Tuesday, 28th November 2017
OLYMPIC gymnast congratulates pupils for advancing in leaps and bounds
AN Olympic gymnast has congratulated pupils for advancing in leaps and bounds at an Oscar-style ceremony to reward academic effort and achievement.
An all star cast of students came under the spotlight as Commonwealth gold medallist and Olympic finalist Craig Heap presented them with trophies and certificates at the annual Haughton Academy Year 12 awards.
The glittering ceremony, attended by parents, carers, teachers and governors, saw returning GCSE pupils rewarded for their accomplishments in a host of subject areas including maths, science and English, as well as health and social care, creative media and sociology.
Special awards were presented to students for their positive attitude and behaviour, as well as trophies for resilience, determination to succeed, high academic achievement, the Alan Sunter Award for acts of kindness and Duke of Edinburgh awards.
Craig, who won 14 British championship titles and competed in five European and five World championships, retired from gymnastics in 2002 and now works as a commentator for BBC and Sky Sport and as an athlete mentor for the Youth Sport Trust.
“Tonight we celebrate winning and success,” said Mr Heap. “Not everyone can be a winner all the time but we can all be learners. Life is about getting out there and seizing opportunities; if you wait for opportunity to knock on the door, it’ll probably never happen.
“Dare to be different, don’t just turn up, always try your best – remember successful people always try.”
Star performers of the evening were students Brooke Mason and Alexcia Vairy who each received a total of five awards.
Brooke, 16, who picked up awards for attainment in biology, food technology, French, maths and was one of the Academy’s GCSE high achievers, is currently studying beauty therapy at Darlington College.
“I’m so happy with my awards as I worked really hard for my GCSEs,” she said. “I loved my time here at Haughton Academy.”
Alexcia, 16, who received trophies for attainment in business, chemistry and physics as well as a Duke of Edinburgh Award and a GCSE high achiever award, is taking A levels at Carmel College, Darlington, in maths, further maths and psychology.
“It’s been a really good night and the last chance to celebrate all of the hard work that we have done over the past five years,” she said.
“The teachers at Haughton Academy have always been so supportive and really helped me to become the person that I am today.”
Summing up the evening, principal Jonathan Lumb, who hosted the evening alongside assistant headteachers Fiona Campbell and Steve Flynn, added: “Tonight is one of my favourite nights of the year, a night to celebrate our students’ success.”