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Eternal values – Headmaster’s Blog – Wednesday 11th May 2016

May 11, 2016
Ballard School Prefects Dinner 2016


Eternal values

Ballard School, New Milton – Headmaster’s blog

It was a real joy last week to attend our annual Senior Prefects’ dinner. It was hosted in the school with some wonderful fare from our catering staff and set in candlelight in the wood-panelled chapel, formerly the billiard room of the old family home. The occasion began with the traditional photograph on the stairs of the Main House and then, with formal seating and everyone dressed in suits and dresses (‘don’t they scrub up well?’) we sat down for our meal.

1922 Ballard School Billiard Room Chapel

Now our Chapel, before ‘The Billiard’ Room (1922 photo)

On this occasion we are joined by staff who have been Form Tutors to the Year 11s and also by senior teachers. After a Gaelic blessing and grace, we enjoyed a splendid three-course meal, engaging conversation and plenty of light-hearted humour. It was a real treat to have a more leisurely meal with pupils and colleagues as opposed to the normal rush that is lunch where there are often conversations to be had quickly and errands to pursue. Perhaps, too, for many of us this was a meal away from the mobile devices and televisions that no doubt regularly punctuate our mealtimes at home.

Toasts were made (non-alcoholic, of course) to the Queen and to the School and we were then treated to what, in my view, were the best speeches I have heard in some time. The Deputy Head Girl reminded us about the friendships and opportunities we have all enjoyed at Ballard and quoted from Prince Harry who said recently,

‘It’s nice to be important but it’s more important to be nice’.

Prefects at Ballard serve the school family and so whilst they do indeed seem important and ‘set apart’ a little here, they also serve and help administratively and, most importantly, pastorally.

The Deputy Head Boy gave us an amusing insight into the antics of some staff and pupils but he, too, exhorted us all never to give up in reaching out to others and, moreover, to take the challenge of the GCSEs and other obstacles ‘head on’ without flinching. The evening was rounded off by Mr David Dunn, Senior Deputy Head, running though some eight principles of leadership of which the most significant was ‘to listen’. He also reiterated what he often says in assembly before a holiday:

Remember, the most important team you are on is your family. Be a good team player!’

So, I for one listened attentively at the dinner and it was great to see the eternal values of family, teamwork, hard effort and service being so naturally espoused by young and old alike. I look forward to Speech Day when we are treated to the thoughts of our Head Boy and Head Girl!

Ballard School prefects dinner 2016

Alastair Reid, Headmaster

We tweet from @BallardSchool 

Ballard School is an independent, private co-educational school in New Milton, Hampshire, providing an outstanding level of education for nursery to GCSE. With small class sizes and proven academic excellence, we strive to nurture the academic potential of all students. Learn more about our academic programmes, pastoral care, facilities and school ethos by visiting our website or by requesting a prospectus here.

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