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Recognition for outstanding East Renfrewshire pupils

90 young people attending East Renfrewshire secondary schools have been honoured for their fantastic achievements throughout the year.

Convener's Awards 2020

Pupils from all seven secondary schools across the authority and Isobel Mair School have been recognised with a Convener's Award for Outstanding Achievement.

Nominations for individuals and/or groups to win an award are submitted by school teachers within a wide range of categories including Sports, Personal Achievement, Creativity and Advocacy, and the winners presented with a certificate and award.

The annual event usually includes an evening awards ceremony at Carmichael Hall in Giffnock, but it was unable to go ahead this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

"The Convener's Awards are always a highlight in my calendar each year, so it is disappointing the awards event was not able to go ahead this year. Needless to say I am absolutely delighted we are still able to recognise the excellent achievements of this group of young people who have been so committed to working hard and excelling this year. All of the winners should be incredibly proud of themselves, they are a credit to not only themselves but their families and their school." Councillor Paul O'Kane, Convener for Education and Equalities

"Well done to all of our incredible young people who have been recognised with a Convener's Award for their exceptional achievements. We continue to strive to offer all of our pupils a vast array of opportunities across a range of disciplines and I am delighted we have been able to recognise the hard work of this group of pupils who are now well equipped to excel in the next stages of their lives beyond school." Mhairi Shaw, Director of Education

Full details of the winners are listed below:

Barrhead High School

Emma C started rugby at the age of 14 and became a member of the Cartha Queens Park rugby team soon after. Emma's team won the Scottish shield and made it to the final of the Scottish cup, playing against Stirling at Murrayfield. Emma has been playing for Scotland U18s for the past two years, training with Cartha twice a week and with the Scotland squad up to 4 times a week.

Tyler V dedicates huge amounts of her time to her local community in Barrhead, volunteering at Include Me 2 in Barrhead, a charity supporting people with additional support needs. She also gives her time to support the local library. She was named Include Me 2 young volunteer of the year in 2019.

The Senior Gymnastic Coaches group have been dedicated members of the gymnastics team since S1. For the last 2 years, this group have volunteered to coach younger pupils, allowing many more young people to attend the club than would otherwise be possible. They consistently provide support for younger pupils as well as showing excellent motivation in developing their own performance.

Eastwood High School

Amelia B has given huge amounts of time volunteering with various volleyball clubs and supporting younger players to develop. She volunteers with the Scottish Volleyball Team to help out at international matches. Amelia has also supported the growth of the Eastwood High School Ceilidh Band.

Torin B is recognised for his excellent creative writing. He writes and performs short stories and haikus and won the prestigious Pushkin Prize for Creative Writing. Unusually for a junior pupil, Torin has been awarded full colours for Creative Performing Arts in Eastwood High School.

Leigh E has achieved 2nd Dan Black Belt in Tae Kwon Do and is working towards 3rd Dan. As well as training several times a week, she is learning Korean as part of her training and cycles at least 20 miles a week.

Amy M was selected at 17 for the Scotland U21 netball squad. An aspiring PE teacher, Amy coaches Basketball for the Council and has undertaken  a lifeguarding course. As a platinum sports ambassador she runs the school sports council every week.

Isobel Mair School

Holly B has achieved exceptional success using her AAC device effectively across the curriculum and in a wide range of situations.

Dylan M is recognised for his success in painting, exhibiting and selling his own art work, which he also promotes through an Instagram page that he manages himself.

Mearns Castle High School

Danyaal B is an International and European Taekwondo champion. Danyaal trains with Team GB in Manchester most weekends throughout the academic year and has been a top European competitor at his age group since S1.

Amy C was selected to represent Scotland at the Japan Shotokan Karate Association (JSKA) European Championships in November. She won a gold medal in her individual event and two silver medals in her team events and gained the title of JSKA European Champion.

Margaret K has gone above and beyond in supporting extra-curricular musical activities over several years: as part of the Stage Management for concerts and charities week; by supporting the Junior Concert Band; by encouraging pupils to learn and keep on playing musical instruments; and supporting her peers in Senior Band as a Section leader. 

Crystelle L is a three times Scottish gymnastic champion and tenth in Britain. She is a British Team member and achieved a second placing in the Home Nations Championship. Crystelle has also represented Scotland in the Northern European Championships and qualified for the finals.

Erin W has achieved national level success singing. She is a student at the RCS and has performed with this group on many occasions and in the televised BBC Watchnight Service programme.  Erin has been part of the Senior National Youth Choir of Scotland for a number of years and has performed with them in a variety of concerts and events. 

Modern Languages Ambassadors Callum L and Scott Y have had a hugely positive impact on the Modern Languages department. They have taken a lead role in a range of activities to promote language learning to both pupils and parents, raising the profile of language learning across the school community and supporting others to learn.

St Luke's High School

Abbie D contributes to the life and work of St Luke's community, showing outstanding pupil leadership in the school's Vision, Values and Aims and Rights Respecting work. She presented the Vision, Values and Aims at a National CHAS Conference.

Charlie G is a Young Sports Ambassador at St Luke's and also a Sports Scotland Young Ambassador. An accomplished dancer, she recently reached the final of BBC's The Greatest Dancer with her dance group Dancepoint. Charlie also gives her time to support younger pupils in dancing groups.

Elle W is a freestyle dancer and holds many national and international titles. Her most recent titles include a double win at the annual Disco Kid, Kind and Queen (DKKQ) event held in the Blackpool Tower Ballroom in December 2019 where she was named Slow Dance Superstar as well as the Disco Kid Under 18 Girl Champion.

St Ninian's High School

Grace H is recognised for her work to raise awareness of young carers as part of the Young Carers Project. She gives her time to help others understand experiences of young carers, by giving talks to younger children in the community, volunteering and running workshops.

Sophia L plays oboe with the RCS Junior Symphony Orchestra and the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain. While at the Conservatoire she has sung as a soloist for the Jazz Band at Christmas concerts. She also performs with Harelquin theatre company and supports school masses and concerts. 

Martha M works tirelessly to raise awareness of anaphylaxis. She has delivered presentations on anaphylaxis to all year groups and has been praised by The Anaphylaxis Campaign for her work. She has featured in Cambridge University and BBC documentaries about her experiences.

Luke N is recognised for exceptional commitment to learning Mandarin Chinese. He has been awarded the September 2020-June 2021 CISS China Scholarship.  Luke travelled to China to compete in the World Secondary School Mandarin Competition finals in 2019. He also hosted the SCEN youth summit in Perth Concert Hall in 2018 and regularly supports younger learners of Chinese in school.

Heather S received a prestigious Royal Society of Biology award for achieving the top mark in Scotland for Higher Human Biology. She supports younger scientists by volunteering as a Biology mentor and assisting at supported study.

The Athletics Team have achieved outstanding success in both local and national events. Due to expectional teamwork they have won the following events: East Renfrewshire Cross-Country Champions 2018, East Renfrewshire Cross-Country Champions 2019, Scottish Schools Road Race Champions 2018, Scottish Schools Cross-Country Champions 2018 and Scottish Schools Cross-Country Champions 2019.

The VEX Robotics Team have spent a year designing, building and testing a robot from scratch. No part of the robot build came from an instruction manual or a teacher and two years in a row they have won the Teamwork Challenge at the Glasgow championships.

Williamwood High School

Louis G has accumulated numerous gold medal finishes in national competitions.  Louis has represented Scotland (U18) for karate male kumite at the European Championships in Denmark and the World Championships in Chile. Louis is also the Scottish Open Champion (U18) as well as the British Open Champion.

Struan K is recognised for remarkable success in swimming at a national level. His most recent achievements are first place in the senior category of the open water Scottish National Championships at 1km, first place in the 2km senior race as well as first place in the senior relay. In addition, Struan is also in the Scottish Development open water squad.

Dylan M has had outstanding success in challenging circumstances. Dylan is recognised for his perseverance and for his success across all aspects of his work.

Ewan M is a percussionist in the West of Scotland Symphony Orchestra and attends the Junior Conservatoire, where he studies percussion and piano,. He won the Junior Conservatoire Colin Currie Percussion competition in 2019 as well as progressing to the final of the Rotary Young Musician of the Year 2019, performing on xylophone and vibraphone. Ewan plays with ERC Symphony Orchestra, ERC Senior Concert Band and ERC Percussion Ensemble. 

Reuben N is recognised for his achievements in pole vault where he has represented Scotland (U20) and is Scottish Champion (U17), British Champion (U17), Scottish indoor record holder (U17, 4.61m) and British outdoor record holder (U17 - 4.72m). In addition, Reuben is the 100m hurdles Scottish Champion (U17) and has also been nominated for the Athlete of the Year (U17).

The Mathematics Community Project Leaders have worked alongside two mathematics teachers to deliver mathematics qualifications to adult learners in the community. The pupils work alongside their adult learners every week to support them to achieve National Qualifications.

The Rowing Club Leaders lead more than twenty pupils across all year groups. They lead the club completely independently, with minimal input from teaching staff. They have also managed to secure funding to purchase indoor equipment to allow more pupils to have access at the same time. The leaders incorporate sports science content into training sessions.

Woodfarm High School

Aftab G is recognised for commitment to those who are vulnerable. He dedicated 300+ hours to volunteering at Barnardo's this year. He has worked with Thornliebank Together to tackle food insecurity & child poverty and gives his time to equalities & diversity work in Woodfarm High School.

Georgia G is an outstanding all-round athlete who has excelled in football. Whilst playing for Stamperland, Georgia was scouted by Celtic Women's Football Club. Georgia has been selected for the Scottish Schools U15 Women's team at the age of only 13. 

Nicola J is recognised for her inspiring determination. She has overcome significant health challenges to participate with flair in the life and work of the school throughout her school career.

The Charity Week Fundraising Group, worked together to raise £2558.84 for Islamic Relief. Fundraising efforts included a bake sale, a Pupils v Teacher quiz and Beat the Goalie. This is the largest amount raised by a state school in Scotland.