March 29, 2021

Spring Term Final Collect

The Spring Term drew to a close in the traditional way on Friday 26th March with Final Collect recognising the recent achievements of students and the School. From the MMC Upper Foyer, Deputy Head and Compère, Eddie Falshaw, addressed attendees in their Tutor group classrooms, as has been customary for the past year in line with social distancing measures.

Isaac Walker, DofE and Outdoor Education Manager, started proceedings by announcing that a record-breaking 44 students have this year signed up to the celebrated youth award and are beginning their Bronze journey. Three students across Years 9 and 10 were awarded their certificates of achievement whilst Daniel in the Upper Sixth was applauded for completing his Gold Award.

Zoe Macpherson, PE and Games Teacher, then congratulated the Year 11 students that have gained their Sports Leadership Level 2 Awards, describing them as ‘dedicated’ and ‘motivated’ throughout their course.

There was plenty to be celebrated in STEAM with Ivy and Ryan in Year 9 and Micah in Year 11 taking part in the prestigious Grey and Pink Kangaroos held by the UK Maths Trust, after attaining outstanding results in the Intermediate Maths Challenge for Years 9 to 11. Five other students also achieved Silver certificates.

In Year 9, weekly Project STEAM sessions have also aided students in achieving their CREST Awards, a scheme from the British Science Association ‘that inspires young people to think and behave like scientists and engineers’.

Leighton Park’s very first virtual outreach event was reflected on by Mark Budge, Maths Teacher and STEAM Co-Ordinator. Live throughout British Science Week, students and teachers delivered a number of successful interactive sessions for local primary schools.

After interacting with our CTECH Sports students, Philly Hatton-Evans, Year 6 teacher at Waverley School enthused “I wanted to say how impressive the Sixth Form pupils were just now on the live Q and A session. They spoke with great knowledge and confidence of their subject and the children here were completely gripped by the session. It is clear that they love their subject and the school.”

In his sports review Jez Belas, Director of Sport, PE and Wellness, reflected on the wealth of positive activity the department has seen over lockdown, with individuals taking up new fitness journeys as well as rediscovering old past times. Jez continued to applaud the student led initiative ‘LP High Five week’ in association with Young Minds, which encouraged people to consider how getting outdoors, running or walking, can help with mental health.

Securing sought after points for the Richard Coleman Shield, School House and Rowntree came out on top in the House CrossFit Challenge, comprised of three workouts over three weeks. Whilst Bournville and Field House achieved first place for collectively logging the most miles walked or run in the month of March. Special mentions were given to flying Fryer, Livi, who racked up a total of 88 miles and Mia in the Upper Sixth who ran the equivalent of almost eight marathons. The Director of Sport spoke with pride about the lineage of strong female endurance athletes coming through the School.

House matches on the Park have also taken place this term with Bournville winning Fryer netball and Rowntree taking the lead in touch rugby. The Juniors brought impressive energy to their football match as won by School House, who last secured the trophy individually in 1997. School House was also delighted achieve first place in netball for the third consecutive year.

Last but by no means least for the tournaments, Jakki Marr, Field Housemistress, took home the win for the Housemaster’s Ashes, achieving an impressive 92 seconds in the Yoga Ball Rodeo. Looking forward to the prospects of the Summer Term, Jez finished by launching ‘Fun in the Sun’ an upcoming PE, Sport and Wellness initiative for the whole school.

A high attainment of merit certificates proved testament to the learning that has happened throughout lockdown. Whilst teachers have navigated both classroom and guided distance learning, (at the end of this term often running simultaneously), students have continued to demonstrate spirit and enthusiasm. 311 students were awarded merit certificates, four of these being of platinum level with 100+ merits.

Natasha Coccia, Deputy Head: Co-Curricular and Outreach, spoke about the outstanding pursuits happening within hobbies and announced the winners of the Sissons Cup as Field House.

“The Sissons cup is part of our co-curricular heritage, since 1890 we have had a commitment to hobbies and leisure pursuits and experiential learning at Leighton Park. It’s all part of the unique character education you get when you immerse yourself and become a Leightonian.” commented Natasha.

She continued “Thank you to those of you who have fully participated in our co-curricular programme this term, you’ve made the most of the opportunities that have been given to you, and because of that we have seen a record number of co-curricular merits awarded for a Spring Term at Leighton Park – 1143 merits!”

Before announcing the winners of the Merit Cup as Bournville and Field House, Eddie reflected on the lessons learnt this past year “…there will come a time when we will look back on everything we’ve experienced across the last 12 months and think to ourselves ‘yes I lived through that, yes I learnt a tremendous amount from that experience’, and from that we will take great heart and we will take great hope.”

Highlighting the strengths of the music department and the talents of our students, there were performances from Joe in the Upper Sixth on piano, recent ISA Musical Theatre competition winner, Vivian in Year 10, singing ‘She Used to be Mine’ from musical, Waitress, and recent Sutton Music Festival winner, Francesco in Year 9 on violin.

In his speech, Matthew Judd, Head, acknowledged the people behind the School’s recent ISA Outstanding Community Involvement award and ended on the note “Together we have collectively I think, made ourselves stronger. We’ve been resilient, we’ve been purposeful and I think we can take stock and give ourselves the comfort that the worst is behind us… good things are really to come!”

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