Speech Day celebrates the Leaving Class of 2020

“Close your eyes and imagine the TCS campus…”

It was a Speech Day unlike any before in the history of Trinity College School, as the school community gathered online to watch the annual Senior School prize giving and graduation ceremony on Friday, June 19th. With students spread around the globe and campus closed due to COVID-19, Headmaster Stuart Grainger opened the video presentation speaking directly to members of the Leaving Class, asking them to imagine being back at the School, under the big tent, celebrating their last day of high school with staff, faculty, family and friends.

While no presentation could capture the same sensation as Speech Day on campus, a team of faculty and staff worked together to create a fitting tribute to the graduating class, as well as students in Grades 9 through 11 who were recognized with various awards and prizes for co-curricular and academic achievement, leadership, commitment and contributions to daily life at TCS.

Head Prefects Roselle Torres and David Pitcairn provided a touching address on behalf of the graduating class, expressing their gratitude to the school community and to families who have supported the students along the way. They reminded the younger students to cherish their time at TCS and said, “Take this opportunity to explore your interests and to discover yourself.” David and Roselle shared the Bronze Medal in honour of their commitment to their leadership roles.

In addition to student recognition, Headmaster Grainger also reflected on three long-term staff members who are departing at the end of this academic year. Faculty member Chris Robert (social sciences) will retire after 35 years at TCS, and David McCart ’67 retires after 27 years of service to the School’s fundraising and alumni programs. Director of Athletics Tim White will be leaving TCS after 32 years, to take on the lead role at the Conference of Independent Schools Athletic Association. Additionally, three staff members in the philanthropy & alumni office were recognized for 25 years of service to the School: Tricia Mandryk, Jennifer Agnew-Pople and Rick Traugott.

The highlight of the ceremony was the chance to honour the Grade 12 class on its graduation. Heads of each house, from wherever they are located in the world, proudly read out the names of the graduates in their house. Prior to the Speech Day video, graduating families were given exclusive access to a recording of the Leaving Class Chapel Service, filmed partially in Memorial Chapel, and also featuring Canon Don Aitchison, who is currently deployed in his role with the Canadian Forces. Along with readings and hymns, the service included a reflection by the head prefects and performances by Grade 12 graduate Acassia Arnaud (vocal) and William Zhang (piano), as well as a musical tribute to the grads from faculty and staff.

And the day was capped off with the traditional video tribute to the graduates, which would normally play during brunch on Speech Day. Compiled by the admissions office, the video captured all of the graduates in moments from their time at TCS.

Thank you to our graduates, for their resilience in the face of a challenging year. We look forward to welcoming you all back to campus next May to celebrate together, in person!

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