Weekly News - Friday 15th September 2023

Posted on: 15/09/2023

St. Helen's College Centenary

This academic year is the St. Helen's College Centenary year! We launched our centenary celebrations this week with two special events.

News 1
On Thursday evening, we hosted a reception for staff, former staff and alumni. The event was very well attended, with over 75 alumni and ex-staff returning to join the current staff body. We were treated to beautiful music from Mrs. Nash's string quartet and some super event catering from Soula and her Accent team. We all enjoyed hearing alumni share memories of their time with us, as well as speeches from Mr. Crehan and Ms Drummond and a vocal performance from Mrs. Crehan!

News 2

Staff and visitors browsed through a display of history boards, photographs and other memorabilia from as far back as the 1920s. So much has changed since then, but everyone agreed that much has stayed the same. St. Helen's College has, for 100 years, remained true to a set of aims and values which define our school culture and shape the lives of so many. 


On Friday, we used St. Helen's Day to launch the centenary to the pupils. At Upper School, our pupils heard from two Old Helenians, Tito Oshewa and Georgia Emanuel, who are about to embark on new adventures at California's Stanford University and Cambridge University respectively. The pupils were also treated to a poem performed by Mrs. Green and Mrs. Ruffle, who are also ex-pupils. Mrs. Green is also the mum of Charlee! The displays of history and memorabilia were brought out into the Evans Garden so that pupils could find out about life at St. Helen's College in days gone by. We distributed our SHC values cards to our new Year 2 pupils and, for the first time, we all sang the school song with its new centenary verse.

We had other musical performances, too. Shayna C, Millie B and Alicia Z did a fantastic job as the string trio and Hana H, Zarifa D and Grace O'H gave a vocal performance. Mrs. Crehan also performed a song for the children.

Every child in the school has received a '100 Things To Do In Our Centenary Year' booklet and we very much hope that you will enjoy sharing these experiences as a family.

Next summer, as the academic year draws to a close, we will be hosting a centenary celebration event to which current parents will be invited. We hope that many of you will wish to join us - it is likely to be on the final evening of the year (Friday 12th July), with a centenary concert and art exhibition the evening before (Thursday 11th July). Please pop these dates in your diaries now and look out for further information as the year moves on.

Staff News

IMG 9743Many congratulations to Ms Drummond, who graduated last weekend and is now the proud holder of the MEd in Educational Leadership and Management (University of Buckingham), alongside a Level 7 Senior Leader (Degree) with the Chartered Managers Institute.

Ms Drummond is living proof that a lifelong love of learning is a wonderful thing!


This week, Ms Porteous celebrated twenty years of working for St. Helen's College. During this time, she has cared for so many children at our After School and Holiday Clubs. She has made (and continues to make) a real difference to many young lives, and we thank her for her commitment to the school so far. 

After a year's sabbatical, we are delighted to welcome Mrs. Bool back to the Finance Office. She has been joined by Mrs. Sonigra, who had most recently worked at St. Helen's School in Northwood. Thank you for bearing with us during the changes in staffing in the Finance department. Normal service has now resumed!

Co-Curriculum Clubs

Co-curriculum activities will begin next week, from Monday 18th September. 

Please note, however, that Karate Club will not begin until the following week (and will instead run a session in the final week of term). This is because Mr. Kumedzina, our Karate Coach, will be joining the Higashi national squad for the Banzai International Cup in Berlin next Friday. We wish the squad much luck!

We still have a few vacancies for the following clubs. Please contact Mr. Harrington at lharrington@sthelenscollege.com if your child would like to join one of these:

Y2/3 Taekwondo - Tuesday 12.20 - 1.00 p.m.

Y2/3 Taekwondo - Thursday 12.20 - 1.00 p.m.

Y4/5/6 Taekwondo - Thursday 1.00 - 1.45 p.m.

Y5/6 Tennis - Thursday 1.00 - 1.45 p.m.

Next Week

Monday 18th September - Individual pupil photographs at Ducklings
Tuesday 19th September - Individual pupil photographs at Lower School (siblings from 7.40 a.m.)
Wednesday 20th September - Maths and Phonics evening for Year 1 (1C at 6.00 p.m., 1R at 6.45 p.m.)
Thursday 21st September - Individual pupil photographs at Upper School (siblings from 7.40 a.m.)
Friday 22nd September - STEAM Day

Open Morning - Tuesday 3rd October

Our next 'School at Work' Open Morning for prospective parents will take place on Tuesday 3rd October. If you know of anyone with a 0-3 year old who might be interested in finding out more about St. Helen's College, please ask them to reserve an appointment via our website or to contact Mrs. Smith at susmith@sthelenscollege.com. There are just a few slots left now!

2024 Entry - Ducklings and Nursery

If your St. Helen's College child has a sibling born between 01.09.20 and 31.08.22, and you have not yet registered them for entry to the school, please do so as soon as possible. The entry processes for Ducklings 2024 and Nursery 2024 will begin shortly. You can access the online registration form here.

Old Helenian To Run The London Marathon!

James & Chris LawrenceMrs. Lawrence's son James, who is a former St. Helen's College pupil, will be running the London Marathon 2024 for his father and the thousands of other men affected by prostate cancer every year. 

The Lawrence family have been valued members of the St. Helen's College community for many, many years and we wish James all the very best for his training and for the Marathon run itself. 

You can find out more information about why James has chosen to run, and sponsor him by donating to support prostate cancer research, at the link below. Many thanks indeed, from the whole Lawrence family, for your generosity and support.


Homestart Volunteering

Homestart Hillingdon are a charity based at All Saints Church Hall. They do very valuable work, recruiting, training and co-ordinating volunteers to help struggling families with at least one child under the age of 5, across Hillingdon borough.

All parents know how relentless and difficult (as well as joyful!) parenting small children can be,even without other challenges.  Homestart help families with issues including post-natal depression, isolation, multiple birth, disability and managing difficult personal circumstances.  

Homestart volunteers need to be parents (or grandparents) and have at least half a day a week (during normal working hours) to commit to the role, as well as attending Homestart's Volunteer Training Course (9 sessions during school hours). The next course will run on Mondays, starting on the 9th October.

Some of the team from Homestart Hillingdon will be at St. Helen's College on Friday 22nd September to introduce themselves and their work to parents, in the hope that some of our community might be interested in volunteering with them. You can find them next Friday at:

7:50 - 8:45 a.m. -  at the Lower School Entrance (beside the Methodist Hall) 
3:10 - 4:00 p.m. -  at the Upper School Entrance (on Parkway) 

You can find out more at www.homestart-hillingdon.org.uk

Thames Valley Cavaliers Basketball Sessions For Girls

Thames Valley Cavaliers have launched an all-girls basketball session, which is now taking place every Saturday at Uxbridge College from 12 - 1.30 p.m. The session is open to girls aged 7-17 and all abilities are welcome.

TVC want to see girls' basketball within the Borough of Hillingdon grow and participation increase. They are also looking to develop a girls' basketball team to represent the Borough in the London Youth Games for the first time in several years.

There are coaches running the session who play on the Thames Valley Cavaliers WNBL women's team, and pupils will have an opportunity to watch them compete in a league fixture on the home court after the session. 

Full details, including how to sign up, are available here.

Important Reminders

The safety of our children and the members of the local community is of paramount importance to us all. Please could we remind all drivers to observe speed limits around the school site and to adhere closely to the school parking regulations, which are published here.

As well as being crucial to protect the safety of other drivers, pedestrians and cyclists, following these regulations closely will ensure that the St. Helen's community remains mindful of our neighbours and helps to promote the school's reputation within the local community.