As the most challenging – 60th and final – term of my career at King’s came to an end, I was reminded how, often, our students inspire us the most.
It was the Headmaster’s idea to appoint a ‘Purple’ (as we call prefects at King’s) with a new brief to support Partnerships and Volunteering. The first incumbent was Daniel Koo, 6a GR, an excellent choice. From his initial paper presented to me during King’s Week 2019, jam-packed with ideas, through his skilful leadership of the new House Partnership Leaders throughout the year, including in lockdown, to this wonderful review of the year, published in July 2020, Daniel has been a super-helpful bridge between pupils and staff and an inspiring support in my role as Head of Partnerships. One initiative of Daniel’s was to pair up each House with a primary school in Canterbury and these new relationships are growing ever closer and more fruitful.
The Partnerships and Volunteering Review is entirely student-produced. Daniel commissioned fellow pupils to write of their experiences of volunteering in Canterbury, and you will find in these pages a sense of humility, community spirit and compassion – qualities we would hope to develop in all our pupils.
And alongside the review we have put together this infographic to provide an at-a-glance summary of the school’s Partnerships facts and figures for the last calendar year.
Whilst face-to-face partnership projects and events may have to wait a little longer, my colleagues at King’s are keen to maintain contact with all our partner schools and look for new ways of collaborating, such as through the wonderful EKST Feel-Good Friday programme and other virtual projects. Schools will need to work together even more closely to weather this storm.
In the meantime, I’d like to express my huge gratitude to all staff who have contributed to our partnership programme over the years, and to all the pupils who have inspired me – as a physics teacher, as Head of Science and in in my partnerships role; to all the wonderful colleagues from partner schools I have met and learned so much from; to the Headmaster and Governors for their vision and support and to Jane Murray as my office- and team-mate, for her skilful administration, and for sharing my passion for partnerships and good coffee!
Christina Astin, August 2020