Lent Term,  Letter from the Headmaster

Week 7

From the Head’s desk,

Dear Parents

I trust that everyone has had a safe and enjoyable half term. It feels as though we have only just started the term and yet here we are half way through! Quite remarkable! It is also notable how many successes and triumphs we have had cause to celebrate in the last few weeks leading to half term.

Returning to School after Exeats, Half-Term and Holidays

Please can I ask that all children return to school dressed in school uniform. This is to maintain consistency and to ensure that all children are dressed smartly for Chapel. Further to this, please can parents note that all children are expected to be in Chapel on Sundays when returning after exeats, half-terms and holidays.

On other weekends, as per our Boarding Policy, children in Years 1 – 4 should return, preferably, in time for Chapel on Sunday evening – but at the latest in time for Inspection at 7.45 am on Monday morning. Years 5 – 8 are expected to return to school in time for Chapel on Sunday evening.

Attending Chapel is a vital part of our identity and community; it is a special time which is greatly valued by us all and serves to set the tone for the time ahead. Thank you to all parents for their support in this.

Up-country swimming Gala

The Up-Country swimming gala at Turi was special for a number of reasons. Pembroke won the gala and got the official season off to a very successful start. The spirit shown was tremendous and this was aided by the support of many parents, which was greatly appreciated. There were noted individual performances, however the team shone through, particularly in the relays. In their first official outing as swimming captains Mathieu and Sophie were super leaders who represented the squad, school and themselves with distinction. A solid platform has been laid for the season and it is evident that the swimming coaches, staff and pupils have also been working extremely hard. Well done to all.

Play rehearsals

Play rehearsals have been moving forward and pupils are well into the swing of things now. In a busy school, with so many talented children, who are involved in so many different areas of school life, it is sometimes quite a challenge ensuring everyone is in the right place at the right time! Thank you to all of the staff and children for their dedication and passion.

Theatre performances-Davina Leonard

The theatre was once again in use as we welcomed Davina Leonard and her one person show to Pembroke. The adult performance was thought provoking and thoroughly entertaining. Thank you to all in the community who were able to attend and support the performance. Thank you to the staff involved who made this possible and for the delicious meal which was served following the performance. Watch this space as Pembroke continues to find more acts and performers as we promote the Arts and our wonderful theatre.

Council meeting

The Pembroke Council held its termly meeting at the end of January. I would like to personally thank the council for its hard work, support and dedication towards Pembroke. Our council are all busy people who have their own jobs and responsibilities; yet they devote a great deal of their time and energy to Pembroke and its governance. They are all incredibly supportive and of great value to our school and community.

Security

Parents will have noticed that we now have KK security guards on our front gate. This is part of an initiative to ensure that this important area of the school is secure. KK security guards have been trained to spot and deal with specific threats and scenarios, such as we may find during an election. In addition to this our current security team is set to undergo more training. KK security is now also our first response in an emergency. It is comforting to know that they have stationed their response vehicle outside our school gates. As a part of our security protocols, all foot traffic leaving the school site will be searched (yes, even the Headmaster) and cars will be searched on a rotational basis. All normal procedures regarding children leaving the school apply.

Verse speaking Competition

Well done to Bella Ker and Orlando Anselmetti who attended the Verse Speaking competition at Nairobi Academy. Both of our pupils had limited time to prepare, thereby making their participation even more special. Miss Livermore was full of praise for both Bella and Orlando and their positive approach on the day. Bella and Orlando both delivered their verses in assembly, to the whole school, and they were excellent performances. Well done to Orlando who won his age group, a fantastic achievement, and to Bella for her participation. Thank you to Miss Livermore for her time, effort and support of both children.

ow in the Theatre. It had everything from choirs, soloists, quartets, presentations, cameos and finally an alternative version of ‘ The pupils were magnificent and in truth we were treated to a wonderful smorgasbord of talent. Thank you to Mr. Nutsford and many other staff for their involvement; it was clearly a collaborative effort.

Golf Tournament, Karen Country Club

Thank you to Mr. Chatfield and Mr. Mynott for organising for four of our budding golfers to attend a golf tournament at Karen Country Club, hosted by The Banda. Thank you to Rob Harte for attending as official
photographer!

Aqua Winter, Connor Neylan, Jamie Brown and Michael Tait represented the school with honour, although the ‘run of the greens’ did not quite go their way on this occasion. All four golfers learned a great deal and we look forward to seeing them using this knowledge as they seek to improve as golfers.

Head Boy and Girl Lunch

Summer Barratt and Arran Coyne attended an IAPS Head Prefect lunch hosted by Braeburn School. This was to promote and foster relationships between the IAPS member schools. Well done to Summer and Arran who continue to be fine ambassadors for Pembroke House. We are indeed lucky to have two such fine Head Prefects.

Banda Hockey

Fourteen hockey teams, and two squash teams, travelled to The Banda for a fantastic sporting clash! The day produced some outstanding hockey and squash. Well done to both schools for the spirit and pride which was shown in every match. Thank you to all of the parents and staff for their incredible support; the children definitely appreciated it. On occasions such as this, with so many children participating and giving 100% effort, it is indeed wonderful to witness the ‘Pembroke Spirit’ in full force.

Book day

The school was awash with colourful character after colourful character from a myriad of different books, as we all celebrated World Book Day. The children and staff looked magnificent in their costumes and this certainly added to the excitement on the day. During the course of the day a host of different activities were organised by the teaching staff, to promote books, stories and fun. We even had real ‘pig chasing’ which the children predictably loved! All pupils had the opportunity to purchase books on the day and we all sincerely hope that they have found these interesting and that they have fostered a further love of reading.

Buckets for Charity

Information has been sent home regarding a charity initiative to provide much needed help and items to local children and families in need. A sincere thank you to all in our community who are able to support this initiative. Pembroke has a very strong outreach programme and we are all humbled by the response that we receive. A display has also been placed in the Martlet for anyone who requires further information. Thank you to Miss Armstrong for her time spent on this project.

School projects

We have just completed modifying the ‘half pipe’ into an outdoor classroom. This will allow for all children and staff to have access to another teaching resource. The classroom will also provide pupils with an area where they can read a book or simply take time to have a chat about their day.

A new bicycle shed is in the process of being built adjacent to the bus parking bays. The shed will expand as a storage facility for all outdoor and camping equipment. The ‘old’ bicycle shed will now be used for our laundry and housekeeping in order to utilise the space better.

Music

Thank you to Mr. Nutsford for organising a lunchtime concert leading up to half term, which went extremely well. There were some great performances from singers, pianists, a drummer and flautist. Special mentions go to Sierra Lutta, Grace Kulubya and Vallentina Ajak for their performance of Stitches by Shawn Mendes, Raheem Higham for his first ever performance at Pembroke, and to Leila Luckhurst who sang a Maori folksong so beautifully. Year 4 & 5 were the excellent audience.

Further congratulations go to Saffron Arnold who during the course of the term has achieved a Distinction for Grade 4 Singing and to Sebastian Powell who has achieved a Merit for Grade 4 Singing.

In addition to this a newly formed Wind Group had its first rehearsals this half term. This includes 4 trumpets, 2 saxophones and some flautists. The Guitar Quartet have also been working hard on a piece by Haydn.

MTB exams are ongoing and congratulations are extended to the following children who received their MTB exam results: Singing: Yvonne de Villiers Grade 5 Distinction; Imani Cherutich Grade 4 Merit; Maximilian Liebeskind Grade 4 Merit; Tamara Zawadi Grade 3 Distinction; Leila Luckhurst Grade 2 Distinction; Elizabeth Liebeskind Grade 2 Merit; Maia Tamayo Grade 1 Merit. Piano: Samantha Oyo Grade 1 Merit; Ayira Browne Intro Distinction. Drums: William Clayton Intro Merit; Liberty Arnold Intro Merit; Sam Trench Intro Pass.

School Inspection

As a member of IAPS we are now due for a school inspection. Pembroke is coordinating with the other IAPS schools in Kenya and more information will be sent to parents as it becomes available. The Inspection requires that we do meet certain UK directives and in this regard please can I ask for parents support on two important matters:

Entry to Boarding Houses: Please can parents ask permission from boarding house staff before they enter the boarding houses during the normal week/daily routine. Clearly this does not apply when returning from Half Terms, Exeats and holidays as staff will of course be on hand. UK inspectors will be very strict on this as it falls under child safety.

Leaving school early before calendared Exeats, Half terms and holidays: As a school we must keep records of any early absences. These are then reflected on our attendance record. Please can parents therefore plan ahead to ensure that any requests for early absences are absolutely necessary. From a school perspective there is also a disruption to school and boarding routines when children leave early.

Many thanks to parents for their support with these two points. We are of course fiercely protective of our unique situation in Kenya, and Pembroke, and the fact that our children have many more ‘freedoms’ compared to UK schools; our aim as a school community is to preserve these freedoms!

Captains

Congratulations to Yann Zoni and Holly Haywood who have been appointed as Squash Captains. Congratulations to Poppy Mowat and Yann Zoni who have been appointed as Tennis Captains. Their positive impact has already been felt during the recent squash and tennis fixtures.

Scholarship Awards

A very big congratulations to Yvonne de Villiers who has been awarded an Academic Scholarship and Kenya Award to The Royal Hospital School. Furthermore, congratulations to Isabella Riley who has been awarded an Art Scholarship to Hillcrest Secondary School. Finally congratulations to Nureyn Mwang’ombe who has been awarded an African Scholarship (All Rounder) to Gresham’s School. The competition for awards and scholarships is exceptionally strong; well done to all three pupils.

Colours

Many congratulations to Yvonne de Villiers who has been awarded her Academic Colours and to Isabella Riley who was awarded her Art Colours. Both girls were given their ties in Chapel on Monday morning.

School Visits

I will be travelling to the UK in late March to visit schools and to attend an IAPS Heads Conference. The schools on my list for this visit are Shrewsbury School, Rugby School, Oundle School, Uppingham School, Oakham School, Stowe School and Cheltenham College. Any parents who are considering these schools are welcome to get in touch with me as I will take the opportunity to discuss pupils with the schools.

Best wishes to all of our community for the second half of term. We all look forward to another successful and exciting time.

With very best wishes,

Mr. Jason R. Brown

MBA Ed. Man (Leics) H.Dip.Ed (Phys.Ed)(JHB)

Headmaster