July 20, 2022

An incredibly busy and joyous end to the academic year 2021/22! The last few weeks have seen a return for Founders' Day (with a wide variety of House activities and events), Sports Day with competitors, spectators and ice creams, the visit of our new Year 7 students and their parents to HBS, the Summer recital and concert and the completion of the Duke of Edinburgh bronze expedition. We also had our new-format end of year awards ceremonies for Years 7-10, where parents joined us to celebrate academic, sporting and pastoral success. And the good ideas continued, with the library team stuffing 147 book bags with requested reading material for students for over the summer holidays.
 
You will also have seen our separate sports news letter in which an outstanding season for Athletics was celebrated, where we were District champions in year 7, 8, 9, 10 and Seniors with 35 individual District champions, seven boys who were individual County champions, the U14s as runners up in the County League finals with U16 as winners of the County League finals, 5th place overall in the English Schools Track and Field national cup with county and regional success along the way, and finally eight boys represented at the English Schools National Championships in Manchester recently. The PE team should be very proud of this success this year, and particularly Mr Cornell and Mr Bajak who have the teams competing at the very highest national levels in Hockey, Rugby and Athletics. We also salute Year 12 student Tom Spreckley who captained the U18 England hockey squad in their recent international series in Germany. 
 
By the time you read this, the winners of the Times Shield for this year will have been announced, and we will have opened our new Fitness Suite. Thanks to your generous donations, we have been able to create a professional level gym within the current tennis centre that will be a support to health, fitness and wellbeing for years to come. More about the grand unveiling and dedication to Mr Moore elsewhere in the newsletter.
 
Although the information below about leavers and joiners has already been shared via email, I felt it was necessary to put the school's thanks to departing staff on public record, and to extend a welcome to our new joiners in September. 
 
Pastoral organisation
With Deputy Headteacher (pastoral) Mr Ajagbonna joining us in September, we have a new structure in place that will allow us to work effectively as the school grows beyond 1300 students. Mr Ajagbonna is supported by three senior staff: Ms Christou as Head of Sixth Form, Mr Larsen as Head of Upper School (Year 10 and 11) and Ms McCall as Head of Lower School (Years 7-9). Ms Stanton is the Assistant Head of Lower School and Mr Rombout the Assistant Head of Upper School. The Heads of Year for September are as follows:
 
  • Year 7: Dr Nuttall
  • Year 8: Mr Roberts
  • Year 9: Mr Fitts
  • Year 10: Ms Cavill
  • Year 11: Mr Rule
  • Year 12: Mr Wilson
  • Year 13: Ms Powell
Staff leavers and joiners
It is sad to say goodbye to some genuine HBS legends as they retire from the profession. Mr Ravinder Moore has HBS blood running through his veins and is leaving us after 37 years (and more when you think he attended the school for seven years too!) I know many parents will remember Mr Moore fondly and his huge contribution to the school in terms of maths teaching but also as second in charge of PE, Careers leader, House Coordinator and head of Radcliffe house. He has made a massive contribution to overall school life and the wider Hitchin community. 
 
Two other very long serving mathematicians are taking full retirement: Mr Middleton has served 32 years and has supported a huge number of students to boost their attainment in maths over the years and also served as a specialist SEND teacher, and Ms Lansdown has served 31 years both as maths teacher and inspirational Head of Sixth. I know many former students owe their success to the nurture and guidance that Ms Lansdown provided them in the Sixth Form and her knowledge and dedication will be missed.
 
Ms Freeman has been promoted to Assistant Headteacher at another local secondary school. Her successful stewardship of the department will be taken forward by Ms Stapleton, who is currently second in maths. Ms Marx has secured a pastoral leadership position at another school and we thank her for her work in maths and as head of the current Year 8. We welcome Ms Chrisp, Ms Wheeler, Mr Taherbeigi and Ms Lane to the maths faculty who bring a vast amount of experience to the team.
 
In science, HBS legend Mr Cook is stepping back from leading the faculty, but we are delighted that he is remaining with us to teach biology and to lead Mattocke house. Mr Warman will take over as head of science. We say goodbye to Ms Armstrong and Mr Hall who are moving to another school and returning to postgraduate study respectively. Mr Kotecha is returning from his time in the USA, and we welcome his return.
 
In English, Mr Southcoat has been promoted to SENDCo at another Hertfordshire school, Ms Weeks is also moving to work for Hertfordshire’s SEND department and Ms Bruen has left to pursue a career outside teaching. Ms Keys joins us as second in English, Ms Garner as literacy coordinator and we also welcome Mr Balderstone and Mr McQueen as English teachers.
 
In social sciences, Mrs Graham is joining the Senior Leadership team as Associate Assistant Head for a year-long secondment and will continue our focus on the environment and sustainability alongside her leadership of social sciences. In geography, Ms Elliott is returning to teach in the North-East of England and is replaced by Mrs Raju. In technology, Ms Millwood has secured promotion at a school in Bedfordshire and is replaced by Ms Winters, who has been a technician and then trainee teacher at HBS, so already knows the students well. Mr Whorrod also joins the faculty as a specialist in media and digital creativity. Ms Fox-Connor in art and Ms Phillips in history join us to cover maternity leave. Ms Marbaix joins the modern foreign languages department to add to our French teaching capacity.
 
From the support staff, Ms Skinner is leaving the cover supervisor team to train to be a psychology teacher and my PA Mrs Norman-Smith is returning to industry. Ms Kohli will leave the cover supervisor team but is staying on with us to be a trainee teacher in Business and Economics. Our inspirational school counsellor, Ms Heyhoe, is taking up a post in Bedford and we thank her for exceptional support over her twelve years at HBS. I know she has been a lifeline for many of our students and we wish her well in her new school. Ms Dean is leaving the science technician team for another post in Hertfordshire.
 
We wish all of our departing colleagues the very best of luck with their ventures and offer thanks for all that they have done for HBS. We also welcome our new colleagues and offer them support as they settle into their new school.
 
Finally, I wish you a safe and restful summer break to recharge batteries. See you in September, or on 18th August for A-level results or 25th August for GCSE results (from 9am in the Sixth Form centre).
 
Fergal Moane, Head Teacher

Coming up

Over the next few weeks

House points

As of 20 Jul 2022

School news

Times Shield Winners!
Congratulations to Pierson house, who have just been revealed as the winners of this year's Times Shield at the end of term assembly!
 

Congratulations Pierson!

New Fitness Suite opened
One of Mr Moore's final duties at HBS before his retirement was to formally open the new Fitness Suite in the Tennis Centre, which has been named in his honour. Old boys and former staff gathered after school on Tuesday for the ribbon cutting ceremony, and everyone present was able to get their first look at the fantastic equipment that has been funded through generous donations from parents and supporters of the school.
 
During his time at HBS, Mr Moore has encouraged and mentored hundreds of students to play at school, County and National leve, with many continuing their sporting careers beyond school. An accomplished sportsman himself, Mr Moore has represented Hertfordshire in four different sports: rugby, cricket, hockey and football. The highlight of his sporting career was winning the National Hockey Under 18 title in December 1981.
 
The opening of the Fitness Suite was followed by a Staff XI vs Old Boys XI cricket match in the 40-degree heat. Former teachers either playing or supporting included Mr Simms, Mr Streets and Mr Smith.
 
The Fitness Suite will be available from September for both students and staff to use - details to be confirmed.
 

Mr Moore opens the Fitness Suite

Mr and Mrs Moore

The Fitness Suite is ready for use

The opening was followed by a cricket match

Farewell interview with Mr Moore
‘Legend’ is a term that is often overused; but in the case of Mr Moore it can be used exactly as it should be. Mr Moore has not only put in 37 years of service at the school as an inspirational and dedicated PE and Maths teacher, but also as second in PE for a time before moving sideways to become the school’s Careers co-ordinator for many years. Before becoming a member of staff Mr Moore was a pupil of the school, meaning 44 years of his life have centred around our school. I was delighted to ask Mr Moore to be a Year 7 form tutor and he has taken on the role in the same vein as he has every other, with enthusiasm, passion and a child centric approach. The students of 7PM have been blessed this year and have no doubt heard one or two stories from days gone by.
 
To celebrate Mr Moore's contribution I asked Ms Williams of the English department to arrange for two Year 7 students to interview Mr Moore about his long and respected career. The whole Lower School Pastoral team would like to thank Mr Moore for supporting all of Year 7 to settle into HBS this year. Following this article are a few photos to highlight Mr Moore’s contribution to the School.
 
Mr Dawson
 
When did you join HBS as a student and as a member of staff?
I joined as a student in September 1974 and as a teacher in September 1985.
 
What are the three biggest ways HBS has changed since you were a student?
There are many ways that HBS has changed. The main thing I would say is the ethos. I joined in 1974, two or so years after it had become comprehensive from a grammar school, so a lot of the teachers wore cloaks and mortar board hats and still adopted very traditional teaching methods. Discipline was very different - the teacher was always right and if you were told you were wrong, you accepted it. In terms of punishment, you could be told to write lines, given a detention or you were smacked! I got the pleasure of that last one three times: once for not having my equals signs in a straight line down on my page in a Maths lesson; once for questioning a history teacher because he said only 200 Sikhs died during the Amritsar massacre in 1919 (I am a Sikh and my grandad’s generation was involved so I was informed that more than 200 Sikhs had been killed); and lastly because a new pool club had opened by the station and I didn’t fancy triple science on a Thursday afternoon (I got caught and deserved that one).
 
There wasn’t a SEND department when I was at school, there was just a small remedial class of about eight students. I was one of them because I had only been in the country for 5 years at this point and my English wasn’t very good.  
 
The diversity of students and staff has changed as well. When I joined there were just over 600 students, and from memory I can only remember nine students were Asian or black, and no staff. Now there are 1,200 plus students from a wide range of ethnicities and backgrounds. There were also only six female members of staff, two of whom were receptionists. 
 
I still struggle with technology and the pace of change here. I remember my computer lessons in the VI Form. Praying we would not get logged on some system connected to Hertfordshire Polytechnic so we could go out and play cricket. 
 
What was your best moment as a student? 
I remember the date exactly - December 13th 1981. We won the National Indoor Hockey Championship and had beaten a lot of the best schools in the country. When I joined HBS, there were ex-students playing hockey for Great Britain, and I’d say five students were in the England squads. The Head of PE, Dave Whittaker, was the coach of the Great Britain team that won the Olympic Gold in 1988 in Seoul. There were a lot of great people around me. My dad was a decent hockey player and he wanted one of his sons to play hockey, so he made me come to HBS. The school was particularly strong at hockey.
 
Who was your favourite teacher and why?
My favourite teacher was Mr John Gardener, an English teacher. He came as a PE teacher from Loughborough, I believe, and played rugby for Letchworth. I played rugby too, so we could always talk about that. The main reason I liked him though was because he took the students in the remedial class for Drama so that our English would progress (we did this instead of Latin). He was an outstanding inspirational human being: he talked to us (those in the remedial class), got us involved in the drama productions and made us feel welcome. He gave me the self-belief that I could achieve and gave me a can do, will do attitude. He also helped me to understand that school can be enjoyed. Most importantly moved me to play fly half instead of hooker in rugby.  
 
Who hired you at HBS and what were they like?
Bill Kaye was the Headmaster at the time. He was a Classics teacher and taught me Maths in my first year. I had longer hair at that time, and I remember I got something wrong in his class, and he came up behind me and curled my hair with his fingers until it hurt! 
 
The person that told me about the job was my economics teacher, Mr John Williams. I was going to America for the summer 1985, and he called me up two days before I was going to fly to tell me there was a job opening. He said that it was mine if I wanted it, I would just need to have a quick interview as a formality, but that I needed to do that tonight! I spoke to my dad and he said that he would be very disappointed  if I didn’t take the job. My interview took place at the house of Mr Emlyn Cook (Head of Maths). We both sat with a lager in front of us, talked about rugby for 5 minutes and then he said “see you on 2nd September”, and that was that!
 
What is your happiest memory of HBS?
Seeing students coming in Year 7 as children and then sending them off to University or work as young adults in Year 13. Another happy memory was as a PE teacher. In one particular week, I managed to see different students play rugby for England, tennis at Wimbledon, football for England at Wembley and badminton for England. Then, when I came back to school the following week, I was told off for not including another student who had played roller hockey for England the week before. 
 
I was happiest though when the 1XV Rugby team would  put a shedload of points on private fee paying schools.
 
Finally, my David Pleat moment. The team were playing a rugby match in the Rosslyn Park 7s and were 25-5 down with three minutes to go. We ended up winning 26-25, and I remember that Phillip “Ronnie” Packard was the only person who touched the ball in those last three minutes. It was amazing. 
 
What roles have you had over your time at HBS?
I came here as a PE teacher and Maths teacher. In terms of responsibilities  I was head of Radcliffe house for five years (I was in Radcliffe when I was student and that was why I was wearing blue on Sports Day). After that, I was the house coordinator. Most of the competitions were sports related, and when I was watching the swimming the other day, it reminded me of events from years ago. The staff were just as competitive as the students and often had to be separated from each other! I was also the careers coordinator for 14 years. 
 
Which Maths teacher has inspired you most over your career? 
Mr Emlyn Cook, for me he shaped what a teacher should be. He was a no nonsense teacher, and what he said went. Rumour has it that he was head of timetabling and he made sure that he never taught on a Friday afternoon! Apparently his golf improved over the years.
 
What will you miss most about HBS?
The school grounds, showing an old boy around a few weeks ago made me realise how lucky we are. Room 25. It has been my room for 9 years and has the best view in the school of all the old buildings and the quad.
 
Who will you miss the most? 
I have taught for a long time, and will miss the students. There are students here now whose grandparents I taught!
 
What are you most looking forward to?
I am a sports fanatic, so I am looking forward to watching lots of live sports. If there is a test match anywhere India is playing cricket, then I will try to go. I am also looking forward to more regular trips to my home, India. My wife is looking forward to not having to pay stupid prices for holidays!
 
What advice would you give any new teacher? 
You have to be patient and often have to give more time to develop than you might expect. I see it as a career, not a job. 
 
Any last pearls of wisdom? 
Take rejection as motivation for improving yourself. When you have a rejection or a failure, take that on board and more doors will open for you than the one that was closed if you are prepared to work hard. Find happiness in your own head, and forget what someone else thinks. I find happiness through my religious beliefs, being honest with myself and putting others first. I have served this community for 37 years and I hope the community is happy with my contribution.
 
Interviewed by Lenny Arno and Reese Paynton (7PM)
 

Mr Moore playing for the 2nd XV rugby team in Year 10

1981 National Indoor Hockey Winners

Mr Moore with the 1stXV Rugby Team in 1992 - Can you spot World Cup Winner Joe Worsley?

Besides Mr Moore, one of the above in this photo still works at HBS. Can you spot him?

Mr Moore

Farewell interview with Miss Marx
When did you join HBS? 
I joined in February 2019.
 
What will you miss most about HBS? 
I will miss the wonderful staff I work with and all the Year 8s I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know. 
 
What has been the funniest moment of your time at HBS? 
There have been many, but I would say that in every Year 9 maths lesson there has been a funny moment!
 
Who will you miss most at HBS? 
Ms Bahnsen. I couldn’t do my job without the excellent Pastoral Support Workers, but Ms Bahnsen has been there with me since Year 7. 
 
Who inspires you the most at HBS? 
The students and the great resilience they show every day. 
 
What are you most proud of during your time at HBS? 
I am so proud of the form tutors I work with that do everything for me every day. They make mine and Mr Fitts’ life much easier. 
 
What are you going to do after HBS? 
I am going to work in a mixed school in Stotfold as a maths teacher and Head of Year 7. 
 
Any last words of wisdom for everyone here? 
You can make back money but you can’t buy memories. 
 
Interviewed by Arundeep Natt and Freddie Willbe (8RW)
 

Miss Marx

Library News
In the last newsletter we asked you to keep a look out for the Book Buffet Google Form, and oh my word, our students didn’t disappoint! We have been inundated with forms – 208 in total, and nearly 150 requesting books. Who says boys don’t read?! It’s been a mammoth task to prepare them all, ready for the summer holidays – anything from one book to six books, all selected by us or our Library Champions. Special mention to our Champions for throwing themselves into the task with such enthusiasm and thoughtfulness.
 
Remember, you can still browse our catalogue for inspiration - https://uk.accessit.online/htc02/#!dashboard
Why not make a list of books you’d like to read next year, ready for September? Accessit also has access to external websites and podcasts – don’t forget to check those out, too!
 
We also have eBooks, and will be getting more, so for those who find reading from a screen easier, or for whom our eBook platform’s special accessibility tools would help, they can carry on reading over the summer too. From the dashboard, click on Quick Lists and then E Books.
 
Follow what we’re up to on Twitter @HBSLibrary, where will talk about what we’re doing as well as promoting items and events we think are interesting.
 
Have a wonderful summer holiday and we look forward to seeing everyone in September.
 
Mrs B and Mrs R
 

Our Library Champions put together the book bags

Year 7 Willen Lake visit
This year, the school hosted a trip to Willen Lake for the year sevens. We went on the coach to the lakes, a journey of only around forty five minutes. The coaches were filled with loud, noisy boys, but we managed to keep fairly quiet throughout. 
 
We had a variety of wonderful activities and some weird as well, such as the archery tag and Zorb football, both on the astro turf pitches and both a unique twist on commonly played games. 
 
Unfortunately we weren't able to try all the activities, but the one we all got to do was the aqua park, which I think everyone agreed was the best activity of the day. It was essentially a massive inflatable obstacle course on water (basically Total Wipeout). The best bit was when everyone grouped together to push off all of the lifeguards( quite often at the request of another lifeguard) and the teachers just for fun.
 
One of the best activities and biggest challenges was the treetop adventure, as while perfectly safe, it still required enough bravery to climb atop logs and ropes mid-air. Luckily, for those of us not willing to go too high, there were three levels of height so we felt perfectly matched with the course. 
 
All in all it was a great opportunity for us all to make friends in other forms, and strengthen our friendships. Thanks for a great year, and we look forward to many more adventures to come!
 
Zach Willbe & Jack Rayner
 

Ready for the aqua park

On the high ropes course

Careers Update
A link to the latest Careers Team Update has been emailed to all parents and carers this week - please keep an eye out for it!
 

The Careers Update was emailed out this week

Music Video Release
This year has seen one of our most powerful Black History Month projects with a heartfelt spoken word written by students themselves. Fast forward a few months and we are now ready to release our own music video after a lot of hard work and laughs at a music studio earlier in the summer term. The video is available on YouTube on the link below - please share with family and friends.
 
 

Who Am I premiered on YouTube this week

Notes from the Key Stage 3 Pastoral Office
It's been an extremely face paced term here in the Pastoral office!
 
Please could I remind you to make sure that all blazers and PE kit have your child's name very clearly written as we seem to be having boys lose their kit more frequently in the summer term? If you are a parent of a school leaver who no longer needs or wants their tie - we would love it for the cupboard in the pastoral office. 
 
Thank you so much to all who have donated Lego this term. Our Year 7 & 8 Lego Club students along with Lego Captain Charlie Ward have spent many happy lunchtimes rummaging and building. 
 
Our pastoral team also run a board games club for students who need a quieter indoor environment at lunchtime twice a week, so if you are having a post lockdown clear out and have any games that you would like to donate, all will be very gratefully received.
 
We wish you a fun filled summer, please encourage your child to meet up with school friends over the summer break, it really helps them to strengthen friendships in a relaxed setting. In a quiet moment, have a supportive chat about peer pressure, kindness, respect and about how they should communicate and interact on social media as they move up into the next year group. 
 
Finally, if you need some help with settings and restrictions on devices, or the lowdown on apps or games, there is lots of hepful information on this website for parents
 
 
Ms Bahnsen, KS3 Pastoral Support Worker
 

Helpful advice at National Online Safety

Year 9 Reward Trip
On Monday 11th July Mr Dawson, Mr Cook, Mr Knowles and myself had the pleasure to take a group of 20 Year 9 students out for lunch and an afternoon of fun at Partyman World in Stevenage. These students were selected because over the last four weeks they worked hard and managed to receive the most conduct points in the year group. 
 
We left shortly after 12.30pm en route to Nandos where we had lunch. The children were delighted with their lunch and some even discovered Nandos for the first time! We then made our way to Partyman World for two games of Laser tag. The green team and the red team were fearless but the green team won both games. 
 
It was fantastic to see the students demonstrating all the values we promote at school in terms of respect and teamwork. Well done to all involved, it was a pleasure to spend some time having fun with you all. 
 
Mrs Cavill, Head of Year 9
 

The green team won both games

All the students had a good time

Music round-up
This term has been very busy with preparations for Founders’ Day, the Summer Recital and the Summer Concert. Founders’ Day was a huge success, and I am so proud of how the students conducted themselves during the rehearsals and on the day. The service began with this year’s fanfare, which was written by Year 12 student Joe English. Christopher Gwinnett in Year 13 had a vocal solo in the introit and Year 12 HGS student Amelia Ryden sang the solo in one of our anthems. 
 
On Sunday 3rd July, many HBS students took part in the Priory Picnic, which is an outdoor concert in the grounds of Hitchin Priory organised by the North Herts Music School. A wide variety of ensembles performed and HBS had students in many of them. This year, our school Percussion Group was invited to perform and the students that took part did so with real professionalism and panache.
 
We hosted our Summer Recital and Summer Concert on 6th and 7th July respectively. The range of musical styles was superb, with students playing music by Snarky Puppy, The Pixies, Beethoven, The Beatles, Ennio Morricone, Gershwin and Eminem to name a few. It is always one of the greatest privileges of my job to see students in Year 7 to Year 13 playing music together and it has been particularly special this year, after the challenges of the last two years. My thanks go to Miss Parkes and Ms Hetherington, without whom I could not run the Music Department. I would also like to thank all of the parents who have donated money to the Music Department this year. We have been able to buy new storage for students’ instruments, and a range of new equipment and instruments.
 
Mrs Strachan, Subject Leader: Music
 

The Summer Concert featured a variety of music

House News
This year has been the first year that we have hosted a house day for each of our four houses. Radcliffe house won the competition for these days, as they had the most participants on their house day. We raised £987.36 from the cake sales and the busking across these four days and this money will be donated to Herts Young Homeless and Cancer Research UK.
 
This term, there have been a number of house competitions, including the swimming gala - won by Mattocke, and the MFL baking competition, where students baked cakes from recipes in French, Spanish or German - also won by Mattocke. The Science department hosted their Race for the Line competition, which was won by Pierson and Year 7 Mattocke students won the teamwork competition on their trip to Willen Lakes. 
 
The house points for the year have been counted and the winners of the Times Shield will be announced on the last day of term.
 
Mrs Strachan, House Co-ordinator
 

Mattocke won the MFL baking competition

Film Club
HBS Film Clubs have been enjoying a wide variety of screenings this year, from animations to epics and comedies. We enjoyed a 'Home Alone' binge just before Christmas and then 'Paddington' and 'Paddington 2' in May and June. This year, we've split into Year 7 and 8s, and Year 9 and 10s and will be doing something similar in September. Students have a login to https://www.intofilm.org/ where they can add to our Wish List and write reviews of any film they have seen - there are prizes available!
 
Ms Robertson, Film Club organiser

English HPG
The English High Performance Group (HPG) has been writing poetry and short stories this year and are celebrating several of them being published. They have a summer project to complete and we'll be meeting again in September - all the information is on the Google Classroom.
 
Ms Robertson
 

The English HPG have had some stories published

HBS Book Club
HBS Book Club has been meeting at Kite at the Red Hart once a month and we've enjoyed some great books. It's a very informal group: we don't always agree on our responses to the books we read. You can find out our next book on the usual social media channels and we look forward to new members joining in any time.
 
The next meeting will take place on Wednesday 14th September, 7pm at Kite at the Red Hart, Bucklersbury, Hitchin. The book to read this time is Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad. All are welcome. Contact Ms Robertson on the email address below for more information.
 
Ms Robertson
 

Book Club meets once a month during term time

September Book Club

EPQ
The Extended Project Qualification has been very successful, with 16 students entering in year 13. We have nearly 40 students working towards their EPQ in the current year 12, and it looks like many more will be starting in September as they join the sixth form. Congratulations to Hristian Vasilev for completing his project before the end of term with a very engaging presentation around Metallica and Megadeth.
 
Ms Robertson
 

Hristian's project, 'Metadeth'

Chemistry Competition
During May, Year 12 Chemistry students participated in the Royal Society of Chemistry's Schools' Analyst competition. During the competition, students used various analytical techniques such as titrations and gravimetric analysis to analyse the recipe for fish and chips! It was great to see the students' passion for Chemistry come alive as they explored this novel problem! Their results were submitted against other schools in the East Anglia region and although we did not win this year, the students did really well. The Chemistry department and HBS would like to congratulate Sonny Green, Henry Kitchen and Matthew Robson as the winners at HBS, and well done to everyone else who participated! Mrs Brinkley and the Year 12s would like to thank Mrs Dean and the Science technicians for all their hard work in preparing the challenges for us.
 
Mrs Brinkley
 

Matthew (l) and Henry (r) with their certificates

Chromebook resources
On the school website we have an App Store to signpost resources we use and that students might want to explore on their Chromebooks. One of these is Google Arts & Culture. This has a fantastic range of topics and places to explore, play and find. 
 
If students click on the "Nearby" tab it will list museums they can visit this summer, shows where they are on the map and gives directions. In the "Play" section they can test their knowledge, play with music and sound, get creative or explore the world. The "Explore" section has lots of different categories and experiments. At the bottom of this page are a number of collections from different museums and galleries.
 

The Google Arts & Culture app has lots of resources

Year 12 Lake District Trip
Having visited the Lake District for many years with A level students, this year marked our final trip, as we are moving from the glaciation topic at A level to the coastal topic next year for our incoming year 12s. The Lake District is the perfect place to visit if studying how glaciation has shaped the UK, and the year 12s were given many opportunities to see glacial features in person. After our long drive to the National Park, we started off with a walk up to Easedale Tarn. The students completed a field sketch in the glacial trough, before walking up past the hanging valley to the tarn. Whilst here, they looked at the characteristics of the corrie and the glacial deposits. The Friday was lead by the staff at the FSC Blencathra centre, the Geography A level students are required to undertake 4 days of fieldwork and this provided students with the opportunity to trial a range of fieldwork techniques, which they could later use to help them collect data for their non-examined assessment (worth 20% of their A level). On Saturday, the students visited Stickle tarn, a tougher ascent than Easedale but with rewarding views to be seen from the top (view picture below). 
 
As part of their Water and Carbon unit, students study the River Greta in Kesick and the factors which lead to it flooding so in the afternoon, we took a tour along the river to discuss these. Students were also able to walk around Keswick and stock up on snacks for the evenings in the centre! The final full day of the trip involved the majority of students revisiting locations and collecting data for their NEA. In the evening, we had a quiz which was put together by Miss Pickton. The result was very close but ‘Team Tiago’ was announced as the winner. We are really proud of how the students conducted themselves on the trip and I would like to thank all of the students and staff who attended our final trip to the Lakes.
 
Mrs Graham, Head of Social Science Faculty
 

Students at the top of Stickle Tarn

Year 7 Founders' Day Medieval Games Event
The History department, alongside many of its colleagues, created a Medieval-like sports arena on the quad as part of Founders' Day activities. There were multiple games of tug of war, croquet, quoits and the incredibly popular stocks and sponges as seen in the picture below!. 
 
The History department would like to thank the staff who supported such a great day, the students who embraced every challenge with enthusiasm and resilience and the audio and visual team who helped with the PA and speakers. 
 
We hope you enjoyed the games and immersive environment we attempted to create. We hope that you can picture the environments you learn about more easily now. Essentially, we hoped you enjoyed throwing yourself (sometimes quite literally) into the past. 
 
Have a great summer break!
 
HBS History Department 
 

Mr Larsen in the stocks!

Holiday Activities
Hitchin Partnership have produced a Holiday Activity Summary with a round-up of activities taking place locally over the summer (attached below). There is also a page over on our intranet here with details of local sports clubs and things to do during the summer break.

Help with the cost of living crisis
If you are struggling with the current cost of living crisis, we have put together a page of useful links and sources of financial and food help that may be useful. More information here: https://hitchinboys.co.uk/en/parents/sources-financial-and-other-help/
 
Various shops and restaurants are offering cheap or free meals for children over the summer break - more details on the images below.
 

Free or cheap kids' meals

More places kids can eat cheaply or for free

Community Wardrobe Uniform Event
Hitchin Volunteer Army are holding a School Uniform event as part of their Community Wardrove initiative on Thursday 28th July from 10am - 12pm at Westmill Community Centre. Good quality second-hand school uniform for local primary and secondary schools will be available free of charge to those in need. More details on the flyer below.
 
We are also in need of spare school ties at HBS, as our stock has run very low. If your son has recently left HBS or you have any school ties that they no longer need, please could you drop them off at Reception? Thank you.
 

Do you need school uniform?

Tom Palmer visits HBS
As part of his involvement in the BBC Young Reporter club, Year 8 student journalist Freddie Willbe tells us all about last month's author visit by Tom Palmer.
 
On Tuesday 24th May, the multiple award winning children’s author Tom Palmer visited Hitchin Boys’ School. As well as signing copies of his books for students during lunch, he also talked to the Year 7s and 8s about his background and conducted a Q&A session for them. 
 
Tom revealed that he wasn’t very into reading when he was young but his mum gradually brought him round to it via shorter stories, magazines and comics. He built up his reading stamina and started to read longer texts, like Roy of the Rovers. Tom then discovered that books could take him beyond football and into worlds dealing with more serious issues, like the Spanish Civil War in books about Real Madrid, or following the story of Bert Trauttman, who once played for Manchester City with a broken neck but had a background as a Nazi soldier. 
 
Over time, Tom started to realise that he really wanted to write books. He started off writing about football and found success with books like Football Academy and the Foul Play series. However, his real passion is history and he has since published a number of novels on a range of topics all of which are inspired by real life events. Drawing on personal experiences of running with his daughter, he decided to write Armistice Runner, which focuses on the perspective of a female runner who discovers her great-great-grandfather’s diaries from the First World War and uses his story of bravery as inspiration to reconnect with her grandmother. Armistice Runner won the Children’s Book Award and a nomination by Carnegie. 
 
Continuing this sudden rush of success, Tom found more inspiration from unlikely places. His dog became the source of D-day Dog, his ex-navy wife inspired Arctic Star and, most recently, After the War was born from the tale of a former refugee-turned GB olympian. Tom’s stories are inspired by real life events and he takes real care to make sure that his books are as close to the truth as possible. 
 
Tom is an inspiration for everyone, he shows us that our passions and dreams can change and it is great to follow them through.

Freddie with Tom Palmer

The Whole School Read
Following the reading of Tom Palmer's novel After the War, students in Years 7 and 8 were asked to respond creatively with a piece of art, a multimedia presentation, or a short story entitled Before the War. Here is a small selection of some of their very imaginative responses. We will be publishing a wider range of responses in The Chronicle in the Autumn term.
 
Before the war
 
I remember things before the war. Life was simpler. Me and my friend would ride our bikes around the village we lived in, jumpers tied around our waists, occasionally nicking fruit from Mr Tibbot. I’d always loved Mr Tibbot. He was a kind, smiley man with a toothbrush moustache and no hair on his head. He grew the most wonderful strawberries, gooseberries and apples. I don’t think he minded us much, as when he ever caught us plucking an apple from his tree, he would let us hop back over the fence, smiling slightly. 
 
I was an only child, but that meant I got a big bedroom. I still remember it. It had a perfect view of the village and the emerald green fields, with posters and drawings on the walls. I liked to draw animals. I sat on my cosy little bed, drawing sheep, dogs and even dragons.
 
I miss my bed. I miss my toys. I had a very special teddy bear father had as a boy, named Timmy. He was very cute. A dog, with small eyes and a fluffy tail. I still remember the smile he had, the very same. I remember my father and mother too.
 
But it all changed when they came. 
 
Ollie Morris 7SR
 
Song - After the War
 
It was the Summer of 1945. 
The Second World War is finally over.
And Yossi, Leo and Mordecai arrive.
 
With three hundred children, three hundred children
all worried and scared, daring to dream of secure warm beds. 
Worrying, “Will England be nice, will it be safe”.
Trying to get the horrors of war out of their heads,
 
They’ve reached a place of peace, in the Lake District.
Swallows, sunlight and cycling together.
The Win-der-mere boys 
Hoping the peace will last forever.
 
Yossi, Leo and Mordecai, 
glad to be alive.
Safe from the nightmares of the camps
Yossi, Leo and Mordecai will thrive.
Down by the water, the sunlight shimmering water, 
by the water after the war
 
Kit Bottomley 7PA
 
 

Oliver Estall, 7RO

Jacob Chell, 8PM

George Pinfold 7SR

Monty Lace 8RO

Fire Station Open Day
Following a long break due to Covid, Hitchin Fire Station will be holding their annual Open Day on the 3rd September. All are welcome to attend.
 

The fire station Open Day is on 3rd September

Join the Rainbow Run
Run, walk or skip a 10k, 5k or 2.5k route with a colourful twist around Ridlins End Stadium and Playing Fields on Sunday 2nd October to raise funds for the Lister Hospital, New QEII Hospital, Hertford County Hospital and Mount Vernon Cancer Centre.
 
The East & North Hertfordshire Hospitals’ Charity team are encouraging participants to dedicate their run to someone: dedications could be in celebration of a new arrival, to say thank you to the NHS or a particular ward, or in memory of a loved one. Participants of all ages will receive a bib to pin on their T-shirts and personalise with their own reason for running. Whatever the reasons for taking part, every penny raised will help them fund projects to help our wonderful NHS teams go above and beyond for patients. More details below.

Sign up for the Rainbow Run

Parent Perspective podcast retuns
“The Parent Perspective” is a podcast series for parents and carers, helping them to support their children with careers advice and guidance. Series 2 returns in July 2022 led by their new host, BBC Radio 5 Live's Rachel Burden.
 
Through the podcast Rachel and guests will offer a fun and informative space for listeners to:
 
  • Explore which careers are available today.
  • Showcase the experiences of interesting and diverse role models.
  • Provide real-time insights into how the world of work is changing.
In each episode Rachel will speak to a diverse mix of parents, bringing their burning questions to expert speakers from the careers world. Together they will uncover practical solutions and informative answers, to help you and your child make informed decisions on those all important next steps.
 
You can find out more about the podcast and register for updates here
 

The Parent Perspective podcast returns in July

Workshop and Support Round-Up
Hitchin Partnership produce a weekly round-up for parents, carers and young people of online courses and sources of support in the local area. More information can be found on the flyer below, together with contact details and booking information for each.
 
Of particular interest might be
 
 
  • Thursday 15th Sep to 20th Oct, 9.30 – 11.30am 
  • Tuesday 4th Oct to 15th Nov, 9.30 -11.30am 
  • Tues 8th Nov to 13th Dec 7.30 – 9.30pm 
  • Wednesday 9th Nov to 14th Dec, 9.30 – 11.30am
Thursday evenings 6th Oct to 17th Nov 7.00 - 9.00pm
 
Finally, this video about the Hertfordshire Local Offer is very short (less than a minute) and it’s aimed at parents and carers of children and young people with SEND to help them understand what the Local Offer website is, and what kind of information and resources they can find on there.  

BeeZee Bodies Autumn Programme
BeeZee Bodies is an HCC funded Tier 2 Weight Management service for young people. Their next rotation of family programmes will be starting on the week commencing 26th September, including multiple face-to-face groups across different locations in Hertfordshire and online groups for children aged 5 - 12. More information can be found on the attached flyer, along with a recipe for ice lollies.