- Written by Mr D Bennett
Yr 10 students studying BTEC Music enjoyed an evening of culture at The Marlowe Theatre as they watched The Philharmonia Orchestra perform Coplands ‘Fanfare for the Common Man’, Korngolds ‘Violin Concerto’ featuring Elena Urioste who was staggeringly brilliant, and Dvoraks ‘Symphony No.9 from the New World’. This not only provided a wonderful evenings entertainment (followed by a tasty stop off at KFC on the way home) but also gave the students an opportunity to experience first-hand a very different music genre, consider the set up of a music venue for such a gig and witness how performers develop stage presence in order to engage with their audience — which all forms part of their KS4 studies. It was a fabulous night with many of the students pleasantly surprised as to how much they enjoyed the experience of seeing a full orchestra playing pieces of music they vaguely recognised in places, and also great to hear some wonderful conversations between our students and some much older members of the public sitting around us quite intrigued at such a young group attending such a concert — exemplary ambassadors for the school.
Calum Simpson who finished his studies with us at the end of last year recently attended the PixL Schools’ celebration event, held at Westminster Central Hall. The event was attended by over 100 Year 11 pupils from across the country to receive awards, after nomination for their achievements in their GCSE examinations, by their schools.
Calum was nominated by King Ethelbert School for the Stephen Bell Special Award for Determination.
Calum is one of the hardest working, most determined students we have ever had at King Ethelbert School. Like the majority of us, he didn’t always find learning easy and he had to study hard but he consistently achieved the highest effort grades in our Year 11 data drops throughout the year and this led to him making the most progress of any student in his year group.
Sadly, Calum had to deal with some immense personal tragedy during his GCSE exams, but he never mentioned this in school and his quietly determined attitude did not waver. He still attended all of his exams without fuss or, indeed, any indication at all of what he was going through.
His utter stoicism and grit is an example to us all and we are very proud of him. Calum went on to achieve a fine set of GCSE results that have seen him move on to Canterbury College to study Public Services progressing towards entering service with the Royal Navy.
Mr Franks (Calum’s Tutor) attended the celebration event along with Calum’s mum and Granddad.
It was truly amazing to see Calum on that stage amongst all the other successes and talents that were celebrating their success. Calum has come a long way in his 5 years with us at King Ethelbert School, a true gentleman in the making, with remarkable courage and character. He and his family should be very proud of this young man.