On Friday 8th September 2017 at St Augustine’s Priory we hosted our fourteenth annual Progression Dinner. Progression is a tradition whereby Upper VI leavers are invited back to the school for a formal dinner together before they progress from school to university.
Before the meal everyone gathered for refreshments in the Priory 6 Common Room before wending their way to the Pupils’ Refectory where a candlelit meal awaited them.
As is traditional for the outgoing Head Girl at Progression, Erin Costello gave a speech from the head of the table, addressing her former classmates and teachers. Erin recalled that at the beginning of the 2016 – 17 academic year the Head of Priory 6, Ms Hagerty, spoke to Priory 6 about ‘grit’. Erin explained that although she felt she understood what Ms Hagerty meant, she didn’t feel that ‘grit’ was something she had personally experienced!
However, in preparation for her speech on Friday night, Erin reflected on how much she has learned about grit in her time at St Augustine’s Priory. She shared that she had recently come to realise that when she was tested on her spellings in front of her class in the Junior School, she stepped up to the mark and demonstrated grit, and when the girls persevered through the toughest weather on the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, that was definitely true grit.
We often refer to our vision of instilling courage and resolve in girls and to enable them to develop and bring out their strength of character. Each girl is individual and resilient and Mrs Raffray, in her speech, applauded the girls for having achieved academic excellence, demonstrating tremendous courage and endurance through some of the trials which several had to endure through the year.
Abbie Buchanan, our current Head Girl of 2017 – 18, then gave a heart-warming speech, telling the girls with whom she has grown up at St Augustine’s Priory that the Common Room is not the same without them, and wishing them luck in all their future endeavours.
Mrs Collins closed the speeches by inviting the girls back to the Association Day next June, assuring them that they will be part of the St Augustine’s Priory community for life.
Progression is a great opportunity for our Upper VI leavers and staff to come together to celebrate all that is wonderful about our Sixth Form – and this, the fourteenth such occasion, was certainly no exception!
We wish all our 2017 Upper VI leavers every success and joy!