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Girls' Voice

Niamh Robinson, Head Girl, Commemoration Speech

As part of the annual Prize Giving celebrations the Head Girl and Deputies give their reviews of the last academic year.

 

 

Niamh Robinson, Head Girl

Over the past year, music at Saint Martin’s has continued to grow and has shown everyone what girls can achieve with hard work and determination. My favourite trip of the year, Ingestre Hall, is a prime example of this. Everyone gathered in the Great Hall learning the actions to The Rocky Horror Show’s “Time Warp”, showed the true Saint Martin’s spirit with both the teachers and girls working together and having a laugh in the process. For some people, it was an emotional Ingestre as it was the last trip for the Upper Sixth, who were in Year 7 when it first started seven years ago and I’m not looking forward to it being my turn this year! The whole weekend was working towards another fantastic charity concert, “Songs from the Shows” with music and drama from Musicals ranging from the Sound of Music to Les Mis. The standard of performances from both staff and students was as high as ever.

Paul Phoenix from the King’s Singers came in a few weeks ago to help us improve some of the pieces that are performed tonight. Watching the way he was able to transform us from just singing a song, to performing a piece of music with smiles on our faces, emphasised the power that music has in our school. But the most important message that he gave us was the value of communication. He showed us that with communication between the singers and with the audience the music written on the page can be transformed into a story, conveying messages and emotions that only music can portray. 

But Saint Martin’s isn’t just about the sport, the drama, the music and the academics. It is about the girls and the teachers who make it possible. To some people who drive by Brueton Avenue every day, they may see the Top Smaller School in the country, but it is so much more. When people say Saint Martin’s to me I think of my second home, my second family. The teachers here not only help us get the GCSE and A-level grades they know we can achieve, but they treat us all as individuals, knowing our strengths and weaknesses and  who will help sort out whatever problem we have, no matter how small. Even if you don’t realise something is wrong, they know when you haven’t smiled for a while and will make sure they can help in whatever way they can. Everyone needs help once in a while and the teachers here can always find time, even if it is just for a catch up.

The friends you make at Saint Martin’s start to become your sisters, people who you can have a laugh in and out of the classroom with and stress about revision with. When I look back on my time at Saint Martin’s, of course I will think about the fantastic education I have had and the lessons in which I was taught that anything is possible if you put your mind to it. But I think most of all I will remember the little things, like lying on the field at lunchtime in the summer or complaining about the school uniform or trying to keep the first page in a new exercise book as neat as possible. This school teaches you not only how to pass your academic exams, but how to pass life exams with life skills that you can only learn through the friends and relationships that Saint Martin’s can give.

Under the Saint Martin’s logo it says life changing. Not only has my time here been life changing it has literally been my life! I started in Reception and my parents have always told me that, when I came home on that first day of school and they asked me how my day was my reaction was “It was amazing but the girls are very bossy”! But I used the wrong word; bossy means fond of giving people orders and being domineering. What I was trying to say is that even at four a Saint Martin’s girl is encouraged to be confident and speak her mind and stand up for what she believes in. This school has taught me never to be afraid of change and always to look at what is next, whilst enjoying what you have at the moment. Even though I may complain about getting out of bed on a Monday morning by Friday afternoon I have had another week of being with my friends and learning things I never thought I could, like understanding complex equations, that I convinced myself that I couldn’t understand the week before.

In Miss Edgar’s first assembly she read a poem called “The Station” by Robert Hastings, showing us the importance about how life is not about the destination, it is about the journey. But now, for those of us in the Upper Sixth, our Saint Martin’s journey is coming to an end and it is time for us to board new trains and look forward to new journeys. And if they are anything like the journey Saint Martin’s has taken me on then they will be a journey well worth the taking!

Niamh Robinson, Head Girl 2014 – 2015