On Sunday 11th June this year’s Bronze DofE group completed their qualifying expedition.
We arrived at the Academy at 0745 on Saturday 10th of June and many of the groups were frantically photocopying maps and route cards for our weekend ahead. By 0915 we left the Academy and each group were dropped off at their individual starting points. Although there was a small shower, the weather conditions were good. Each group had their different routes with different experiences for each of us, including swearing primary children and lost radios!
From 1610 the groups steadily started to filter into camp, set up tents and cooked their dinner. There were games of splat, capture the flag and a group search for lost items.
The next day, groups woke up, had breakfast and packed tents away, the earliest group leaving camp at 0730. Everyone had a chance to navigate to their finishing points where some were then picked up and taken to Clumber Park where all groups met. After ice-creams and a toilet break we got back on the mini-buses to travel back to the Academy and did our “kit husbandry” where everything was cleaned and handed in. By 1800 we had finished and we were all ready to go home after a long weekend, and back for school the very next day.
On Wednesday 7th June, 70 cadets from Years 8 and 9 departed to Walesby campsite. They were about to embark on two days navigation training, walking about 30km over the two days.
After arriving at Walesby Forest Campsite on the minibuses as group 2, we collected our bags before boarding the minibus again and travelling to Eakring. We parked by the road, before setting off to our start point, a nearby 'phone box. We came across our first turning, but ended up deciding it was the wrong one, when in fact, it was correct. We took the next right, which we decided was correct, taking a detour, and ending up in Rufford Country Park. With the help of Sgt Fearn, we found a new route and eventually ended up back on track. We arrived back at the campsite after about six to six and half hours of navigating, totalling 19-20 kilometers. After arriving back at camp we were soon instructed to put up our tents for the night. All recruits managed to get the tents up very quickly without too much struggle. It was a speedy set up and everyone was back doing their own thing after a short period of time. I know that after speaking to a few people, aligning the inner tent to the flysheet was slightly confusing, but the issue was easily resolved with the trial and error technique. Overall, day one was an eventful, yet fun and enjoyable day for everyone.
Day two was a very challenging day! We had to get up at 07:00 am, have our breakfast, pack our bags and then pack all our tents away before – all before 08:30am! We set off for our walk at 09:00am with our (heavy) rucksacks on our backs. We travelled 10 kilometers on day two with already shattered legs from the day before. Initially we walked 7 kilometers through Clumber Park to get to our destination, Manor Farm, which was on the other side of Clumber Park. When we arrived at Manor Farm we waited for our mini bus to come and pick us up, then it took us back to the place every section was supposed to meet. Rather kindly, we all got a well-deserved ice cream from our section leaders! After that, everyone put their bags in the van and we got driven back to the Academy where everyone had their various ‘clean down’ jobs to do. This entailed hanging the tents up to dry, cleaning the mini buses, unpacking kit borrowed form the Academy and then, thankfully we got picked up by our parents. Boy, did I sleep on Thursday night! I was exhausted from a very tiring but thoroughly enjoyable two day CCF camp. Bring on the next one!
Whilst on the expedition, we had to take four meals, two lunches, one breakfast and one dinner. As it was easiest to team up between people to carry the food between us, that’s what we did. My friend carried some rice and I carried the chicken korma. For breakfast we had porridge as it was easy to make and light to carry.
We made the food by using a trangia which consisted of pots and pans and a little pot where you can put the fuel and light it. It’s important to eat a good amount of food because if you don’t eat properly, you may get light headed and feel ill which isn’t good as you burn so many calories whilst walking and carrying your bag. Hydration is also extremely important because if you don’t drink enough water you could get seriously ill and become dehydrated.
On the expedition we learnt a variety of skills. Personally I enjoyed the two day expedition because I had the chance to work in a team. I also enjoyed it because I had never completed any walking before and it was a challenge to walk the entire distance. I learnt how to read a map and that working in a team is important to succeed. We also learnt the importance of space management in our tents. Finally we learnt the importance of communication in the group and listening to all people. Next time, I believe that I would make some changes to the way we worked as a team. Firstly we will need to practise our map reading skills a little bit more, secondly not overcomplicate our routes and stick to the most apparent route and finally walking at the same pace as the slowest person in our group.
No 50 and No 61 Squadrons' Association Service Sunday 11th June 2017
Four cadets and one officer from The Priory Federation CCF attended the No 50 and No 61 Squadrons' Association Memorial Service held during the afternoon of Sunday 11th June at Skellingthorpe. Two cadets LCpl Leah Robinson and LCpl Owen Frances had the honour of laying a wreath on behalf of the The Priory Federation. CWO Callum Frances, Cpl Max Butterworth and Fg Off Summers joined with 1237 Air Cadet Squadron North Hykeham on parade. The event was attended by a diminishing number of 50/61 Squadrons' veteran. Also present was the President of the Association, Air Vice Marshall Nigel Baldwin CB CBE and the Mayor of Lincoln. A fantastic afternoon with some very poignant words spoken and memories relived. The cadets were a credit to the Academy and the CCF and should be proud of what they accomplished.
Four spitfires of the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight conducted a fly-past over the Memorial during the 1130 hour. They were due to overfly the service at 1400 but due to forecast high winds flew over the Memorial early.
On Saturday 27th May, four Young Match Officials, two from The Priory Academy LSST and two from De Aston School all representing Lincolnshire travelled down to south west London in preparation for a meeting and workshops at 10.00am on Sunday at Twickenham, home of English Rugby. Thomas Osborne-Day and William Robertshaw were the two students chosen on this occasion for the commitment they had shown in successfully completing the RFU Level 2 Refereeing Course, officiating not only in academy fixtures, but also at county events throughout the season. William was heavily involved in the production of a RFU DVD which will shortly go out on the RFU website for all aspiring Young Officials to watch.
I am pleased and proud of the boys and the manner which they conducted themselves through the initial meeting, question and answer session with Aviva Premiership Referee Craig Maxwell Keys and finally in the four workshops. Both boys spoke confidently to both smaller groups and finally to a room full of their peers and RFU Officials about their experiences as referees and what they would like to see develop in the future for this scheme
The icing on the cake so to speak was to be able to watch England play The Barbarians in the afternoon before making the long trek back to Lincoln on Sunday evening.
I would like to thank Mrs Hopkinson and The Priory Academy LSST staff for supporting the boys.
It is a great honour to recently have been accepted onto the highly prestigious Sutton Trust US Programme. After a long and intense application process, the Sutton Trust team selected 150 applicants from state schools across the country based on a mixture of academic attainment, extracurricular activities and a demonstrated interest in US study and it is incredible to be selected among some of the most talented students in the country.
A place on the Programme means I will be travelling to the US this summer to stay at Yale University, as well as visiting a number of other colleges, including Harvard for a US university fair. It gives me a chance to see some of the world’s best Academic Institutions and will give me a taste of what studying in the US would potentially be like through a first-hand experience of campus life.
Beyond the Summer School, the Programme is responsible for giving state school students from across the UK a chance to study in the US. The team at the Sutton Trust are some of the best in the world at guiding students through the application process and helped many to achieve fully funded scholarships to a vast number of US Universities. The team also make it possible to attend many additional residential activities across the country, such as one in London this past holiday at UCL, and offer fantastic support to the participants throughout.
This is an opportunity like no other and I strongly encourage anyone interested currently in Year 11 to apply next year. I have always been interested in study in the US and the Sutton Trust has made a far-fetched idea into a potential reality, presenting me with possibilities over the coming years that I never thought would be possible.
Students from Year 9 and 10 have recently taken part in the UKMT Intermediate Maths Challenge. From this 1 hour competition, several of our students progressed to follow-on rounds.
These follow-on rounds are for those students who – from an initial entry list of roughly 200,000 students – scored in the top 5,500.
Praise must go to: Jack Bell, Oliver White, Laurence Beswick, Robert Lambert, Scott Taylor, Joe Bartle, Josephine Hannan, Annan McGlade, Zachary Peutrill and Leo Moss for getting this far.
However, particular praise must go to Taha Ahmed (Year 9) who was one of the 50 highest scorers. He sat a 3 hour paper, and lost just 7 marks along the way – answering six extremely challenging maths questions. He recently met Mrs Hopkinson, who presented Taha with his medal and book prize.
More information about the Maths Challenges can be found here
On Thursday 4th May, twelve students from Year 10 were given the opportunity to visit Fitzwilliam College at Cambridge University. The day served as a taster to Russian language and history and rounded up the Gifted and Talented course in which we participated last year.
Dr Sara Owen welcomed us when we arrived in the morning. She gave us key information on the college, applying to Cambridge and university in general, before taking any questions we had. Two Russian language undergraduates then gave us a tour of the college; we were shown around accommodation, facilities, including the impressive auditorium, and the library.
After a fantastic lunch in the buttery we were introduced to Dr Susan Larsen, Director of Studies for Modern and Medieval Languages. She gave us two hour-long sessions on Russia, the first being on its language. We were introduced to the alphabet and we learned how to say what our names were, working our way through a comprehensive booklet full of interesting vocabulary. The second lesson discussed Russia’s history, particularly the Stalin era and the development of the Soviet Union. This entailed watching some interesting depictions of the USSR in both contemporary and modern Russian film media.
That concluded our day at Cambridge, all of us having thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. It was a great opportunity to learn about Russian language and history, as well as university in general.
Follow this link to find out what staff at Fitzwilliam College thought of our day!
The Geography Department were really lucky last week to have the Google Expeditions Pioneer Program accessible for students to use all day. A Google representative guided students and staff as they lead their Geography classes through various virtual reality expeditions using Google Cardboard viewers. They were able to look inside a volcano, travel through world biomes, visit Antarctica and climb Mount Everest. It was a busy day!
The Duke of Edinburgh Long Service Award is presented to those individuals who have completed more than 10 years voluntary contribution to the Duke of Edinburgh award. Mr Brazinskas fell well inside the criteria after volunteering with the award for 28 years and is still actively involved today.
On the 23rd March Mr Brazinskas and his wife were invited to St James’s Palace to be presented with his Long Service Certificate. The award was presented by His Royal Highness Prince Edward, shown above exchanging pleasantries. Mr Brazinskas, a man of few words, managed to speak to his HRH for more than five minutes - a real coup as HRH had places to be. Mr B and his wife were shown around St James’s palace and not just the public rooms, a rare treat which they both thoroughly enjoyed.
A brief history of Mr Brazinskas' dedication to the Duke of Edinburgh’s award:
He was instrumental in setting up of the DofE Award Scheme in 1995; inducting/training staff into the aims, ethos and philosophy of the scheme; ensuring students were completely clear on the history, aims and the overriding philosophy of the scheme before registering them for the award.
Mr Brazinskas has been instrumental in the smooth running of the award within the Federation of Academies. He is an individual one can always rely on. He has assisted and organised water based expeditions along with the normal walking expeditions. Mr Brazinskas is a qualified climber and on more than one occasion has acted as an assessor in the skills section. He is one of those unsung heroes who just gets on with it without complaint, financial reward, thanks and often leaving himself out of pocket in providing the candidate with equipment and sustenance, or going further in transporting the candidate to an expedition or residential. An unassuming character who is well deserved of recognition.
Over the years Mr Brazinskas has co-ordinated the DofE Scheme at The Priory Academy LSST and continues to support and deliver all elements associated with the scheme: working with students in expedition training; running First Aid Courses for students; working with and supporting other academies within the Federation; assessment of walking expeditions for both the Academy and other user groups; assessment of water based expeditions (Bronze and Silver levels); attendance of various training courses associated with the delivery of the DofE Scheme.
We would like to congratulate Mr Paul Brazinskas on his prestigious award and thank him for all his tireless efforts over the past decades.
Mr M Ginty
On Wednesday 26th April, ten year eleven students, myself included, travelled down to Fitzwilliam College at the University of Cambridge for a Russian Taster Day. Following our early morning journey from The Priory Academy LSST, we were all keen to get started upon arrival and we went straight into a Russian language class given by Dr Susan Larsen, which lasted most of the morning.
This gave us an excellent opportunity to brush up on the Cyrillic alphabet before moving onto some common phrases - starting the basics, such as greetings and thanks, before moving onto some more complex expressions. We were then given an informative talk by the college admissions tutor, Dr Sara Owen (who it transpired had taught Tom Hiddleston during his time as a classics student), on applying to the university, before walking through the college grounds to the buttery, where we had the chance to further sample life at the university and eat alongside current students.
Upon returning to our classroom, Dr Larsen gave us a fascinating introduction to Russian film history, covering a diverse selection of media ranging from Soviet propaganda to 21st century musicals, accompanied by a brief insight into Russian history and culture, inspired by her earlier experiences in Russia. After this we were given a tour of the college by two fourth-year MML students to conclude our visit. Our journey back to the Priory Academy LSST gave us the chance to reflect on what had been a thoroughly enjoyable and useful day.