From Mr Hillier

The World Cup is looming. Although, as a massive fan of cricket as well as football, I would also point out that the World Cup (T20) is nearing it’s conclusion. What a final Sunday’s match in Melbourne between England and Pakistan, two fantastic teams, should be. I hope those watching will enjoy it, whichever team they are supporting.

Of course, it’s the mens’ football World Cup that is about to start. The hosting of this in Qatar is controversial and causes us some disquiet as a school which values equality, fairness and freedom. There are aspects of Qatar’s record of human rights that are problemetic to many people. The treatment of people relating to their gender or sexuality goes against the values we hold as a school. We are also acutely aware of the number of migrant worker deaths (estimated 7,000)  arising from the building of the stadia and recognise that these workers can be regarded as slaves with limited human rights.

Personally, even as a football obsessive, I will not be watching any of the matches myself and will not be engaging with the World Cup. I’m going to spend the duration visiting more non-league grounds and just looking forward to Forest being back in action. I’ve even got a trip lined up to go to Glasgow to watch Partick Thistle!

That said, we realise that the football is exciting for the children and that it would not be fair or appropriate to them if we were to completely ignore this World Cup. We will be taking a relatively low-key approach to it, but will recognise that it is going on as a sporting event.

The key date so far is Monday the 21st November, when England play Iran at 1pm. We will make provision for any child who wants to watch this match to do so, whilst also providing for those who don’t want to. Families/children can choose for themselves. What would help us greatly, to figure out how many rooms we set aside for this and how we manage it, is to know if you wish you child to opt in to watch the match. We have set up an online form for you to do this. It would be helpful if we could know by next Friday,  Remember, this is to opt in to watch the match. You only need to respond for your child to be allowed to watch the match.

 Erling Haaland is protesting…                                                                            …as are the German national team