Risedale School pupils celebrate a year of achievements

The pupils completed their Duke of Edinburgh Bronze Award.

Risedale School celebrated an evening of achievement at their annual presentation awards.

Joined by pupils past and present along with their families and members of the community, staff at Risedale School recognised the achievements of pupils at the school over the last 12 months.

Mr Yates, deputy head teacher at Risedale School, presented the awards alongside lead senior pupil ambassadors, Grace Baker and Archie Bassett.

Ahead of the awards, Mr Yates explained why events like this were an important part of school life.

“This evening is not just about the pupils who have got the top grade, it’s about looking at the pupils who have holistically worked hard or overcome adversity or a personal challenge and have achieved something that for them is outstanding.

“Without celebrations like this, they are the ones who can often go unnoticed.

“In doing this, we are trying to reward the silent majority of pupils who every day get it right, but don’t always get the recognition they deserve.”

The awards celebrate achievement across the curriculum with trophies for academic, sporting, and voluntary successes.

Among the attendees at the presentation evening were representatives from the Soroptimist Society who were there to see Ellie McGee awarded the Soroptimist Cup, an award that recognises pupils who volunteer or contribute towards school life.

Ellie McGee was awarded the Soroptimist Cup.

As pupil ambassador, Ellie helped pupils adjust to school life at Risedale, an important factor for the Garrison school where 70 per cent of the pupil population have one or more parents in the Armed Forces and have often experienced disruption in their education.

Now at Queen Elizabeth College in Darlington, Ellie reflected on her time at Risedale School and said the thing she missed the most were the teachers.

Rogan Glass, recipient of awards for both maths and most improved attitude to learning, a fellow alumnus of Risedale School, echoed Ellie’s words,

“I miss the relationships I have with the teachers, I looked forward to seeing them, particularly the History and German teachers.

“They explained things well whilst still keeping it entertaining and they helped a lot with getting the grades I needed to go to college.”

The impact of the teaching team at Risedale School was evident throughout the evening with many of the pupils attributing their success in their subject awards to their teachers.

Mollie Thirwell, recipient of multiple awards, animatedly shared how her geography teacher Mr Ford helped her find a passion for the subject.

Mollie Thirlwell.

“I took the subject for GCSE, if you had told me in Year 7 that I would have, I don’t think I would have believed you.

“I didn’t used to like Geography in primary and not even really in Year 7, but then I started warming up to it in Year 8 and then in Year 9 it got really good!”

Mollie added that Mr Ford’s creative approach to teaching the subject made it one of her favourites, something that extended beyond the classroom,

“I was doing learning outside of school because I liked the subject so much!”

Mollie was also one of ten pupils who were recognised for successfully completing their Duke of Edinburgh Bronze Award.

What started as a solo endeavour evolved into a true group effort as the pupils came together to support each other on the expedition element of their award,

“Everyone was motivating each other, we were singing to help keep us going,” said Mollie.

“When we got to the expedition we had to work as a team – if we didn’t work as a team I am pretty sure we wouldn’t have done it.”

The group now plans to work towards their silver award together as a team in a clear display of Risedale School’s pillars of aspiration, resilience, and kindness and empathy for others.

The guests at the presentation evening were also treated to musical performances by Katie Galloway on keyboard and Grace Baker on vocals with a stunning rendition of ‘On My Own’ from the musical Les Misérables.

The final awards of the evening were for outstanding academic achievement and were awarded to brothers, Jona and Foster Carter.

Both brothers were commended for their hard work and consistency across all of their subjects and were joined by their proud family on the evening to mark their success.

Risedale School is Ofsted rated Good and one of the leading secondary schools in the Catterick and Richmond area. The school welcomes pupils from Year 7 through to Year 11 with a  varied curriculum that is founded on 5 pillars that help foster resilience, curiosity and kindness, amongst the school’s family of learners. Admissions information and further details on the school can be found on their website: https://www.risedale.org.uk