Tuesday, 30 June 2020
Pupils return to Abberley
It has been fantastic over the last week to welcome back most children and parents to Abberley. Each day in the prep school a year group spent the afternoon back at school engaged in fun games, sports day athletics events, time for activities and socialising and speeches and prize giving. All of this in the ‘safe’ environment of social distancing and heightened hygiene.
Seeing the excitement on the children’s faces when they were reunited with their class friends and teachers was wonderful to behold and has allowed for a closing of the summer term and all the distance learning, and hopefully a return to ‘normality’ in September.
At the beginning of this week the Leavers were invited back into school for a 24 hour period to try and give them a special sending off that they have not been able to experience in the usual way.
We had several group sessions from the leavers’ programme, fun games, sports day athletics events and an extended speech and prize giving session. After a BBQ, the children headed into the woods for camp fires and marshmallows and lots of time to enjoy each other’s company.
After hot chocolate and biscuits outside the pavilion we all headed up to the clock tower bank in the dark and with the Clock tower lights eerily lit and wind rustling in the tress we shared the traditional ghost stories. Everyone then headed to their dorms for a welcome sleep.
The BBQ was relit in the morning for a relaxed and hearty breakfast before emotional farewells were bid.
This set of Leavers have been exceptional. They have taken on every challenge that has been thrown at them during these unusual times. When the traditional 100 mile school to Manorbier cycle ride in a day was not possible the children took on the individual challenge of riding as a group over the week from Land’s End to John O’Groats, sending in their daily miles achieved on roads and on static bikes. What epitomised the ‘Abberley spirit’ was the seven boys who set their own 100 mile cycle challenge in a day and with the wonderful support of parents trained, organised and fund raised to continue that challenge themselves.
What this period has taught so many children is a degree of independence which will carry them far in life.