Here is Katie's speech from our Opening Event on 30 January 2014:
Let me tell you about my experiences at Halcyon London International School.
I believe that education is very important because it gives us so many opportunities. Also, it teaches us more about the world that we live in.
Being a founding student has been a truly amazing experience; you are involved with so many decisions in the school! The students were even included in creating the school's values and the main guiding principle. We were inspired by Mahatma Ghandi and chose to be guided by his belief, "be the change you want to see in the world." Going through this process and contributing at this level is great because you feel so much more connected to the school and everyone in it.
One of our main priorities at this school is finding ways we can be productive, active citizens. I love that Halcyon has such a big focus on community and service. It was one of the first clubs to be established and comes up with meaningful projects where you can see the positive affect you can have way past your everyday life.
It is really easy to organize clothing drives and fundraising events, and there are always teachers and other students who are more than willing to help you with whatever cause you decide to support. For example, before the winter break almost all of the school participated in a crafts fair where we each made a unique product to sell to the parents, teachers and other students. All the proceeds went to Great Ormond Street Hospital and Stonewall UK.
In addition, I really like all the extra-curricular opportunities. I am an active member of the debate club, and I love it because each week we debate new and interesting topics like banning boxing and enforcing curfews. And the teacher who runs it, Ms. Dutton, really loves debating herself and is always giving us tips on how to improve our technique. I never knew I could argue so well against what I actually personally think. We’ve even done a school-wide debate were we debated all day in a competition.
Overall, coming to Halcyon was a great decision. I've made so many new friends and am learning so much. Halcyon is unlike every other school I've been to because everyone is incredibly enthusiastic and involved in trying to make this a great school.