I first joined Ratcliffe in Year 3 and stayed until the end of Year 4. My family was then relocated to Switzerland where I stayed for 2 more years. However, it became very clear to me that I preferred to continue my education at Ratcliffe, so I came back to join the senior school in Year 7. That is when I first joined boarding, and I have now been here for 5 years.
When I first came to Ratcliffe, I had previously lived in France, with a French mother and English father. Therefore, I completely understood English however, speaking it was a different challenge.
The teachers and students helped me develop my language skills a lot and made me feel very welcome.
I love boarding at Ratcliffe, there is always so much to do during the week, such as go to the gym or simply hang out with other students and staff. The weekends are the most enjoyable, thanks to all the trips we have been able to go on. Going to places such as Alton Towers and visiting York, I feel like it helped me discover the UK in a way I hadn’t done previously.
Joining a new school can often be scary, I have done it three times, but I always felt like Ratcliffe was the most welcoming. Particularly when joining boarding, at first you may be scared but without a doubt someone will approach you and you will become friends. It may take time but the friends you make will always be there for you. You always have the support of every teacher in boarding, no matter the subject they will always listen to what you have to say.
Sport is a big part of my life and I am very interested in hockey; I have played for the Ratcliffe team since Year 7 which then gave me the opportunity to join the team for Leicestershire. It was a privilege to play with that team for a few years. Training with the senior teams at Ratcliffe this year has helped me develop my skills and learn from the older students and listen to the advice they had to offer. It is a sport that requires teamwork, so you have to get to know your team which has also benefitted me personally.
Staying away from family is the hardest part, however, with the family you create in boarding you will very quickly feel comfortable, it’s like a home from home.
Since a young age I have always admired the people of the Combined Cadet Forces, I felt they looked very smart in their uniforms. So, when the time came to join, I did so without a second thought and haven’t regretted it since. I am a member of the RAF section which has given me the opportunity to go flying! When I was up in the air, my instructor gave me control of the plane for a few minutes and it was truly amazing. I also feel that the CCF teaches discipline and has helped me develop my leadership skills which hopefully will be useful in my future.
I plan to stay at Ratcliffe to complete my A levels. I will be studying maths, physics, economics and Spanish. Hopefully, that will give me the opportunity to attend university to get a potential degree in engineering.
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