Friday, 19 August 2022

Don't shut my great school because I love it

Don't shut my great school because I love it

IMAGINE growing so close to something, knowing everything about that something, its wrongs, its rights, and becoming so emotionally attached that you couldn’t bare to think what you would do without it, writes year 9 pupil Hollie Pepper, 14, from Caversham.

Now imagine what it would be like for someone to walk up to you one day and say, “we could be taking all that away from you and you might be left with nothing”. Imagine how heartbreaking that would be. Let’s face it, you would be devastated.

Well, right now that’s the position we are in, a position of uncertainty not just for us students but for all the staff and people who are connected to the school and the wider community.

The best thing about Chiltern Edge is that it is such a small school, which means everyone knows everyone else. Sometimes that can be challenging but for most of the time it means that it’s a family environment, where we look after each other.

Students who attend Chiltern Edge are all unique in their own way. We can be moody, unpredictable teenagers, so we have bad days and sometimes we get a bit distracted, but we all have one thing in common and that is friendship.

We have support from staff in abundance and every day we are all learning to respect each other. The bond we have in this school is so strong and no Ofsted report or article can ever break that.

At times there have been teachers who haven’t been as flexible as they could have been but I wouldn’t be who I am today if it wasn’t for certain teachers at this school.

I’m a child who maybe pushes the boundaries too far sometimes or thinks I’m doing something for my own good but it then turns out to be a disaster yet the staff have supported me through all these times.

These teachers are amazing and they stand out for me because they understand teenagers, they listen and they want to help. They also get kids understanding on a level that not all teachers can achieve. I can’t thank them enough for all they do for me.

To my teachers reading this, you inspire kids like me every day and I hope you are proud to be part of our school.

I remember the time the dance department went round with a loudspeaker promoting tickets for the dance show and the whole school was literally dancing their hearts out. It’s moments like these that us kids will remember for the rest of our lives and I would love to carry on making lots more memories over the next two years.

I’m so proud to be at Chiltern Edge. There are lots of things to improve on, but let’s go for it, let’s make things better. Let’s not take all the good stuff away nor break up friendships, bonds and the community. Let’s come together and show everyone what we can achieve.

Chiltern Edge, its pupils and staff deserve a second chance to get this right. In my eyes, we are 90 per cent there already. I wish I had all the answers but I’m 14 and I don’t have the power to fight government cuts or the council alone.

I just have the power to voice my opinion and hope people will listen to me as a pupil of a great school.

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