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It’s Marks & Spencer for school Assembly video

Kensington Palace released a video clip today of the Duchess speaking with elementary school students. 

The Duchess will lead an online assembly for the Oak national Academy tomorrow (Thursday, June 18). more from Kensington Palace: 

Oak national Academy is an online classroom providing high-quality video lessons and free resources to parents and teachers. It was created in response to the lockdown, supporting teachers educating their pupils remotely, and since its launch has delivered over 12 million lessons to children and young people. Every Thursday morning, the academy, in collaboration with TES, hosts assemblies for students across the UK, allowing them to experience the normal routine of a school environment.

During the assembly, she will talk about kindness, and how important it is to the mental wellbeing of children. In the clip released today in advance of tomorrow’s event,  the Duchess references the topic and then asks, “Who wants to tell me what kindness means?”

You can hear the children answer in the clip. 

Video Player


The video was recorded last week and Kate’s theme for the address is based on a Mentally Healthy Schools platform. You may remember Kate launching that program in January 2018 during a visit to Roe green Junior School, a pilot school in the program.

The program provided a website designed to provide information and practical resources to help teachers and staff support students. It was developed in collaboration with Place2Be, Young Minds, and the Anna Freud Centre. The project encourages children to explore ways in which they can show kindness, and recognize the benefits of kindness to others. Below, the Duchess at that 2018 launch.

The Mentally healthy Schools site is now managed by the Anna Freud Centre.  Below, the Duchess addressing teachers, school administrators, officials, as well as other stakeholders at the launch.

More on what students will hear at tomorrow’s assembly via a Palace news release: 

During the assembly, The Duchess will say: “Talking to someone, whether it’s a friend, family member, or teacher, is something you can do to make yourself feel that little bit better. and you can also play your part in helping others to feel better too, whether offering a friendly ear, or helping someone in need. small acts of kindness can go such a long way. but as we help others, we mustn’t forget to nurture ourselves, by taking the time to focus on the things that make us feel happy too.”

Another view of the Duchess addressing students. 

Oak national Academy tweeted its delight at being part of the assembly. 

Also a component of the assembly: Kate’s Hold Still photo project.  during her talk, Kate joins a video call with students from Waterloo primary Academy in Blackpool. The students’ parents are essential workers taking part in frontline efforts to combat the pandemic. The children shared pictures they had taken and submitted to the Duchess’s Hold Still photography project; the photos were based around one of the central Hold Still themes, ‘Acts of Kindness.’

The students also talked with Kate about some of the ways they had been personally worked on spreading kindness in recent weeks. (For anyone thinking about entering, the deadline is 6pm local time tomorrow; see more info here.) 

Now for our look at what Kate wore in the new video. 

It looked like the Duchess was wearing a Marks and Spencer dress, the British retailer’s Printed Yoke Midi Waist dress ($69).

The fabric has a small cabbage print in shades of blue and ivory. Made of 100% viscose, the unlined dress is midi-length with a round neck, slightly puffed sleeves with a frill at the cuff, an elasticated waist, and a back button fastening.  here is a closer look at the fabric and sleeve detail.

Many thanks to The daily Mail’s Caroline Parr for her early ID of the print, and also to Natasha S. for her DM on Facebook about the dress, as well as Katie on Twitter.  Natasha recognized the piece right away because she had seen this promotional image of TV presenter Holly Willoughby in the piece.

Ms. Willoughby is a style ambassador for Marks and Spencer. You might recall seeing her conducting Kate’s ITV interview about the Hold Still photo project in early May, along with co-host Phillip Schofield.

Ms.Willoughby offers seasonal lists featuring Marks and Spencer fashion called, “Holly’s Must-Haves.”  

Today’s dress is also available in a leaf print (£15) and a plain ‘sunset’ color (£15).  The latter allows you to better see the detailing at the bodice with the yoke and gathers. 

There was also a top available in the print the top, but it appears to be sold out.

I wasn’t able to see what earrings the Duchess may have been wearing in the video. You can watch the entire video on the Oak national Academy website tomorrow at 11am local time, which is 6am on the east coast in the US.  


Also today, a quick fashion flashback, this one also going back eight years. 

On June 17, 2012, the Duchess spent time with children at Margaret McMillan house in Kent as part of a Widehorizons program exposing them to the outdoors as a way of developing teamwork skills and building self-esteem.

The students were part of an ARK (Absolute Return for Kids) endeavor; some had never been to a remote wilderness area like the one where they camped. In her story for The daily Mail, Rebecca English noted:

Zahid Shanvere, eight, made Kate roar with laughter as he held open the tent flap for her and said: ‘After you.’

‘What a gentleman,’ she said.

Kate was in casual separates for the morning’s excursion. 

Her vest was by really Wild clothing Company, the Nubuck Waistcoat (£495), seen most recently last October during the Pakistan tour. 

Beneath the vest, she wore the Burberry shirt first noted during a visit to Blachford Lake during the 2011 North American tour.

Here is a better look at the shirt. 

Her jeans and sweater were both by Zara and Kate also wore her trusty Le Chameau ‘Vierzonord‘ wellies ($239) seen on many occasions.
The Duchess wore her Kiki McDonough Grace earrings shown below as worn to another event.

We’ll leave you with a classic Kate funny face. 


Learn more about the Mentally healthy Schools program at the project site here 

Read about the Place2Be program at the organization’s website here; follow the Facebook page here, the charity’s Twitter feed is here

The Young Minds website is here; the charity’s Facebook page may be seen here; its Twitter feed is here  

Visit the Anna Freud Centre website here, view its Facebook page here, the Instagram feed here, or follow the group on Twitter here

The daily Mirror’s story is here; The daily Mail’s piece is here; 


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