It’s week 19 of the school year and the number of additional ‘revision Saturdays’ for GCSE students is already increasing in preparation for the summer examination sessions. A week last Saturday it was Philosophy and Ethics revision and this weekend it was GCSE Separate Science (71 attendees). Well done everyone for showing such amazing commitment, and to my staff for their hard work and effort on behalf of their pupils. For quite a long time last term we were exposed to some remarkable new moustaches among the male staff but, with Movember now – in most cases – just a distant memory (some brave individuals seem to have decided to retain their new facial accessories), we are able to celebrate the fundraising benefits of the project. Staff raised £505.20 in support of prostate cancer. Well done for a superb commitment and for your understanding in shaving them off before The Duke of Gloucester’s visit. On the sporting front, Craig Tyson, our PE and Science Technician, was nominated for an award by the English Rugby Football Schools’ Union. The RBS Daily Mail Real Rugby Heroes Awards 2012 recognise those who beaver away in the background, largely unheralded, for rugby and the school. After the nominations were judged, Craig was informed that he is an award winner this year. He gets tickets for the RBS Six Nations England vs Ireland game, a certificate, a lapel badge and an invitation to the Daily Mail RBS Schools’ Day presentations later this spring. Congratulations Craig – you deserve this recognition for the great job you do at UCC. On Saturday 21 January, Greg Hall and Flora Blackburn both qualified for the Cumbria County Cross-Country Team in a race at Cartmel Racecourse. Greg and Flora will compete at Kirkby Stephen in the Inter-Counties Event, which is, in effect, a national cross-country trial. The District Team will also contain 14 runners from UCC. Good luck to all our runners.
Happy New Year to all students, parents and members of the UCC school community. It’s good to be back in a routine after the long Christmas break. With spring in the air there’s a huge amount going on, as usual, and lots to look forward to (including the January AS/A2 modules, unfortunately). When I agreed with Michelle Lewin (Head of the Learning Resources Centre) to do a regular blog, I had no idea how many people outside the school would keep up to date with what’s happening by reading it. Last week I had to go back to my old school in Armthorpe, South Yorkshire, for an event and my Chair of Governors, a fabulous and committed advocate of the school, told me that she also keeps tabs on this school’s progress by occasionally logging on the UCC website and reading this… Last night we held our Year 9 options evening and the attendance was awesome – less than 10 missing from a year group of 240 pupils. This year a team, led by Mr Ellery, has worked on our options programme and the result proved very popular. You can see the options video, filmed by students on Carlisle Station and the London to Glasgow Inter-City 125 under Student Life/Careers (click here to view) on the website. The video will give some idea about the professionalism of the whole process. Football: Mr Key’s Year 10 football team played their County Cup Quarter Final on Friday against St Benedict’s Catholic School Whitehaven. Although they lost 4:3 they played fantastically, battling back from 3:0 after 20 minutes to level the score at 3:3, only conceding the final goal in the last minute. For a full game report click here. Re-sit marks for Year 11 GCSE Science and Maths are out today and these show further good progress for those students involved towards another very pleasing results in the summer.
The year 10 football team travelled over to a very wet and cold Whitehaven to play St Benedict’s in the Quarter Finals of the County Cup. After a hard earned victory over Caldew they knew that St Benedict’s were going to provide even tougher opposition. The game didn’t start well, from the UCC KO possession was conceded and despite a superb initial save by Sam Pryke the St Benedict’s forward was straight onto the rebound and put his team 1-0 up. It didn’t get much better for UCC, 5 minutes later another goal mouth scramble and again a St Benedict’s player lashed the ball home doubling his teams lead. UCC were shell shocked despite a good warm up the team had not got the journey out of their system. Gradually Cam Prokas and Asher Hart started to win the ball and get the teams possession game working, chances started to come more often, with Jonny Murray, Lamin Cham and Harry Land linking nicely up front. Then against the run of play St Benedict’s took a quick throw and there winger sent in a cross turned shot that unbelievably found the top corner leaving Pryke with no chance. Just as the UCC boys were getting there act together conceding again after only 20 minutes 3-0 it was not looking good. However the UCC boys knew that the score line did not reflect the game, they knew they could get something from the game. The reaction from the whole team was pure grit and determination, lead by captain Luke Boyle and Brad Renwick who started winning every preventing the St Benedict’s danger men time on the ball. Dan Corrie started to become an attacking threat linking with ‘Man of the Match’ Josh Usher, finally UCC’s persistence paid off with a superb delivery that was met by Harry Land who hit the bar only for fellow strike partner Murray to out muscle the defender and head home. At half time UCC looked hungry for more, they knew that they had to show composure on the ball and use their superior close ball skills to greater effect. This was put into practice almost immediately with Jonny Murray slotting home his second of the game, with a precision finish. The whole team really started to win their individual battles, Callum Evans using his height to dominate the aerial contest and Dan Corrie driving forward on every opportunity. After bombarding the St Benedict’s goal, Brad Renwick hitting the cross bar with a dipping cross, getting the ball cleared of the line from an Usher strike it started to look unlikely a UCC equaliser would happen. Then a long clearance by Evans caught out St Benedict’s defence with Lamin Cham judging the bounce to perfection, he accelerated away and finished emphatically into the top corner. At last UCC were back on level terms, they didn’t stop pushing with more attacks going agonisingly close. Then with 5 minutes to go, St Benedict’s pushed forward to relieve the pressure. Adam Ewbank making numerous well timed tackles the ball fell to there midfielder who found himself in space 25yards out from goal. He struck a stinging low drive, unfortunately Pryke got down low but could not stop the ball from squirming under his body. Heart break for UCC after all their efforts and commitment they had conceded when they had battled so hard. UCC tried to get one last chance to equalise once more however St Benedict’s put everyone behind the ball and saw the game out to the end. Despite the disappointment and frustration of coming so close, the boys had to hold their heads high as they never gave up and showed outstanding team spirit. They know that they have got to demonstrate the same commitment and desire when they play in the City Cup final at Brunton Park making sure they come away with a victory. St Benedicts 4 UCC 3 MoM – Josh Usher Goals - Murray 2, Cham.