Ann Widdecombe former MP, star of BBC Strictly Come Dancing, author and TV panellist was the Guest of Honour at our Presentation of Certificates evening on Thursday 8th January 2015.
The school hall was packed full of staff, former students parents and guests to celebrate the school’s examination success at A level and GCSE. The evening started with a short address from Mr Quinn where he made reference to the outstanding performance of students particularly at ‘A’ level and GCSE. He also talked about the considerable success of students in raising money to support schools in Kenya, and the passion students displayed for extra curricular actives from Latin through to beating private school opposition at rugby.
The highlight of the evening was the address given by Miss Widdecombe who stepped down from being an MP in 2012. During a motivating speech, she talked about what she had learned during her career weaving in a number of amusing anecdotes. She went on to give the students some advice, using as an analogy the advice her father gave her when she was learning to drive; in addition to watching out for your own mistakes ensure you watch out for other people’s!
At the end of the evening Miss Widdecombe stayed and chatted to students and staff as they mingled and enjoyed refreshments before returning to Devon.
During the ceremony students were entertained with an excerpts from the next school production, ‘Oklahoma’ and a dance display.
Mr Quinn said. “It was a fantastic evening, I was delighted to secure someone with the gravity of Ann Widdecombe. With so many students achieving so well it was fitting to have someone of Ann’s calibre. She is a fantastic supporter of Catholic education and has a great story to tell, I am very appreciative”
Miss WIddecombe is a patron of the St Vincent de Paul Society (SVP) and the school has made a donation to this charity from money raised through non uniform day.
Certificates Evening is one of the great events on the Oaklands calendar where the success of past and present students is recognised.