Prize Giving 2021
The Headmaster, Philip Wayne, offers his reflections on the successes of our boys this year, particularly
during a difficult year of lockdown.
I would like to extend my thanks to our Chairman of Governors, who is stepping down this year after around 14 years as a governor, Chair of Finance and Board Chairman. A passionate advocate of the school which educated his two sons, Steve has been exceptional in this role. We wish Steve all the very best in his future projects and thank him, along with all of our dedicated volunteers, for contributing their time and expertise so generously to support the School.
Steve will be saying a few words during the ceremony as will our Guest of Honour, Fergus Walsh, BBC Medical Correspondent and Old Wycombiensien. We are delighted that Fergus has agreed to address us this evening and thank him, like many others in our alumni community, for his continued commitment to RGS.
Although our Prize Giving 2021 is a virtual one again, this year, we have decided to combine our celebrations with the annual RGS Art Exhibition into a single event. Art at the School has gone from strength to strength in recent years. The quality of the boys’ work is exceptional and I do hope that you will enjoy the gallery.
The School has traditionally held two Prize Giving ceremonies each year: a Junior event for students in Years 7 – 9, and a Senior event for students in Years 10 – 13. Between them, over 200 trophies and awards are handed out every year – just over half of them for academic achievement, while the rest celebrate commitment and achievement in a wide range of activities, including sport, music, drama, public speaking, young enterprise and community service. The names of most of the awards are self-explanatory, but here are some of the less obvious ones explained:
- Form Tutor Prize – one for each form group, awarded by the form tutor to the boy who best embodies the values and ethos of the School
- Diploma of Merit – awarded to the boys who have achieved the consistently highest scores for Attitude to Learning throughout the year
- Colours and Half-Colours – a recognition of excellence in the co-curricular sphere of the School. Often awarded in Sport, Music and the Arts.
- Swan Colours – awarded to any student who is selected to represent their country in sport. These are relatively rare and a great achievement.
Prize Giving traditionally concludes with a Vote of Thanks by the Head Boy. Here, James Murray from Year 12, our recently appointed Head Boy for the next academic year, brings our ceremony to a close with a short speech from the Queen's Hall.
Music has always played an important part in our Prize Giving ceremonies. Every year the audience in the Queen’s Hall is treated to solo and small-group performances by some of the outstanding musicians at the school. To conclude our virtual Prize Giving, therefore, Adam Portch has chosen to play That's Life by Frank Sinatra.
Thank you for joining our virtual Prize Giving. We hope you enjoy it.