Headteacher of top school tells parents to keep children at home

CREDIT: This story was first seen in iNews

The headmaster of a leading school in Surrey has encouraged parents to stay at home and play in the snow with their children despite the fact that his own school is remaining open, reports.

Shaun Fenton, head of Reigate Grammar School, said families should take the opportunity to make special memories as, in his experience, these would last “longer than any lessons taught at school.”

In an email to parents, Mr Fenton said: “I realise that for some families work/other commitments mean that they will not have any options about the day whereas for others it makes sense to enjoy making snowmen and sledging.

“Looking back to my own childhood, in these moments some fabulous lifelong childhood memories were formed, memories that lasted longer than any lessons taught at school.

“I believe that there are too few snow days for our children where they can go out and enjoy making snowmen and go sledging. Shaun Fenton, pictured in the hat, at an artificial snow day laid on by Reigate Grammar School last December.

“Therefore, if there is a lot of snow and you can go sledging or make snowmen with your children today, then maybe today is a chance to make some special memories.”

Last year the independent school drafted in industrial snow machines to create its very own snow day in the playground after it missed out on snowfall at the end of term.

Mr Fenton said: “Although the snow causes immense disruption for many people, I think the joy it offers to children and young people should be celebrated.

“Exam results are crucial, but as a school that believes that education is about far more than what is learned in the classroom, I’m encouraging our students and their families to make some special memories before the ‘Beast from the East’ returns to Siberia.”

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The school confirmed that children whose parents chose to keep them home for a snow day would not be marked as absent, adding: “If parents choose to keep their children home to make memories they’re to be congratulated.”

Travel disruption It comes as many parts of the UK woke up to a fresh blanket of snow and freezing conditions following the arrival of the ‘Beast from the East’ weather front earlier this week.

The front – which has swept in from Russia – has brought with it severe disruption for commuters, with delays on the roads, reduced rail services and cancelled flights.

Amber and yellow Met Office warnings for ice and snow remain in place across much of the country and hundreds of schools have been closed. Four people were killed on the roads on Tuesday – three in a crash on the A15 at Baston in Lincolnshire and another on the A47 near Peterborough.

Treacherous road conditions were feared to be a factor. ‘Double history can wait’ Mr Fenton said that, following his email, a few hundred pupils had stayed at home but the majority braved the elements to make the journey into school. The email, he added, was as much for the benefit of parents as it was for their children.

He told i: “If you’re a parent who managed to take the day off and have some fun with your child then that’s a memory that will stay for decades. Double history can wait. “I’m a dad – I’ve got two boys so I can see it from both perspectives. I can remember as a boy the excitement of being able to make snowmen and go sledging.”

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