Write For Rights studentsOur older students are the most fantastic role models for the younger members of our school community. They are mature, reflective and well-informed and their insights often help us as the adults who work with them at this very strange time to pause for ourselves and to reflect on what is important. They are doing a great deal even in our current context to develop themselves, support others and make a difference.

On Monday a group of Sixth Form students will participate in the Merchant Taylors’ Company Livery Awards Final. Essentially, this is a Dragons’ Den style competition in which the students form a start-up company and “pitch” it to investors. We will keep everyone updated as to how our team get on but they, and the staff involved, have worked tremendously hard in preparation for the competition. I would also like to particularly thank the business mentors who have given up a great deal of their own time to guide and advise the team and the Merchant Taylors’ Company for organising the competition and for their ongoing significant support for Wallingford School and the Merchant Taylors’ Oxfordshire Academy Trust.

During next week a group of Year 11 and Sixth Form students are encouraging their peers to become involved in Amnesty International’s Write for Rights campaign. They recognise that as individuals they can come together and be stronger as a collective in order to initiate change and that is very impressive. I am very proud to have young people who think this way in our school.

On Wednesday I met with our brilliant Year 13 Student Leadership Group and they are planning a Non-Uniform Day on Friday 11th December. It will be Christmas-themed – Christmas jumpers are optional and it will also include a Christmas Mask Competition – and there will be a voluntary contribution of £1 to benefit the Oxford-based charity Aspire which has a current campaign to support homeless people in Oxford over the Christmas and the New Year period. Further details about how the contributions will work to follow as we are not currently able to collect donations in the usual way.

All three of these things reflect the nature of our older students and are only a snapshot of some aspects of the life of the school in a typical week; well done to them all.