TERM has finally started again under arrangements which, I hope, are as near to normality as possible. I do hope that all members of the RGS community have had a restful and healthy summer break and enjoyed the sunshine when it appeared.

Following their welcome and transition day, our new Year 7 and 12 students were joined on the first day of term by the whole school, including our new Year 9s, in eager anticipation to learn, on what was a beautiful and sunny morning. At 931 on school roll we are at near record numbers and at 94 we welcome our largest ever boarding intake. I do hope all our students have a happy and fulfilling academic year, and that all our new students especially settle in quickly and make new friends.

We also welcome the following new staff to Ripon Grammar School:

Head of RE Mr Cornish
Senior housemaster/teacher Mr Spiers
Teacher of mathematics Mr Barrass-Hemmens 
Teacher of mathematics [p/t] Mr Davidson-Martin 
Teacher of physics Mr Saxon
Teacher of PE [mat cover] Miss Marshall
Teacher of PE (p/t) Mr Younger
Teacher of biology [p/t] Mrs Greenwood
Teacher of DT [mat cover] Mrs Johnson
Plus One coordinator Mrs Nelson
Student counsellor Miss Donkin 
Director of strategic operations Mr Livesey
Inclusion manager/senco Mrs Southwell
Boarding housekeepers Mrs Birch and Ms Herod
SEN teaching assistant Mrs Parks and Miss Barron
General teaching assistants: Mrs Britton and Mrs Sala

In addition, current staff have been appointed to the following internal posts:

Duke of Edinburgh asst coordinator Mr Higson
Head of KS3 and KS4 PSHCEe Mrs Mars
Head of Year 10 Mrs Colville-Robins 
Head of Year 11 [mat cover] Mrs Stoker
Digital and literacy coordinator Mrs Mars
EPQ coordinator Mrs Dring
Deputy head of sixth form Mrs Lyons
Early careers framework mentor Mrs Caldwell
Lunchtime supervisor Miss Armitage

Over the summer holidays there were a number of developments to report. First and foremost of course were two successful results days of which this edition of RGS News gives full details. It is excellent to report that a very high number of our students secured their first or insurance choices at university. We look forward to our leavers' event in December for the awarding of prizes and to hear how their first term or gap year is progressing.

The premises and IT departments continue to make impressive progress on the development of the school’s estate with a full IT server upgrade, a new boarding annex of nine rooms for Johnson House [in School House], the refurbishment of the food technology room [with a generous gift from the Wolfson Foundation] and the completion of new windows on the science block and swimming pool by NYCC. Finally, in addition to our security upgrades to car parking and fencing, please note that reception and the headmaster’s office have now moved to Bishopton House at the front of school. This is to improve accessibility and student safeguarding. My thanks go to Mr Slater [IT manager] and Mr Hogg [premises manager] and their teams for the huge amount of work accomplished during the summer break. Please follow the signage if you are visiting us!

Finally, may I take this opportunity to remind parents of the guidance on Covid-19 measures which has already been circulated and to re-emphasise the point that additional measures may be reintroduced in line with public health guidance if the infection rate rises. In the meantime, please encourage good hand hygiene and ensure that students are kept at home if symptoms develop.

Best wishes,

Jonathan Webb