Last week, The Totteridge Academy welcomed students, staff, parents and special guests to celebrate the very best school achievements of the past year in its annual ‘Evening of Excellence’.
Over 300 guests gathered in the school hall for the special ceremony which celebrated student achievements, including academic attainment, effort in lessons, participation in the school community and demonstration of school values. There was also recognition for the contributions of staff towards academic learning and overall student development.
The guests were welcomed with food prepared by students involved in the academy’s ‘Let’s Get Cooking’ extracurricular club, and special musical performances from vocalist Kyryl Shishkin and pianist Mya Hughes were interspersed throughout the ceremony.
The evening began with an opening address from guest speaker Dan Jones, the highly esteemed author and historian, who visited the school last year for World Book Day. In his speech he explored the etymology of ‘excellence’ and asked the audience to consider the range of qualities that the word encompasses – which the academy honoured through an array of prizes.
Speaking at the event, Dan Jones said:
“What an honour to be here again and for such a special occasion. The school is an absolute credit to the students and staff who make it the unique and fantastic place that it is.”
One-by-one students took to the stage to receive their hard-earned awards, met by a round of applause from the audience. Jon Coles, Chief Executive of United Learning, the group of schools The Totteridge Academy is part of, presented several prestigious Group awards. Two former students were re-awarded the Best in Everyone Award for outstanding effort and attainment in English and Maths and the Student Quad Redevelopment Committee, supported by Ms Pretsell, were awarded the ‘Framework for Excellence’ Award. Mr Knott also received a special mention for his National Teaching Award achieved earlier this term.
Jon Coles was joined at the event by Dame Sally Coates, Director of Secondary Academies at United Learning, both of whom praised students and staff for their enthusiasm and great academic progress.
Chris Fairbairn, Principal of The Totteridge Academy, said:
“It has been fantastic to celebrate the successes of our students and staff through our ‘Evening of Excellence’. Not only do our prizes honour academic achievement but they also recognise the wider attributes and values we want to instil in our students as part of an Education with Character. This includes kindness, resilience, effort, and the importance of caring for others within the school and local community. I am very proud of all of our students who are thoroughly deserving of their accolades.”
One student, who won the Marcia Griffith Award for Resilience, said:
“I am so happy – lots of my family have come to support me and watch me receive my award. It has been one of the best nights of my life!”