Love the ones you're with...

'The first step to make people trustworthy is to trust them.'

Trust them to do their very best.

How true.


Words written two thousand years ago by Seneca, a Roman Stoic philosopher and teacher.

2,000 years ago.

Coincidentally, just about 2,000 lessons are taught a week at Park House. I can't observe them all. Heaven forbid! I therefore strive to engender a climate of trust; a culture in which teachers are trusted to do their very best, to be creative and take calculated learning risks on behalf of the young people in their care. A climate in which they are allowed to thrive professionally and personally.

How wonderful, therefore, to have the vey best of what Park House does validated in so many ways in the space of 24 hours last week.

RAISEOnline came out on Friday.

This probably means very little to those outside educational circles.

For those inside it, the arrival of 'Raise', as it's referred to in the trade, is a seminal moment. In simple terms, 'Raise' grades every aspect of a school's performance: Blank means in line with expectation. Fine, phew! Blue, below expectation. Enough said, especially in time current climate of Ofsted- induced fear. Green. Above what could be reasonably expected; celebrate collective endeavour.

Park House's 2014 'Raise' is greener than a rainforest.

Simultaneously we received news that Park House had been short listed as Berkshire's Workplace of the Year for the promotion of healthy lifestyles amongst its workforce.

How many of you go out running in ASICS shoes?

Asics Trainer

ASICS is an acronym for the Latin phrase...

Anima Sana in Corpore Sano: 'a healthy mind in a healthy body'.

That says it all about what we try to achieve. Because at the same time Year 12 Team GB Bobsleigh star and recent recipient of my 'Living the Values' Award for combining academic and sporting excellence, Annabel Chaffey, was also short listed as Berkshire's Junior Sports Personality of the Year.

Annabel Chaffey

And, together with fellow Year 13 Senior Team GB Bobsleigh international Codie Burnett, the Park House pair were short listed for Team of the Year!

Annabel Chaffey Codie Burnett Bobsleigh

Codie Burnett Annabel Chaffey Bobsleigh

All of this reflects a commitment to ensuring that students and staff feel equally valued, trusted and supported to achieve individually and as a team.

As Crosby, Stills and Nash said some thirty-three years ago...