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12 June 2020

As Warwick School looks forward to the return of Year 10 and the Lower Sixth on Monday, we are confronted by the latest in a series of changes to our lives that have occurred over the past few months. 

Never has the claim that we live in a rapidly changing world been more true!  We all face periods of change throughout our lives.  Some of these changes are expected and some are not. How we cope with the expected ones helps us to cope with the unexpected.  Change is often uncomfortable but if we approach it with the right mind set it can be a stimulus for growth.  One of our school learning values is perseverance, to keep trying and overcome challenges.  In this difficult and uncharted era the perseverance of the Warwick School community and in particular the boys has been remarkable.  Over the last two weeks the boys have coped with the change to online exams. Over 6,000 assessments have been taken.  This has been a new way of working for the boys and staff and it is a testimony to their perseverance that these have been completed smoothly and in good spirit, all should feel a great sense of achievement at getting through this very different examination period.

None of us know what the coming months will bring but when facing the inevitable changes, it will be important to remember that we have friends and family and a community to support us.  Equally important to remember is that as members of a community we have a duty to support others and have a positive impact on the world around us. No one could have foreseen how the last few months would change for us all.  We have all read the inspiring reports in the press of how medical staff, critical workers and volunteers have put others first to help us tackle these changes.  Closer to home in our special community there have been countless examples of those who have put themselves out to help others.  The undoubted highlight of my first few days in post has been the receipt of two reports from members of the public, completely unsolicited examples of Warwick Boys at their best helping others without any thought of public recognition or reward. Last Friday Tom Bosworth was nearby when a gentleman fell over in St. Nicholas Park.  Tom was incredibly kind and helpful in assisting the man and another passer-by, moved by his actions, felt the need to call the school and let us know how impressed they were by his willingness to help others.  Early this week I also received a card from a resident of Snitterfield, currently ‘shielding’, they wanted to express their gratitude for Jasper Cockburn-Miller’s daily small act of kindness in delivering their papers. In helping others, we often find we help ourselves to get through difficult times.  It helps us to feel a little more certain and able to cope with what is happening around us and helps to strengthen our community, something from which we all benefit.

School has been a strange place this week as we prepare for the return of Year 10 and the Lower Sixth.  It has been so quiet. Schools should be vibrant places full of life and energy and it will be fantastic to see some of the boys again. For now, this ‘contact’ must remain limited.  We must be conscious of those who, for a variety of reasons, still cannot be with us and continue to make every effort to keep in touch with them.  It will though be fantastic to see the boys back in school interacting with their peers and teachers.  I for one can’t wait for Monday and the next cautious steps toward the return of our special community to its home.