Posted on 15/10/2014

Happy and Safe

Several staff, as they left school on Friday, popped into my office to say how FBS was really starting to feel like the school we always said it would become. Routines are now in place, the environment is stimulating and lessons are in full swing. The Senior Leadership Team started sitting-in on lessons last week as well as carrying out ‘book looks’. There is so much good practice happening.

As the boys are singing our school anthem so well, we have started learning a new hymn in assembly this week, ‘Be thou my vision’. The intention is that this will be accompanied by some of our boys on the drums. Despite it being a new song to most of them, they gave it a good shot – no doubt spurred on by Friday’s victory in our first competitive rugby match.

When I reflect on all of this, it has been a great start; not perfect of course, but great. Staff and boys are happy. And the school building and facilities have exceeded my expectations.

It is hard to imagine a better temporary site. Boys have got so much space to run off steam at break and lunch times. The science lab and classrooms will allow us to do all we need to as a school striving for academic excellence. We have a large music room for Mr Burns to teach in and a rehearsal room full of his instruments. The resource centre and library is a place many of our boys choose to go to at lunchtime to read or steal a march on their ‘Ownwork’. There is also the Art room, now displaying pupils’ artistic endeavours, and the Pupil Support Class where boys can go to get extra help and support with their work/behaviour. On top of all this are the sports facilities. Over the next few months, our all-weather football pitch will be in operation, cricket nets and volley ball courts set up and an outside gym installed. Inside, boys have swung their first punches in the boxing ring and christened the table-tennis tables.

In doing what we can to enable our boys to really push the boundaries, our prime concern is always safety. It is so important that our boys are safe and feel safe. It’s one of the reasons we place such emphasis on behaviour, and it’s why staff are on duty at the beginning and end of each day. At eleven years of age most boys appreciate familiar faces dotted around as they make their way home, and having staff at the main gate, bus stop, tube station and chicken shop also means we can keep an eye on them!

Looking at what we have achieved, in a short time, on our temporary site our imaginations are being fired by what will be possible on our purpose built permanent site. When we leave this part of Fulham and put our roots down permanently in the south of the borough, I have no doubt we will look back at these days with so many fond memories. Days that were happy and safe.

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