The results are in…

KATHERINE BURT-ROBINSON

For the first time in thirty years, two girls shared the ‘First-on-year’ award. From the left Katherine Burt-Robinson and Jasca de Abreu in Grade 12. Photo E Ndwere

The results of the 2020 matric final exams are in, and for the 41st year in a row, St Michael’s is celebrating a 100% matric pass rate. The school also managed to obtain an 89,5% bachelor’s pass, and seven students achieved 3 distinctions.

Every year after results are released, the school hosts a Matric Achievers’ Assembly for the learners who obtained four or more distinctions. This year, the assembly was attended by the matrics only, and the star of the show was Jessica Chuang, who finished her matric year with seven distinctions.

The matric achievers receive a pendant to remember SMS by and to wear with pride. The pendant is circular, symbolising the journey of a learner through her school career, and how it comes full circle when they finish matric. Engraved on the pendant is Psalm 91, which tells of the protection offered to those who dwell in the shelter of the Lord.

When asked what kept her motivated through the final months of matric, Jessica replied, “I’m going to be truthful and tell you that, towards the end of the year, the aspect of finishing this whole thing and being done with the worst of it is what kept most of us going to the end.” She also found motivation in the goals she set for herself before Covid-19 struck, “We all started the year with our own goals. Imagine being able to achieve what you wanted at the beginning of the year when you didn’t think there would be a pandemic, but being able to achieve those things in a pandemic, how great and how awesome it would be for yourself. That type of personal motivation is what would push you to the end.”

Jessica claims that the key to her success was having supportive friends who she could go to whenever she needed a pick-me-up or a shoulder to cry on. “There were times when I was like ‘This is too hard, I don’t want to do this anymore’, but I had friends around me that would always make me laugh through the tears and tell me I could do it”. She also says that she found encouragement from teachers that helped her; “Having teachers that tell you how to get better, as opposed to just telling you to work harder next time, was really helpful”.

In a speech addressed to the matric class of 2021, Jessica encouraged learners to work hard and study well. She thanked the staff for their efforts, without which she wouldn’t have been able to do so well. She closed her speech with a reminder to this year’s matric class: “Matric 2021, you can and you will”.

Jessica will be studying Law at the University of Cape Town, and the St Michael’s family wishes her all the best as she embarks on this new journey in her life.

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