News from The Kings of Wessex Academy

A Very Good Year

24th July, 2017 by Miriam Mitchell

Time can be restless in anticipation. This was never more so than on the day of Friday 14 July 2017, when 50 students from Years 9 and 10 eagerly awaited their ‘Rewards Afternoon’, which recognised those students who had made a notable contribution to the school throughout the year and also demonstrated excellent behaviour and attendance.

The event was organised by the respective Heads of Year, Mrs Gray and Mr James, and it was with great consideration and deliberation that students were selected for this special occasion that was to be cherished by all who attended.

The enthusiastic consumption of barbecue hot dogs got proceedings underway on the school field. Many leisure activities then followed: dustbin bag fashion creation; board games that entertained and stimulated the mind with thought-provoking amusement; photo booths that captured that very moment forever; alongside other recreational options, all whilst benefiting from the rays of the summer’s blazing ball of light. A fitting culmination and celebration of a successful academic year.

Before a final farewell, pervading memories swim in the sea of the mind and memorable events of the past year float to the surface. Talented Year 9 entrepreneurs of the future presenting their ‘Big Pitch’; The Kings and Queens News Team ploughing the journalistic furrows of the countryside, exposing the truth about rural bus provision in their story ‘Going the Extra Mile’ for the 2017 BBC News School Report; the Duke of Edinburgh Award students returning after much trekking, and some fatigue, but in high spirits having achieved their goal; and Year 10 students getting a glimpse of the future during their week of Work Experience.

On this note, philosophers have long since ruminated about life and death, but did you realise it is actuaries that have all the answers – including those you want to know and those you might rather not know? I hoped to discover much more during my Work Experience placement. I was fortunate to spend the week in the pleasant and professional environment of a team of consulting actuaries in Bristol. Actuaries use mathematical expertise to measure the probability and risk of future events.

After a little trepidation in unfamiliar surroundings I quickly became involved in some of the daily routines: joining meetings; reviewing client reports; proofreading; and applying 'Plain English Campaign' principles to improve client correspondence.

Throughout the week I gained illuminating insight into the application of an actuary's knowledge and skills. However, the pièce de résistance was finding out about actuarial tables and the vital information they contain about almost every aspect of human life. Actuaries know more about us all than we might be aware!

Spending time in a working environment helped to demystify some of my preconceived ideas about what to expect in the world of work. I had both an informative and interesting experience that exceeded my expectations and I am grateful to the whole actuarial team who were so welcoming and accommodating. All in all, a very good year indeed. These and many other momentous occasions have ushered us into the rising sun of hope and all its possibilities for yet another thriving year to come at Kings. But first the summer holidays!