Manor House School, Ashby -de la- Zouch

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End of term prize giving speech from Mr. Messent

05 Jul 2018


Mr Messent’s prize giving speech at St Helen's Church Thursday 5th June 2018

Welcome to our annual prize giving in our historic seat of learning. How lovely it is to see so many familiar and some new faces. How quickly a year goes.

I want to say thank you to two of our leavers in S5, who have done themselves and Manor House School proud throughout their time as Head Girl and Head Boy. The school has been a better place for your presence, and for all of S5.  Watching the way the kindergarten children respond to S5 due to their patience and kindness shows us all how our students work together, and individually, in every aspect of Manor House school life.

Good actions give strength to ourselves and inspire good actions in others. To quote gratuitously from the person who’s been on our screens for the past few weeks, and who’s been a favourite of mine for many years previously, Harry Kane, ‘ You need dedication and motivation and your dreams can come true.’  Skills learnt and nurtured here at Manor House School will set you up for the rest of your lives. You leave us confident in your knowledge, abilities and with memories that will stay with you throughout your lives.

Our children here are nurtured, encouraged and motivated. Supported and stretched. Rewards are high and endeavour important and recognised. Having mentored, guided and taught the year group myself I have no doubt how hard S5 have been working and how we all know your efforts will be rewarded when you collect your results eight weeks today on 23rd August. I know I will be talking again to happy and excited students as the school celebrates its third consecutive year of everyone passing every exam; of 100% success again. Academic successes at Manor House School are well documented – we are rightly proud of the examination results achieved by our senior pupils last year and before. That is a remarkable achievement for all of you and testament to the hard work and efforts that you make, not just in your examination years but lower down the school as well. You start your journey early here at Manor House and the rewards are yours for the taking.

We now focus on the challenges ahead for S4 by welcoming our new Head Girl and Head Boy for the class 2019. Our young people in this school look up to you and respect you. With this position comes responsibility and the chance to shine; Manor House expects and we know you will be successful.

Coming to school every day in the rarified surroundings of Manor House School is a privilege for staff and students. The highlight of my day has always been greeting happy children as they come up the driveway every morning.  The education your children receive at Manor House is thorough and structured to the needs of individual children; taught by teachers who know your children and are dedicated to motivating, supporting and encouraging them to achieve. High expectations, small classes and big results. Nulli secondus. Second to none.


In and out of the classrooms there are numerous opportunities and successes. I never tire of showing new parents around and hearing their comments on the art work, and talking about the nativity plays and the productions that are such show pieces. New parents never fail to be impressed by the manners and politeness demonstrated every day here. Many of you here will have heard me tell you on your first visit that we continue the good manners you introduce at home. Our children see that being polite brings its own rewards – such a powerful lifelong lesson.  We have young artist winners here, students who win prizes for mathematics, for public speaking in the English speaking awards and in many other areas in and outside of school; tomorrow’s leaders.


Our children try hard and we put success within their grasp by encouragement, making goals achievable and showing understanding of who they are as individuals.  Our residential trips build confidence and trust in each other – my thanks go out again to Mrs Millington-Pipe and the team for last week’s excellent trip. She was so thorough that she even planned the weather… As ever I thank our staff for maintaining the high standards all of us here have a right to expect at Manor House, and for showing care and for encouraging our students in everything they do. I want to thank the children  for teaching me something I will never forget when I joined them at Whitemoor Lakes last Friday – avoid yellow helmets as they attract flies. And so I was able to enjoy my kayaking with them - fly free! Plans are afoot for next year’s residential further afield for seniors including S5 after the exams in the first week of July, to be announced with more details next term.


The education and care at Manor House gives our children the confidence to excel outside school too.  Every student here shows what effort and courage can achieve when supported with purpose and direction. Enjoyment is in taking part and trying your best.


Manor House remains unique amongst schools due to the high levels of individual care and attention that permeates every aspect of school life. You leave your child here knowing they will aspire and achieve in lessons. But more than that all staff here know and understand your children. In the office, in the kitchens and on the caretaker’s rounds staff work every day doing their best for the children. All of us know every child’s name and all of us share the care for their welfare and best interests.

Today we say goodbye to a few students and wish them all the very best for the future. We welcome more next year.

With Monday and Tuesday’s transition days being well attended throughout the school and the incoming children excited to be joining us in September at last, and the talent show, interhouse rounders, swimming gala and Whitemoor Lakes residential all happening over the past fortnight, the aura of positivity around the old buildings recently has been tangible.   With potential newcomers in the junior school, a completely refreshed new S1 class and an S2 class which will soon be having a waiting list we continue to maintain our development whilst keeping our commitment to big results in small classes.


Here, I’m going to read a comment from someone here today who was in the audience for Manor’s got talent on Tuesday;

On behalf of all of us lucky parents, you demonstrated courage that most of us could not muster. For myself, I have never been able to get up in front of an audience, as a child or an adult. And therefore I admire you for firstly volunteering to get up in front of us and secondly doing as you did. You may not believe it at the moment, but the courage you showed will stand you in good stead for the rest of your life. This will probably not be the only time you are in the position of wondering what you have “signed up” for. But next time, and the time after that, you will remember that you survived it before and can do so again. I am not your parent, but I was proud of you



Finally, thank you, each and every family for supporting your children in all they do, whether it be encouraging their learning or the requests to support the charities and The Friends of Manor House School events. We welcome all parents and children to our Certificate Evening on 22nd November where children will be receiving examination certificates and you will have the chance to chat with myself and our teachers afterwards. There will be other events throughout the year where we will see you too.

To all today I say, be cheerful and strive to be happy.



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