Gosfield School 
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Principal's Newsletter 12th October 2018

Dear Parents, 

I start this week’s Newsletter by confirming today’s announcement that our Head of Prep School, Mrs Matthews has successfully been appointed to the Headship of a Prep School in Frinton and will be leaving at the end of the Spring Term 2019.

This is an impressive career advancement for Mrs Matthews and we are very proud that her achievements at Gosfield School have been recognised by the Governors of her new School. 

Of course, we will be very sad to see Mrs Matthews leave us and have already begun the process of recruiting her successor. This is an exciting opportunity for any Primary School leader, given the developments currently underway at Gosfield.  I am sure it will attract a very high calibre field of candidates, as has been the case with the other posts for which we recruited earlier this calendar year. 

We will of course share more details about this process when we have them, but as Mrs Matthews will not be leaving us until April 2019, this does mean we have a very generous amount of time to ensure we make the right appointment. It does also mean that we have time to consider the best way for us to say farewell to Mrs Matthews, which I am sure we will all want to do.
Open Morning

May I take this opportunity to thank everyone who was involved in last weekend’s Open Morning.  Those who attended will have observed unprecedented guest numbers and many have commented upon both the way that our School was presented and the buzz that was generated. It was a very enjoyable morning for all concerned.

As ever, our pupil tour guides and staff were the stars of the show.  For prospective parents starting out on the life-changing decision about which School best suits their child, our pupils provide a glimpse of what their child may grow into with our support; they all stood up and proudly became expert hosts in most impressive fashion.  As ever, our fantastic Parent Ambassadors also provided a great deal of reassurance and insight for prospective parents and our inspirational staff went the extra mile, in the exciting activities they prepared, the motivational conversations they engaged in and for staying beyond our finish time to accommodate all of our extra visitors, for which I am very grateful. 

In conclusion, all the staff received a letter on Tuesday from the Chair Governors who has experienced all of our Open Mornings over many years.  He commented that it was “undoubtedly the most successful Open Morning in the school’s history. In my 25 years as a Governor, I have never been quite so proud, confident and excited about our School.” That is some stamp of approval; we’re all delighted with the very positive momentum the School has, as we continue to grow so that our children achieve beyond expectation, and inspire us with their performance on events such as Open Morning.

Taking Care of Pupils with Food Allergies

Following the two tragic, recent, high-profile national news cases, I would like to reassure parents that we are extremely vigilant in following all the correct procedures to support any pupils with food allergies.  Our kitchens are properly licensed and audited and our catering staff trained and qualified to ensure that we comply with the correct legislation.  In addition, the small nature of our School ensures the following:

* Parents of new pupils are able to communicate their dietary needs with both our School Nurse and Catering Manager and be confident that they will be observed at all times

* Similarly, any changes to pupils’ dietary needs or requirements can be registered and maintained providing we are informed

* Our catering staff know most of our pupils by name, and especially those with any dietary needs and they keep a watchful eye on them whilst serving meals

* All food that is taken out of School, not least sandwiches for School excursions, are labelled to advise of the inclusion of any of the 14 allergens which are contained

In addition, our School has been completely ‘nut free’ for some years now, helping to eliminate one the most common forms of allergy.  However, many pupils who are prone to this and similar conditions carry their own ‘epipens’ as well as a spare for each pupil being kept in First Aid – and a number of staff members are epipen-trained to be able to assist when required to.  If you need any additional advice or reassurance relating to food allergies at our School, please email Patrick Bell to arrange an appointment with the relevant professionals.

Lydia Benbrook Memorial Tree and Fund-Raising 

We are holding three events in the next couple of weeks in memory in memory of Lydia Benbrook who tragically died suddenly last December. Lydia was a pupil at Gosfield School from 2005 when she joined the Reception class through to Summer 2017 when she finished her GCSE studies and joined Writtle College.

Today, Prep School pupils have been invited to wear their own clothes and bring in a £1 donation.

Next Friday 19 October, Senior School pupils may wear their own clothes and bring in a £2 donation.

We hope that everyone will celebrate Lydia’s life-long love for animals by wearing their own animal themed clothes and outfits. Any donations raised will be donated to help fund a new red footed tortoise enclosure at Linton Zoo, which is being constructed in Lydia's memory.

And finally we will be planting an oak tree on the lawns in front of the Main School building next Thursday 18 October in a ceremony to remember Lydia.  We will be honoured to have Mr and Mrs Benbrook in attendance for that ceremony and they will be joined by staff, plus students from Year 10 and above. Any parents who knew Lydia well and may wish to attend this should contact Mrs Redfern directly. 

We welcome any additional donations to the fund by cash or cheque and these should be made payable to  “The Linton Zoo Conservation Fund”.  We will ensure that Linton Zoo are informed of our wishes that all of the money raised by Gosfield School is to go to the fund for the new tortoise enclosure.  Thank you for your support in this matter which has touched the hearts of our whole School community

Duke Of Edinburgh Silver Award – Practice Weekend

The Year 10 girls followed their excellent representation of the school on our busy Open Morning by behaving inspirationally on their Duke of Edinburgh Practice Expedition this weekend. The blustery weather didn't dampen their spirits, and despite a dismal first night's camping the girls' spirits were high and their attitudes were exemplary throughout. Miss Rayment, Mr Davies and Mr Edgar are incredibly proud of our students' achievements and look forward to taking them to the South Downs in April for their Qualifying Expedition...hopefully with a little better weather!

Sports Round Up

Here is our Sports round up, starting with an extended report of what we believe may be a first for Gosfield School – a very successful football festival for our Girls Football squad.

Under 13 Girls’ Football – ISA Football Festival

Miss Hume reports:  Gosfield School’s under 13 team travelled to LVS Ascot on Tuesday to participate in the ISA Football Festival.  The team of Ella L, Annie, Olivia, Amelie, Jemimah, Ella M, Evie and Isabelle worked together and achieved third place in the whole competition out of 16 teams.

Their first match was against Mount House, who they beat 2-0 with goals from Isabelle and Ella M before a tougher second match against Southbank Westminster, when the girls fought hard to get a goalless draw.  The third and final group stage match was against Holme Grange, a 4-0 win with two contributing goals from Isabelle and one apiece from Jemimah and Ella M saw the team solidly through to the Cup finals.  Here, Gosfield faced Shoreham College where the team worked tremendously hard to score, but in the final minutes of the game conceded and lost 1-0.

However, in the third place play off, Luckley House were a tough opposition for the girls, but their hard work paid off. The game went to penalties. Ella L in goal did not concede any one of the four penalties struck at her. Meanwhile, birthday girl Ella M and Amelie led us to victory winning 2-0 from penalties. 

It really was an excellent day and a fantastic display of teamwork and camaraderie from the start. Well done everyone; brilliant!

Under 15 Girls’ Hockey vs Cambridge International School

Mrs Allwood reports:  Another gorgeous afternoon with the sun shining saw the girls record their first victory of the season. The U15 team played CIS at Bocking. The first half was extremely tight with the ball travelling from end to end resulting in many fatigued players. Gosfield were unfortunate to let in a goal right before half time. However, the girls came back fighting in the second half with great goals from Jess and Niamh resulting in a satisfying win. Well done girls.

Under 15 Mixed Hockey vs Cambridge International School

Mrs Allwood reports:  This week we took 4 teams over to Cambridge International School.  All the girls were given the opportunity to play as well as the boys who attend our hockey club. There were

some skilful performances from many of our players notably Heston, Imogen and Ella plus Tanaka and Fleur showing most improvements. All the games were played with a great spirit of competition but also fair play. Gosfield won three of the matches and CIS just one. Well done all who took part, some in their first ever fixture.

Under 11 Boys’ Rugby vs Littlegarth Away

Mr Lyon reports:  The Year 5 and 6 boys went to Littlegarth School yesterday and put in an outstanding performance!  They came away having beaten a Framlingham side convincingly by eight tries to two. Oscar was instrumental at scrum half and Freddie S dazzled with some excellent running with the ball.  Archie was a juggernaut running hard down the middle of the pitch to score two tries. On the defensive side special mentions go to Ben and Freddie M who put in countless tackles to stop the opposition in their tracks.

In our second game against the hosts Littlegarth 'A' the boys were stalwarts in defence, again putting in a number of try saving tackles. The boys showed themselves to be outstanding team players and passed the ball well to move the ball up the pitch. At two tries to one down with 30 seconds to go the boys went on a frenzy of runs ending in a great run by Freddie S to score under the posts and tie the game at two tries each.

All the boys were a credit to the school and came home extremely happy!

Additional Cricket Square Secured for Cricket Academy

I am pleased to announce that we have reached an agreement with the Gosfield Playing Field Committee to take over the maintenance and use of the village cricket square.  This provides us with the ability to host double age-group fixtures against other cricketing Schools next summer; this is a model which works well for us and for visiting Schools.

Mrs Allwood’s Culinary Corner

This week saw our Year 10 GCSE group make delicious Thai salmon filo parcels with an orange watercress salad. Eugenie’s work on this is pictured below.   Year 8 continued with their bread/gluten investigations and Year 9 produced Mexican Enchiladas.

Next week: 7 NAJ Humous 8MAS Nan bread 9DAJ Homemade burgers

Star of the Week

Year Star Reason
Nursery Muhammed Ramzan For being patient and encouraging when playing with a younger child.
Reception Ilyas Lahmam For speaking whole sentences in English
1 Millicent Tarbin Super effort and imaginative writing in our Big Write
2 Louis Palmer For a fantastic attitude to learning!
3 Amy Whitwood Showing great determination to earn her star of the week.
4 Adam Alsawaf For maintaining an excellent standard in all areas of the curriculum.
5 John Bowen Fantastic thirst for learning displayed and developing his enquiring mind in lessons.
6 Hugo Goddard Excellent listening and a focused, mature attitude to learning.


Diary Dates

Date Event
15th October Year 12/13 Young Enterprise Launch Pad Programme
U9 Boys Football vs Littlegarth at Gosfield School
16th October Senior Tutor Parents Evening
17th October Year 9-11 Chemistry Trip to Tilbury
ISA Swimming Gala Prep School
19th October Prep School Harvest Service


And a reminder to everyone, next week is a Week 1 on our two-week timetable.

Good luck to everyone with all their endeavours this week.  As ever, my door is always open if you would like to book an appointment in advance via Mrs Bowles.


Guy Martyn



Gosfield School, Cut Hedge Park, Halstead Road
Gosfield, Halstead, Essex, CO9 1PF

Telephone: + 44 (0)1787 474040

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Gosfield School · Gosfield School · Cut Hedge Park, Halstead Road, · Gosfield, Essex CO9 1PF · United Kingdom

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