By Clare Jarmy, Head of Able, Gifted & Talented, Oxbridge, Academic Scholars & PRE
It’s a temptation once you’ve been here a while to harken back to the old days as if you were there. The reality is that the Bedales ‘fireside’ – a relaxed evening with music, snacks, games and chatting round a fire – has not been a staple part of the Bedales way of life for a long time, probably not since the times when staying in at the weekend was the norm for everyone. But the important thing about being aware of a school’s history and ethos is that you have a vocabulary, an established set of practices, on which to draw, especially in more challenging times.
So what could have been more appropriate on Thursday night than to spend the evening round the fire with the Bedalians who were still in school – many here to keep working on Art and Design – playing games, chatting, drinking hot chocolate, and listening to music? We had Monopoly, jigsaws, word games, and some very special Star Wars Lego that Clive Burch had saved for such an occasion!
It got me thinking about Bedales as a community. There were times when the school was just that small, and just that domestic. Things change, but the heart of the community remains, and this is core to what we do, to why we came to Bedales, and why we stay. It would be wrong to say that our community is going to be virtual for a while. It may be online, but it will still be very real.