Herts & Essex High School named English-Speaking Union's Oracy School of the Year and receives its Oracy Culture Award
Herts and Essex High School has been named the English-Speaking Union's Oracy School of the Year and won a national award from the international organisation.
The ESU’s Oracy Culture Award is the only national honour that recognises and celebrates schools that place oracy – the ability to express oneself fluently and grammatically in speech – at the heart of their curriculum.
In a year when schools and policymakers have increasingly recognised the importance of a high-quality oracy provision, the ESU said that it was “delighted to celebrate the wide range of activities, interventions and opportunities” available to students at the Bishop’s Stortford secondary school.
As for the ESU’s Oracy School of the Year title, the judges’ unanimous decision recognised activities that include everything from weekly upper school debates and student-led assemblies to ethical debates on science and healthcare, and spoken reviews for World Book Day.
As part of the Oracy Culture Prize, on Wednesday November 1 the school welcomed Elise, a coach from the ESU, who delivered a bespoke ‘Discover Your Voice’ workshop to Year 12 debating enrichment group and lower school Youth Speaks teams.
A spokeswoman for the Warwick Road school said: “It was a great day of debate and oracy where students had to think (literally) on their feet and wrestle with some in-depth and fascinating topics.”