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 enthusiasm about why character matters using the astonishing motivation of British Astronaut Tim Peake who demonstrates huge strength of character as he embraces every opportunity whilst resident on the International Space Station. As summed up by Tim Peake in his tweet in Jan 16, “Character is important-a CV may get you the interview, but character will get you the job”. Mr Wergan wished College learners every success in their summer exams in the secure knowledge that 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.”
Many of the awards were 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 to Aswin Malladi and the Weaver Musical Advancement Award to George Comber. The overall Zest Award went to a student who has shown that he is not only a great artist but also a risk taker, change agent and entrepreneur Connor Nevin.
Curiosity Award-This was made in recognition of those who explore a wide range of information when trying to draw a conclusion including information that challenges our own initial assumptions. Ilja Thiemrodt received this award for examining things from all sides and not jumping to conclusions, and for his notable contribution as a member of the Wilton Park Reading Party.
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 a commendation to Ashleigh Liddell for her volunteering as a Peer Reader and Literacy Ambassador who has worked with Y7 and 8 pupils. An amazing coach; she is dedicated, truly cares about her reader and shows an enthusiasm which is needed to motivate reluctant pupils. The work of Y12 Peer Listeners was also applauded. This year for the first time we have extended the College’s participation in national, prestigious, academic challenges: British Physics Olympiad, International Chemistry Olympiad and Senior Maths Challenge. It is both brave and optimistic to do this; results are out there for all to see. Awards went to the highest scorers in each competition; Adam Dillamore, Calum White and Tobias Heaver.
Team Working Awards - Mr Luke Talbot, Director of Sport, reviewed the sporting year with the Football, Rugby, Basketball, Hockey, Dance and Netball Teams. Individual awards were made; Gary Reeve Memorial Cup to Ian Bond and the Tim Roberts Memorial Cup to Georgina Welch.
Over the Easter holidays, the Rotary Clubs of Storrington, Steyning and Henfield sponsored four of our Y12 students to attend a week’s residential course for the Rotary Youth Leader award. All four learnt a lot about themselves, made strong friendships and now certainly appreciate the value of teamwork. Rotarian representative, Mr Peter Firth presented certificates to Thomas Carey, Alex Davis, Keziah Blackmore Saunders and Hannah Morris.
Young Enterprise companies, Unite and Colour In were identified as embodying team spirit with Sam Sutterlin in his role as Company Director taking a team working award for his leadership and loyalty to the group. College student led committees were recognised for their flair, followership and hard work, with overall team working awards going to the Newsletter Committee and Church Without Walls, founders, Nick van Pelt and Archie Croft.
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 from the local Rotarians of Steyning and Henfield branches gave certificates to the four students they sponsored to attend the Rotary Youth Leader Awards scheme: Thomas Carey, Keziah Blackmore Saunders and Hannah Morris. Special congratulations went to Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award students Megan Haigh, George Matthews, Isabella Wan Adnan and Ellie Tosey for completing the qualification as they now await their visit to Buckingham Palace to receive their Gold Awards.
In such a large Sixth Form College as Steyning it is inevitable that a few of our students will face adversity and personal struggles but despite tough times they will show grit and determination and continue to sparkle. Each year the Millennium Trust rewards one such person in Y12,confident in the knowledge that this recognition will enable them to continue to shine as they progress into their next year at Steyning. Chloe Slocombe was commended as a shining example of a student who shows pure determination and grit and a very worthy winner.
The overall Grit award recipient was Atticus Albright for his innovative fund raising event; Bug Appetite offered to us by the Environment Committee. In true “I’m a celebrity get me out of here” bush tucker trial, 10 sixth formers showed the most astonishing grit consuming appetizers of meal worm and small beasties before a main course which included scorpions, water bugs and tarantulas, raising over £500 to support rainforest conservation.
Self-Control Mindedness Award - For examining things from all sides and not jumping to conclusions, showing the capacity to regulate thoughts, feelings or behaviour when they conflict with valued goals, this award was presented to Hannah Randall, stalwart of the Y12 Debating Society.
Social Intelligence Awards- For an awareness of other people’s motives and feelings and using this understanding to navigate social situations appropriately: Outset Community Volunteering; students who have volunteered for over 150 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 Thomas Carey for his volunteering work of over 260 hours service by working with Fellows Drama Group supporting those with additional needs, volunteering at Steyning Primary School and in lower school English lessons. Mrs Nicky Mc Ivor from Steyning First Responders praised the large number of Y12 who had undertaker defibrillator training.
Caring Award - Steyning Grammar School Sixth Form College celebrated another record charity fund raising year with over £13,500 raised for their chosen charities, including: Cancer Research UK Kids and Children, Sports Relief, Macmillan Cancer Trust, Cancer Research UK, The Red Cross Nepal Disaster Fund and Christian Aid. Cheques were presented by the Head Boy and Head Girl and their Deputies.
Mrs Gue, Chair of Steyning Grammar School Governors was delighted to dedicate this highest honour to Ruby Taylor, a student who has shown endless concern for others less fortunate than herself, She has supported aspects of sixth form life by being an active member of the Student Liaison Committee and helping with fundraising events for McMillan and Red Nose Day with further charity work such as the Cancer Research's Race for Life and the St Barnabas Midnight Walk.
Leadership Awards - Current Head Boy Samuel Welby, Head Girl Olivia Francis, Deputy Head Girl Sophie Crossfield, Deputy Head Boy Henry Hayward, Boarding Head Boy Nathan Chesney and Boarding Head Girl Vivienne Onamusi passed over the leadership baton to newly elected student officers for 2016/17: Head Boy Oliver Bennett, Head Girl Emilia Cross, Deputy Head Boys Thomas Carey and Tolulope Ajadi and Deputy Head Girls Emilia Robinson and Tara Constantine, Boarding Head Boy Kenny Adebanjo, Boarding Head Girl Gladys Hui ,Deputy Head Girl of Boarding Ana Robinson and Deputy Head Boy of Boarding Ilja Thiemrodt.
Gratitude Award- The final award made was to Bryony Martin to whom we wished to give our sincere thanks to in making an exemplary contribution to the school community, giving outstanding service over a sustained period of time. She is a member of various committees including the Liaison, Equalities and Charity Committees taking a leading role in the production of the College newsletter and helping out at a dance club for younger students. This year she became the official school photographer and film-maker at events such as the Macmillan Coffee Morning, the Charity Induction Party, Pink Day and Jail Break. Destined for a prestigious university place and a career in Business she leaves a lasting legacy for the archives of SGS with her brilliant photographic record of the last year.
A special SGS Blessing was given by School Chaplain, Revd Peter Butchers assisted by members of the College Christian Union; Church Without Walls, giving praise for all who belong to the ‘Steyning Family’ and for whom Steyning Grammar School holds a special place in their hearts. All Y13 leavers’ were given books from the Chaplaincy Team,’ Beyond Beans on Toast’ with tips and reflective thoughts.
Notable musical interludes included those by “Steyning Has Talent” winning performer 2016, Luke Fuest who performed ‘Thunderstruck’, soloist Madi Feary performed ‘Quiet’ and Dominic Diez, and show cased his guitar composition, entitled, ‘The Dom Diez Expereince’.
Mrs Sally Randall, Director of the Sixth Form College (Assistant Head), asked students to give a thought on Sunday morning to Tim Peake who is running the London Marathon 26.2 mile course on a treadmill in a cramped room at the ISS that has no windows offering views on the world below. With no hot bath to ease his post-race muscles the astronaut will once again show how character matters as he took up the race moving at 17,500mph, 250 miles high above our heads.
For those leaving SGS this summer Mrs Randall stated that: ”we know that you are ready to step confidently into the next phase of your lives. Stay close, visit often; and keep our great school with you wherever you go. Steyning will always be part of your story, just as you will always be part of Steynings’ story”.
On the big screen students were thrilled to view their journey over the last year in our Reflections film so cleverly collated by Mr Tom Packer as a fitting finale.