To mark the end of the academic year, the College Reflections Service was held at the Dome in Worthing for over 500 students, staff, governors and members of the wider community who have enjoyed working with the Sixth Form College. The red carpet was rolled out in true Oscar style as guests arrived at this splendid Art Deco location.
The service started with Mr Nick Wergan, Head teacher, who spoke with pride of the effective ways in which students have embraced character-building opportunities over the last year saying: “Yet again our students’ achievements, commitment and strength of character were inspirational. We wish them every success in their summer exams and know their resilience and zest will support them in achieving their full potential. I am very proud of our students, and thank our staff for the dedicated support they have given them.”
Awards were revealed from golden envelopes with many of the prizes in the form of books, entitled ‘Greatest Inspirational Quotes’ by Dr J Ticho.
Zest – In approaching life with excitement and energy, the creative talents of students were marked with presentation of the Paul Holt Memorial for Sculpture to Lucia Dominguin Dominguez and the Weaver Musical Advancement Award to James Palmer.
Lucia Dominguin Dominguez
Resilience Award - For adapting well in the face of adversity, trauma, threats or significant stress: Outset Community Volunteering; students who have volunteered for 20 hours or more received certificates. This included, volunteering in local hospitals, charity shops, clubs for those with disabilities and local conservation projects. A special award went to Georgina Bettinson for her volunteering work of over 100 hours for Dingemans and Croft Meadows Care Homes for the elderly. John Stevenson, Governor and representative from the Millennium Trust, presented Year 12 students Amy Haeffner, Anastasia McIver and Cheyenne Derwin (as joint recipients of the Millennium Trust Award) £300 for their formidable work as a triumvirate in setting up and leading the College Equalities Committee .This dynamic group meets weekly with up to 50 Y12 attendees. The students have led the agenda-setting, with a range of students preparing informed presentations and chairing discussions embodying a breadth of equalities issues with time built in for reflection.
Optimism Awards - Prize-winners in this category epitomised the belief that effort will improve others’ future with team commendations and Millennium Trust donations to further their work made to the Y12 Peer Listeners, Paired Readers and Literacy Ambassadors. Rebecca Darling and Toju Bello were rewarded for their exemplary commitment and care in helping younger learners overcome their literacy difficulties. Mr Martin Leigh-Pollitt from Steyning First Responders was delighted to present certificates to 20 Y13 students who have trained to use the community defibrillator which has been newly installed at the school. The overall Optimism Award was given to Eloise Reader for her bravery in administering emergency first aid in the most challenging of circumstances.
Team Working Awards - Mr L Talbot, Director of Sport, reviewed the sporting year with the Football, Rugby, Basketball, Dance and Netball Teams. Individual awards were made; Gary Reeve Memorial Cup to Yvan Godby and the Tim Roberts Memorial Cup to Millie Webb. The football and rugby teams award were commended as much for their commitment off the field as on the field including their rendition of ‘Street Style’ in pink tutus in aid of Breast Cancer Awareness Month and the donation of their legs for waxing as part of our Red Nose day fund raising.
Grit Awards - By title perhaps not the most glamorous of accolades but these went to students who clearly demonstrated the merit in finishing what one starts; completing something despite obstacles; a combination of persistence and resilience. Mr A Firth and Mr A Smith from the local Rotarians of Storrington and Pulborough and the Steyning and Henfield branches gave certificates to the four students they sponsored to attend the Rotary Youth Leader Awards scheme: Sophie Crossfield, George Dixon, Edward Simpkin and Samuel Welby. This year members of the Boarding and Day College community formed a Rotary Interact Group which was chartered in March 2015 under the superb leadership of their elected President, Johanne Toth Mouritzen, who was praised for the legacy she now leaves for those who follow. Special congratulations and overall Grit Awards went to Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award students Jamie Luxford and Ruth Allam with a further 10 students being applauded for completing the qualification as they now await their visit to Buckingham Palace to receive their Gold Awards.
Curiosity Awards - For taking an interest in experiences for their own sake and finding things fascinating, participants in the National Maths Challenge were celebrated, with an overall award made to Heather Webster for outstanding effort and commitment to the International Baccalaureate Programme.
Open Mindedness Awards - For examining things from all sides and not jumping to conclusions, presented to Henry Hayward, stalwart of the Debating Society, and William Sproxton-Miller for his notable contribution as a member of the Wilton Park Reading Party.
Caring Award - Steyning Grammar School Sixth Form College celebrated a record charity fund raising year with over £13,500 raised for their chosen charities, including: The NSPCC, Comic Relief, Macmillan Cancer Trust, Mary How Trust, Malawi School Appeal and Cancer Research UK. Cheques were presented by the Head Boy and Head Girl and their Deputies. This year’s Caring Award went unanimously to Hester Toovey in recognition of her outstanding drive, kindness and concern for improving the lives of others, including donating her hair for the creation of wigs for children undergoing cancer treatments.
Leadership Awards - Current Head Boy Ross Cusdin, Head Girl Olivia Cleary, Deputy Head Girl Isabelle Green, Deputy Head Boys Christopher Nixon and William Carey, Boarding Head Boy Raymond Njoku and Boarding Head Girl Anna Donovan passed over the leadership baton to newly elected student officers for 2015/16: Head Boy Samuel Welby, Deputy Head Boy Henry Hayward, Head Girl Olivia Francis and Deputy Head Girl Sophie Crossfield, Boarding Head Boy Nathan Chesney and Boarding Head Girl Vivienne Onamusi.
Current & Newly Elected Student Leadership Team
Lifetime Achievement Award - Head teacher Mr Nick Wergan, was proud to dedicate this highest honour of sustained excellence to William Carey for his modesty in letting his performances in the lead roles in School Productions for the last four years speak for themselves. Destined for a prestigious Drama School place and glittering future career, the audience were once again enthralled with excerpts from some of his finest moments on stage.
A special SGS Blessing was given by School Chaplain, Revd Peter Butchers assisted by members of the College Christian Union, giving praise for all who belong to the ‘Steyning Family’ and for whom Steyning Grammar School holds a special place in their hearts.
Notable musical interludes included those by Steyning Has Talent winning vocalist 2014 Oliver de Savigny who performed his own song ‘Alright’ written for the occasion and soloist Molly Parker performing ‘Someone Else’s Story’ from Chess.
Mrs Sally Randall, Director of the Sixth Form College (Assistant Head), spoke of the College’s pride and admiration for the positive way in which students had demonstrated the words of Vicktor Franker, ‘The greatest human freedom is the freedom to choose one’s attitude’. She referred to the teachings of Mahatma Ghandi many of which remain as potent today as when he first made them; ’The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others’. Steyning Grammar school leavers will step confidently into the next phase of their lives.
About Steyning Grammar School:
A thriving comprehensive day and boarding school for students ages 11-19 set in the beautiful countryside of the South Downs, with close links to Brighton and the South Coast. The school has an intake in Year 7 and 9 and a successful Sixth Form College, offering both A Levels and the International Baccalaureate. An OfSTED ‘good with outstanding features’, students are extremely keen to learn and this is reflected in good examination results.
Steyning Grammar School has had the proud tradition of boarding provision since 1614. It boasts some of the finest and most modern facilities of any state or private boarding school. Following a three day inspection by Ofsted in October 2012, SGS Boarding was once again judged as 'Outstanding'. Very few schools achieve such a judgement and SGS Boarding is the first Outstanding State Boarding School in the country to achieve this grade under the new inspection framework. The inspection report reinforces the popularity of Steyning Grammar School as demand from the UK, as well as overseas, continues to rise. The education is free to parents and families with just the very modest boarding costs to cover.
Full details can be found on the school’s website www.sgs.uk.net
Steyning Grammar School will be celebrating 400 years of excellence during the academic year 2014, visit our website http://www.sgs.uk.net/SGS-400 for more details or to register your interest in the events.