Mr Bevis' Words Summer 8
Achievement - a triumph at the regional athletics and beyond, senior prefects announced and Year 10 see Sixth Form life.
School summer terms are often focussed on achievement - end of year exams, GCSEs, athletics competitions, academic awards......... et al. With exam grade cards coming home on Friday it seemed an opportune time to reflect in assembly on the nature of achievement. We considered was it about winning, gaining an exam grade, or reaching the top? Whilst it was clear that that could represent an achievement it may not. Similarly with the some of the more bizarre ‘world records’ in the famous Guinness Book - for example was having the longest fingernails really an achievement! After analysing most of the dictionary definitions we concluded that it had to involve effort, striving, determination as the means to succeeding or reaching an objective.
So when your daughter brings home that grade card (limited to exam outcomes only) please focus on how they have tried and strived rather than just grade outcomes.
It was a delight however to announce that we had an amazing set of results at the London West ISA Athletics where both Senior Girls and Junior Girls won their sections and we were therefore overall winners against 27 other schools. We were so proud that all that effort and striving after school has lead to such a fantastic outcome. On top of that we achieved two 1sts and a 3rd place at the Berkshire County Athletics, with both of our winners gaining the qualification for English School Athletic Association Track & Field Championships - the blue ribbon event or school athletes. Our two stars are Robyn Watkins, competing in the Under 17 800m and Rachel Okoro in the Under 15 Long Jump (whilst only an Under 14. The Championships take place 6/7 July at the Alexander Stadium in Birmingham.
At not such a prestigious level but still requiring effort in preparation and the willingness to give it a go were our teams in the Geography Association Worldwise Quiz competition last Wednesday. Hosted by our own geography department we entertained teams for other schools in what was a wide ranging, and very demanding set of questions and tasks. Being asked to be one of the scorer/]udges allowed me to resurrect my geography teacher credentials... and then I realised how much I may have forgotten - fortunately I had a mark scheme! We gained a very creditable 3rd and 6th place... with our senior boys team taking 2nd place by a mere 5 points (much gnashing of teeth).
Monday next week we welcome all of our next year’s Year 7s, both from our own Junior School and many others. Our induction evening is their first step in learning about life in the Senior Girls, making friends, and meeting their tutor and their mentoring prefects. We have now announced to the school the rest of our prefectorial appointments - House Captains and deputies, Sports Captain and vice captain, and a host of others. We will be awarding their badges next week and I shall be writing formally to parents with the good news. We have an expectation that all of our senior pupils act as role models, and even those that have yet to achieve a specific role have the opportunity to strive towards one over the next few months.
Year 10s will also be busy next Wednesday morning when they are invited to join the Sixth Form team for the morning to gain an early insight to life in Claires Court Sixth Form. As we hope to demonstrate being one of the top 100 schools in the country for added value does not mean that Claires Court Sixth form is an academic treadmill.
I wish all the Year 10 Duke of Edinburgh expeditioners the best of luck for this weekend - it is certainly going to be a warm one! They have had all the necessary instruction about how to manage themselves to avoid heat exhaustion so there should be no problem.
And my final plea - it is PTA Summer Fete on the 24 June and I hope you are intending to attend, and that you have also ordered your tickets for our Senior Girls Theatre and Dining experience!
"It always seems impossible until it’s done." – Nelson Mandela
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