From the Headmaster…

Posted: 22nd June 2021

Dear Parents

I was once asked what I enjoyed about my job and what motivated me.

Any leader, be it a Headmaster of an independent Prep School or the CEO of a manufacturing group, must believe fervently in their product and its people.  At Holmwood, we don’t have a product as such, we just have people; children, staff and parents.  My job has been to provide a clear and exciting vision for all three of these important stakeholders along with a clear route map of where we are going and how we are going to get there. For that you need commitment and passion; two things that have fuelled my time at the school. At Holmwood we are committed to creating opportunities for children to develop the skills they will require throughout their lives; not training children to jump through the narrow hoops that education can present in its least creative forms.  Our children will grow up and enter a workplace which may not resemble the one that you and I would recognise. Technology and changes in expectations will likely lead to the need for greater adaptability in our youngsters. It is the young person who can think creatively, problem-solve, and feel equally comfortable working independently as collaboratively that will be successful in the workplace of tomorrow.

I’ve said it before, we want to develop in our children the capacity to think.  It’s not always about what they learn, but about how they learn. I am passionate about this aspect of our work.  If traditional teaching methods are the backbone of what we do, then the development of exciting and creative ways of advancing our children’s learning experiences are the vital organs and blood supply. We are about seamlessly welding the two sides of education – the intellectual and the emotional; achievement & character.

It is our job to show leadership and guidance, to hold on to the traditional values which we all expect from decent individuals; to sow in our youngsters the seeds of what we hope will grow into the qualities we know we respect in other adults.

A dad once told me that, as a partner in his City-based law firm, when interviewing for a new recruit, ask themselves the ‘Norwich question’;  “Having looked at the CV, the school, the university, etc, they ask, not of the candidate, but of themselves, would we put this person on a 2 hour train journey to Norwich, …..with our best client?”   My aim has been that each and every Holmwoodian would pass that test with flying colours!

Alexander Mitchell

Categories: Headmaster's Blog News


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151 Coach Road, Great Horkesley,
Essex CO6 4DX
T: (01206) 273 827


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Chitts Hill, Lexden,
Essex CO3 9ST
T: (01206) 574305