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Life lessons and leadership inspiration at Key Stage 3 Speech Day




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As Key Stage 3 students and staff gathered in the Orangery for their final celebration of the academic year, Headmistress Natasha Dangerfield, began her address with the sentiment that has pervaded the summer term at Westonbirt;

“This year has been like no other any of us can remember and we are extremely proud of you all. You have shone in your departments and the breadth of involvement we have seen is testament to you all taking chances to stand out.”

Ahead of prize giving, Mrs Dangerfield was delighted to introduce guest speaker, Major General Paul Nanson CBE who, during a decorated army career spanning over thirty years, spent time in conflict areas such as Iraq, Bosnia and Afghanistan. Major General Nanson finished his career as Commandant of Sandhurst at the army’s training headquarters in Berkshire and Mrs Dangerfield told the students in the audience;

“Life lessons and leadership are an area we hold in common. I know we share the concept that you are all leaders – of yourself, of your learning and sometimes of each other. We are not all born to lead groups, armies or schools, but no matter our place in any group or team – we play an important part.” 

Affirming Mrs Dangerfield’s words, Major General Nanson advised Westonbirt pupils to “never stop learning” and explained how education has given him the confidence and belief to succeed when faced with crisis situations. He told students;

“You will all have had to step up and be leaders during this difficult past year. Leadership is not necessarily about people in authority, rank or high position. It is about those who, when things get difficult, give you the courage, confidence and hope to keep going.”







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