On Wednesday 30 November, we held our GCSE awards and welcomed the ‘new’ Lower Sixths to school. The event was held in the Ruddock Performing Arts Centre and it was a chance to celebrate their outstanding results and to formally welcome the fifteen ‘new’ sixth formers who had joined the school after GSCE’s.
The afternoon began with a performance of Duo G-dur by Wenzel Pichl performed by Emmy (Lower Sixth) and Sharon (Upper Fifth), followed by Evening Prayer by E. Humperdinck performed by Rachel and Noor (both Lower Sixth).
The Principal Kirsty von Malaisé, gave an address, explaining that they are now the pupils that the Lower School look up to. Mrs von Malaisé challenged them to become leaders and to push their learning, whilst enjoying the adventure. She encouraged them to make memories and to make a difference.
We were also delighted to welcome back Old Edwardian and 2021 Creak Memorial Prize winner, Aliyah Begum, to present the awards. Aliyah closed the event with a speech to share her advice with the current lower sixth and her experiences and thoughts since leaving KEHS.
Aliyah began by talking about what she wished she had said to herself as a Lower Sixth. Her advice was to make the most of the time outside the classroom. She explained ‘it’s not the hours spent in the library that I remember, but the time that I spent with my friends going on a walk around the sports pitches outside, or on the school bus or train, or laughing in the common room.’ She went to on say that one of the biggest things that she had learned outside of the classroom was confidence. Explaining that she attended Spoken Word club, every Friday lunchtime from Thirds to Upper Sixth. She went on ‘I can’t quite overstate how much poetry, Jas and the Spoken Word club have shaped me as a person – from choosing to study English over maths, to the fact that I am able to be standing here speaking in front of you all.’
Another piece of advice Aliyah shared was to try new things and to be curious and to let yourself take the time to be curious. She concluded ‘pupils are so much more than their grades, it is one thing to get good grades, but it is another to be a happy, healthy, well-rounded person.’
Aliyah was thanked and presented with some flowers before guests were invited to gather for refreshments in the Ruddock Performing Arts Centre where girls, parents and teachers could enjoy talking to one another.
Good luck to the girls for their next couple of years, use this time to work hard but to be curious!
Photographs from the evening can be viewed here.