Message from our new Principal, Mr David Woods

Posted on: 3rd September 2020


Dear Students and Parents
It is with great pleasure that I am writing to welcome you to the school year 2020/21 at Hockerill. The year ahead promises to be as unique as the last one has been and in my transition to the College I have been enormously impressed by the dedication and professionalism of all the staff in planning and preparing to make it a successful year. I am very excited to be joining you, to be part of the Hockerill community and feel enormously privileged to be in a position to help shape the College’s future.
The start of the school year is always a time when information that ensures a smooth return needs to be shared. This year that is no exception with Covid-19 requiring us all to ensure that we make our hygiene responsibilities for ourselves and each other our top priority. Please follow this link to a guidance document which sets out the specifics around school start and end times, ‘bubble’ arrangements and other health and safety matters that everyone in the community needs to be aware of and respect. The governments ‘Stay at home guidance for households with possible or confirmed coronavirus (Covid 19) infections’ is also very helpful in explaining what to do in various circumstances. Please can we ask that before the start of term you sit down as a family and review this information so that everyone is aware of what will be required. It should also be noted that the government has been very clear that all students of statutory age are expected back in school at the start of term. If you have Covid-19 related concerns about your child’s return to school please contact their Head of Year who will be happy to review the health and safety measures that we have put in place in order to ensure a safe return.
The summer has also been a significant time for all those who were due to take examinations in May and June. The results of those (non) examinations have brought their own challenges but I have been delighted to see that Hockerill students have continued to achieve well above national averages and - for those who completed the IB Diploma - gone on to a wide range of top universities. My sincere congratulations to all students in Year 11 and 13 who received examination results. Very impressive - you have set the bar very high for me.    Click here to view the IB results or here for our GCSE results.
During my first weeks, I want to dedicate much of my time to learning everything I can about the College from as many perspectives as possible. I am therefore reaching out to as many members of the school community as I can – staff, students, parents, alumni, former staff, friends and supporters – to say hello and to open a conversation. Since you have more experience and knowledge about the College than I currently do, I invite you to share your reflections and advice with me. Imagine you are the new Principal and thinking ahead to the world our students are likely to live in well into the 22nd century: What are the aspects of Hockerill you think deserve particular attention? What are the things that most carefully need to be preserved? And what do we need to change to enable us to fulfil our mission? Please write to me anytime you feel inspired to do so. I promise to read each of the replies and to learn from you.
Once again, welcome to 2020/21. I wish you every success for the year ahead and look forward to meeting you in due course.
Kind regards
David Woods Principal