At the end of another e-Hampton 2.0 week, I remain personally grateful for the cheerfully resolute manner in which Hamptonians, parents and colleagues are enabling our digital programme of guided home learning, pastoral care and co-curricular activities to continue successfully. We are doubtless all finding the latest (winter) lockdown period challenging and rather attritional at times, but I hope that our online provision is offering plenty of nourishment for mind, body and spirit as we seek to navigate the turbulent waters of the pandemic safely and securely. Regrettably, the Government announcement earlier this week means that the attendance restrictions currently applicable to schools in England will remain in place until Monday 8 March at the earliest. It is very disappointing indeed that we are not permitted to return immediately after the half term break as hoped, but we shall of course update all Hampton parents and boys when we receive further updates. It is at least reassuring that the Government has made a public commitment to give schools two weeks’ notice of site re-opening.
In this latest edition of Hampton@Home, we feature our pioneering and always impressive Genocide80Twenty group, which led our Holocaust Memorial Day commemorations; you can also discover more about the 2021 Creative Writing Awards. Don’t forget to register for our next Thursday Night In event with sports journalists Adam Hunt (Sky Sports and Amazon Prime) and Will Kelleher (Daily Mail and Mail on Sunday) – they are both Hampton alumni and indeed former editors of the much-loved Hampton Sports Chronicle! In the meantime, we encourage boys and their families to try out Mr Hurst’s hand-eye coordination challenge and to join our Head Chef, Paulie, as he demonstrates how to make perfect flatbreads.
We are all in need of some moments of levity at present, so I warmly recommend setting aside a few minutes to watch our H@H Sixth Form ‘cook-along’ video, which offers insight into the creative MS Teams sessions that Upper School Form Tutors have been running with their tutor groups. In encouraging our senior boys to embrace the pleasures of home cooking, my colleagues have bravely been running live online culinary lessons during the past fortnight. Some of the footage suggests that using a cooker and kitchen utensils was a somewhat unfamiliar experience for some Sixth Form participants (just as it was for me at their age), but some impressive dishes emerged and the initiative was certainly an entertaining way for boys and staff to remain connected during lockdown. As I have observed a number of times over the past ten months, it has been uplifting to see and hear about so many examples of our School’s deep-rooted values of togetherness and mutual support being upheld during our unwanted periods apart.
Next week, we will be marking the start of LGBT History month in Monday’s assembly and celebrating the joy of reading in National Storytelling Week. Keep an eye on our twitter and Instagram posts over the coming days as members of the Common Room introduce you to their favourite books.
I wish all Hampton families a restful and relaxing weekend
With kind regards and best wishes