WE SHOULD NOT BE ASHAMED OF OUR PRIVILEGE, WE SHOULD, HOWEVER, BE ASHAMED IF WE DO NOT PUT IT TO GOOD USE.
Tom (F), Head Boy
I must admit, after I accepted the role of Head Boy, there were a few things that concerned me. The first worry that popped into my head was ‘oh my goodness, I am going to have to do the speech’. I spent a lot of this year hoping something miraculous might happen to get me out of it, and I came so close. But not even a pandemic that closed the school and cancelled my exams could get me off the hook.
The worst part is this, I have given a number of speeches over the course of the year and I have used up all my good jokes about the Headmaster. Maybe it is time for a change, after all unexpected change is something we’ve become accustomed to over the last few years.
Fortunately, Bradfield is a school which welcomes change and we’ve seen this recently with the College’s open-mindedness with regards to the Black Lives Matter movement. I know that so many of us are appalled by the countless injustices against the black community throughout history and I am so proud to say in full confidence that my school wants to make a difference. My school is involving all members of its community in discussions about how it can improve and my school encourages its pupils to educate themselves on matters that previously many of us had turned a blind eye to.
Over the last five years, the Upper Sixth have had the privilege of attending this beautiful school, with stunning grounds, excellent facilities, inspiring teachers and most importantly inspiring pupils. In a world where privilege has become stigmatized I think it is imperative that as leavers we appreciate how lucky we have been to spend such an important part of our lives in such a wonderful place.
We should not be ashamed of our privilege, we should, however, be ashamed if we do not put it to good use. We owe it to society to use our privilege for good and to make a positive difference in the world outside the ‘Bradfield Bubble’.
I’d like to thank all of the Bradfield staff. The nature of lockdown has shown how committed you all are to the pupils. Your commitment to giving us a great education is something I truly admire and I look forward to seeing you all again soon as friends rather than teachers.
In my opinion, this year’s Upper Sixth is a bit of a vintage year. Not just because of our work ethic or our ability in so many different areas of College life but because of the way I have seen so many of us act with leadership, passion and kindness toward the rest of the school. Of course, we aren’t perfect, but I believe our legacy will be a long lasting one and I will miss you all terribly over the coming years.
As someone who aspires to be a performer later in life, I hope I never have to perform to a venue as empty as this one ever again. But who knows, maybe this is great practice. I hope that by this time next year, this theatre will be full again and we will be much closer to normality than we are today.
Good luck leavers and good luck Bradfield.