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Principal Weekly Update 11/11/16 from Mr Mark Sayer

11 November 2016

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This week has seen one of the most bitterly contested and divisive US elections in history that ushers Mr Donald Trump into the White House as the 45th President of the United States.  I want, however, to talk about food. How, you might reasonably ask, are these two things related?

Just before I left in October for the Nord Anglia SLT conference in Tanzania, I commissioned our staff here in school to conduct a survey into our catering provision, seeking opinions from both sections of the school into both Catering companies currently operating, and using the same set of questions as were used in the Endicott Survey back in April 2016.  In this way, we would have a comparative picture of what the students are thinking, whether any new issues are emerging or some remain unchanged and unchallenged.  This is an important part of giving students a voice.

We know that catering is a significant issue in every school.  Students and staff want to know that what they eat is nutritious, well cooked and served in an inviting atmosphere.  Eating is after all an intensely social activity.   We continuously monitor our service; both catering companies regularly meet with suppliers, monitoring them and changing periodically if standards are not high.  As a leadership team we meet regularly to ensure the service and provision is as we expect.  We do not allow any question to remain unasked and unanswered as we seek higher and higher standards in this essential part of school life.

But taste, like the voting patterns in the US this week, are intensely personal.  It is quite impossible to please all people all of the time, but we can have a very good go at trying.  I will be releasing details of these survey results next week as it will not be completed until last thing today and we need time to analyse data and produce findings.  Action will be taken against the backdrop of this data, and we are committed to running similar campaigns in subsequent terms to ensure all have a free voice to express their opinion.

The exit polls from this catering survey are nowhere near as unpredictable as the election results in the US this week.  On a global scale, this may not be as momentous, but the process and results very much matter to us here in school, because we know that this issue matters to you too.

My very grateful thanks to all parents and staff who participated in the BBGV Fun Run on Sunday whilst I was in Bangkok for the FOBISIA Senior Leaders Conference.  I hope you greatly enjoyed the tee shirts and the event itself, bigger this year by far but considerably cooler conditions.  As well as congratulations for participating, well done to our staff for doing so well: Mr Dong Dao, our PE TA coming 4th, Mr Will Murray Smith coming 6th and Ms Alicia Smith the first lady across the line: very impressive stuff.

Have a wonderful weekend.

Mr. Mark Sayer - Principal