This week I am talking to the students in Assembly about the importance of remembering service men and women who gave their lives or who have suffered injury and trauma while in active service. Of course, this is a story which refers not only to the past but also to today, with service personnel in Afghanistan. This year is particularly memorable to me on two accounts; firstly, I had the privilege of accompanying Year 9 students to the WWI Battle Fields in Belgium where two of our students presented a memorial wreath at the Menin Gate in Ypres, a site where thousands of missing soldiers’ names are chiselled into stone as a sign of remembrance and respect.
The second account is when I visited our Base students at Stoke Mandeville and accompanied them to the Paralympic games. The whole games history goes back to WWI with the return of disabled and neurologically impaired soldiers who were institutionalised. At Stoke Mandeville a pioneering doctor, Sir Ludwig Guttmann, started to get the young men active again, focussing on playing sports – and so came the origin of the Paralympics.
All students will observe 2 minutes of silence to remember those who have lost their lives, and tragically continue to do so.
HOLOCAUST MEMORIAL DAY
We are very honoured to be hosting this year’s Holocaust Memorial Day Commemoration in January. This event is coordinated by SACRE (Herts Standing Advisory Council for Religious Education) and invites schools from all around the County to participate in the event to which high-profile guests within Hertfordshire are invited. The theme for 2013 is ‘Communities Together: Build a Bridge’ which asks us all to honour those communities destroyed in the Holocaust under Nazi persecution and subsequent genocides. I will report on the evening in late January.
KEEPING YOUR CHILD SAFE
The week before half term a student reported to us whilst on Facebook a man had suggested that she meet him. The police were contacted immediately. You may think this is a rare occurrence, but I am disturbed to report to you that a number of students at Bushey Meads and nationally are contacted and correspond on Facebook and Twitter with men and women they do not know.
I know for many parents and carers you feel alienated from what is going on with your child on online. We always aim to keep you informed and if you click on the link below it will show you a short video to inform you of what you can do. This video is from Child Online Exploitation Protections (CEOPS).