Baker’s Beacon Blog – Week 36

5 July 2024

Dear Parents,

And so that completes The Beacon’s 91st year, and what a year it has been.  So much enterprise and industry, so much enjoyment and achievement; every Beacon boy has played their part in what has been an immensely successful and productive year.  Our dedicated, talented and passionate staff care so much for our boys and their school, whatever area they work in.  Their good humour, great company and commitment to making The Beacon what it is today creates a working environment unmatched in my career.  My thanks also to everyone in our parent community for your support of our school and kind words throughout the past year and, in particular, this week.  The Beacon is for everyone and you are as much a part of this school as the boys and, of course, play the ultimate role in bringing up such brilliant children that it is a privilege to work with.

A predictable election outcome yesterday but an unpredictable future, particularly for the independent sector who, despite being such a force for good in this country, seem to be the current poster boy for all that is bad.  As with every year, the Governors review the school’s Terms and Conditions and this year’s update includes reference to taxes being applied (at 4.2) if that policy does indeed come to fruition.  The prospect of VAT has been much talked about and it was a Labour manifesto pledge so we will see how that plays out in the autumn Budget but as I have said to many of you this past year, The Beacon has been, and is, prepared for any eventuality.  For as long as I have been a Head, there have been threats to our sector and doom-mongers from outside and inside the profession; in all those circumstances we prevailed and will do so again, bringing all in our community with us.

Time for the annual pilgrimage to Silverstone for the Bakers this weekend, then flying to our home in Menorca – initially with five of Joseph’s friends (not strictly defined as a ‘holiday’ in my book) at the end of July – and finally just the four of us until the middle of August when we return for ‘Results’ from GCSE and A Levels.  Aside from that, I will be keeping a watchful eye on all of our Beacon developments over the holidays, some more interesting to the boys than others.  We are all excited for the new Cooking and Nutrition Room, kindly funded by the BPS, and Nursery and Reception boys will no doubt be completely beside themselves when they enter their completely transformed playground in September – best of luck to my Early Years colleagues getting those boys settled on the first day of the school term!  The solar panels on the Sports Hall roof are less exciting but arguably more important as we become a more sustainable and energy cost conscious business going forward, and the completion of the rear pathway will render that area of the school complete in terms of refurbishment.  New staff, over a hundred new boys and their families, even better facilities for what is already the best served prep school in the country – always lots to look forward to in 2024/2025…

Have a great summer,

Nick Baker

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