The End of the Michaelmas Term

Donhead at the end of the Michaelmas Term 2016 is, in some ways, very different to the Donhead that existed at the start of this term. The boys, staff and parents, of course, are largely the same; the ethos, I hope, is as strong and secure as ever and the pace of life is, I suspect, as robust as always and as surely befits a place that serves as the daytime home to so many young people. Having said this I hope the Donhead that exists at the end of this term has changed, and is different, in a couple of subtle but very important ways and I hope this has come about largely by the addition of our new facilities.

Firstly, I hope the boys will now know, if they did not know already, that we are serious about helping them to become the best that they can be and that we will stop at nothing to achieve that ideal. Secondly, I hope the boys will now feel an ever greater sense of pride in their Jesuit School and will have a greater understanding of the fact that what we are doing in this place really matters and deserves the best.

Therefore, I hope the boys of Donhead today, and in the years to come, will grasp all the new and existing opportunities available to them in this place and so develop their talents to the full, in service to their families and to others, to the Greater Glory of God and the Common Good.

Our Jesuit Identity

The Donhead of 2016 is, I believe, in rude health. Our academic, sport and music programmes have, between them, secured 33 scholarships in the last 3 years, and I believe all 3 aspects of our provision are strong. In addition, we now have an excellent range of facilities, the quality of which any school would be justly proud. Much, therefore, has moved forward at Donhead. However, through all this, one aspect has remained constant. Underpinning all these developments have been the core values and ethos of the school. At the outset of this new academic year these merit being restated:

  • It is written just inside the main entrance that Jesuit schools are places where children are honoured, cared for and believed in. Every child in this school must be cherished for who they are, a child of God. This school seeks to take care of the person, first and foremost. ‘Cura Personalis’ in action.
  • This school has a clear mission. 1% of the world’s population receives a college education. The 99% are looking to the 1% to make a difference. This school exists to make a contribution to that mission. It seeks to educate young men of competence, conscience and compassion, who can ultimately make a real difference in the world. Within the stresses and strains of their busy daily lives, we hope they will understand the importance of making a difference to those who need their help most. We hope our alumni will serve the cause of social justice in the best way they can.
  • We seek to do our very best for every boy here regardless of his character, regardless of his ability, regardless of the amount of attention he may demand from us, and we do this out of respect for the difference they will make.
  • Finally, we live in a part of the world where education of the mind can tend to predominate. While understanding the importance of this, of course, we believe strongly that you must educate the mind, the heart and the soul together and that no one part is of more importance than the others. We want every boy in this school to be the very best that they can be, in all aspects of their personal development, so that, ultimately, they will make the biggest difference they can make.

Semper Magis.