- Posted by: Valerie Vaz MP
- Category: News
Blue Coat Church of England Academy held their Summer Prize Evening at St Matthews Church on Thursday 13 July 2023. The school was founded in 1656 as a charity school for orphans and deprived children in the borough. The Principal, Mr Smith, became Head in September 2016 and we have worked together on many issues affecting the School. I was invited to give an address at the Summer Prize Evening and was delighted to accept. The Church was filled with parents, primary carers and pupils. I handed out the Certificates to the pupils from each year.
In my speech I highlighted the kind and caring school ethos which was recognized in the latest OFSTED report that Blue Coat was ” an inclusive school where kindness flourishes”. This is exactly as set out in the Bible in the Gospel of Luke: Chapter 10 v 29, the principle of the Good neighbour, the story of the Good Samaritan. to help other people which Mr Smith does when he opens his school to everyone. He does not say no when children need a place. And this principle was embodied in our law establishing a legal principle set out by Lord Atkins when he posed the question, who then is my neighbour and answered by saying someone who is so closely affected by my actions that we have reasonably have them in mind; don’t walk by on the other side;
Each one of them is unique and have a unique set of talents and that a school is there to bring those talents out and help them to discover them. One day they will remember the voice of a teacher or someone at school who has helped them and spurred them on. I asked my staff ( who are younger than me ! ) to let me know what they would have told their younger self and they suggested “not to worry about what you want to be, change is constant; friends are important; and get a hobby which could include volunteering.”
I added that my mother told me its never too late to be what you want to be. It is important to give something back and work for the common good and especially to the School. Follow Beethoven’s advice and never stop learning; and enjoy your successes along the way and to be resilient and persistent.
Our generation work hard to make the world a better place, it is now up to their generation to take up the challenge and I wished them all the luck and success i know they will rise to the challenge.