Headteacher’s blog: Christmas is a magical time of the year: the season for giving and receiving.

Our students have the privilege of receiving a high quality education from dedicated teaching staff and Urmston Grammar ensures that we educate the whole child by focusing on so much more than  academic achievement.

We are committed to instilling the importance of giving back and want to play a role in unleashing the power of positive action in our students.

The role the UGS student body plays in the local community is a source of great pride to the school.

Every year our very own Mr Dickson takes on physical challenges to raise funds that go toward two community Christmas parties hosted by our sixth formers. This autumn he cycled from Urmston to Silverdale in the Lake District to make sure that events go with a swing.

Before school breaks up for the Christmas holidays, students will organise festive fun for older members of our community who live  in residential homes, by serving up an afternoon of seasonal treats and tipples.

They will also entertain the pupils from Delamere Special School by playing party games, dancing and singing.

Each Delamere pupil gets to visit Santa’s grotto along with their support assistants where they will receive a gift and a Christmas card from the big man in the red suit himself!

These connections between older and younger members of the community, from different backgrounds, give vital life experiences that are not possible to achieve in the classroom.

Our students get as much, if not more, from the parties as their guests. They look forward to them throughout the autumn term; learning and putting into practice the social, organisational and service skills required which are transferable to their future careers.

It helps them understand that sometimes the greatest gift you can give is your time.

Just as importantly, the parties are tremendous fun and gets everyone in the Christmas spirit.

On Tuesday 12th December the School Council has arranged for us to support  Key 103’s Mission Christmas. We  are encouraging all students to support this important  initiative to help provide Christmas gifts for the considerable number of children living in poverty in the Greater Manchester area. We hope to create a better Christmas for those who are less fortunate than us.

During our whole school assembly this week a group of Year 11 students told us how they want to help raise funds to support the homeless of Manchester. They explained what they intend to do to make life just a little more comfortable for those who will spend the festive season on the streets of our great city and why this was such an important cause for them.

There are many opportunities throughout the year to contribute to communities, locally and indeed internationally, most recently the month-long Tanzania trip to support community building project over the summer. So we would encourage students to get involved in charity events after the festive season is over.

A reminder that Urmston Grammar closes at 13:45 on Thursday, December 21 and reopens at 8:30 Monday, January 8. We wish you all a very merry Christmas and a peaceful and prosperous new year.

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