Clyst Vale’s Annual Awards are an esoteric collection which have evolved over the years and reflect the College’s ethos and values surprisingly well. It’s one of my personal highlights of the year to present them at the last whole-College assembly of the year, held last Friday.
The Spirit of Devon Award for Progress in Years 7 – 9 was awarded to Dan Horn. Dan is the student who has demonstrated most progress from his starting point in Year 7 almost three years ago; this is determined from students’ Progress Reports over three years, checked against general records and with a little bit of professional judgement ! So, it is a recognition of a student who has shown a great attitude to learning, being organised, working hard, and doing their best.
The Pope’s Challice for Performing Arts was awarded to India Williams, and anyone who has followed performing arts at CVCC will realise she is a worthy recipient beyond any doubt. Making her debut as Little Cosette in Les Mis when still in primary school, India has appeared in all of the College’s productions, with leading roles in many of them (Elle in Legally Blonde, Bonnie in Bonnie & Clyde). Her talent is clear: grade 8 music, grade 9 Drama, Advanced 1 in Tap and Ballet, predicted Distinction* in BTec Performing Arts. However, it’s India’s contribution and support for others which is being recognised. She choreographed many of the annual productions, including the whole of Annie. She has supported dozens of nervous performers over the years, most recently at the Talent Show and Festival on the Field. Next year India has won a place at Guildford School of Acting with intense competition for the 20 places available.
The Ostler Award for Outstanding Personal Achievement has been awarded to Sam Mills (year 12). This is the second year Sam has won it, but in fairness his achievements in athletics continue to impress everyone (and he is such a pleasant, popular, grounded young man !). He is the national cross-country champion for his age-group, as well as the winner of the English Schools’ 800m. If you’re not familiar with running, this is quite a range of events: long-distance running and a (extended) sprint.
The Tolman May “Strive and Achieve” Cup. This award is for a student who has overcome significant personal challenges, but at the same time has remained positive, popular, and in many respects a role model for others. Harrison James in Year 10 is undergoing continual surgeries on his legs, and this school year has had five major operations. He has had periods studying remotely at home, but has been extremely determined about getting back to school. Due to his wheelchair and surgical frames being so “visible”, Harrison is known by almost everyone, and fits the description of positive, popular and being a role model.
The Rights Respecting School Shield is awarded to a student who has made a difference by contributing extensively to RRS. This year’s winner is Mike Rothery (Year 11). Mike was elected a Head Student, meaning he represented student voice and contributed to some key decisions. Further, he was heavily involved in the College’s fund-raising activities for UNICEF/Ukraine, especially in organising and coordinating the Talent Show which raised hundreds of pounds. While the money raised and its destination was of course most important, the fund-raising campaign itself is an important criterion for the RRS Gold Award.
The Caring Cup was awarded to Bracken Snell (Year 11). Bracken is a student who gets on with everyone, and is naturally supportive towards other people. She was Deputy Head Student, representing others’ views, engaged with fund-raising for UNICEF, and was also voted Prom Queen ! Bracken is also a young carer, with considerable responsibilities at home, has always managed this very successfully, has been an amazing student, and thoroughly deserves her award.