Trio achieve high finish at Rotary International Youth Speaks competition
9th May 2017

A trio of Rydal Penrhos pupils achieved a podium finish in the national finals of a prestigious public speaking competition.

Cerys Cuddihy, Kevin Farrell and Sydney Johnson, all Year 9 pupils at the school, competed against seven other groups from across the UK and Ireland in the Rotary International Youth Speaks National Finals, which were held in Telford on Saturday, May 6.

Headmaster Simon Smith, said: “There are few things more important in life than the ability to speak confidently, convincingly and clearly in public. Kevin, Cerys and Sydney have performed superbly in every stage of the competition but perhaps more importantly they are just as eloquent in and around the school on a daily basis.

“They really are role models to both our younger and older pupils on the importance and power of rhetoric. I thank, too, their supportive parents and the tremendous work of the staff who have coached them to such heights.”

The threesome, who qualified for the event after winning their local, regional and district heats in fine style, once again produced a phenomenal display on their chosen topic ‘Guilt – is it good or bad?’, to come away with second place for their efforts.

In addition, 14-year-old Cerys was selected as the Best Chairperson of any team in the competition.

Deputy Head Tim Cashell, added: “As expected, the standard was incredibly high with speeches addressing a diverse range of topics.

“The team kept their cool and once again delivered another exceptional speech, and we are extremely proud that they were recognised for all their hard work with second place.

“To reach the national finals was a remarkable achievement in itself, but for Sydney, Cerys and Kevin to perform as they did on such a big stage demonstrates incredible maturity and poise, and my thanks also go to the staff at Rydal Penrhos who worked tirelessly to prepare them for the event.”

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