On Wednesday 21 October 2020 the Leeds United Foundation visited Mount St Mary’s to speak to our Year 9 students. The Positive Choices Event included guest speakers from a number of different ethnic and social backgrounds who came to share their life stories with our young people. They gave detailed descriptions of the setbacks they have had during their lives and discussed how those setbacks seriously affected their thought processes and future decisions they made.

Some delivered the session by way of the spoken word, others just told us their compelling stories, but all engaged fantastically well with the audience and actively encouraged participation. Each session identified how actions have consequences and discussed how the choices an individual has made can continue to have a serious impact on their lives and that of their families and friends.

The speakers were a combination of victims and perpetrators of crime. Some were gang members, others were victims of serious sexual offences. The students also heard from victim’s families including a mother who had tragically lost her son.

The students were left with plenty to think about and we would like to thank Leeds United Foundation and Mr Coluccio for organising the event.

After the event we received the following thanks on behalf of the Leeds United Foundation:

On behalf of Leeds United I would like to thank you and all the staff at Mount St Mary’s for hosting such an amazing event on Wednesday.

What was so incredible was that in such challenging times all the staff were so welcoming, polite, patient, and professional. They really were a credit to the school.

I would also like to pay tribute to the Year 9 students, they were nothing short of amazing. The level of respect, engagement, sympathy shown to all the Guest Speakers was humbling. You could hear a pin drop during the presentations and yet each session helped to create lively, honest, and respectful debate during the “reflection” sessions. Truly inspiring. They were all a huge credit to your school and testament to all the staff who obviously care so much about them.

But if I may I would like to say a special thanks for believing in the Guest Speakers and being so enthusiastic, caring, and non-judgemental. Thank you. I know ALL the Guest Speakers and visitors were delighted with how the day had gone and are really looking forward to returning to Mount St Mary’s in the future.

Thank you