SMILE Week 2021

Jan 24, 2022




As COVID-19 had curtailed our usual autumn SMILE extravaganza in 2020, the Senior Student Team were emphatic that SMILE Week should return in 2021.

The usual activities of Vandyke’s Got Talent and the enterprising activities of the Sixth Form tutor groups were reminiscent of previous years. Some outstanding performances in Vandyke’s Got Talent kept the audience entertained all week and it was Sixth Form band ‘The Band Without A Name’ who took away the prize.

Cash rolled in from tutor groups thanks to cake and confectionary sales, the ‘Name the Bear’ challenge and raffles.  Friday saw high demand for Krispy Kreme donuts which sold out rapidly. The fundraising activities continued into the second week with game teachers willing to take a wet sponge in freezing conditions in the name of charity.

There is always a keenly fought battle for whichever tutor group has generated the most income and the accolade this year went to 12JTN whose  fashion show was a delight. This initiative was a masterclass in project management and collaboration with the tutor group working hard to realise Kian Callahan’s initial vision. Alfie Pickard as chief salesman said ‘This has been a great experience, and raising over £100 for the charity feels like a real result!’

As ever, Sixth Form students were encouraged to dress up in themes including ‘Best of British’  ‘Twosday’ (famous pairs) and Initials (where students had to dress up as something with the same initial as theirs). Notable mentions have to go to Ben Ayling as Winston Churchill, Bailey Janes as Ali G and Georgia Miller as Vicki Pollard – although it has to be said that Jared Walsh’s Amy Winehouse is scorched into the memory.

This was our first post-COVID SMILE Week and the Senior Student Team had to carefully plan the week. They learned how to work effectively as a team, to plan events in a global pandemic (!) whilst generating interest through advertising and publicity. We are about to recruit our new Senior Student Team from the current Year 12 and it will be their challenge to improve on this year’s event. Whilst the team didn’t reach their target of £3K they did raise £2700. When added to money raised from the non-uniform days in 2020 & 2021 we will be able to donate another £4,500  to SMILE Malawi Orphanage founder Elspeth Baecke when she visits the school later this year.

Thank you to everyone who took part.

Mrs Quinn, Director of Sixth Form

Post by Angela