We were thrilled to welcome parents, pupils, teachers and distinguished guests to our annual Speech Day at the spectacular Brighton Dome on 22 June.
And what a Speech Day it was! As the school’s jazz ensemble played in the foyer, the audience took to their seats and prepared to hear from our Head Master. When Mr Cairns took to the stage, his warm and moving speech focussed on the role Brighton College has played in founding and sponsoring the London Academy of Excellence, a Sixth Form College in Newham which provides A-level courses for pupils who are often from deprived backgrounds. Since its opening, the school has been placed in the top ten state schools in the UK and has transformed the educational opportunities of Newham’s young people, sending over 700 pupils to Russell Group universities, Oxbridge and on to medical degrees. Mr Cairns spoke of his determination to make Brighton College’s ties with the LAE even stronger.
Prizes were then handed out by guest of honour Colin Jackson. The former athlete and Olympic gold medal winner gave a warm, engaging and often very funny speech about the importance of “daring to dream”. Mr Jackson reflected on the difficulties and challenges of his own career which, when faced, led to his success with an Olympic gold medal, helped and inspired by Daley Thompson - who was also in the audience!
Katie, our outgoing Head of School, then gave the vote of thanks and spoke warmly of her love of the College’s emphasis on kindness in her farewell speech.
Prizes and speeches were augmented by some striking performances, including from Sixth Former Tony, who played Debussy’s technically-demanding L’isle Joyeuse wonderfully, and the Chamber Choir and Jazz Group Dancers who sang and danced with great aplomb.
It was delightful to see the new Head of School announced, along with the Deputy Heads of School. Many thanks to Katie, Gabriel, Daniel and Edward for the tireless commitment and infectious enthusiasm with which they approached their duties as the Head and Deputy Heads of School over the past year. May you have every success in your future.
In September, we welcome Ned as Head of School, along with Kelly, Daniel and Sophie as our Deputy Heads. Good luck to you all.