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Headteacher Blog

what's happening at Chesham Grammar

Posted on: December 8th 2017

Head's Blog

Dear Parent,

This time next week, we will have finished school for Christmas.  Our assemblies this week have had a Christmas theme.  I talked about Christmas customs and traditions from around the world and about some Christmas related facts.  Did you know, for example, that the largest ever Christmas cracker, according to the Guinness Book of Records, was constructed in 2001 by the parents and children of Ley Hill School, just around the corner from CGS? Neither did I until I was doing some research for assembly!  Mrs Hill, our librarian, tells me that she was involved in the construction of said cracker and I am sure that amongst our parent body will be countless others who were either involved or who can remember the cracker (which measured more than 60m in length apparently) being constructed.  In our assemblies we were treated to some beautiful Christmas music too with different performers involved each day.  My thanks to those who took part.  If you are coming to Christmas in Words and Music on Wednesday you will also get to hear the various choirs and groups perform.

This week I met with Clementine Berthelsen, Lily Stone, Pippa Petty, Luca Cassidy, Ted Quaife and Annabel King in Year 7 who have recently celebrated their 12th birthday.  Happy birthday. We had an interesting conversation on the pros and cons of having a birthday so close to Christmas!  I also met with Joe Rees, Katie Meichtry, Adrian Williamson and Aaron Cousins in Year 13 who all turned 18 recently; congratulations.  It dawned on us that those Year 13s with a birthday this term are the very last students at CGS to have been born in the 20th century.  I met with Jack Noller in Year 12, Lily Voak and Narayan Dua in Year 13, Caitlin Mackay in Year 11 and Jessica Merrett in Year 10 this morning. Jack competed in the ESSA swimming relay schools' final held in the Olympic pool recently, representing the school.  He was delighted to come away with a PB.  Lily and Narayan have received Young Scientist of the Year Awards at an event organised by Science Oxford and the Bucks Learning Trust.  Caitlin has been selected to swim for the South East Region in the Flanders Speedo Cup in Belgium in January and we look forward to hearing all about it.  Jessica undertook some fundraising for Children in Need with three friends from primary school, selling cakes in Berkhamsted and raising a fantastic £300.23.  Very well done to them all. 

Earlier this week I attended a presentation to which schools in the town had been invited on the 'Chesham Masterplan'.  This Masterplan "has been inspired by a vision to embrace new residential accommodation, not in the Green Belt around the town but within the town itself".  I do not live in Chesham myself and nor do many of our students but CGS is the second largest employer in the town and so I feel it is important for us to engage in this long-term vision.  I would urge those of you who do live in Chesham to take a few minutes to respond to the consultation which closes on 22nd December.  I have done so myself and can vouch for the fact that it doesn't take very long to complete.  The website address is

It was good to see Year 12 parents last night at our progress evening and I hope you found the opportunity to meet your child's teachers useful.  We will be sending out a questionnaire to Year 12 parents so please do try to find the time to complete it if you can as the feedback we receive is most helpful. I am also looking forward to meeting those Year 7 parents who are able to come to our 'drop in' session on Wednesday afternoon and to hearing about the ups and downs of your son or daughter's first term at CGS.

Finally, I would like to pass on the congratulations of the whole CGS community to Elizabeth O'Reilly, one of our parents and our governors, who has today been to receive her MBE for services to education.  Elizabeth has been Chair of Governors at another school for many years and I am delighted that her commitment and long-service have been rewarded in this way.

Can I remind you that the school will close at 2.30pm next Friday and that we return on Wednesday 3rd January 2018.

With best wishes for a relaxing weekend,


Annmarie McNaney