A UNIQUE set of students has been rewarded with an academy’s highest honour for their commitment within the classroom and the local community.

Four Year 13 students at Bede Academy, Blyth, received the Principal’s Award 2017 after demonstrating an outstanding contribution to academy life.

Jay Robinson, Christie Wilce, Kirsty Routledge and Claire Brown were presented with their certificates by head of school Julie Roberts.

“Our Principal’s Award recognises the highest personal recognition that Bede Academy can make,” said Mrs Roberts.

“It is not based on academic ability but on personal integrity; it does not rely on sporting prowess or artistic talent but on commitment and good humour and the recipients of this award have gained not only the personal respect of the principal but also the respect of those from within our academy community and beyond.

“I am sure that our four winners may be surprised to have been chosen and will have thought of many others whom they feel may have deserved the award more than themselves. That is the type of people they are and that is why they are the most deserving of this accolade.”

The awards were presented at the annual Year 13 leavers’ dinner organised by head of computing Jenifer Taylor and attended by over 70 students and members of staff.

“The leavers dinner really is a celebration of our sixth form students’ time here at Bede Academy,” said Mrs Taylor.

“It is especially meaningful as this is a unique group of students. They are the only year group to have started in Year 6 on this site on the very first day that the academy opened eight years ago.

“They have been excellent role models for our school throughout their time with us and have really set the standard that is Bede Academy.”

Guest speaker and retired head of sixth form Alan Corner encouraged the academy leavers to embrace both ups and downs in life and to never give up on their dreams.

“As you go through life there will be lots of highs and lows and it is how you deal with them that defines who you are and how happy you will be,” said Mr Corner.

“There is a time for everything in life and it is now your time to take the next steps on your journey. Try to enjoy every single day and never let anyone squash your dreams of success.”

Before receiving their own awards, head boy Jay Robinson and head girl Claire Brown presented humorous awards to other students including: worst driver, worst laugh, nicest smile, biggest chav, biggest gossip, most hardworking, worst hair, best couple, best personality and best bromance.

“Tonight is a great opportunity to all get together for one final time,” said Jay, who is hoping to study law at Newcastle University.

“We have been a really tight year group and the only one that will ever experience Bede Academy from Year 6 to Year 13 all on the same site.

“It will be sad to go, after all this time the academy really feels like a second home, but it’s also positive that we will all be moving on to a new chapter in our lives.”

Head of sixth form Stephen Davies added: “I have such pride looking out and seeing everyone here this evening. You have all come such a long way and now is just the start of your adult lives.  

“You have been a fantastic year group and part of Bede Academy will always be a part of you and who you will be in the future.”