matthew House were winners of the Years 5/6 section and Luke House won the Senior event. A new arrival at this event was the impressive St. Michael’s Parents’ Association catering trailer funded by the efforts of these industrious mums in conjunction with the whole school community. May I extend a vote of thanks to this committee who tirelessly support many of our sporting occasions and events such as the ‘Movie Night’ for pupils of Years 1 and 2, the SMPA Disco, Easter Egg Hunt and the ever-popular Quiz night.

Further to the events mentioned above the calendar will indicate a number of events happening in the upcoming half-term, including the U11A Netball Tournament, Years 6 & 8 Parents’ Evenings, Pre-Prep and Junior Parents’ Evenings, Reception Mothers’ Day Tea Party and the Primary Schools Cross-Country meeting. Specific information for these events can be found in the online calendar and please note that the sports fixtures always indicate the ‘kick off’ time.

A final request to please ensure your children return to school smartly dressed, shoes polished, buttons on blazers and with hair tied back or appropriately cut according to the school policy. I look forward to welcoming you all back to St. Michael’s next half-term.