Behind the scenes we have been completing the all-important recruitment of new staff for 2017-18. I am often asked what distinguishes an outstanding school from a good school, and I always say that is down to the quality of its staff. It is the staff who inspire and motivate students to produce their best and to stretch themselves when faced with a challenge, inside and outside the classroom.
I am delighted to have the opportunity to introduce to you the rest of our new team for 2017-18.
Firstly, our boarding team is completed by the appointment of Ms Elizabeth Cobb who joins us as a Housemistress from St Edmunds School, Ware, one of the oldest boarding schools in the UK. Ms Cobb is a very experienced boarding housemistress who has been instrumental in transforming the boarding at the school where she has worked for the last 14 years, firstly as a housemistress and then as the Deputy Head of Boarding. She brings with her a wealth of experience of and a passion for creating and maintaining a positive, purposeful and warm family atmosphere in her boarding house. She is very excited about joining our team and making her first venture overseas.
Our new Head of Expeditions is also an exceptional addition to our team. Mrs Rocio Siemens is a highly qualified and very successful mountain guide with a passion for using Outdoor Education to develop and challenge young people. She is a lifelong learner and educator who holds both Bachelor and Masters degree qualifications. Mrs Siemens will add an extra dimension to the work of our team, which next year will of course include expeditions to climb both Mt. Kilimanjaro and Mt Cotapaxi in Ecuador.
Our new Music Co-ordinator is Mr Stephen Bowman-Jones, replacing Mrs Massey who has returned to the UK for personal reasons. Mr Bowman-Jones joins us from another Nord Anglia school, the British School of Guangzhou in China, where he was Head of Secondary Music. He has already worked closely with the Julliard School who hold him in high esteem. He has a strong track record in delivering high quality academic and extra-curricular music programmes, and he is looking forward to further developing our music provision and facilities here at Beau Soleil.
Our fourth recent addition is another talented educator who will be serving as our Head of English to cover Mrs Louise Brooke’s maternity leave over the next two terms. Her name is Ms Susan Urquhart and she has worked for the last seven years at Institut auf dem Rosenberg in St Gallen where she served as both as Head of English and Head of Modern and Foreign Languages. Ms Urquhart has a Masters in Politics and French, she is also a fluent German speaker and she has a passion for community service and media.
I am also delighted to announce that the new Head of the French Section is Mme Véronique Bertrand Bouffard who will join us at the beginning of October, having served her three months’ notice period at her present job in France. Mme Bertrand Bouffard is highly experienced, having taught and held leadership posts in a wide variety of schools in France and overseas. She has a BSc in the Sciences of Languages as well as two Masters degrees in the Sciences of Languages and Teaching French as a Foreign Language. She has also run her own business and has previously lived and worked in Switzerland, at Aiglon and then at Aidan College.
In order to strengthen the management of the section we have also decided to add the post of French Examinations Co-ordinator. This will be an administrative role focussed on the tasks necessary to ensure the smooth entry for and completion of the appropriate courses and examinations. We have appointed Mme Claudine Luguet to this post. She already has a good deal of experience and strong links with the Académie de Grenoble, which is the examining body that we use for the Baccalaureate and the Brevet. This will give Mme Bertrand Bouffard time to manage and lead the department, with a strong focus on coaching and mentoring students and on the quality of teaching and learning.
Finally I am pleased also to share with you that we will be retaining the services of Mr Nicu Gaibu who will be taking on the role of Senior Grad Assistant, and Mr Nick Rumbold who will be undertaking a Post Graduate Certificate of Education over the course of next year.
The combination of the fantastic new facilities which will be open in September and some exceptional new staff coming to join our team is a very exciting prospect. I am looking forward to introducing you to these new members of our community when you return for the beginning of the new school year.
Kevin Foyle, School Principal