Festival of Sport 2015
With approximately 400 children from the Jersey, Guernsey and the UK competing over a 5-day period, St. Michael’s Festival of Sport is one of the pinnacles of the Sporting calendar. Not only for St. Michael’s Preparatory School, but several UK Preparatory Schools who attend year on year to take part in Football, Netball, Indoor Hockey and Rugby 7’s Tournaments
Festival of Sport – An overview – Events / Ethos
St. Michael’s Festival of Sport is one of the pinnacles of the Sporting calendar. Not only for St. Michael’s Preparatory School, but several UK Preparatory Schools who attend year on year to take part in Football, Netball, Indoor Hockey and Rugby 7’s Tournaments
These key tournaments are interspersed with ‘friendly’ fixtures that involve local Jersey Schools and UK schools that have become part of the fabric of the week.
The entire school team from the Maintenance and Catering crews, Office staff, the PE Department and Senior Management Team, work as a well oiled machine to bring all the facets of a busy week together. The support of local media and businesses and crucially the staff, children and parents at St. Michael’s spectating at some of the events adds extra magic to the festival as they cheer the school on!
The week begins with the early arrivals of some schools on the Tuesday who pitch themselves into Netball and Football fixtures against Island opposition as well as a few traditional UK match-ups.
Wednesday morning is filled with hockey fixtures or touring the island before the boys ‘Cook Cup ‘ football tournament or local netball fixtures. A three-tier football competition is held at Grainville sports pitches. It is a great opportunity to get schools together and include all the touring boys teams in a relaxed ‘curtain raiser’ before the main events on Thursday and Friday. Despite its friendly nature, competition is fierce! There’s always plenty to talk about at the Headmaster’s Welcome reception in the evening!
The Main Events;
Thursday sees the festival in full swing with individual girls and boys Indoor Hockey competitions that occupy the entire Gloucester Hall for the day at Fort Regent. Hundreds of children raise their game in a uniquely quick format over the whole day with the girls playing in the morning and the boys rounding off the hockey in the afternoon.
Friday morning is shopping, sightseeing and relaxing before the Friday festival Finale. Rugby 7’s for the boys at the Rugby pitches at St. Michael’s and Netball for the girls’ UK and Jersey schools at the fantastic Indoor facility at Les Ormes.
The Final Whistle;
This is great preparation for the End of Tour Disco for the children and a chance for staff to catch up and reminisce about memories made and friendships rekindled alongside new sporting links that evolve during the week.
Friday evening also provides the platform for the England Schools A&B XV Rugby Selection Committee to meet. Made up from UK schools rugby staff, select teams are chosen to take on the might of two combined Jersey Schools Select Representative A&B XV’s at St. Michael’s on Saturday morning.
This is a fitting end to a week that encompasses appreciation, respect and traditional values that we hold dear at St. Michael’s. In a wider context, the festival fosters opportunities for squad members and the wider school community to experience new challenges and learn lifelong lessons through a rich culture of sporting and personal challenges. The camaraderie that evolves from the festival ensures fantastic relationships with our guests. They have become our colleagues, friends and share the same core values (and a fair helping of good natured rivalry!). The children pick up on that and at St. Michael’s, this holistic approach underlines what values true sport and indeed life should encompass in an ever-changing world.