The Roman Ridge School (TRRS) has surpassed its own record-breaking performance in the Queen’s Commonwealth Essay Competition.
TRRS pupils were awarded an astounding 163 medals after participating in the 2019 edition of the essay competition making it the highest number of medals received by any school in Ghana. TRRS has also topped the overall tables in this prestigious international writing competition for the past five (5) years in a row.
The Queen’s Commonwealth Essay Competition is the world’s oldest schools’ international writing competition, managed by The Royal Commonwealth Society since 1883. Every year, it offers all Commonwealth youth aged 18 and under the opportunity to express their hopes for the future, opinions of the present, and thoughts on the past through the written word.
The competition is used to build confidence, develop writing skills, support creativity and encourage critical thinking, using literacy to empower young people to become global citizens.
In 2019, over 12,000 young people from across the Commonwealth nations took part, submitting entries around the general theme, ‘A Connected Commonwealth’.
TRRS’s performance in this internationally acclaimed competition remains unmatched in Ghana, and arguably across West Africa and the continent as a whole, earning the highest number of medals in the country, every year for the past five (5) years:
2015 23 medals 9 Gold, 7 Silver & 7 Bronze
2016 19 medals 8 Gold, 6 Silver & 5 Bronze (only school in Ghana awarded Gold)
2017 21 medals 6 Gold, 5 Silver & 10 Bronze
2018 64 Medals 21 Gold, 14 Silver & 29 Bronze
2019 163 MEDALS 4 GOLD FINALISTS, 20 GOLD, 51 SILVER & 88 BRONZE
More than 100 judges, drawn from 40 different countries, assessed entries across every region of the Commonwealth. A total of 923 medals were awarded for entries from Africa with 163 awarded to TRRS pupils.
The RCS has confirmed that TRRS has won the most medals overall in Ghana for 2019, and the most medals in each of the four categories. Across all Commonwealth nations, only 140 children in total received Gold Finalist Awards, with their work being forwarded for consideration by the Final Panel for the Global Award. Judges commented on the skill and talent shown by many of the young writers, with entries described as ‘massively memorable’ and ‘very powerful’.
On Monday, December 9, 2019, the school hosted a Special Awards Ceremony to celebrate the participants and medal winners of the 2019 competition. The Akwaaba Dancers (Junior Troupe), TRRS’s Traditional Dance Group welcomed an impressive group of Dignitaries and Special Guests to the occasion, with a colourful display of Ghanaian Cultural Dance & Music.
Dr. Frank B. Adu Jnr (Chairman, TRRS Board of Directors) congratulated the pupils on their record-breaking performance, stating that, ‘These awards are a testament to our ongoing literacy programme, which aims to promote basic literacy, Digital & Computer literacy, as well as Public Speaking, and is interwoven into all aspects of learning at TRRS. It has long been our view that without these vital literacy skills, a young learner is held back at every stage of their life. Indeed, without these skills they won’t be able to attain their full potential at school, in the workplace and the wider world.’
TRRS was thrilled to welcome Mrs. Claire Walker (Wife of His Excellency Iain Walker – British High Commissioner to Ghana) to the Special Awards Ceremony again this year.
In her Special Address on behalf of the British High Commissioner, Mrs. Walker congratulated TRRS pupils for their outstanding achievement in this prestigious international competition.
She reminded all in attendance how important education is to developing a globally-minded child; one who communicates well, is knowledgeable, thinks critically and is not afraid to ask difficult questions.
Mrs. Valerie Mainoo (TRRS Principal) commended her pupils for always rising to the challenge and congratulated all of them for their outstanding performance again this year.
She also seized the opportunity to recognise all of the English Teachers across the whole school, calling each of them up on stage and to express the school’s appreciation for all their hard work and unwavering commitment to excellence, year after year.
A delegation from the Royal Commonwealth Society (RCS), the organisers of the Queen’s Commonwealth Essay Competition, attended the programme and was led by Ms. Francoise Lubanda (Country Director of RCS).
Ms. Lubanda, praised TRRS for their performance in the 2019 competition and their consistently outstanding results in this globally prestigious writing competition, year after year.
She extended apologies from RCS Special Ambassador, Kwesi Arthur (singer/rapper), who was unfortunately unable to attend the Awards Ceremony as planned.
Kwesi Arthur visits TRRS in May 2019
In his place, he sent a special video message of congratulations to the pupils which was played, much to the delight of all in attendance.
Kwesi Arthur visited TRRS earlier in the year (May 2019) to meet personally with pupils, congratulate them on their exceptional performance over the years and encourage them to keep up the great work.
Finally, Rev. Dr. Joyce R. Aryee (Chair of TRRS Academic Board of Governors) closed the Special Awards Ceremony with a moving message about the importance of collaboration and teamwork between Parents & Teachers, for the ultimate benefit of our children.
She extended her heartfelt congratulations to the pupils, their teachers and families on this milestone achievement during her Closing Remarks, before closing the programme with a special prayer.
Gold Medal Finalists Cutting Cake with Dignitaries