SLEEPING BEAUTY AT THE BYRE | Two St Leonards students, Rory (Year 12) and Honor (Year 8) had a very busy festive season, taking to the stage in 30 performances of this year’s pantomime, Sleeping Beauty, at the Byre Theatre in St Andrews.
Both pupils were involved as members of the Youth Cast, with Honor playing the role of Cousin Maggie, and Rory playing Bogle, one of ‘The Minions’.
Our Director of Drama, Ms McQuade-Powell, went along to see the show on its final night, and by all accounts it was an absolutely fantastic performance. Lots of laughs and some brilliant costumes as well.
A huge well done to Honor and Rory from all at St Leonards!
RUSSIAN CELEBRATIONS | The festive cheer lingered a little longer at St Leonards with the Russian New Year celebrations at Fingask Castle on Monday, 14 January. Our Year 11 and Sixth Form Russian students enjoyed a beautiful banquet complete with haggis and Christmas crackers, made resolutions for the year ahead and were treated to a tour of the 17th century castle's extensive grounds. A great way to celebrate at the start of Spring Term, and our seventh year at Fingask!
St Leonards Golfers vs Blairgowrie
ST LEONARDS GOLFERS VS BLAIRGOWRIE | St Leonards and SALJGA (St Andrews Links Junior Golf Academy) golfers played Blairgowrie on the New Course in St Andrews on Sunday, 13 January in the first leg of their match, which took the format of best five Stableford scores out of six players.
Going into the second leg, which will be held at Blairgowrie Golf Club in May, the team scores saw St Leonards in second place with 132 points. Blairgowrie had 139 points, and SALJGA 126 points.
Well done to St Leonards captain Ellen Caton, and our golfers Jack Headon, Ewen Farquhar, Aidan Sutton, Tom Goniwiecha, Konstantin Gaissert and Karla Klostermann!
We wish them the best of luck for their away game in May.
Burns Night Ceilidh
BURNS NIGHT CEILIDH | More than 80 pupils in Years 8 - 13 took to the floor in the School Hall on Friday, 25 January, for a few rounds of the Dashing White Sergeant to kick-start our Burns Night Ceilidh. Organised by one of the Year 12 tutor groups, with support from Mr Kitson, Ms Beck and Mr Barlow, it was certainly an evening to remember!
Scottish country dancing was interspersed with readings, poems and music from our pipers and very own school ceilidh band. Thank you to Mr Shiells for all his hard work in organising the band and leading rehearsals in the run-up to the event!
The 'Address to a Haggis' was delivered with great flair by Andrew and Kim (Year 12), and refreshments were served in the Sloyd, making for a brilliant Burns Night.
Thank you to all the staff and pupils who were involved with organising and hosting the event! A total of £124.00 was raised for the RNLI.
Sixth Former Kit Addresses Scottish Parliament
SIXTH FORMER KIT ADDRESSES SCOTTISH PARLIAMENT | Kit (Year 12) appeared at the Scottish Parliament during the Christmas holidays to address the Holyrood Parliament Petitions Committee on the subject of ultra-sonic ‘mosquito’ devices, which are used to drive young people out of public places where they are thought to be a vandalism risk.
Kit was elected as a Member of the Scottish Youth Parliament (MSYP) 18 months ago, and along with a couple of SYP colleagues, he has been researching the topic through enquiries to local councils and Freedom of Information requests, as we well as petitioning to Parliament to have the devices banned in Scotland.
After being interviewed live on BBC Scotland on Thursday, 20 December, Kit’s Parliament appearance was streamed on the Scottish Parliament website, and his statement archived here.
A brilliant, very well delivered interview – well done Kit!
Dave Best Lacrosse Coaching
DAVE BEST LACROSSE COACHING | We had a great turnout of Senior girls across Years 8 to 13 on Saturday, 19 January for lacrosse training sessions with coach Dave Best of DB Sports Coaching.
Coach Dave shared his top tips with the girls, who spent a fun (and very energetic!) morning practising drills out on Big Field.
Our teams are looking forward to their first February fixtures, with an U14 tournament away at Loretto, and home matches against Fettes coming up next in the Spring Term calendar!
CRADLE OF LACROSSE ON THE BBC | St Leonards featured on the BBC2 television show ‘Celebrity Antiques Road Trip’ on Friday, 11 January, with our former Deputy Head, APN Housemistress, Head of Games and lacrosse expert, Jane Claydon talking to the cameras about the school’s significant role in the development of women’s lacrosse. Interviewed by journalist and presenter Kaye Adams and antiques expert Anita Manning, Jane shared her extensive knowledge on the history of the game.
The first ever game of women’s lacrosse was played on St Leonards soil in 1890, and was brought to the UK by Dame Louisa Lumsden and Dame Frances Dove, the first and second Headmistresses of the school, who had been inspired after watching a men’s game during a visit to Canada in 1884.
Miss Lumsden later wrote, “It is a wonderful game, beautiful and graceful. (I was so charmed with it that I introduced it at St Leonards.)”
Today, lacrosse is still a core sport for St Leonards girls, who train throughout the year during their timetabled Physical Education lessons and focus on fixtures during Spring Term, playing against school and university teams from across Scotland.
Jane Claydon has written and published ‘St Leonards: Cradle of Lacrosse’, detailing the crucial role played by the school in the development of the game.
To watch Jane on Celebrity Antiques Road Trip and find out more, the episode is available to view online here: BBC Two Celebrity Antiques Road Trip
Scottish Golf Selection
SCOTTISH GOLF SELECTION | Congratulations to Ellen (Year 12), who has been selected as a member of the Scottish Golf Performance Academy.
Ellen, who is enrolled on the Elite Golf Programme at St Leonards, is pictured here alongside the Scottish U18 Girls’ panel at a training camp earlier this month. Well done Ellen!
Business BTEC Talk
BUSINESS BTEC TALK | Our Year 12 BTEC students enjoyed a very engaging talk from Randal McLister, Managing Director at St Andrews-based Scotcomms Technology Group. With a focus on innovation and enterprise, pupils learned about Mr McLister’s journey of founding and running his successful ‘smart card’ business, before taking part in a brilliant Q&A session.
A great start to the term for our BTEC students, and our thanks go to Mr McLister for coming in to speak to the class!
Team GB Equestrian Coaching
TEAM GB EQUESTRIAN COACHING | St Leonards pupils Libby (Year 10) and Ella (Year 11) travelled to Aberdeen just before Christmas to attend a training clinic with Chris Bartle, the Performance Coach for Team GB Eventing. The pair took part in the lesson alongside other members of the Fife Pony Club. A fantastic and unique opportunity for two of our riders to train with one of the UK’s top coaches!
Alex's Antarctic Expedition
ALEX'S ANTARCTIC EXPEDITION | St Leonards Sixth Former Alex Campbell (Year 13) travelled to Antarctica during the Christmas holidays in support of the UK Antarctic Heritage Trust, an organisation which works to keep the history of the British Antarctic explorers alive.
Alex flew for 16 hours and sailed for seven before reaching Port Lockroy on the frozen Antarctic Peninsula, where he was briefed, along with his brother Harry and sister Catherine, both St Leonards Seniors, on the wildlife, including penguins, whales, elephant seals and many different species of birds.
After learning about the topography of the land that lies beneath the ice, Alex discovered more about how this land helps to form the glaciers and ice shelves that are found all over the continent.
There were strict regulations to comply with even before Alex and the rest of the expedition team embarked from the boat, including vacuuming every item of kit using a powerful suction tool to prevent any foreign soils, seeds or bacteria from entering the Antarctic zone.
Over the course of the expedition, Alex attended a lecture by crew members of the American Scientific Research Team from Palmer Station on the realities of living and working in Antarctica for six months of the year, and even raised a St Leonards flag, which he had brought all the way from Scotland to represent the school.
Alex said: “Just to see the Antarctic Peninsula made all the hours of plane travel and several days at sea worth the hardship. The breathtaking landscape and incredible wildlife creates a picturesque scene to rival the natural wonders of the world.
“If you were to explore Antarctica yourself, I would recommend becoming a friend of the UK Antarctic Heritage Trust or a similar organisation, as these organisations help to sustain and preserve the continent and allow you to become a part of the history of this great scenic and scientific land.”
An absolutely incredible educational adventure completed by Alex and his family!
SLM Blues Rugby Round-Up
PROPERTY DEVELOPMENT FOCUS | Thank you to Joe Headon, of Headon Developments, who came in to speak to our IB Business Management students about how he developed the family business, which he runs together with his brother, Pat Headon, who is the father of Jack (Year 12).
Mr Headon spoke to the class about the property development sector more widely, as well as about his own business here in Fife. One of the highlights for Headon Developments was the firm’s recent 30th anniversary.
A very engaging guest speaker for our first Business Management talk of the year!
CRIME CLUB | Last Thursday evening, our Crime Club pupils welcomed two visiting students from Dundee University Law Society: Lauren Galloway and Chloe Smith. Both students are reading Law at the university. Lauren and Chloe were able to school the pupils in the legal process with a view to helping them build a defence and prosecution for the mock trial of Colin Norris, to be held later this term.
The students will be returning with more colleagues every two weeks to facilitate our pupils in building their cases, analysing evidence, deciding which expert testimony to include, and ultimately present their view to the Law Society students, who have kindly agreed to serve as judges in the formal proceedings.
Mrs Greener and Mrs Greenwood are thrilled to have had the help and support of such a prestigious institution, and our pupils could not have asked for better information and direction. Dundee University Law School is first in Scotland and third in the UK for Law, according to the Guardian University Guide 2019, and it is also in the UK top ten in the Sunday Times Good University Guide 2019.
Both teachers very much look forward to continuing to develop the relationship between Crime Club and the Law Society.
INTER-HOUSE LACROSSE | We had a brilliant turnout for Inter-House Lacrosse on Saturday, 26 January, with enough girls representing their teams to have both Big Field pitches in play. Some great skill and teamwork on show, as well as a friendly competitive spirit.
Congratulations to the winning house, St Rule. Bishopshall came a close second, followed by Ollerenshaw in third place!
IB Extended Essay Fair
A TOUCH OF TARTAN | Burns Night was celebrated in style with the boys sporting colourful kilts and tartan trews and the girls adding a touch of tartan to their school uniform on Friday, 25 January.
A delicious traditional Burns’ supper of haggis, neeps and tatties featured on the menu for lunch in the CDR. Here are some of the pupils looking particularly smart in their traditional Scottish dress!