Clap for our Children
Celebrating our young people
At midday on Thursday 1 April 2021 pupils at Deer Park joined others across the county to congratulate themselves and all young people on their achievements during the pandemic. While a token gesture and expression our admiration, it was an occasion for us all to be a part of something greater than Deer Park and it was nicely timed to coincide with the end of a busy term.
‘It was a delight to say thank you to our young people in such a positive way and to listen to the applause ripple through the school. Teachers paused their lessons and support staff went outside to show their appreciation.’ Chiquita Henson, Head.
Dame Janet Trotter, Chair of Child Friendly Gloucestershire, launched the initiative, Clap for our Children and invited schools to participate. She had been moved to do so following the Bishop of Gloucester’s virtual youth voice event on Monday 15 March 2021, which Miss Hope, Head of Ethics and Computing, attended with 3 of our Year 9 pupils. Dame Janet wrote:
‘I was struck that as adults, many of us have not said ’thank you’ to our children and young people for all they have done and sacrificed during the past year. We have Clapped for our Carers. We have Clapped to celebrate the life of Captain Sir Tom Moore. Now we ask that you Clap for our Children. It is a chance for us to show them how much we appreciate what they have done.’
Child Friendly Gloucestershire recognise how much children have been through over the last 12 months: they are the first generation to be confined to their homes, have their freedoms taken away and not be able to play with their friends.
Dame Janet Trotter asked that ‘all schools stop for just one minute to mark the moment and that children to give themselves a round of applause.’
Mr Clutterbuck, Deputy Head at Deer Park, managed the event and commented 'As soon as I rang the bell, I heard applause erupt from the English corridor. I joined a Year 8 classroom and it was lovely to see the faces of the pupils as we all clapped; the applause from the pupils for each other was really heartfelt. We’re very proud of our young people at Deer Park.'
Mr Bellamy, Assistant Head, said ‘I was in a Teams meeting with representatives from Gloucestershire County Council and when I heard the applause start, we paused our meeting and colleagues online joined in our clap for our children.’
'Wow!! As I left the PLC at 12 noon I was welcomed in the corridor with the uplifting and very moving sound of clapping coming from classrooms around the school. This was surprisingly very emotional to hear, but also left me with a very warm feeling.' Mrs Dobson, Cover Supervisor
‘I clapped for the children because I believe they have been so resilient during this time.’ Mrs Bond, Librarian.
Mrs Reynolds, Year 8 Year Leader: 'Each Year Leader is biased towards their own year group but I am so proud of how well my current Year 8s have coped with all the changes and uncertainty due to the COVID pandemic. They started Deer Park in September 2019 and then spent half of Year 7 working from home. They managed incredibly well in September when we returned to school and I've really enjoyed getting to know them. It was so disappointing for them to be working from home again after Christmas but they understood why it was necessary and once again they've bounced back. I am so proud of them all.'
Comments from some of our Year 9 pupils:
‘I was glad we have been remembered even if we don’t do as much as the NHS.’ Nigel
‘I think we should also clap for our parents because of what they do for us behind the scenes.’ Timothy
‘It hasn’t been good for our mental health because it has made us feel isolated.’ Keira
‘It was nice because it made us feel appreciated.’ Bradley
‘COVID has made me feel sad. It has made me realise how lucky we were when we were allowed to go out.’ Angelina
I am just pleased to be back in school. I enjoy it. There are too many distractions at home!’ Jasper
‘Everyone clapping for you made you feel appreciated for all your hard work.’ Olivia