The Friends aim support the school community with social opportunities, practical help and where appropriate raising funds along the way to benefit those within the school community. The Friends has a steering committee of parents and former parents supported by and working alongside the Headmaster, Prep Head, a teacher rep and members of the school’s Development Office. Volunteers from the Friends organise the secondhand uniform and kit sales with sales regularly taking place throughout the year.
Friends events are held throughout the academic year giving parents, staff and pupils the chance to enjoy social time together. The aim is to offer a range of social events so there is something for all.
Year 7 picnic
This lovely family get together is hosted by the Friends towards the end of the Summer holidays to welcome pupils and their families starting in year 7. It is a brilliant opportunity to meet up in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere before the school term begins.
A hotly contested challenge usually held around February/March time. Held in the bar at Rushmere – simply book a place for your team and bring a picnic supper.
The Summer Ball
The biggest event in the Friends social calendar is The Summer Ball. Hosted every two years. Save the date – 27th June 2020 in the grand marquee on the school field grounds. It’s very popular! Be on standby to secure your tickets when they are released after Christmas.
Funds raised are used to provide ‘extras’ to benefit pupils – often ‘fun things’ that help to support teachers in making learning interesting and exciting and also to support the wider school community. The Head of the Prep and the Headmaster of the Senior School work together with the Friends committee to decide how best to allocate funds raised each year.
Gifts from the friends enjoyed by pupils included:
- house T- shirts for all new pupils in both the Senior School and Prep
- swimming and ski equipment
- a treehouse for the Upper Prep playground and a donation of £5,000 towards the refurbishment of the Lower Prep playground
- a Caterham car kit, new cricket nets and table tennis tables for the Senior School.
Recycling bins have also provided to support the environmental initiatives within the school.
In terms of the wider community:
- the Friends contributed £1,000 towards the wonderful doves installation in our beautiful school Chapel last year to commemorate 100 years since the end of the First World War.
- the Friends are delighted to have been able to provide significant donations in support of a number of local organisations:
- Thomas Wolsey School, less than two miles from us Thomas Wolsey supports children with complex and challenging support needs providing an outstanding learning and nurturing environment.
- SELIG, a local charity supporting homeless people providing the Ipswich Winter Night Shelter
- most recently the school pupils and the Friends combined to be able to provide local charity FIND (Families in Need) with a substantial combined donation of over £6,500. FIND supports some of the most vulnerable families in our local community week in week out not least via its food bank service.
The Friends of Ipswich School Prize for Charitable Work is awarded each year at speech day to a senior school pupil. This last year it was awarded to Anastasia Murphy for the considerable work in raising awareness and money for the ocean plastics campaign. She was instrumental in various posters, discussions and a boys against girls netball match fundraiser for the Marine Conservation Society.
We hope that you and your family will enjoy and benefit from being a member of the Friends. Ideas for events and initiatives and new committee members are always welcome just contact us via the details on the website and we look forward to enjoying your company at an event very soon.