Bennett Memorial Diocesan School were delighted to welcome to the school the Right Reverend James Langstaff, Lord Bishop of Rochester, our diocesan bishop to formally open and dedicate our brand new classroom block, named the Rochester building. The dedication and opening ceremony took place on Wednesday 21 April with a small number of invited guests and students from years 7 and 13. The dedication ceremony was followed by the celebration of the Eucharist in the brand new Rochester Hall led by Bishop James.
The Rochester classroom block gives to the school 21 new state of the art classrooms, as well as a multi-use hall. The hall provides a superb new venue for the rich co-curriculum life of the school, in particular for our ambitious musical performances and theatrical productions. We are very grateful that, with support from the Bennett School charity, we have been able to equip the new hall with top of the range audio-visual facilities, as well as stage lighting.
The event was a wonderful opportunity to celebrate another very significant step in our development as a school community, albeit on a smaller scale than we might usually. The new classrooms will make sustainable the school’s expansion, meaning that a distinctive Bennett education, with its strong emphasis upon high quality classroom teaching following a traditional knowledge-rich curriculum, can be made available to even more students.
The school also took the opportunity to express its thanks to Bishop James for his support and ministry as Bishop of Rochester, as he is retiring from that role in the summer. We are very grateful for his sustained engagement with our school community and his leadership.
From Monday 19th April we will be re-opening our food serveries to enable us to offer lunch to students in all year groups. You no longer need to book food online.
Our school catering department have worked hard with us to develop a lunch offer, which we believe will appeal to students, providing them with hot, home-made, nutritious food whilst minimising mixing between year groups and avoiding any disruption to the school timetable.
The following will be in place from Monday 19th April.
It is with considerable sadness that we learned today the news that His Royal Highness Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh has died.
We send our sincere condolences to Her Majesty the Queen and to members of the Royal Family from our community at Bennett Memorial Diocesan School.
Prince Philip will be remembered for his personal initiatives and support in many spheres, but in particular at Bennett for his encouragement of young people through the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Scheme, which he founded in 1956.
We join others across the Church of England in prayer.
Lord of Lords and King of Kings, we give you thanks
for the life of Philip, Duke of Edinburgh .
for the grace and mercy
he received from you,
for his faithful love and support
of Her Majesty, The Queen,
and his service to this nation
at home and abroad.
Enfold him in your everlasting arms
grant him rest
and raise him up at the last
in the company of the saints in light.
We remember, too, the Royal Family in their bereavement.
O God, our sovereign and shepherd,
who brought again your Son, Jesus Christ,
from the valley of death,
comfort, we pray,
The Queen and all the Royal Family
with your protecting presence.
Fill them with your Holy Spirit;
and with your heavenly peace;
and bring them at the last
to your everlasting kingdom;
through Jesus Christ, our Lord.
You are invited to pray for our school community as we make the return to full school. If you would like to join our Bennett Parent Prayer Group so that you can pray regularly for our school please email Reverend Rachael on [email protected].
O God, the protector of all who trust in you,
we commend into your hands our school
as all staff and students return after this lockdown.
May we know your presence as we journey into school,
your peace to reassure those who are anxious,
your joy as we are reunited with friends,
your hope guiding us for the future,
your comfort for those who have been bereaved,
and your strength to persevere when facing challenges and changes.
Gracious God, we are confident that your love and care for us will never change,
may we reflect the same love and care to all in our community.
Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
A prayer from St Patrick’s Breastplate
Christ be with me, Christ within me,
Christ behind me, Christ before me,
Christ beside me, Christ to win me,
Christ to comfort and restore me.
Christ beneath me, Christ above me,
Christ in quiet, Christ in danger,
Christ in hearts of all that love me,
Christ in mouth of friend and stranger.
The Government have now published guidance on how schools will approach planning and carrying out the processes of assessing and awarding of grades this summer. Please see this visual map for reference:
We are delighted that Bennett Memorial Diocesan School has been designated as the Teaching School Hub to work across West and East Kent. This designation from the Department for Education provides the school and its network the opportunity to build further on its work as a Teaching School and at the centre of the Outstanding initial teacher training provider Teach Kent and Sussex.
As the Kent Teaching School Hub, we are looking forward to working with our partners to build further on the provision of evidence-based teacher training and development for each professional stage. Teachers play a critical role in the success of our pupils, and it is absolutely right that we are committed to offering them excellent training and development, building shared professional expertise based on evidence. The new Teaching School Hubs have an important role to play in this critical work.
During the school closure due to the developments in the Covid-19 pandemic, parents should be aware of the following support networks available to them in this period. We understand that this could be a worrying and stressful time for families and we would like to make sure that families continue to feel supported by their networks in school and also know how to access support from outside agencies whilst we are closed.
Dear Bennett Parent,
I am writing to you following the government’s announcement regarding this next lockdown period and the indication that GCSE examinations will not go ahead in the usual way this summer. We do understand that both students and parents may have some questions and perhaps some worries about how students will be assessed at the end of this Key Stage. We are waiting for further guidance from the government about how students will be assessed in relation to the GCSE examination courses. We will share that information with you when we are in a position to provide further details.
In the meantime, we will be continuing to provide a remote education for all Bennett students, making sure that the GCSE curriculum is fully covered. In this context we will not be proceeding with the trial examinations that were scheduled for next week. It is likely however, that we will need to systematically assess students’ knowledge and understanding of their courses when they return from lockdown, so their efforts in revising will bear fruit. For now, students should be engaging with their on-line learning as a key priority. We know how positively impactful this is on students’ sense of well-being and purpose. With good coverage of the curriculum students will be supported to master the subject knowledge which is the foundation for progression to Sixth Form courses.
As we receive more details about arrangements for assessment we will share this with you and how these assessments will support and inform progression to the Bennett Sixth Form. It remains our intention to provide advice and guidance to each Y11 student about their Sixth Form curriculum and we will write with more details about that in the coming weeks.
Mrs Rebecca Malone
Dear Bennett Parent,
I am writing to you following the government’s announcement regarding this next lockdown period and the indication that A level examinations will not go ahead in the usual way this summer. We do understand that both students and parents may have some questions and perhaps some worries about how students will be assessed at the end of Sixth Form. We are waiting for further guidance from the government about how students will be assessed in relation to the A level examination courses. We will share that information with you when we are in a position to provide further details.
In the meantime, we will be continuing to provide a remote education for all Bennett students, making sure that the A level and Diploma curriculum is fully covered. In this context we will not be proceeding with the trial examinations that were scheduled for next week. It is likely however, that we will need to systematically assess students’ knowledge and understanding of their courses when they return from lockdown, so their efforts in revising will bear fruit. For now, students should be engaging with their on-line learning as a key priority. We know how positively impactful this is on students’ sense of well-being and purpose. With good coverage of the curriculum students will be supported to master the subject knowledge which is the foundation for progression to university and other school leaver routes.
As we receive more details about arrangements for assessment we will share this with you and how these assessments will support and inform the UCAS process.
Mrs Rebecca Malone
Director of Sixth Form
Remote Teaching / Teams
Find out more information about how Remote Teaching works at Bennett Memorial by clicking here.
Bennett Memorial Diocesan School is able to offer students a Microsoft Office 365 ProPlus subscription at no cost via the Microsoft Student Advantage program. This program allows us to provide current students with the latest version of Microsoft Office at school and at home. You can find out more by clicking here.
Foldr allows you to access your school files from any desktop, laptop, tablet or phone in school, at home … in fact anywhere.
You can access it here: https://foldr.bennett.kent.sch.uk
You can view a user guide here.
A sincere thank you to the Bennett Music Team for all their work in providing for us a truly special Carol Service at King Charles the Martyr Church in the final week of the Autumn Term. Special thanks go to Dr Christopher Parker for orchestrating the music, to Rev Rachael Knapp for conducting the service and to the vicar and staff of King Charles the Martyr for allowing us to use such a fitting venue. Thank you also to each and every participant as a singer, organist or reader at that event.
Furthermore, many Bennett musicians shared videos of their own performances from home which were compiled into a virtual concert on the penultimate day of term. There were some stunning performances and a number of musicians whose potential is really expanding and growing. Our thanks to all of them and to Mr Crane and the Bennett music staff.
Finally, we must thank the Bennett Music Academy’s visiting music teachers too whose work each week with students has helped them improve and get to the high standards which they have arrived at.