AN ANDOVER school has done its best to maintain one of the highlights of the school year by hosting an online sports day.

Anton Sports Day Live, hosted by Anton Junior School, was staged last Thursday afternoon to bring pupils back together and give them a chance to see one another – retaining some semblance of normality amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Children were able to get involved both from home and at school, with five activities carefully created so that participants could join in wherever they were.

At 1.15pm the action went live and the school’s socially-isolated ‘pods’ headed out to attempt the activities around the school grounds.

Meanwhile, assistant headteacher Mark Rist and teachers from each year group logged into Zoom to welcome children joining in from home.

And for those who were unable to join on the day, there was the option to complete their activities at a different time and send their scores and photos into Mark.

He told the Advertiser: “Since finishing the event, I have received a huge number of emails from parents grateful for the opportunity for their child to have a ‘normal’ school activity and to be able to see their friends.

“Others enjoyed the whole family joining in! Probably my favourite image from the children competing at home was of a current Year 6 pupil, who was competing with his two older sisters, both of whom are ex-pupils of the school, all in their house colours!

“It took a lot of planning and preparation but the reaction of the children seeing each other for the first time in months, and to have school feeling a little more like ‘normal’ again was worth every minute spent.

“I am extremely grateful to the staff at the school, the parents and most importantly the children for making this idea come to life and reminding us what can be achieved in the face of adversity.”

Headteacher Nikki Bennet added: “‘Thanks to the hard work and dedication of the staff here at Anton, the event was a huge success! I am a very proud Headteacher.”