Celebrating 10 years at The Holmewood School
On Monday 30th November, The Holmewood School is ten years old.
They'll be celebrating throughout the day in their 'bubbles' and we’ve looked back over the recent history of the school to share 10 fascinating, interesting, quirky and fun facts about Holmewood that you might not have previously known...
1. Now in its 10th year as a specialist autism school, the original site in Woodside Park (now the Lower School) has been known as ‘Holmewood School' since 1885, and during this time has been a day school, a kindergarten, a girls school, a boys prep school (including boarding!), a mixed primary and even an international school.
2. Holmewood's pupils are a multi-talented bunch, including a sea cadet; an experienced public speaker; an accomplished violinist; a Taekwondo black belt; a writer and contributor to an online motoring magazine, and an actor who once shared the stage with Sir Ian McKellen!
3. The new Upper School campus on Muswell Hill is home to a variety of visiting wildlife: as well as mischievous squirrels, it is proud host to pond dwellers including dragonflies, frogs, newts, pond skaters, and even offers a warm welcome to numerous local cats who stop by for a refreshing drink!
4. The Holmewood School has won not one, not two, but three tes Independent School Awards. In 2018 they brought home ‘Wellbeing initiative of the year’ and in 2019 scooped both ‘Special Needs Initiative of the Year’ and ‘Senior Leadership Team of the Year’. The judges said:
"Happiness and kindness pulse through the veins of this small school nestled in a quiet corner of North London where students are welcomed each day.. by happy and passionate staff."
5. The talents of The Holmewood School staff team aren't limited to the classroom! WIthin the ranks there is a qualified scuba diver, a Guinness World Records holder, a TV star, a goat whisperer and a social media influencer (well, her dog has 3.5k followers on Instagram at any rate!).
6. The Holmewood School is one of only 30 schools nationally to have been awarded the NAS Advanced Accredited Award; for showing a high level of consistency and quality, rooted in a specialist understanding of best practice in the field of autism. The visiting committee said:
"The committee was left in no doubt that the school achieves impressive outcomes for its students and has a considerable impact on the wellbeing and quality of life of these young autistic people as they progress through the school and transition to adulthood."
7. The Holmewood School students have cooked up over 120 recipes during Occupational Therapy activity within school including: chocolate fondants, sea bass and potato canapes, flatbread, Portuguese marble cake, chocolate courgette cake, matcha tea cake, veggie fritters, etc. The list goes on...
8. The Lower School at Woodside Park is listed in the Barnet Local Heritage List (2019) for its 'architectural interest significance'. The listing highlights the school’s ‘stone mullions’, ‘stone quoins’ and ‘decorative arts and crafts style white painted barge boards'
9. Over 110 brilliantly unique and talented students have been part of the Holmewood
journey since it was established in 2010. Students go on to achieve amazing things in many different walks of life. We are incredibly proud of each and every one.
10. With Christmas fast approaching, Holmewood's Headteacher Lisa Camilleri is speaking at the Living Autism - Autism and Festivities online conference on December 10th, where she'll be talking about how to help autistic children enjoy and manage festivals at home and at school.