19 October 2021
Godolphin and Latymer School in Hammersmith has won the prestigious Independent Schools of the Year 2021 Special Award for Outstanding Response to Covid-19. Presenting the award, the judges said, ‘schools and students across the country have risen amazingly to the challenge of supporting their local and wider communities, in many cases providing a vital life-line’, and they paid tribute to Godolphin’s ‘inspiring community outreach activities – including the sector-leading Bridge programme – which provided an astonishing level of digital learning support to state primary and senior school partners during the depths of lockdown’.
During the pandemic Godolphin and Latymer stepped up its support for the wider community, particularly for local primary school pupils who continued with its Saturday morning outreach Bridge programme by logging-on remotely with iPads provided by the school. Its Higher Education University Subjects programme was relaunched as a series of 30 – 40-minute on-line lectures bringing together students virtually from local schools including West London Free School and Kensington Aldridge Academy. Initiatives in the wider community included a link-up with Certitude, one of London’s leading adult social care providers, to supply PPE to staff in care homes and their 1st XI Hockey Squad ran 3,000km in 30 days to raise over £9,000 for NHS Charities Together. Students made face masks for the local community, laundry bags for the NHS ‘Rapid Response Appeal’ and volunteered with local community groups to support vulnerable people; one student was featured on the BBC News Report, Corona Kindness. The school collected and donated food to the local Hammersmith and Fulham Foodbank, Christmas gifts for the Salvation Army, and supported Ready Tech Go, Battersea Power Station and Wandsworth Council by donating used IT equipment, laptops and tablets for children who didn’t otherwise have access to the internet. Godolphin Head Girl Jessie set up Mentor Jr and recruited fellow Sixth Formers to provide a free online mentoring and tutoring service to local primary school pupils and Lower Sixth students set up the online Pulsar Science Magazine for primary school children to support their interest in science and help with their learning.
Head, Dr Frances Ramsey, congratulated the whole school community on receiving the award saying, ‘over the last eighteen months we have striven to maintain a sense of togetherness, even when we’ve been apart, and our students have demonstrated great imagination, energy and commitment in supporting each other and the wider community despite the trials they faced during the pandemic’.