Teamwork on Duke of Edinburgh

September 13th, 2011 | Posted by Rebecca Walker in Sports - (0 Comments)

Teamwork was definitely the name of the game on the St Joseph’s School Silver expedition in Wales this summer. After a very early start on the first morning my team and I were very excited to be on our way. However, we very soon found ourselves a little lost and had to work out the best way to get back on track. Fortunately this didn’t take long and with re-charged batteries after lunch we even arrived at our campsite before the teachers! This seemed rather too good to be true – and it was – we weren’t quite in the right place!

After much searching we finally found the site and together put up our tents and cooked and ate our meals. Exhausted we fell into our beds (sleeping bags) ready to sleep – and it was only 7.30pm! Slumber, however, had to wait because the other group arrived about 2 hours after and we all got up to help them put up their tents and get their meals: they had an even worse day than us!

Day 2 came all too quickly and involved a huge climb. We almost gave up, but encouraged, cajoled and helped each other so that finally we made it – and what a view: we were glad we did it.

On the final day we decided that we worked out that walking for half an hour and resting for five minutes was the best way of making maximum progress. Using this technique we quickly climbed “Sugar Loaf” – and to help us even more we kept singing (American Soldier Style) and  before we knew it we were at Crickhowell – the finish!

We were all exhausted but so proud of each other for meeting the challenge: it was all down to teamwork!

Naomi Gillies – Year 11

608 Mile Fastnet Race

August 31st, 2011 | Posted by Rebecca Walker in Sports - (0 Comments)

 

Beth Matthews – Year 10 St Joseph’s School

 

Beth Mathews, a Year 10 pupil at St Joseph’s  School,  completed the gruelling 608 mile non-stop Fastnet race, which involved 5 days at sea in some quite difficult and challenging weather conditions. The Fastnet is one of yacht racings big Ocean racing challenges and to have completed it is no mean achievement.

Beth was one of a crew of 7 on board the 33 foot yacht ‘X-Rated’, skippered by Charles Gurney and was probably the youngest person to be taking part in the race, which involved 313 boats (some 2000 crew members). They finished 20th in class and 90th overall.

Congratulations to Beth and her team.

Oustanding GCSE Results

August 25th, 2011 | Posted by Rebecca Walker in Results - (0 Comments)

Students at St Joseph’s School in Launceston are celebrating another set of exceptional GCSE results this week, as once again they are significantly higher than the national average.

GCSE students celebrate fantastic results

56% of students achieved all A* & A grades, an outstanding achievement.

100% of students who took Music and French at GCSE achieved A* and 100% of students who took History and Geography achieved A or A*.

Head Teacher Mrs Sue Rowe said, ‘“This is an excellent set of results; as a non-selective school we are extremely proud of the achievements of all our pupils. The students are a credit to St Joseph’s and their families and I look forward to seeing them using this springboard to fulfil their considerable potential as they progress onto the next stage of education or into apprenticeships. My congratulations to them all on such tremendous and well deserved results.”

The top performers for 2011 were Freddie Bowden, Lily Robinson, Penny Tilsley and Head Pupil Grace Waterhouse who all achieved A* and A Grades.   

The results are the pinnacle of  an excellent year for St Joseph’s having also received the 2011  ISA Award of Excellence. With boys now from Nursery to Year 8 St Joseph’s School looks forward to another year of excellence across the board.

Cornwall Life

August 20th, 2011 | Posted by Rebecca Walker in In The Press - (0 Comments)

August 2011

Choir Tour Italy 2011

August 15th, 2011 | Posted by Rebecca Walker in Music - (0 Comments)

After a painfully early morning start from Launceston the journey to our hotel, Da Bepi, in Lido di Jesolo via Gatwick and Bologna went smoothly and the eagerly anticipated summer Choir tour to Venice was finally underway.  Lido di Jesolo  is a resort on the Adriatic coast fringing Venice’s lagoon, a boat ride away from Venice, with 14 km of safe sandy beaches. Our family-run hotel was not only close to the beach but also to the town centre and the shops – vital, as out first essential task was to find lunch.  Rheinhard, our tour guide, had stayed there before and with his fluent Italian ensured that we were comfortable and well looked after.  Breakfasts were buffet style with the usual continental cornflakes, fruit and bread and in the evenings a three course meal starting with pasta (why does it always taste so much better in Italy?).  Lunch time eating was more adventurous and involved ingenuity as it involved local foraging armed with the ration of Euros from the ‘bank’.

Italy 2011

Next morning we had time to relax on the beach before travelling to Marostica in the foothills of the Italian Alps for an evening concert. There was time to explore the medieval town famed for its gatehouse and walls which encompass a centre square floored by a human sized chess board and to sample the ice cream. Despite the threat of a shower the evening was calm. The open-air concert was set in a small courtyard, Scalinata dei Carmini, where the acoustics were quite stunning.  The hour long concert included items from the whole choir and from individuals which were warmly applauded by the audience that steadily grew in numbers during the concert. The hospitality of our hosts after the concert was appreciated by all.

Wednesday was Venice day.   An early breakfast and an equally early coach journey took us to our boat at Punta Sabbioni for a tour of the waterways of the Venetian lagoon. It was incongruous to be followed up a narrow channel by a towering ocean-going cruise liner heading for the docks.  Arriving at Pizzale Roma (Bus station!) we transferred to four small water taxis for a fantastic trip down the Grand Canal.  Arriving at St Mark’s Square, we were led by our expert guides, Mr & Mrs Mann, to the Rialto Bridge where, in our normal groups, we partook in the enjoyable ancient art of wandering and shopping in the busy, but safe, streets of central Venice.  All too quickly it was back to the boat for the trip across the lagoon to our hotel. Our concert in the evening was just a few blocks away from the hotel in a central square in  Lido di Jesolo. Unusually it rained. Luckily the choir were set up in a bandstand which provided shelter and despite the torrential downpour the concert was enjoyed by a large number of locals and tourists, all sporting umbrellas and the group of parents camped out in the nearest café.  Lily Robinson’s song containing the words  ‘Don’t leave me out in the pouring rain’ took on a very real significance.  ‘I don’t think I have enjoyed a concert so much,’ was the general consensus of opinion.

Thursday was Aqualandia day.  Aqualandia is reputed to be the largest water park in Europe and it certainly lived up to its reputation. There was something for everyone. Those who wanted to climbed the towers, to whizz down the long, steep and curvy water slides, whilst others, and I include most of the staff in this group, enjoyed the gentle (and the not so gentle) waves in the very large swimming area.  Ice creams were mandatory as was the sun screen!

Friday was again a Venice day. After yet another early breakfast it was off to our chartered boat for a tour of the islands of Murano and Burano in the lagoon.  Burano is an extremely quaint fishing village characterised by its lace making and brightly painted houses.   It was a delight to wander along the streets in the warm Mediterranean sunshine.  Murano is famous for its glass making and we were able to see a demonstration of the glassblower’s intricate art in one of the factories.  During the afternoon we were again let loose in Venice to shop and wander at will before meeting up for the highlight of out trip.  We had the privilege of being able to participate in the Evening Mass at the magnificent Basilica San Marco.  The choir performed to perfection with their unaccompanied choral singing during the service befitting the occasion and the setting.  This was a wonderful moment for all those who were there. The magic continued afterwards as we travelled back across the lagoon, to Punta Sabbioni, with the sun setting in red and gold over Venice.

An early start on Saturday saw us retrace our footsteps to Launceston.  Thanks to Rheinhard, our Tour Manager and Rayburn tours we thoroughly enjoyed our visit to Venice.  Yet again Mrs Mann, aided and abetted by her team, had planned a Choir trip that everyone, pupils, staff and parents thoroughly enjoyed and appreciated.  Thank you!

Dr Alan Doe