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Listen Up! It’s A Message From The Head…

September 19, 2011

After the amazing weekend that was CavFest, here are a few lovely words from Janet. Or, as she’s known to her pupils, Ms Marland…

Janet  "Too Cool For School" Marland :-)

Janet "Too Cool For School" Marland 🙂

Something quite amazing happened on our school field this weekend. An idea, that started as a conversation between 2 colleagues over a quick pint in The Met on a Friday afternoon, became a reality. Steve Hanley (site manager) and Rob King (Y3 teacher) made the original suggestion that we should host a music festival at Cavendish.  They mulled it over and spoke at a PTA meeting to see what others thought. Before they knew it, the PTA had decided it could be a huge success and came to ask me whether I thought it was feasible. If I’m honest, I was filled with trepidation at the thought of such a large scale entertainment event. I’m just a teacher – organising end of term concerts is as far as I’ve been in showbiz terms!  But I knew that a music festival would be perfect for our school if we could pull it off. With an uncharacteristic rush of blood to the head, I gave the PTA the thumbs up.

From that point on, a team of parents, colleagues, professionals and local businesses have worked tirelessly and in their own time to make CavFest happen. There has been so much for them to organise and manage – the artists and an ever changing running order, the stage, the sound system, the children’s activities, site security, a well stocked bar, publicity, ticket selling and wristbands, food, portaloos, backstage accommodation and refreshments, not to mention how we’d clean up to get school ready for Monday! Somehow, they got all of this sorted despite having day jobs and young children to see to.

And so, on Sat 17th September, CavFest took place, attracting a crowd of about 1600.  The bands on show were a mix of new talent and long established favourites, food and drink were provided by local restaurants and bars, children’s activities were coordinated by parents and school staff, we had an army of volunteers on the day to assist with a multitude of tasks, independent stallholders created a festival market…it all came together beautifully to create a fabulous family friendly event for our local community.

We’ll be using the profit from CavFest to buy class sets of instruments for children to use – recorders, guitars and glockenspiels for starters. We’re also buying new Samba drums and some MP3 players. CavFest will help us to ensure that ALL children in KS2 get the chance to learn 2 musical instruments; too often in schools this opportunity is only open to those whose parents can afford to pay for tuition, and that’s wrong in our view. Schools have a moral duty to negate the impact of social inequality where they can, and that’s part of what CavFest was about.

I’d like to say a HUGE thank you to everyone who made it happen, and to all those who came to support it. CavFest has been a fantastic collaboration between our school and the vibrant community we so proudly serve. I am lucky to be working with people who between them have such a diverse range of skills and talents, and it has been a privilege to be involved.

JANET MARLAND, HEADTEACHER, CAVENDISH PRIMARY SCHOOL

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