School Closure 12 January 2018

As many of you will be aware from the penultimate newsletter of last term, Nick Lardner, who had taught at Park House since 1996 sadly passed away shortly before Christmas.

Nick had spent his whole teaching career at Park House. He moved from a Newly Qualified Teacher of History post to roles as a Head of Year, Head of Department and Deputy Head of Sixth Form and from 2008, held a variety of whole school responsibilities as a key member of the Senior Leadership Team as one of our Assistant Headteachers. As I’m sure you will therefore appreciate Nick worked with many different colleagues across the staff and had many close friends at the school.

Nick’s funeral service and a number of events to celebrate his life will take place on 12th January from 10am through to the mid-afternoon. As I am sure you will also appreciate there are many teaching and non-teaching colleagues who wish to attend these events and support his family at this difficult time. In view of these exceptional circumstances, I have taken the unprecedented decision following discussions with Mr Larby as Chair of Governors, to close the school for all students on Friday 12th January. The Year 13 Mock Exams involving a small number of Year 13 students will be rescheduled to Monday 15th January.

I do appreciate - and am very sorry for - the inconvenience that I know this will cause to many of you and can only ask for your forbearance and understanding in the circumstances. Unfortunately, the logistics of school transport and supervision make even a partial opening unrealistic.

Work in each of Friday’s lessons will be set by subject staff via Show My Homework for completion on the day. We will also subsequently adjust timings for professional development activities later in the school calendar so that no ‘direct’ teaching time is ‘lost’ as a result of the closure. For immediate reference the school will not close early on the last day of this term on Thursday, 29th March.

Nick’s family have made it clear that parents and students who knew Nick are very welcome to attend the Service at St. Joseph’s Church in Newbury at 10am. Please note that the limited parking at the Church will be reserved for family and close friends.

Thank you once again for your understanding and support of this unprecedented decision.

With good wishes

Yours sincerely

D J Peaple