On Wednesday 26th September the rector, Mr Derrick Hannan, gave one of the keynote speeches at the National Nurture Group Network Conference at the Holiday Inn in Glasgow. He was joined by five 2nd and 3rd year pupils, accompanied by nurture group staff Mrs Jeffrey and Mrs Neilson. They helped to run workshops showing delegates how nurture groups work in Braidhurst. While delegates very much enjoyed Mr Hannan’s lively presentation on Braidhurst – a Nurturing School, many of those attending said that the young people “stole the show” as they demonstrated activities and talked confidently with many of the teachers and other professionals attending. They were a credit to the school and a marvellous advert for Braidhurst’s innovative nurture groups.
As an Adistar ambassador, Braidhurst High pupil Connor Gray’s goal was to promote and live out the Olympic and Paralympic values as an inspirational figure for other young people as well as adults. The values were determination, equality, inspiration, excellence, courage, respect and friendship. Promoting these values allowed him to use them in his own performance and participation in sport. In school Connor helped organise a rugby club for S1-3 which will begin this term, which will hopefully catch the eye of the lower school and grow as the year goes on. There are a range of sports which Connor had to promote such as Badminton, Basketball, Volleyball, Trampolining, Fitness, Rugby, Football, Hockey, Boxing including every Olympic sport.
As an ambassador Connor was also involved in the Olympic torch relay. He helped primary school spectators to have the best view as the torch went past. It was a great day and an event he will remember for the rest fo his life. Another Olympic events Connor attended were the France vs USA and Columbia vs North Korea women’s football matches at Hampden. Being a part of the Olympics and having influenced young people to get involved has given Connor great experience and has been a wonderful opportunity for him. Connor is honoured to have had this opportunity to get involved with sports and he hopes to get even more people participating and taking an interest in sport as the Commonwealth Games 2014 in Glasgow draws near. He also hopes to become more involved with sports activities within schools and in the local communities.
Megan Rooney (5M) and Ross Grant (6L) joined 200 young people from central Scotland in a History lesson they will never forget. The senior pupils have returned from an emotional pilgrimage to the infamous Nazi death camps in Auschwitz, Poland as part of the Lessons from Auschwitz project led by the Holocaust Educational Trust.
Prior to their visit, Megan and Ross took part in an Orientation Seminar for the once in a lifetime opportunity to hear the incredible story of a Holocaust survivor first hand. Eva Clarke shared the story of her mother, an inmate and survivor of the Nazi death camps and of her own story of fate and good fortune to have been one of only a few babies to survive being born in a concentration camp. The heart-touching story evoked an emotional response from the audience and added a personal perspective to the events and atrocities of the Holocaust the pupils had previously studied from textbooks, films and photographs.
On arriving in Poland, Megan and Ross explored the camps and prison cells at Auschwitz I which have now been dedicated to a museum housing the evidence of the atrocities. This includes a display of human hair, spectacles, luggage and prosthetic limbs to name but a few. The visit inside the gas chamber and the nearby crematorium, offered a chance to reflect on the terror felt by the inmates who met their untimely and inhumane end in the “showers of death”. The scale of the exhibits merely touches upon the scale of the mass murder experienced by the inmates in Auschwitz alone, not to mention the other Nazi death camps elsewhere in Poland.
The tour continued in the afternoon to Auschwitz- Birkenau. The sight alone of the railway tracks leading into “the gates of hell” sparked an emotional response from many students. Megan and Ross walked along the infamous railway tracks which brought many innocent men, women and children to their fate. During World War Two over one million people were killed in Auschwitz- Birkenau including Jews, political prisoners, and Soviet prisoners of war. The calm but vivid imagery of the tour guide brought the fear and terror of the inmates to life in a haunting thought of the millions who had passed through the gates of Auschwitz- Birkenau under the chilling and much feared presence of the Nazi guards. The day ended with a moment of reflection with a short service of memorial and a candle lighting ceremony led by Rabbi Barry Marcus. Megan and Ross agreed that this was an appropriate and touching end to their visit.
All of the young people who took part in the Lessons from Auschwitz programme arrived with a textbook understanding of the Holocaust and what happened in the camps. They have now witnessed first-hand the extremes that humanity can sink to under the hands of a powerful and evil regime. Megan and Ross will now work in school as Ambassadors for the Holocaust Educational Trust and will complete a Next Steps Project in which they pass on the lessons they have learned from their involvement in the programme. This will include a focus on a presentation and lesson delivered to lower school pupils focussing on the theme of prejudice, racism and tolerance. The experience is sure to be one lesson from history that Megan and Ross will never forget.
Last Wednesday saw the first eagerly anticipated inter house event and with new house captains selected, each house was keen to get off to a promising start in this year’s competition. The fun run, which is a whole school event, had even more significance that it is worth triple points. The sun was shining as everyone took to the playing fields of the event. There were special appearances on the day from Elvis, Wonder Woman and many other pupils who hade made that extra bit of effort and dressed up for the occasion. As the competition got underway pupils were aiming to put in a good amount of laps to help build their house points total. Pupils were joined by enthusiastic members of staff, including Mr Hannan, who donned another very interesting competition: who would achieve the most laps – a pupil or a teacher? After 30 minutes of continuous running, jogging and walking, where pupils and staff completed a total of 5433 laps and a tremendous 1100 miles. The event was finished and all that was left was to gather in the scores and tally them up to see what house would claim the first inter house victory of 2012-2013. The final results were:
Well done to all the pupils and staff who took part and made this fantastic event. We look forward to the next inter house event in the next few weeks which will be potted sports and football.
Braidhurst High School recently appointed their school captains for academic year 2012-2013. The role of School Captain is a high-profile and prestigious one amongst the senior student body, performing a range of important functions through the academic session. Duties and responsibilities accompanying this role include being a positive role model in the school and community, representing Braidhurst HS at public events, attending and organising inter house and whole school events, organising the Senior Prom and representing the ‘pupil voice’ within the school.
Braidhurst expects their captains to be inspirational to other students with a clear commitment to the ethos and values of Braidhurst High School. The captains have to lead by example with energy, enthusiasm and a visible pride in our school. This is a post which challenges them to show initiative, achieve goals, and become more confident in how they communicate and interact with people.
Mr Gordon Craig the Scottish FA Coach in charge of the newly established elite performance school of football has expressed his delight at the skill and commitment shown by the group of players he has selected to work with in the school. Sessions take place on the new Astroturf each morning starting at 8.30 am.
ALTON TOWERS: Pupil Support Staff are busy organising the annual trip to Alton towers open to all year groups. They have almost four hundred pupils taking part for the event scheduled for Friday 14th September leaving the school at 5 am. Staff have enthusiastically volunteered for the trip and are very much looking forward to the day.
LONDON TRIP: A meeting has been arranged for Wednesday 12th September to parents of pupils taking part in the forthcoming trip to London. The trip will take place over the September weekend.