Life at St John’s

Life at St John’s

This week the school took part in two sporting events.

The girls Netball team of Chiamaka, Tia, Eloise, Carrie, Scarlet, Mia and Amelia went to Knole Academy on Wednesday to play in two matches.  The first was an even exciting game against Sevenoaks County Primary which resulted in a 2-2 draw. The game against Lady Boswell impressed me especially because, although we were playing an excellent team and lost 0-13, the girls played their hearts out to the end and after the match we talked about how much they had learnt from the opposition.  This was just such a positive attitude and a great example to everyone.

On Thursday 400 children descended on Radnor House for the Primary Schools Cross Country competition.  The following 22 pupils took part from St Johns:

Max BSadieAdamLouisAnna
Max PEmilyAndrewBayleySarah


There were four races:  Year 3/4 Girls; Year 5/6 Girls; Year 3/4 Boys; Year 5/6 Boys

St John’s raced their hearts out and Lauren and Max P were outstanding, Lauren coming 2nd in the 3/4 Girls race and Max P 3rd in the Boys 3/4 race.

I am now looking forward to Friday night’s Quiz when the hall will be full, with teams of staff and parents testing their General Knowledge against one another.  This is always a great school event and a really enjoyable evening.



A Fun Week

This week, the final one before half term, has certainly been full-on.

Monday saw the second Open Morning for prospective new families.  Approximately 20 families were taken round the school by Year 6 pupils to meet all the staff and experience the atmosphere of St John’s. Once again the children were the stars, impressing everyone with their PR skills.

On Wednesday evening there was a social evening for staff and governors to discuss their roles in the school.  Governors of a school obviously have important responsibilities, but I know all the St John’s governors will agree with me when I say how privileged we feel to work with such outstanding and talented professionals, teaching at the top of their game.  For me, I just so enjoy seeing how the children are developing on all fronts; the staff are so determined and enthusiastic in all they do, with the parents embracing the teamwork that makes the school so successful.

Thursday proved how adaptable the staff can be.  With the weather forecast predicting rain in the afternoon, after a short discussion it was decided to bring forward the House Games Competition to the morning, so in sunshine and blue skies Years 3-6 took part in Rugby, Football, Table Tennis, Basketball, Hockey and Cup Stacking.  Half an hour after the final results were declared the rain came down.  Year 3 who had come dressed up to take part in a Stone Age History Day had time to change into their PE kit and then back again!  All great fun in the usual sporting atmosphere.

It is worth mentioning that today I read in the Sevenoaks Chronicle that Jean Hart had died aged 83.  She taught at St John’s from 1968-1982 and was Deputy Head during her final years.  None of us here at school now remember her but those 14 years are worth remembering and paying tribute to.

Primary School Rugby Festival

A great afternoon of rugby, well organised by Sevenoaks Rugby Club and played in an impressive sporting atmosphere by all the schools.

Oscar, Andrew, Katy, Oliver, Adam, Ben, Isabella and Chiamaka represented St John’s and all their four matches were end-to-end games which were really hard fought with the results being so close.  In any one match the ability to remove the tags from the opposition in tight situations can be the decider. This was probably the reason for us losing three very close matches to Seal (1-2), Shoreham (4-6) and Otford (7-8) with our one success being against Anthony Roper which we won 4-3.  As usual the St Johns’ spirit was always there, the children were willing to learn and there were smiles all round.

I would like, on behalf of all the Governors and I am sure the parents, to congratulate the school on the School Games Mark Platinum Award.  This is a top award for a school’s commitment to develop its pupils to be the best they can be in competitive and non-competitive sport and this is surely the DNA of St John’s.  St John’s is all about the development of each individual child, making sure they are happy in their own skin and therefore self-confident and this is the mind set of the whole school.  The Governors are so proud and privileged to be involved in such a successful school, well done to you all.


Primary School Rugby Training

A few of St John’s Key Stage 2 pupils took part in a rugby training session organised by Sevenoaks Rugby Club yesterday afternoon on their ground. 50 pupils from a variety of local primary schools were there. They were split into 4 groups and then had 4 20 min training sessions with each of the 4 trained team coaches on different aspects of the game. This will go on for the next 3 weeks leading up to the Primary School Rugby Festival towards the end of the Rugby World Cup, which starts tomorrow.

The pupils had certainly been put through their paces and were all the fitter for it . Sevenoaks Rugby Club took the lead many years ago in going into the schools and St John’s takes full advantage of all they do. However it is not only the Rugby Club that helps at St John’s and we take full advantage of all the training that the Athletics, Hockey, Football, Boxing and Tennis clubs do at the school. Danielle Parfett leads a strong group of St John’s sports teachers and they work closely with the clubs to make sure not only that all the children have a lasting love of the sport, but those that do want to push themselves make the necessary progress at school and with the clubs.

We all know that taking part in sport is vital for our health, our general well being and gives us so much more self confidence and we can all feel proud of the way the schools and clubs work together in this area to make this so successful .

End of Term

I have the very privileged position of being a Governor here and in the present times when we badly need Leadership and the right examples to be set it, gives me great confidence that with the Leadership we have at St John’s from Sally and her entire team; together with the co-operation, help and support the school has from the parents and grandparents (as shown with such great strength in all that took place this morning) then every word of our great School Song Year 6 will activate not only in setting those examples but leading others to do the same.

Words can be just words, but here at St John’s we know they mean Action.

A truly great school.

The School Song


Imagine a place, a place full of happiness

Everyone equal, and never the same

Imagine a place where we live with compassion

Learning together, achieving our aims.


Imagine a place, a place full of challenges

Everyone striving and finding their way

Imagine a place, understanding and tolerant

Full of resilience, embracing each day.


St John’s is the place where we all make a difference

Positive actions and making things right

St John’s is our place in God’s wonderful world

We can stand strong in his glorious light.

End OF Term Plays and Service

The plays are always highlights of the school year and this years’ were indeed something special.  The Directors, Sophie Allen (who also wrote the Key Stage 1 play “Cock-A-Doodle-Don’t), Jane Gillhouley (Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat) and the Musical Director Lizzie Hughes are the hugely talented leaders.  However they will be the first to admit that their teams of staff and a significant army of parents who organise costumes, props etc, make it possible for them to take all they do to the highest level.

The Key Stage 1 play was a joy to watch, the children were enjoying themselves and all the songs were so well learnt and rehearsed with Sophie as the master inspiration.

This year the Key Stage 2 play was always going to be a challenge with a double form (64 pupils) taking part.  Jane and her team surpassed themselves by successfully including all the children, with the main parts being taken by 6M on the Wednesday evening and by 6W on the Thursday with the actors swapping to become the choir on the other evening.  This meant training all 64 pupils into serious acting and singing roles so that everyone had a part to play, enabling 16 children to have solo singing parts.  Jane, Lizzie and their team must take great credit for achieving such a high standard from all the children and this just proved once more the importance of the St John’s spirit and “Way of Life”.  The acting and singing from both Year 6’s was outstanding along with the enthusiastic singing and dancing from Years 3, 4 and 5; all the parents must have been so proud of their children, and the school, as they cheered and applauded at the end of the play.

To me it shows the tremendous strength of St John’s in seeing the self-confidence the children have to be themselves and to enjoy what they are doing.  I have great confidence in their ability to become leaders in their new schools.

I am looking forward to next Tuesday when we will have what is in effect the Year 6 leavers’ service at the church with the whole school there along with the Year 6 parents and grandparents.  This is followed by a leavers’ assembly back at school with a well-organised party in their classrooms.  Again, always a great occasion with hardly a dry eye in the church with everyone wishing the pupils all the very best as they move on to their future schools.  We thank them for the leadership they have shown and all they have contributed to the running of St John’s.

Are you a ‘sharent’?

Five Thinkuknow articless to help you engaged with your child’s online activities over the summer holidays. Thinkuknow is the education programme from NCA-CEOP, a UK organisation which protects children both online and offline.

Sharing pictures of your child online

Lots of parents love sharing photos of their children with friends and family, particularly when they are on holiday or starting the new school year. A recent report found that 42% of young people reported that their parents had done this without asking their permission. The article on the link below helps you to protect your child while staying social.

Gaming: what parents and carers need to know

Many children will be spending time gaming online over the summer holidays. This article explores the different elements of gaming with a particular focus on how it can be used by offenders, but focusing on what parents can do to support their child while gaming.

Keeping your under 5s safe online

Whether it’s watching videos, playing games on their devices or talking to Alexa – today’s under 5s are spending more time online. In this article we look at the benefits of children accessing the internet, and share advice about how parents can make sure their child has a safe experience online.

Live streaming: responding to the risks

Many children enjoy live streaming as it can be used to showcase talent, develop communication skills and create identity. This article helps parents to understand why children love it, what the risks can be, and how they can help their child stay safe if they are live streaming.

Using parental controls

Parental controls are a great tool for helping to protect children but should not replace open and honest conversations with children about their life online. Share these tips on how to use parental controls effectively.

I had to miss the tea because I was with Key Stage 2 ‘B’ cricket team at a Primary School’s Cricket Festival. However I hear the the tea was a great success.

We have about 50 volunteers working really well with the children in so many varied roles. The tea is the ‘icing’ on an excellent school assembly they attend which had, as it’s theme ‘helping others’. The choir added their talents to the service.

The school are indebted to these volunteers who add so much to the St John’s “Way of Life” and especially helping the children in gaining that self confidence that is at the heart of their development. As for the cricket the team – improved from game to game, all of which were close contests. They enjoyed themselves and the St John’s sporting spirit was very much on show.



Summer Fete, Saturday 29th June.

Always an inspiring family school event, and this was helped by being the hottest day of the year( in fact a 24 hour mini heat wave –  33 degrees!) and so with blue skies it made the whole occasion, on the school fields, extra special. Mind you, the moving of all the equipment needed from school to the field and back was a challenge but Naomi Ball and her extensive team together with the staff made it a real laugh and so worthwhile.
Everyone busy setting up in the morning and then from 12 to 3 a steady stream of family and friends enjoyed the many stalls, games and the food and drink provided (the BBQ  went to sleep 30 mins from the end due to sunstroke). However many came with picnics and with some shade to be found a,round the perimeter of the fields it was just a great sight seeing everybody enjoying chatting with each other. 3pm came and “all hands on deck” and by 4pm the field was back to normal.

A really enjoyable day.

Sports Day, Wednesday 26th June

This, to me, is one of the Highlights of the school year.

The scene is set at daybreak with as near perfect  grass Athletics Track as you will ever get. Grass almost like Wimbledon and white lines spot on. This is all thanks to David Shrubb who is total master of all the “behind the scenes”  activities that make St John’s.

At 9.10 exactly  all 240 pupils then march onto the playing fields and sit in their year groups under tents. The field is now full of all the pupils families ready for the races and with plenty of food and drink for the morning and a family picnic lunch at the end. So starts Sports Day masterminded by Danielle and helped to perfection by the all the staff.

All the children took part in several races with the House Relay always a favourite at the end. To save parents from injury they took part in an egg and spoon race! (about 40 mums and Dads in total. The teachers had a handball team race. Sally ended it all with the presentation of the House Cup and and a thank you to all concerned for a great morning. The Family picnic then started.

Weather ok, but some sun would have been a bonus.

Just such a wonderful St John’s Family Day.