Whether called Extra-Curricular or Co-Curricular, the life of the Senior School encompasses so much more than just what happens in the classroom. The wider life of the child is of equal importance, and this holistic approach to ensuring that we provide opportunities for all is very much a focus of life at St Joseph’s.
St Joseph’s has a long tradition of musical excellence across both Junior and Senior departments, and the Choirs provide one example of this. Here Year 6 pupils have the opportunity to sing in the Senior Boys’ Choir, while the Girls’ Chamber Choir and the elite Canzonetta both have outstanding reputations. All pupils have the opportunity to develop the many lifelong skills that choral singing can provide during both lunchtime and after school sessions. In addition, private music lessons are available, as well as the school having offered jazz bands, folk groups, rock band, wind band, brass band and a wide variety of other musical activities. Opportunities to perform in front of audiences occur throughout the year.
St Joseph’s has seen considerable investment in sporting facilities in recent years, including a state of the art floodlit Astroturf facility, a new grass sports and athletics facility and a newly constructed strength and conditioning suite. All are available for a wide range of extra-curricular clubs and fixtures, allowing the inclusive ethos of the St Joseph’s PE department to offer something for everyone. And all this in a supportive (and healthily competitive) environment that gives each child the chance to find their strength. In addition, we have outdoor education, Science, ICT, programming, media, golf, sailing and surfing clubs as well as a variety of other activities running through the year. These can change year on year. The school is now a Directly Licenced Centre for the delivery of the Duke of Edinburgh programme, as well as a proud participant in the Ten Tors challenge, where students have had great success in recent years.
As a member of the Independent Schools Association (ISA) we have access to a wide variety of sporting events, and many St Joseph’s children are very successful indeed in this area, some even winning National titles. Supporting this invaluable programme, Mr Sam Matthews is ISA South West Sports Representative, while St Joseph’s Headmaster Mr Oliver Scott is ISA South West Sports head.
Clubs are all bookable through the Parent Portal which is an excellent way ensure communication between school and home. Pupils can of course choose to complete their homework in Prep instead of attending clubs, but we very much encourage a healthy balance between activities and academic life. Skills developed as part of the extra-curricular life of the school are not just valuable in their own right, but can develop healthy habits for the rest of a student’s life.