The Headmaster’s Blog

“Any worthwhile, let alone noteworthy achievement is inherently tough. It takes considerable effort, energy, and sacrifice – sacrifice – usually over a significant period of time – to make it happen. Otherwise, it’s not an achievement. That’s GRIT. Without it, nothing happens.” – Paul G. Stoltz

Dear Parents,

At the Senior School Prize Night in October, I spoke of our desire, at Huddersfield Grammar School, to identify and celebrate each individual success that we can, no matter how off-the-beaten track it might be. Over the school year thus far, we have publicly shone a spotlight on Stars of the Week in the Prep School, an international showjumper on Year 10, a group of drama students who are set to perform at the Lawrence Batley Theatre, our title-winning Year 9 footballers, a five-year old child who has completed his first music examination, as well as every child celebrating a birthday (through cake with the Headmaster).

To further embed our achievement culture, two new initiatives have recently been introduced to ensure that effort is acknowledged with as much fanfare as attainment and that individual pupils receive public acknowledgement for inspiring others in the school community in unique or unusual ways.

Across the school, the effort of our pupils is now tracked on a half-termly basis (from ‘1-4’, with ‘1’ meaning ‘excellent’) and the individuals in each tutor group with the highest mean score receive rewards in assemblies. It was also great fun to surprise 10H with donuts today, as a reward for topping the leader board with a superb average score of 1.373.

Our second new initiative is the introduction of the Headmaster’s Award, which is awarded to individuals who demonstrate an outstanding act of consideration, kindness or helpfulness to other, organise an event in school for the benefit of others, or produce an outstanding series of pieces of work.

Our first winners, who will be invited into my study for tea and cake next week, have received acknowledgement for two very different but exceptional acts.

William Kingston (5H) was one of 11 Prep pupils competed in cross-country last half-term but was not rewarded for winning this competition. Instead, William had noticed that a classmate, Jaydon Makhilora, had been pushed and fell over in his race. Instead of keeping his ‘eye on the prize’, William stopped, helped Jaydon to his feet and eventually finished 15th, once place behind the grateful Jaydon. Once the competition had finished, William remarked to his teacher: “I just couldn’t leave him.”

Our second recipient of the Headmaster’s Award, Jannat Noor Hafiz (7A), was tasked by her Maths teacher with completing two pieces of homework, on sequences and methods of multiplication, but over-delivered on both counts.

This student first returned to class having not only completed her sequences homework, but having researched the work of Fibonacci, an eminent mathematician who noticed that a mathematical sequence determines the patterns of some natural plants.

Upon receiving the second piece of homework, her teacher was delighted to see that she had also prepared a booklet on a little-known Russian method of multiplication, which she subsequently presented to the class.

My warmest congratulations to both pupils – see you in the study next week!

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