Trinity Term, Letter from the Headmaster
From the Head’s desk,
The Trinity term has started and the staff and children are already into the full swing of things. Early morning riding, swimming, cross-country, music, tennis and scholarship classes are all in full flow and our children have returned full of energy and vigour!
A few events which took place last term deserve mention before we look forward.
UK Rugby Tour
Congratulations to the five boys and Mr Owino for an exceptionally successful Rugby Tour to the Rosslyn Park Sevens Tournament in England. As said previously, the tournament is the biggest Schoolboy Tournament of its kind in the world. The Kenya players all adapted extremely well to the cold weather (and it was very cold!) and played some outstanding rugby. Previous years have seen the Kenyan teams struggling to win one match. Therefore, it is a feather in everyone’s cap that the team played five matches, won three and lost two. The two losing matches were hard fought and very close as well, which is a credit to the spirit of the players. Thank you to all parents who were able to support the children and to the coaching staff and players from the other schools represented. The Pembroke players clearly learned a great deal, represented Pembroke superbly and have come out of the tour with great memories and more experience in the game of Sevens.
The Little Shop of Horrors
The dress rehearsal and two performances of the Senior School production were outstanding. A great deal of hard work goes on behind the scenes and this year was no different. It is a tribute to all staff and children involved that everything came together so well. The children seemed to grow in confidence with each performance and the standard achieved was excellent. I mentioned in my thank you that a play of this nature is very hard to pull off successfully. I am sure that all who had the opportunity to see the show will agree that it was exceptional. Suffice to say, it is not possible to thank and congratulate everyone who was involved by name here, as the list would fill the page. However, it is fitting to say thank you to Hannah Shoukry and Rebecca Livermore on a job well done and for helping so many children to achieve something truly remarkable. Well done to all of the children involved, front of house and back, and to the staff and parents who helped with everything from props and lighting to make-up and crowd control; a true team effort.
Pembroke has not run a trip of this nature before. The touring party of 40 children and 7 staff members had the most wonderful experience in Paris, Normandy and Giverny, soaking up the French language, culture and sights. I asked the staff what the highlights of the trip were and the answer was “Everything!” – from visiting The Louvre and sights of Paris, to spending time in historical Normandy, it appears that everything was enjoyed by the children and staff. Thank you to the children for their wonderful behaviour and to their parents for allowing them to go on the trip. A huge thank you to the staff who organised the trip and accompanied the children to France. It was a complex operation but they carried it all off in spectacular style.
Sedbergh Rugby and Netball Coaching
Lucia Sdao (ex-England Netball) and James Doherty (ex-Cornish Pirates, Leeds Carnegie and England Counties) joined us from Sedbergh School for the last week of term. Lucia spent time with all of our netball players and coaches and James did the same with rugby. Their enthusiasm, expertise and desire to bring out the best in our children and staff was evident throughout the entire week. Every child had some sort of contact with Lucia or James and the excitement this has generated will certainly see Pembroke start the netball and rugby season in good shape and spirit.
We have engaged the services of a professional recruitment agency in our search for a Catering Manager. If parents are aware of anyone who may be suitable for this position, please do get in touch with MJ or me. In the meantime, we are fortunate to have Mrs. Lisa Schupbach in school as our Interim Catering Manager. Lisa is very keen to engage with parents. If you have any comments, queries or useful tips then please do contact Lisa using the email address: firstname.lastname@example.org During the holidays, our kitchens have undergone a lot of maintenance, cleaning and purchasing of equipment. I am thankful to Lisa and the team for their hard work and endeavour. Lisa will also be talking to our children about their food ideas and needs, which is very much welcomed.
Final Assemblies are always special and long may this continue! It is lovely when we can celebrate the achievement of others and we all had the opportunity to applaud pupils who came up to receive a prize or certificate. All of the awards can be seen on the website. A few special mentions go to:
Fosters House for winning both the Work and Conduct Cups
Opies who are currently leading the Cock House competition
Girls Hockey colours – Poppy Mowat, Summer Barratt, Shauna McCarthy, Carolyn Weller
Boys Hockey colours – Jolyon Coulson, Jack Ker, Frank Simpson, Yann Zoni
Swimming Colours – Yann Zoni, Arran Coyne, Mathieu Farren, Sophie Doig, Poppy Mowat
Squash Colours – Yann Zoni, Jolyon Coulson, Holly Haywood, Poppy Mowat, Summer Barratt
Art Colours – Sophie Doig
During the course of the term we were delighted to receive the news that the following children have been offered scholarships to schools in the UK. We are proud of all of our children who are able to receive an award, as we know just how hard it is to receive something with the competition in schools.
Arran Coyne – Sports Scholarship, Merchiston Castle School
Holly Haywood – Sports Scholarship, Sedbergh School
Imogen Mattock – Drama Scholarship, Kings School Taunton
Malaika Njema – Academic Scholarship, Kings School Taunton
We are delighted that Mr. Andrew Hunter, Headmaster of Merchiston Castle School, will be our Guest Speaker at Speech Day 2017. Mr. Hunter’s father was born in Kenya, Mr. Hunter was born in Kenya (and attended Kenton) and his wife Barbara was born in Uganda. He therefore has a long history with Kenya and with prep schools in Kenya. We currently have two Pembroke boys at Merchiston, Finlay Coyne and George Kyriazi, who are both doing extremely well, and of course our Head Boy, Arran Coyne, has just been awarded a Sports Scholarship to Merchiston. We all look forward to welcoming Mr. Hunter and I am sure he will have words of wisdom for our Year 8 leavers and their parents.
Headmaster’s visit to UK
The trip proved to be interesting and beneficial. I first attended a Headmaster’s IAPS conference in Leamington Spa. The agenda was varied, but also provided an opportunity to talk to the IAPS leadership about inspection issues. Following this, I visited Shrewsbury School, Rugby School, Uppingham School, Oundle School and Stowe School. I was fortunate enough to meet a mixture of Heads, Registrars, Boarding House Parents and Pembrokians in each school. Some of the initial observations are: I was warmly received everywhere and Pembroke children are clearly well thought of in each of these schools; Registrars are asking for parents to make early contact if considering applying; Pembroke children considered boarding at Pembroke to be a major reason why they settled quickly into the UK; Pembroke pupils remain polite and talkative in their UK schools; parents need to consider location, school size and ethos as being important when considering a school; UK schools expect a scholarship application to be for children in the top 5%-7% (UK standard); scholarships are based on ability and bursaries are means-tested; Pembroke children appear not to worry about the cold after a few weeks!
In September, I will be in the UK for the IAPS conference in Edinburgh, when I will take the opportunity to see schools in the North of England and in Scotland.
As we approach elections, it is prudent that we continue to monitor conditions in Kenya and our own procedures. Mike Aung and Benedict Omondi attended a security conference in Nairobi in this regard. The conference was offered to all international schools in Kenya. Over the Easter holidays, our security team underwent rigorous training run by KK Security. Some of the course content included: surveillance, search and arrest, criminal prevention, first aid, observation techniques, defensive techniques, patrolling, public relations, communication, fire-fighting and terrorist recognition. Pembroke has also instigated security car stickers. These can be collected from the office and should be stuck on the inside of car windshields. They will help our security team to identify Pembroke families and therefore speed up the security process.
Well done to the following children who will be House Captains for the Trinity Term:
Fosters: Marie Omulen and Ben Moss
Hazards: Poppy Mowat and Donell Mwamburi
Opies: Shauna McCarthy and Frank Simpson
Turners: Matilda Ndinda and Lem Mbaga
Congratulations to the following pupils who were awarded their Drama Colours in Assembly this week:
Krissy Grant, Holly Haywood, Max Liebeskind, Imogen Mattock, Lem Mbaga and Arseni Wedd.
Thank you to all parents and pupils who worked hard over the holiday on the CE revision packs sent home. Thank you as well to Mrs. Surtees and her team for putting the packs together. It is always a tricky issue to ask pupils to work during their holidays, but we are ever positive that this will pay dividends in a few weeks’ time. One of the bonuses of being in a boarding school, is the fact that teachers can organise extra sessions during the day and during prep time, if needed. I am appreciative of all of the hard work and time being spent by teaching staff in this regard. A great deal of time and effort has also been put into the post-CE programme and we are all quite sure that Year 8 are set for a fantastic end to their term.
During the holiday, the Opies Pavilion received its own electricity supply. This will certainly aid us during events such as the Ndume Sevens. We are, however, also keen to use the pavilion as a teaching tool, but for topics outside of the normal curriculum. This format has been well received at schools such as Oundle. On certain Saturday mornings we would like to put informative lectures/talks on for our children. If there are any parents who feel they may have an interesting topic to talk about then please do contact the Headmaster. Alternatively, please do pass on the names of people who you feel would be perfect for this.
Following on from the theme above, our Senior pupils were treated to an evening that many of them will never forget and some will hopefully use to guide their future careers. Nicky and Felix Lankester entertained our pupils with an eclectic mixture of content which was both entertaining and informative. Felix took the children through the role of a wildlife vet. His career has been varied and he has worked with gorillas and cured rabies in Western Europe and the Serengeti! He has darted many animals, performed postmortems on parrots and much more.
Nicky spoke about documentary film-making and she explained how she first got started. Her entrepreneurial spirit shone through and the children were inspired. Nicky played some short clips of her films which were watched with rapt fascination. We are always incredibly grateful when outside speakers come to give talks at school. We know everyone has busy lives but the children clearly get so much from these talks. We would like to extend a huge thank you to Mr and Mrs Lankester.
Music MTB Certificates
Congratulations to the pupils below who received their MTB music exam results recently. The certificates were handed out in assembly.
Cameron Nightingale – Singing – Grade 3 – Pass
Ciku Njau – Piano – Grade 1 – Merit
Sarah Blackstock Grillo – Piano – Intro level – Merit
New Pupils and Gaps
We welcome eleven new children into the school this term, as well as five new Gap students. The sorting hat has done its job and all new additions have been placed in Houses and are already very busily getting on with their daily routines. I am sure the school community will join me in wishing all new pupils, their families and the Gaps the best of terms.
With best wishes for a busy, productive and action packed Trinity Term.
Mr. Jason R. Brown
MBA Ed. Man (Leics) H.Dip.Ed (Phys.Ed)(JHB)