December 2020 King’s Academy Ringmer Newsletter Dear Parents, Carers, Staff and Governors, This time last year, I was privileged to experience my first King’s Academy Ringmer Carol Concert. What a joy that was and how little did we realise what lay ahead. Ironically, in last year’s Christmas newsletter, I quoted Charles Dickens: “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness… it was the season of light, it was the season of darkness, it was the spring of hope…” So, fitting for the present moment. I am drawn to the line ‘It was the Spring of hope…’ and find myself wishing and yearning for longer days and sunshine. We have all been indoors for far too long. BUT… I end this term triumphant. Triumphant on behalf of every single member of our school community. On behalf of parents who have worked tirelessly to get their children into school every day, smartly dressed and keen to learn. On behalf of staff who, despite the classroom travel, have continued to produce fabulous lessons - on and off the screen – and triumphant for our fantastic students, who play, smile, laugh and learn while all around the world battles on. We have discovered new ways to learn. We have managed to launch our new house system, Year 11 have completed their first round of mocks and we have even managed a school trip which sold out in hours! I know the pandemic is not over yet, and it may get darker before it gets lighter, but King’s Academy Ringmer is creative, resilient and determined. Determined to be a beacon of hope and strength in this community. We promise to strive for every student’s potential and we are committed to making KAR students the best version of themselves, in every aspect of their lives. I know that Christmas this year may not be what we hope for. We may not get a chance to see everyone that we want to or celebrate in the usual style but we can still give, we can still love and we can still be thankful for each other. Now more than ever we can appreciate that love is our strength and the giving of love makes us stronger. I wish you all a safe and loving Christmas Sian Williams Principal That was 18 years ago and now King’s Academy Ringmer is recognised as one of the leading Eco Schools in the country. Along the way there have been awards, a visit from Royalty, presentations in Parliament, new head teachers and hundreds of students as well as new boilers, solar panels, a wind turbine, ground source heat pumps, a car charger point and a comprehensive insulation scheme. The school has reduced its waste by 40%, saves 400 tonnes of carbon going to the atmosphere every year as well as recycling over a 100 tonnes of material but, most importantly, it gives every student the opportunity to play a part in making a difference. Stephen says, “Our school is a microcosm of society and there are always going to be people passionate about a topic in the same way as there will be those who are opposed to it. The important thing is to appeal to the mass in the middle. That’s been the success at Ringmer. Our Eco Reps aren’t seen by their peers as being odd, they’re just doing something that is eminently worthwhile. I can’t tell you how much fun working with so many brilliant and inspiring students I’ve had and I’ve lost count of the packets of chocolate biscuits we’ve eaten!” Not only will Stephen be missed for all the amazing work he has done over the years, but he is also the nicest man you can meet and will always do whatever he can to help. Take care! FAREWELL TO STEPHEN GREEN It is with a very heavy heart that we say farewell and wish Stephen a very happy retirement. Steve joined the school in 1998 and has been nothing but a complete revelation. The original Eco Warrior has transformed the school into one of the top trailblazing eco schools in the country which has recently been invited to join the National Eco Schools of Fame! When Stephen was asked if he would start an Eco Club, Stephen replied that he didn’t want to have a group of geeky kids meeting in a science lab but wanted to start a movement that would include and engage with students of all abilities.