The RP Weekly: 18 March 2022
The weekly digital newsletter from Rydal Penrhos School.
The RP Weekly
18 March 2022
GCSE Revision Courses
BOOK now whether you are a Rydal Penrhos pupil or not
Easter is the key revision period for GCSE pupils and so we are holding a special revision week during the Easter holidays with our warm, friendly teaching staff for those across the North Wales area to assist with their exam preparations.
The GCSE Revision Week will take place over three days from 11-13 April 2022.
Excellent value for money at £150/day for eight hours of distraction-free study, including lessons and all food and drink.
This is a can’t miss opportunity for any GCSE pupil sitting exams this year.
Current GCSE pupils at Rydal Penrhos can book their place for FREE using the Schools Buddy App.
For external pupils, register and book here.
Anyone else wishing to book their place on our GCSE Revision Week, or for more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01492 530155.
RPS U16 tournament a massive success!
After so long without any prominent sporting activity over the last two years due to COVID-19, Rydal Penrhos was thrilled to welcome schools and teams from across North Wales and the North of England for the annual RPS U16 Rugby 7s.
This was one of the first major rugby competitions since restrictions were eased and brought a significant amount of interest from across the community to New Field and Brackley.
The event was also met with glorious sunshine to mark the occasion, with teams competing in two separate pools before being split into Cup, Plate, and Trophy categories.
After a hugely competitive day of action, St Ambrose College emerged as the Cup and overall winners of the tournament thanks to a hard-fought victory of Stonyhurst College in the final.
Wirral Grammar School emerged victoriously from the Plate section with a final win over Colwyn Bay Rugby Club, with Llandovery College taking away the Trophy section bragging rights with a convincing success over Stockport Grammar School.
It was also an extremely worthwhile outing for Rydal Penrhos’ U16 squad, who were playing the 7s discipline for the first time in two years competitively and performed exceptionally well throughout, winning against Newcastle-under-Lyme School to qualify for the Plate event.
GALLERY: Rydal Penrhos U16 Rugby 7s 2022
This saw the hosts come up against Colwyn Bay, which finished 17-17 with the same number of tries and conversions, leaving the outcome decided by a coin flip that went the Bay’s way.
The event was incredibly well organised, with Exile Sportswear and Edwards of Conwy also lending their support by sponsoring the competition.
Nicky Head, who is Head of Physical Education at Rydal Penrhos, said: “This was a marvellous occasion and it was great to see the school full of life during a brilliant day of Rugby 7s.
“We would like to thank all the staff, players, sponsors, referees and supporters for attending and we look forward to welcoming you all back in 2023.”
Where swimming and making waves are part of the timetable
Open Day 2022
Booking open for May event
Rydal Penrhos is pleased to announce details of a special Open Day next month, which will take place on Friday 6 May 2022 and is set to provide prospective pupils and their families a first-hand opportunity to see for themselves what goes on during a typical day at the school.
This is an exciting time to join the Rydal Penrhos community. The school is flourishing from Pre-School to Sixth Form, examination results and value-added scores remain of the highest standard and things have a much more familiar feel to them across academic subjects and extra-curricular activities with decreasing restrictions from the Welsh Government.
The Open Day will be held in accordance with COVID-19 guidelines at the time and booking is advised for anyone looking wishing to attend. The event will be split into two sections to accommodate anyone looking to visit both Prep and Senior sites.
- Prep visitors – 9am-12pm
- Senior visitors – 1-4pm
Those in attendance will get individual tours from the school and speak with teaching and admissions staff to get a broader perspective of the day-to-day life of a pupil, the diverse curriculum and exceptional pastoral care.
There will be a host of things to enjoy throughout the showcase, which will feature core academic departments such as English, Mathematics, Art, Drama, Music and Science.
Our thriving extra-curricular provision will also be on full display as pupils young and old go about their usual activities.
The Open Day will take place from 9am-4pm and refreshments will be available following tours.
Anyone wishing to book their place at our Open Day, or for more information, please call 01492 530155, email email@example.com or use our online form.
Rev'd Dr Beamish
Chaplain outlines term name change significance
Given all that is going on in the world right now the news that Rydal Penrhos has renamed its academic terms might not seem that significant, but I do think it is worth reflecting on. The three terms of the school year are now known as Advent, Lent and Trinity.
This change reflects the Methodist ethos of the school, and as Chaplain, I am of course not going to object to that! It would though be tempting to dismiss it simply as an exercise in being different, or a desire to align with other educational establishments that have long avoided more usual names, and thus to miss something of its broader significance.
Any change of a name matters as names simply matter, they carry inherent meaning and begin to shape how we relate to a person, event, object or place. My parents always taught me to ask people’s names in whatever relational context I am in as it does something to any potential power dynamic, the person who was once not known to us is now known in a fundamental way.
This knowing of a name, their name, communicates the inherent value of that individual to us in a moment where it can easily be lost when we are perhaps being served in a restaurant, a shop, or in a conversation with a distant call-centre employee.
The Ting Tings are an English indie-pop duo from Salford, formed in 2007, who immediately had a number one single with ‘That’s not my name.’ The lead singer Katie White wrote that the song was a response to how she had been treated by the music industry, venting that frustration when we are not properly named:
“They call me hell; They call me Stacey; They call me Her; They call me Jane; That’s not my name; That’s not my name; That’s not my name; That’s not my name.”
The repeat of ‘That’s not my name’ is particularly powerful as there is a repeat for each of the moments she is misnamed. Using someone’s proper name, however familiar or unfamiliar it may be, is a means of communicating that person’s value. So, it matters that people, events, objects and places are properly named.
Now we know that names of things do change for various reasons, but I still remember with horror (this shows my age) when Marathon bars became Snickers, the thing I thought I knew now seemed different even though the actual product was just the same. I realised that the name of the thing, a simple designator, actually carried the meaning for me, it provided the means to make sense of the content within.
This is why I think that reflecting on the changes to the term names here at Rydal Penrhos is worth a little of our time. You might not be bothered at all or you might think it is just another administrative tinkering, but it is a change designed to communicate the ethos of the school.
The change declares that on one level the seasonal rhythm of the school is shaped around the Christian calendar, and on the other that in those seasons we are pointed again and again to a God who in Luke 12:7 tells us that:
“Why, even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not; you are of more value than many sparrows.”
Here is a beautiful picture of the value of each individual, and what better picture to shape an educational and relational approach that seeks to honour all who are part of Rydal Penrhos now or who used to call it home in some way.
Valuing one another might seem an obvious aspect of the Rydal Penrhos ethos to draw upon, and even more obvious for a school chaplain, but you may be reading this at a time when one country has decided that the value of another is not inherent and is even a threat. This desire to expand borders or to eliminate people groups looks to change names and even eliminate fundamental identity entirely.
So, names matter, but even more importantly it is the worth and value of the person, event, object or place they point to that matters the most and that is something we can never take for granted.
Keeping the value of all at the centre of the school ethos is not simply about keeping peace in a classroom or a sports field, but about shaping us all for when we are called to create and sustain peace in whatever situations we may find ourselves in.
Rev’d Dr Rob Beamish, Rydal Penrhos Chaplain
More British Academy success for Cam!
A talented young skier at Rydal Penrhos acquitted himself extremely well in the face of yet more stern competition as part of his involvement with the British Ski Academy recently.
Cameron Pye, who is a Year 8 pupil at the school, spent two weeks with the Academy in Italy, developing his craft and participating in some competitions against other bright prospects from across the country.
Rydal Penrhos permitted him to attend the camp providing he kept up with his studies throughout his stay, which he was able to accomplish by making use of the school’s free iPad to keep in touch with teaching staff during the three hours a day allocated to academic progress by the BSA.
During the first week, Cameron participated in the Ambition Children’s Races in Santa Caterina, securing a creditable sixth-placed finish in the slalom event, 11th in the grand slalom category as well as 10th and 14th in the super grand slalom races.
The second week of action saw Cameron compete in the English Alpine Championships, which featured almost 400 competitors. Despite a crash on his second run, the pupil attained 19th place in the slalom, 27th in the grand slalom and 28th in the super gland slalom.
This represents a remarkable achievement against the best UK full-time snow-based athletes. Something that should stand Cameron in tremendous stead moving forward.
Cameron has hit the ground running upon his return to domestic duties, achieving a team win at the Pendle Winter Race League as part of Ski Rossendale Race Club. Preparations are now being made for another trip with the BSA to Tignes over the Easter holidays to take his place in the British Alpine Children’s Championships.
Everyone at Rydal Penrhos would like to congratulate Cameron on another superb performance and wish him the very best of luck during his next exciting venture!
Incredible support for donations appeal
The events unfolding in Ukraine are distressing to everyone and our remarkable pupils at Rydal Penrhos came together to arrange a special donation initiative that was led by the Prep School Council and Senior Charity Committee to assist those fleeing from war.
After a collective meeting between the two groups, it was decided that two separate donation events would take place on the same day. This is another fantastic initiative arranged by pupils and something the entire Rydal Penrhos community got behind with an unbelievable amount of essential items brought in and generous financial donations made.
A total of £829 was collected, which the school paid forward to the Disasters Emergency Committee Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal - which is being matched pound for pound by the UK Government.
Prep pupils wrote messages of support during the day on the Ukrainian flag, with a large amount of clothing toiletries, teddies and other vital items collected and then sorted out into specific areas by pupils and members of the school's outstanding staff team.
We are thrilled to announce that these items have now been distributed to two separate locations in Liverpool and Kinmel Bay. These will now be taken to the Polish/Ukrainian border and given to those in dire need of help.
This is yet another pupil-led campaign that is reflective of the strong characteristics built into each child from Pre-School to Sixth Form at the school. We are enormously proud of their selfless approach and willingness to do whatever they can to help those less fortunate both across the region and around the world.
On behalf of everyone at Rydal Penrhos, we would also like to thank the entire school community for their generosity towards this particular initiative.
Former pupil sends in construction photos
We are always keen for our wonderful community at Rydal Penrhos to remain engaged with us both during their journey through school and once they move on, fully prepared for whatever challenges lie ahead thanks to a comprehensive education under the exceptional guidance of teaching staff.
Our former pupils feel a close affinity to the school. This is something we are incredibly proud of and is a testament to the strong characteristics we build within every pupil from Pre-School right up to Sixth Form.
Following a recent article featured on our website surrounding the architect Sidney Colwyn Foulkes and his influence on the incredible buildings across Rydal Penrhos, the school received an email from John Grindlay, who attended the school from 1952-57 and gave us some wonderful pictures dating back to the original construction of the Memorial Hall.
Foulkes’ first project was the Costain Building, completed in 1930. Ten years after the end of World War II, in 1955, the Memorial Hall followed, its name commemorating the 99 Old Boys from Rydal School who died in both World Wars.
The Costain Building is named after A. J. Costain, Headmaster of Rydal at the time. The sandstone for the building was quarried in Yorkshire and amazingly, the quarry was reopened for the building of the Memorial Hall between 1955 and 1957.
In his email to the school, Mr Grindlay wrote:
“I see your website features the school architect, Sidney Colwyn Foulkes. You will see him in some of the snaps. He was forever on the site and we all thought that progress on the building was slow!”
As you can see, the pictures are remarkable and we would like to thank Mr Grindlay for taking the time to send them in. They will now be added to our archives alongside other notable artefacts throughout the school’s history.
Roleplay on ‘people who help us’
Rydal Penrhos Pre-School is the perfect place for children to begin their journey through education.
Our exceptional staff led by department manager Letitia Spencer provide a safe, stimulating environment that allows each child to flourish, develop at their own pace, build friendships and become inspired through a diverse programme of activities and early learning methods under expert supervision.
In addition to building solid foundations in literacy and numeracy, Pre-School children also participate in practical-based activities collectively designed to foster self-esteem, a positive attitude as well as expressive and observational skills. These transpire both on-site and outdoors thanks to Rydal Penrhos’ stunning location on the North Wales coast.
It’s been an incredibly busy start to the second half of the Lent Term within the department, with children building core skills and expanding their horizons with plenty of encouragement and support along the way.
One of the more thought-provoking tasks the group have taken part in lately is centred on ‘people who help us’. Of course, being so young, the list is long, so it was nice for the children to acknowledge the assistance they receive across their day-to-day lives.
This exciting topic culminated in a roleplay session where children were tasked with acting out their own scenes and playing characters relating to the subject. These included prominent figures such as Doctors, Nurses, Firefighters and Policemen.
There was even time for the children to use wooden blocks and make their very own model fire trucks and ambulances to further enhance the overall experience of the roleplay activity.
Another job well done by our young Pre-Schoolers, who have come on a significant amount since the start of the academic year!
Stars of the Week
Stars of the Week
Rydal Penrhos Rugby 7s