Passing of Ruben Bousquet

It is with a heavy heart that I write to inform you that Bonus Pastor has been deeply saddened by news of the sudden and tragic death of one of our Year 10 students during the Easter holidays.

Ruben had an extreme allergic reaction and died soon after from anaphylactic shock. Ruben was a wonderful child who will be hugely missed by staff and students.

The school is working closely with support agencies including St Christopher’s Candle Bereavement Service (010 8768 3422). I have informed all the students of this sad news in school today and I know how difficult it has been for them.

We know that children deal with grief in many different ways, and that they will react differently over coming days and weeks.

It is important to give children time to ask questions, to express their feelings and to answer them as honestly as you can.

The school has been advised to keep routines as normal as possible while children come to terms with this sad news as children feel safer when their familiar routines are continued. Whilst we understand the impact this has on individual students, support is available in school and our mentors, Year Teams and House Teams will be on hand to support students as and when needed. The chapel will also be open during specific times to allow time and space for prayer and reflection.

As parents, I know you will want to provide as much support as possible for your child over coming days. Common reactions by children include not wanting to talk about it, getting angry or upset more easily, or finding it difficult to sleep or concentrate. We have reassured students in school today that these feeling are all completely normal and staff trained in supporting children to deal with loss and bereavement will continue to be in the school over coming days and weeks as required.

Talking to children about death can be very difficult. Our pastoral team will be happy to speak with you about any concerns you have, and to provide advice. Parents may also wish to contact St Christopher’s Candle Bereavement Service. Parents and children can also access emotional support through Kooth (an online counselling service, at Kooth.com) and from Childline (0800 1111).

This sad news has deeply affected the school community: we are a close and supportive school and I have asked students and staff to be sensitive and understanding towards each other, and particularly to those members of our school most affected.

Our thoughts are with the family at this difficult time and they will stay in our prayers. We will work with the family to remember and celebrate Ruben’s life at a later stage

It is very important that everyone remains as calm as possible during this very difficult time. This will help those who knew Ruben best to grieve.

Please do not hesitate to contact us should your child need further support.

God bless

Jonathan Ronan